Sodium is not the Enemy
For years, we have been told more than once that sodium is a Human Enemy. The general population was consuming far more than the recommended amount of 2300 mg (for adults 50 and below) and 1500 mg for those over 50. It was widely believed that an excess of sodium created health problems including hypertension and heart disease. With this news, many severely restricted their sodium intake. Many of the changes people made in their diets were beneficial for overall health including restricting or eliminating processed and fast food, both notorious for containing ridiculous amounts of sodium. Sodium-free seasonings were born and health-conscious consumers paid attention to the sodium content on nutrition labels.
Growing up, we used salt on everything. As we grew older, we became more concerned about our health, and like millions of Americans, we restricted our consumption of salt. But we missed what salt does to food. The truth is, salt makes or breaks a dish.
Salt lovers can now rejoice a little bit. A recent study conducted by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), commissioned by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, stated that scaling back to 1,500 milligrams may not be necessary. A lower sodium diet can reduce blood pressure, but a diet too low in sodium can increase cholesterol and insulin resistance.
Unrefined vs. Refined Salt
Unrefined salt means it hasn’t been touched by man and all the original minerals and nutrients are in tact. Refined salt contains only two minerals, sodium and chlorine. Natural, unrefined sea salt contains 92 essential minerals. Cells need trace elements to control their ions; a deficiency can create dire consequences within our bodies. Unrefined salts have a shorter shelf life so keep that in mind when purchasing quantities.
Health Benefits of Salt
- Salt is a natural antihistamine
- Sodium is required to keep your stomach at a proper pH level. Proper acid level in the stomach is essential for good digestion.
- Salt lowers adrenalin spikes
- Salt improves sleep quality. Salt suppresses stress hormones.
- Adequate salt consuming contributes to a healthy weight and fast metabolism
- As we mentioned above, salt makes food taste better. Salt can even make brussels sprouts taste good!
Salt has gone gourmet and is not just “Morton” anymore. There are sweet, savory, spicy and exotic salts with which to cook and finish food. Some of our favorites include Hawaiian Red Sea Salt and Fleur de Sol. We invite you to visit us and spend some time at our “Salt Wall.” We have several varieties available for tasting.
Susan and Bridget