Salt is a crystalline compound known as sodium chloride, it is a mineral, a component of seawater, and used for seasoning food, and as a preservative.
Sounds simple right? It should be easy for the average consumer to choose a salt for their cooking and baking needs; however nothing is ever that simple. Many popular television shows with doctors and chefs say they prefer a certain salt over another, that sea salt and Himalayan salts are more pure and less processed. So let’s decipher between the two:
Table salt is mined from underground salt deposits and then processed to give it a fine texture that is easy to use in recipes. This process strips the salt of its minerals and an anti-clumping additive is supplemented. Most table salt has added iodine, an essential nutrient to help maintain a healthy thyroid and prevent the iodine deficiency disease goiter.
Sea Salt is found directly from the evaporation of seawater with little to no processing depending on its source. Trace minerals and elements are left behind providing a variety of color/flavor/coarseness.
While many of sea salts attributes may be appealing and trendy, there is no real health benefit to using this product over another. In fact, table salt and sea salt both have the same basic nutritional value: 40% sodium.
Whichever salt you choose for your home, remember, do so in moderation. The American Heart Association recommends only 1500 mg of sodium daily and the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend limiting sodium to less than 2,300 mg daily for healthy individuals with no other pre-existing conditions.