Sea Salt vs. Table Salt
There is not a lot of difference between sea salt and table salt as they have an almost identical chemical structure and sodium content. A survey was conducted recently by the American Heart Association which reported that over sixty per cent of respondents had the wrong notion that sea salt is an alternative to table salt because of its low sodium content.
Both of these types of salts have about forty per cent sodium content by weight. Some sea salts, particularly kosher salts have larger size of crystals than the table salt and they may have less sodium content by volume comparison.
Preference for Sea Salts
Sea salt has become popular in the last few decades and you will come across it more frequently on the supermarket shelves and in the restaurants. Many chefs who are gourmet experts prefer it over table salt mainly because of its crunchy texture and strong, coarse flavor. Several manufacturers are using sea salt in potato fries and many other snacks and flaunt it as `all natural’. It is certainly less processed than the table salt. Many consumers who are conscious about their health select sea salt as it possesses minerals such as magnesium.
The key to good health is in their low intake
One of the important keys for maintaining a healthy diet for the heart is to keep the intake of sodium to a low level and controlling it. Some people may consume more sea salt thinking that it has got less sodium content may be placing themselves at a high risk of developing hypertension and various heart ailments. One plus point in favour of table salt is that manufacturers add iodine as an essential nutrient and this keeps the thyroid healthy; but, at the same time, if table salt is consumed in excess, it will lead to nausea, headaches and disturbed hormone levels.
How are they processed?
Sea salt is gathered directly through the process of sea water evaporation. It is also collected from salt water lakes. It is generally not processed or goes through very minimal processing. This is the reason it tends to retain magnesium levels and traces of calcium and potassium.
Table salt is derived after mining from the salt deposits and it is then processed to come out with a fine texture. It is easier to mix in other foods or use in recipes. The minerals are stripped while processing and additives are then added to avoid caking or clumping. These attributes of table salt make many people prefer sea salt from the standpoint of marketing. However, it has to be noted that there no bona fide health advantages to be attained by consuming sea salts.
The major differences between sea salt and table salt can be found in their texture, taste and in the manner they are processed. Based on the source of water, sea salt will contain certain traces of elements and minerals. These minerals will add flavour and a distinct colour to sea salts and they may also be available in various coarse textures.
What are your thoughts? Which salt do you prefer to always have in the kitchen and use in your delicious cooking? Let us know below.