March 12, 2005

What you didn't know about salt. Apparently, table salt is going to kill us all.

My gut reaction to websites like this is to point and laugh. But a friend sent this link to me in all seriousness, and so I share it with you monkeys.

  • They say well-harvested seasalt tastes much better. Yeah, that would be enough for me to switch. Tastes better, may or may not be better for you, but certainly not worse. No reason not to change if I can.
  • NaCl is NaCl. All those other elements you can get from a decent diet.
  • So, you're saying we should take this article with a grain of ... oh, never mind.
  • My first thought on skimming the page was how much crap we dump into the ocean and how bad most of it is for us. In particular, this Gulf Coast native thought "Mercury is an element". I don't recall sea salt being a big factor in the Pirenne I read, but I can't claim a comprehensive knowledge of his works. I recommend Mark Kurlanksy's Salt for any monkey interested in a pop history of salt that they don't have to take with that proverbial grain.
  • Dihydrogen monoxide will kill us all.
  • Not sure about the science, but as a cook, sea salt makes a big difference in flavor. Many chefs prefer the larger size crystals, but I've been happy with the Hain iodized table sea salt from my grocer's granola section. Ordinary salt tastes more harshly salty to me now. Sea salt to my palate is slightly milder and slightly more complex. Worth the extra money in any case, about a dollar more for six months worth, and I cook nearly every day. I, too, have worried about what extra chemical goodies may be in the sea salt I buy. Does anyone know of any analyses which may have been done on this? So far as iodized vs. not, get a full blood chemistry test spread done whenever you get a checkup, including thyroid function among many other things. Doesn't cost that much more even if it's out of your own pocket, and can catch many conditions early enough to treat. That'll tell you which salt to buy. My last thyroid chemistry was normal so I'm sticking to what I had been using, which was iodized.
  • At first... FACT - No one can live without these. Mainstream medicine too often ignores 2 & 3 in favor of selling drugs and procedures to treat the symptoms of dehydration. And then.... FACT - Health care makes big bucks by selling a quart of water with salt in it (Saline 4) for up to $350.00 installed, but won't tell the patients they do indeed need more water and salt in their diets. Price aside, these two seem a bit contradictory. Plus, what does "$350 installed" mean?
  • "Installed" means using a saline drip in an IV, I suspect. Personally, I use Kosher salt, because of the shape. You don't have to use as much of it to achieve your taste, because it's a larger flake and doesn't dissolve quite as quickly into the food. Plus, it's very easy to distribute over your food. I might do sea salt at some point, but by and large I don't, because of the extra cost. Yup, there'll be plenty of other minerals in it to alter the flavor, and I'm sure they're tasty tasty, but I'm happy with the price-to-flavor ratio of kosher salt.
  • for up to $350.00 installed Taxes and acquisition fees not included. Must take delivery from dealer stock. As far as unrefined sea salt, I'll take hyperthyroidism over mercury poisining any day.
  • rocket88: All table salt in New Zealand is iodised to compensate for iodine deficiencies in the soil (hence limited uptake in plants, and ultimately humans). So while it may be true where you live, it isn't here.
  • It's the same here.
  • well, you can buy the non-iodized kind too, at least in the US.
  • A salty death is deserved by many. I can't understand the amount of white death crystals so many people cavalierly throw on their food, which would actually taste good if they took some care in preparing it instead of suffocating it with salt. I'm a sea salt person, too, or kosher. We also have a stash of fleur de sel on hand. That's the expensive stuff, but well worth it once in a while.