Low-sodium. Low-salt. Un-salted. Naturally salt-free. Have you been trying to avoid the Morton’s? Have you absorbed the claims that salt is BAD for your heart health? BAD for you? Any confusion out there?
Rethink wellness with me, and let’s focus a moment on salt. My basis for ultimate truth (even health truth!) takes me back to the words of Jesus. He is quoted regarding salt. A very famous teaching of His directed followers to be the “salt of the earth”. Yet, we are told that our health will benefit if we limit/ avoid the salt shakers. Hmmm. Something the Lord used as a positive picture for His followers, now is labeled ultimately dangerous for the body. Definitely have a problem here!
Salt was traditionally used as money in the Roman days. Even our word for “salary” is originally dated back to its origin… the word for salt! Highly prized! Treasured minerals for living health… for livestock and humans alike. So it was always considered wildly favorable and desired. I began to wonder what had changed. My findings are shared eagerly with you…
If salt was historically such a remarkable gift… what have we done to salt to create these supposed problems for our present diet?
Here goes… I found out that our typical table salt is actually altered salt… refined salt… bleached salt. Think Morton’s cardboard cylinder. Here, again, we find that man’s attempt to create a great business model results in products that trickle down to radical damages in the human body! Typical table salt is actually bleached sodium chloride stripped bare and then joined with factory forced toxic additives to keep it from caking in the box. The sodium chloride has been highly heated (close to 1200 degrees fahrenheit) and thereby changed in its chemical state. Close to 80 valuable trace minerals have been mined away from the naturally occurring salt rocks, and these minerals are then sold elsewhere for other factory needs. The sodium chloride that is boxed and shelved for sale at the local supermarket is not even a naturally occurring product! (Sound familiar… think supermarket milk. supermarket sugar. supermarket orange juice. hear my big, disappointed sigh.)
I am learning to think about foods differently (hence this blog) and constantly asking questions these days about traditional foods. Contrary to popular beliefs, common sense indicates that salt simply cannot be so detrimental to our bodies if traditional cultures thrived while ingesting it for centuries. Of course, the body is brilliant! As it turns out, those naturally occurring trace minerals, which are removed in the processing of our table salts, really are vital to our health. We are, in fact, electrical beings and most of our electrolytes are found in these trace minerals along with the sodium. The natural balance of these minerals is exactly the balance that the body needs to establish and maintain health in the intricate nervous system and circulatory system! Another reason that digestive health is key to vitality! If you aren’t ingesting the foods, then you are not providing the tools for the entire body to flourish. The body cannot manufacture salt! It has to be provided!
Did you know that great, unadulterated salts are available? And it is not pure white afterall? Some of the most treasured salts in the world come from the mines of the Himalayan mountains, where these salts have remained pure for thousands of years. The beautiful salt rocks are pink and wonderfully flavorful! I can really tell the difference in the taste. We have dumped ALL regular table salt and often use these gorgeous pink crystals in our Perkins kitchen. Rich sea salt is certainly another great option! Perfect for your body’s needs!
And did you know that without the correct balance of the whole food that real salt is, your health will suffer acutely! Did you know that blood pressure is one of the areas that actually benefits from use of real salt? WOW is this understanding counter to what we have been told by popular, trusted voices for decades! Let me quote a few studies I found from others online who have written about salts…
An article from Clinical Science in London in 2008 stated:Low-sodium diets result in WORSE clinical outcomes for people with congestive heart failure, due to “detrimental kidney and neurohormonal effects.” And in an article from a respected researcher on the topic in 1988, now OVER 20 YEARS AGO, we find this quote from Taubes in his article “The (Political) Science of Salt,” :
“While the government has been denouncing salt as a health hazard for decades, no amount of scientific effort has been able to dispense with the suspicions that it is not. Indeed, the controversy over the benefits, if any, of salt reduction now constitutes one of the longest running, most vitriolic, and surreal disputes in all of medicine….
The data supporting universal salt reduction have never been compelling, nor has it ever been demonstrated that such a program would not have unforeseen negative side effects… After decades of intensive research, the apparent benefits of avoiding salt have only diminished. This suggests either that the true benefit has now been revealed and is indeed small, or that it is nonexistent, and researchers believing they have detected such benefits have been deluded by the confounding influences of other variables…”
WHAT? Why are our foods still labeled “low-salt”? Why are we still hearing caution about salt usage? Could it be that the TYPE of salt being used is truly cause for the bad publicity? Most experts, including Dr. Joseph Mercola, think so. Here is his comment on the matter:“Today’s table salt has practically nothing in common with natural salt. One is health damaging, and the other is healing.”
Salt, in its natural state, is a remarkably health-promoting seasoning! And learning to listen to our bodies will help us determine what levels are appropriate.
Have you ever had the experience of craving salt? Especially after illness or physical activity or stress. I have learned that our salty cravings are closely tied to adrenal health. (Dr. James Wilson’s book, Adrenal Fatigue, is a very interesting read. Still must say, after following much of his research and protocol, it was simply AMAZING KEFIR that solved all these issues in yours truly! Click here to find out more about this perfect healing food!) When our bodies become greatly depleted due to the exhausting paces we keep, our tiny little adrenal glands really struggle. They are significant contributors to the complex cascade of stress hormones which are necessary for daily function. When we are really stressing these little glands, which sit like peas on top of each of our kidneys, then our cravings for salty foods greatly increase. If you are in agreement with the ole Lay’s potato chips commercial that you “can’t eat just one”, then your body is probably sending you alerts.
Amazing really! Your body hums along and then hits a need for intervention… sending signals of pain or cravings. We have been so trained to silence these brilliant cues rather than plunge into resolving the real issue.
I want to close this post with a link to an amazing site that really does a superb job of promoting real salt in our diet. The site is based on the research by world-renown Dr. F. Batmanghelidj. Heard of him? He was the remarkable researcher who studied and documented the healing power of salt and water in simply re-hydrating the body. He says that most chronic disease today is a direct result of chronic dehydration! His books are super interesting. (I have included a bit about his work on my library page. I would love for you to peer at the details.)
So, apparently salt is involved in many internal cascades which work to promote vitality! Be sure you are supplying the real thing! The body cannot even adequately rehydrate itself WITHOUT SALT! Salt naturally adds flavor, but it also creates a true thirst in the body for water. The salt actually prepares cells for true absorption of good ole H2O. And who can live without good ole H2O?
Awww… here is where we understand the true metaphor of Jesus. Can’t miss it… We are to be, as His followers, salt of the earth. That’s translated… flavor to the world. We are to demonstrate His love to a needy world by creating a thirst for Him, as salt creates thirst in our body! And guess what? He called Himself, “the LIVING WATER!” Beautiful. He promises we will never thirst again when we drink what He offers to all of us… life and life more abundantly! I plan on savoring that salty-truth for my lifetime!
Here are the thought-provoking links I promised. I hope you have time to click your way on over…
WaterCure.org for more on Dr. Batmanghelidg’s life-changing and profoundly simple protocol!
RethinkWellness Library with some great suggestions on life-changing, expert resources!
Bless the Gut Series shares the foundational goodies regarding caring for the body. This understanding changed my life!
And please make a quick inventory of the salt in your pantry. An easy change to the real thing will definitely bring goodness to your dishes and your taste buds and your state of wellness! Salt… ROCKS!
Blessings and Joy! Deana