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The benefits of sea salt

The many benefits of sea salt are seldom appreciated these days. Few people realise the important roles that salt plays in supporting health - and life.

Think about it... what do hospitals do when a person is too ill to eat anything? They put the person on a saline drip. They give salt water to keep the person alive! That's how important salt is.

Instead of the benefits of sea salt, people are constantly reminded of the "dangers" of salt in causing high blood pressure and other heart diseases, like stiffening of the arteries and stroke.

People are advised to reduce their salt intake. Some, on their own initiative, even avoid salt altogether by seasoning their food with strange concoctions like "liquid animo", which is described as "soy sauce without salt".

This is a shame. Because salt makes food tasty and enjoyable. It is also dangerous. While too much salt may be bad for health, too little salt - or worse still, no salt - will make a person weak and, eventually, sick.

More impoortantly, we should understand that the so-called dangers of salt actually apply to refined "table" salt, not natural sea salt. In this series of articles, I will explain more about:

Benefits of sea salt - sodium

First, let's look closer at the benefits of sea salt... Salt itself is responsible for regulating the body's fluid balance, that is, the content of fluid in the cells of the body. This is crucial. Too little water and we dry up (dehydrate) and die. Too much fluids in the cells will, initially, bloat the cells, weaken the protective cells walls and make our cells vulnerable to virus attack. Ultimately, it will cause out cells to break up. W

The biggest component of salt - whether natural sea salr or refined salt - is sodium chloride. Sodium is commonly portrayed as the "bad guy" that causes high blood pressure. Yet sodium plays one of the most important roles in supporting health. It imparts the greatest benefits.

In regulating the body's fluid balance, sodium is present in the fluid between cells or "extracellular fluid" while potassium is present mainly inside the cells. The balance of these two elements ensure the integrity of our cells so that nutrients can enter and waste can be discharged.

Benefits of sea salt for the heart and nerves

Sodium is also necessary for the contraction of our muscles. This is not just about lifting heavy weights. Remember, your heart is the body's most powerful and most important muscle that never stops working - until you die! Without sodium, your heart cannot pump.

So rather than being a "bad guy" that causes heart disease, sodium is actually necessary for the functioning of the heart. This is one of the greatest benefits of sea salt and salty foods.

In fact, a good dose of salt can actually save the life of a person suffering from heart failure, a condition where the heart is too weak to pump. In macrobiotic practice, a natural remedy for heart failure is one raw egg yolk (preferably of a fertilised egg) mixed with about equal amount of shoyu (soy sauce) and taken straight. I heard that the President of Rice Dream, an American company that produces rice-based beverages and dessert snacks, was saved from heart failure by this!

Muscle contraction, in turn, is controlled by the nervous system. And this is where another of the major benefits of sea salt lie. Both sodium and potassium in sea salt are necessary for nerve function. They enable the electrical signals to be sent throughout the body. This not only ensures body function but also makes us human - able to think, communicate and so on.

Benefits of sea salt - chlorine

Talk about salt usually focuses on sodium. Yet chloride - chemical compounds containing chlorine - actually make up the biggest component of salt, about 51 percent compared with 33 percent for sodium. Any discusssion about the benefits of sea salt should therefore also consider the role of chlorine in health.

Chlorine is normally highly toxic. But in small amounts, it is essential to the health of all like forms. Its role in salt is similar to that of sodium - regulate fhe fluid balance, acid-alkaline balance, nerve function, etc. In addition, Chlorine enhances immunity by helping the body to destroy harmful bacteria - but too much chlorine also ends up destroying helpful of friendly bacteria and suppressing immunity.

Benefits of sea salt - immunity

Helping immunity is, in fact, one of the most important benefits of sea salt. Here, the role of natural sea salt is both direct and indirect.

Salt directly destroys bacteria and viruses - which is why it works effectively as a perservative to prevent food from rotting. This has to do with the role of salt in balancing cell fluids. When bacteria cells are surrounded by a salty solution, the process of osmosis causes water to leave the cells and so the cells die. Of course, too much salt can cause healthy body cells to die in the same way. But when the body is just slightly salty, the harmful bacteria die first.

Click here to read more about the balance of salt and water and how it affects immunity.

Indirectly, the sodium, potassium and other minerals in salt contribute towards creating an alkaline condition in the body and bacteria and viruses do not thrive in such an alkaline condition. Salt also thickens the blood, further contributing to strong immunity.

Actually, all types of salt, including refined salt, produce these above effects. But it is only when you use natural sea salt, and use it properly, that you avoid high blood pressure and other problems that have been blamed on salt.

Moreover, natural sea salt has a much wider range of minerals - up to 80 or more, compared to refined salt which is just pure sodium chloride. Or worse, sodium chloride plus harmful chemical additives in the case of table salt. Click the following links to read more about the benefits of sea salt from potassium and other minerals like magnesium, iodine, etc.

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General discussions
Are you taking too much salt?
Benefits of sea salt
Nutrition of sea salt
Salt and high blood pressure
Sea salt vs table salt
Types of salt
Types of salt
Celtic salt and other unrefined sea salt
High potassium salts
Himalayan pink salt
Iodized salt
Kosher salt