Take this with a grain of salt

- November 28th, 2011

(Note: The following post is courtesy Bruce Krahn of www.ebodi.com.)

picture-7Hi, Bruce here from www.ebodi.com.

The other day I was sitting down to eat with a friend and she questioned the amount of salt I was sprinkling on my food and wondered why I wasn’t concerned about the potential ill effects of including salt in my diet. She seemed surprised when I told her the reasons for my salty habit:

1. Sea salt (not modern day table salt) is actually good for you. While modern salt is highly processed with little to no nutritional value, sea salt in its original form is rich in minerals your body needs.

2. My body handles the sodium very well. I don’t have any skin problems such as acne (which can worsen with salt intake) and I don’t have osteoporosis.

3. Salt is beneficial for people who are under stress and suffering from adrenal fatigue (is this you?)

4. I eat a lot of protein and the more protein you eat the more salt your body needs.

5. Salt is good for digestion as it helps to activate enzymes in your intestines.

6. I work out quite a bit and lose a fair degree of salt through perspiration. This is one of the reasons why I recommend drinking lemon water with a pinch of sea salt. Not any salt will do. All salts are not created equal. Stay away from regular table salts. Instead, look for sea salts that are pink, red, grey or beige in color. This colour indicates a high content of iodine and valuable trace minerals. Some good sea salts to try include Celtic Sea Salt and Red Sea Salt.

Be sure to pick this up the next time you go shopping. If you want more health info like this, be sure to watch the video found at www.ebodi.com.

Have a healthy week,

Bruce

Website: http://www.edmontonsun.com/author/cary-castagna

Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Keeping-Fit-with-Cary-Castagna/106367266730

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/CaryIsKeepingFit#g/u

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/cary-castagna/

Categories: Fitness

Subscribe to the post

14 comments

  1. Dan says:

    That is foolish. No mention of blood pressure. If you work out regularly there is a good chance that your b loop pressure is fine. But if you are like many, less than perfect, North Americans, bloop pressure may be an issue. Although sea salt is less dense and therefore giving you less salt per teaspoon it is still good old sodium chloride. Giving arbitrary advice to increase your salt intake is silly, especially if there is any processed food in your life – and then you are probably getting far more than what would be considered reasonable. Sounds like Bruce enjoys the taste of his voice just as much as his salt.

  2. CultureOfOne says:

    Take with a grain of salt indeed. Bruce is a certified personal trainer, not a nutritionist or a scientist. Where is your scientific data that proves sea salt is healthier? I’m not a nutritionist or scientist either, but five minutes of research can debunk his implication that more salt is a healthy choice.

    Sea salt is not “rich in minerals”, but rather contains only trace elements of zinc, manganese, iron, and other minerals. Beyond this, table and sea salts are virtually identical; they’re both 97-99% NaCl. The trace elements (aka impurities) in most sea salt are so miniscule as to be ineffective unless you use massive amounts of salt, which would be counterproductive.

    As for Bruce assuming his “body handles sodium very well” because he doesn’t have acne or osteoporosis: this is hardly a scientific conclusion. It’s like claiming a lucky penny keeps away bears just because there aren’t any bears around you right now. One would presume he also doesn’t have high blood pressure, heart or kidney disease, and hasn’t yet suffered a stroke, but high sodium intake is a factor in all of these conditions.

    There is supposedly a link between high iodine intake and acne, hence excessive iodized salt intake can be a factor. Iodine is also prevalent in dairy products and seafood. Many sea salts are uniodized, and sea water is not a significant source of iodine (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seawater). There are other alternatives to sea salt that don’t contain trace elements (read: contaminants) or iodine if you wish to avoid it, but we do need some iodine in our diets. Regardless of the link to acne, chances are added table salt isn’t going to be the primary factor in anybody’s acne issues unless they’re using a lot.

    Salt is also linked to osteoporosis, and can apparently hasten its onset (see http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/449440.stm). Using a lot of salt because you don’t have osteoporosis yet is like not using a condom because you or your partner aren’t pregnant yet, or not getting a flu shot because you aren’t sick yet. Unless you want the condition, why tempt fate?

