Table salt is kosher salt that has been purified and made free of contaminants. Sea salt is seawater that has been evaporated. It's used mainly as a seasoning in cooking, baking, cosmetics and even for preserving foods. It's also known as baking salt or solar salt.
Like mined rock salt, however, production of sea salt goes back thousands of years. At first, it was harvested only from the coasts of the Pacific Ocean. Over time the differences between sea salt and table salt have emerged. Here are some of the differences you might not have known.
The most obvious difference between sea and table salt is the content of minerals. Each has naturally occurring minerals such as magnesium, calcium, zinc, and sodium. However, sea salt is the pure product of nature. It's often harvested from inland waters and therefore has significantly less of the metals and other impurities we find in commercial products. Sea salt is more nutritious than its table salt counterpart because the water contains a wide range of minerals that are good for us. One of its key benefits is its high availability.
There's another big difference between the two. As we all know, table salt can actually clog arteries and increase your risk of stroke and heart disease. Sea salt on the other hand has a much lower sodium content. Sodium is the substance in which we get sodium chloride which helps with our cardiovascular systems. It's the salt on your table that regulates our blood pressure.
Salt is also largely affected by dietary guidelines. A lot of people are now aware of the impact of sodium on their health. The problem is that dietary guidelines are largely based on advice from the government. There's no hard scientific evidence that showing lower sodium intake from foods or drugs can reduce your risk of stroke or heart attack. In fact, there is some evidence that suggests that salt increases your risks.
For instance, a study that was carried out at the Harvard Medical School found that people who opt to add table salt to their meals tend to eat more. This was true even if they were advised not to do so! Another study, this time by the Harvard Extension clinic, showed that women who chose to add sea salt to their diet lost more breast milk than women who did not. The salt apparently had a positive effect on the hormonal balance of the mother. Other experiments showed that kosher salt reduced levels of cholesterol and improved the insulin sensitivity of test animals.
The jury is still out on the exact benefits of sea salt but many people believe that eating an occasional serving of it has many beneficial effects. They also believe that it's a much better and healthier alternative to table salt. So if you want to take control of your diet and lose weight, then this is definitely a better option. It can't hurt to add a few spoonfuls into your favorite salads or use a spoonful as a topping on a pizza. You can see why this simple addition makes a world of difference in taste and nutrition.
You can find sea salt online, in health food stores, and in some supermarkets. Most health food stores have a few varieties on hand, especially if you are looking for the natural source of this mineral. Natural table salt tends to be slightly darker in color and less powdery. You can find many recipes that call for this type of sea salt and many recipes call for this salt in one form or another.