To celebrate Salt Awareness week, we’re shining a light on the table salt and sea salt. Is sea salt healthier? Why is table salt so refined in comparison? How much salt should I consume? Get your answers, below…
The big differences
Mined from salt deposits underground, table salt is so highly processed that the salt is stripped of its minerals (that’s how it gets its uniform white colour). Anti-caking agents, such as calcium silicate, are also added to stop the salt clumping, along with iodine, to prevent thyroid conditions.
Sea salt is produced slightly differently from table salt, whereby the salt crystals are extracted from the ocean water after natural evaporation occurs. Due to minimal processing, its trace minerals are kept intact. It’s these minerals which make the product varying colours (it can be pink, blue, etc.) and have a unique flavour. However, while trace minerals sound like a great benefits, research bodies have found that most minerals in sea salt occur plentifully in other foods.
Despite health claims surrounding sea salt, the two different types of salt actually have the same basic nutritional value, with similar levels of sodium (they are both around 99 per cent sodium chloride).
Everything being equal, there isn’t much benefit to buying expensive sea salt versus tablet salt. However, whichever salt you choose, do so in moderation, aiming to keep to the NHS’s recommended 6g of salt per day.