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Health and Nutrition Benefits Sea, Kosher and All Those Other Salts

Apr 2, 2018

Here at Freshly, we use sea salt in our meals because we love its strong flavor and coarse texture. We believe that healthy food doesn’t have to be bland, and sea salt is one ingredient that lets us bring taste to your plate.

Of course, the word “salt” brings with it a lot of debate, so below we break down the benefits of sea salt—and why we’re big fans.

What Are the Benefits of Salt?

This seasoning unfortunately gets a bad rap. If eaten in excess, yes, sodium could cause a spike in blood pressure and could potentially lead to heart disease. But when salt is enjoyed in moderation (helloooo, mini pretzels), your body can actually benefit from it. For starters, iodized salt contains iodine, which helps produce the thyroid hormone that keeps your thyroid in check. Salt can also be a saving grace when it comes to maintaining proper hydration which in turn keeps your electrolyte levels balanced. Studies have shown that eating the right amount of iodized salt (around 1,500 to 2,300mg a day) may combat bacteria and toxins. There are also a number of ailments that gargling salt water may help remedy, like a sore throat and canker sores. 

Is Sea Salt Healthier than Other Types of Salt?

Nope—in terms of its effect on blood pressure and heart health, sea salt isn’t any healthier than other types of salt. The sodium content of sea salt and table salt is the same (about 40 percent sodium by weight), according to the AHA.

That said, sea salt crystals tend to be larger than table salt, so they may have less sodium by volume (aka, by teaspoon or tablespoon) simply because fewer crystals fit on the spoon. So, if you measure your salt (versus salting to taste), you may ingest a little less.

In terms of vitamins and nutrients, the amount of minerals found in sea salt is minuscule compared to how much you’d get by eating foods like veggies, fruits, beans, nuts, and whole grains.

What About the Other Types of Salt?

Kosher Salt

Chicken noodle soup and kosher salt were made for each other. It’s a coarse cooking sea salt with no additives like iodine, and is exceptionally easy to control. The word kosher means “suitable for consumption” in Hebrew. You can learn more about the koshering process (where kosher salt is often used) here!

Iodized Salt

Iodized salt is a pantry staple. It’s a table salt that contains sodium iodide or potassium iodide. As we chatted about above, they’re added to salt to decrease iodine deficiency and bolster thyroid function. Although you can use it while whipping up your meals, it’s better suited for sprinkling on your dish to add more flavor as you see fit. 

Himalayan Salt

This pretty, pink salt is sourced in the South Asian Himalayan mountains. It actually trumps table salt when it comes to its mineral content, containing zinc, iron, calcium, and magnesium. Not only does it look nice sitting on your countertop, it can also elevate your cooking. Top your tomato and mozzarella salad, shake in a cocktail, or stir it into a creamy lemon pasta. 

How much salt is ok to eat?

The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends no more than 2,300 milligrams (mg) a day (that’s about 1 teaspoon of salt). Keep in mind that most of the sodium Americans consume comes from packaged goods and restaurant food so if you cut back on both, you’ll likely be in good shape.

Here at Freshly, we aim to average about 700 mg of sodium per meal (which is less than ⅓ of the FDA’s recommendation). Bon appetit!

Freshly delivers healthy, chef-developed meals weekly to make eating well easy and delicious. Check out our rotating menu.

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Health and Nutrition Benefits Sea, Kosher and All Those Other Salts