Salt and Sodium – Question the concerns of the medical establishment
High sodium diets and high blood pressure (hypertension) cause coronary problems, even heart attacks. This has been the medical consensus for a long time that points to table salt as the major culprit. But how accurate is this consensus really? There are a growing number of medical practitioners who disagree, and some epidemiological studies have shown this consensus if flawed.
Salt and Sodium Differences
Just as it is with the bulk of commercial food sources, the table salt you see everywhere is processed. The essential and trace minerals are removed almost completely. This leaves processed table salt with only tainted sodium chloride. Pure unprocessed sea salt, including Celtic and Himalayan salts, contain several basic and trace minerals that contribute to health.
Processing salt involves the use of aluminum, ferrocyanide and bleach. These toxic materials replace the healthy minerals in unrefined salt and add to the toxicity of your body. Iodine is barely added to refined table salt anymore. It had been commonly added because the naturally occurring iodine was removed with processing.
Dr. David Brownstein, author of Salt Your Way to Health, advocates using pure, unrefined salt. He is keen on restoring iodine levels in our thyroids for better overall endocrine health. Besides containing iodine, pure sea salt is a factor for better iodine absorption from other sources.
Sea salt also contains potassium, which is vital for regulating pH balance along with sodium and chloride. Yes, untainted sodium chloride is vital for health. Chloride also contributes to creating digestive acids. Pure salt contains magnesium, the master mineral that is involved with over 300 cellular metabolic actions. Sulfur and other nutrients are in sea salt as well (Celtic salt analysis, source below).
Understand the listed minerals need to harmonize and balance with each other for optimum health contributions. Removing any of them destroys the balance nature intended.
Low Sodium Diets
There have been several international studies, including one in the mid-1990s that was conducted in NYC, a hotbed for hypertension, for eight years. These studies did not confirm the medical consensus of pushing low sodium diets for lower blood pressure and less heart attacks.
What was discovered was either no influence or in the case of the NYC study, a fourfold increase in coronaries among the low sodium diet participants. Maybe the low sodium participants with higher coronary incidents weren’t aware of those other sodium compounds they were consuming with processed foods while eschewing table salt.
Within most processed or junk foods, there are other sodium combinations, such as sodium benzoate and mono-sodium glutamate (MSG). MSG has many aliases, making it tricky to notice the sodium word. Both of these are harmful additives. Yet when doctors recommend low sodium diets, the focus remains on seeing the words sodium chloride or salt on processed food labels.
The more dangerous sodium compounds are in those processed foods, along with processed salt or tainted sodium chloride without its balance of natural nutrients. The solution for all this is simple. Don’t eat processed or junk food, and sprinkle unrefined sea salt for seasoning to your heart’s content with basic whole foods without any form of added sodium.
Many of us use reverse osmosis to remove another toxic sodium compound, sodium fluoride, from our drinking water. But reverse osmosis removes a lot of natural minerals in the water. So many nutritional experts recommend adding a pinch of – sea salt!
Sea salt can be used liberally with a diet of mostly organic whole foods and purified water, not only for taste, but also for good health. Just shop for the best unprocessed, pure sea salt.