Diet Q&A: Is Sea Salt Better for You Than Table Salt?
It's quite common for health-conscious guys to reach for sea salt over the regular stuff. For one, it just seems healthier and more natural. Pink Himalayan sea salt in particular contains 84 minerals versus processed table salt, which is missing most of those minerals. But overall, the crunchier flakes are really no healthier than their finer counterparts. Angela Lemond, R.D.N., spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, broke it down for us.
What's the difference between sea salt and regular table salt?
Sea salt is just what you would imagine—salt from the ocean that's produced when sea water evaporates. The main difference between sea salt and regular table salt is texture. Both are equally high in sodium (about 40% sodium). Sea salt has a bit more mineral content, but nothing significant. The texture of sea salt may seemingly provide more flavor for the amount due to its ability to sit well on top of food.
There are different types of sea salt—for example, pink Himalayan sea salt. Is one kind healthier than the other?
Some salts have more mineral content, but in order to get significant minerals, you need more salt. With salt, you get more sodium. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans want us to keep our daily sodium <2,300mg/day for healthy adults and <1,500mg for anyone with a history of heart disease, high blood pressure, or diabetes. One teaspoon of salt contains about 2,300mg.
Should men be including sea salt in their diets regularly? Why or why not?
Because of its course texture, sea salt over regular table salt may add more flavor gram per gram. Because of this, a person may be able to reduce his sodium intake. The overall advice is to add as little additional salt to your food as possible. Instead, use fresh herbs, spices, and natural flavor enhancers like lemon and lime juice.