Wednesday’s Ask Dr. Walt — Take it With a Grain of Salt

Dear Dr. Walt,

Is sea salt healthier than table salt?

Looking for Good Nutrition in Nevada

Dear Briny,

One certainly cannot escape coming across sea salt most everywhere you go. It has boomed in popularity in restaurants and supermarkets. Chefs and consumers alike rave about coarse, crunchy texture and supposed stronger flavor. Many manufacturers are using because, they say, “Sea salt is all natural.” Some doctors even recommend sea salt because they say it contains minerals like magnesium.

But, according to the American Heart Association, “In one very important respect there’s usually little difference between the two: sodium content.” In a survey conducted by the American Heart Association, 61 percent of respondents incorrectly agreed that sea salt is a low-sodium alternative to table salt. Table salt and most sea salts contain about 40 percent sodium by weight.

Furthermore, according to the AHA, “There are no real health advantages of most sea salts. The minute amounts of trace minerals found in sea salt are easily obtained from other healthy foods.” But, and most importantly, “Sea salt also generally contains less iodine than table salt. Iodine has been added to table salt since the 1920s to prevent the iodine-deficiency disease goiter.”

So, take it from this old salt, take your choice.

This Q&A was originally published in the July 2016 edition of Today’s Christian Living.

© Copyright WLL, INC. 2016. This blog provides a wide variety of general health information only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from your regular physician. If you are concerned about your health, take what you learn from this blog and meet with your personal doctor to discuss your concerns.

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