    I have neither the time nor the space to get into the rest of the article’s claims, so I’ll cut straight to it: an heroic intake of salt, be it sea salt or table salt, iodized or not, is not going to make anybody healthier. Salt in moderation is important to our health, but in my opinion, all Bruce has succeeded in doing is making an irresponsible claim that could lead people to make less healthy choices. Don’t take my word for it: do the research yourself, and talk to a qualified nutritionist or doctor.

  3. Oscar says:

    You didn’t mention the most nutritious type of salt.
    Himalayan Crystal Salt.
    research it.

  4. Kevin R says:

    Sea salt only has trace amounts of iodine – about 2-3% of the amount recommended in iodized table salt. As for the trace minerals in sea salt – the amounts are insignificant unless you eat salt by the bucket. Go ahead and have sea salt for the flavour or texture, but don’t tout it as a healthier alternative to iodized table salt.

  5. James G says:

    There is absolutely no evidence in scientific literature that sea salt is processed differently than table salt. It is essentially the same stuff, although with a coarser texture.

    In other words, the claim that it is good for you is unfounded and could severely impact the health of your readers.

  6. Rhys says:

    If you read this website, you will find the benefits of sea salt. Every day I drank 1tsp of saturated sea salt water mixed with 8 oz of water for 3 months. What a fantastic benefit it had on my body. My nose bleeds virtually stopped and I felt so much better. Even my skin was healing better.

    Check it out.

    http://www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com/salt.htm

  7. CJP says:

    This is a dangerously misleading article to publish. Here is some real information about sea salt from the Mayo Clinic:

    “By weight, sea salt and table salt contain the same amount of sodium chloride. Your body needs only a very tiny amount of salt to stay healthy. Most people get far too much — mostly from processed foods. So regardless of which type of salt you prefer, use a light hand with the saltshaker. And limit total sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams a day — or 1,500 milligrams if you’re age 51 or older, or if you are black, or if you have high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.”

    I would suggest that “Bruce” refrain from making further public statements regarding nutrition.

  8. JBP says:

    This is foolish in the extreme. It is sad that it has come to this; Make any kind of stupid statement so long as it can be compressed into an attention catching headline so folks will be intrigued into clicking on the link.

    Others in their comments have eloquently enumerated the problems with this thesis. Chemically, sea salt is the same as table salt MINUS the iodine our bodies need to prevent development of goitre. The absence of acne and osteoporosis hardly proves a unique ability to “handle sodium” and, even if that were true, hardly justifies advising everyone else to ingest excessive amounts of salt.

    Hooey!

  9. Ben L says:

    I am a doctor, and I can say that Bruce is peddling products, not giving proper nutritional advice. Salt is salt. Your kidneys don’t care where it came from, I can assure you. As has been posted here, sea salt is nearly identical, except that it hasn’t been fortified with iodine like table salt. All of his other claims are so ridiculous, I am not going to bother (seriously, I just reread all of the claims and they are all plain and simple “wrong”.)

    As a former personal trainer, I would prefer if “Bruce” and Mr. Castagna researched their claims and posts before they potentially harm others and give their respective professions bad names. A blog on keeping fit should be about helping people, not promoting a website making ridiculous (and harmful) claims.

  10. Bruce says:

    This is clearly a subject that many people are interested in discussing and the feedback is interesting and appreciated. The article needs some clarification and so, if I may, here are a few more points to consider;

    To be very clear- I am not advocating a “high sodium” diet as some are implying and yes, people who frequently consume refined and packaged foods are well advised to avoid adding extra sodium into their diets. However, for those people who already avoid eating processed foods and do not have high blood pressure the use of sea salt in their diets instead of table salt is well advised.

    Fact is regular table salt is refined. This refining process removes trace minerals, magnesium and iodine. In addition, aluminum and dextrose (sugar) are often added back into table salt.

    In terms of science, According to a May 2009 study in “Clinical Science,” Dr. Barry Hurwitz and University of Miami researchers determined that the magnesium in sea salt improved mineral balance and low blood pressure in chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers.

    Sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium also form alkaline reactions once inside the body. An alkaline state is beneficial to bone health, muscle mass as well as other health benefits. However, don’t take this too far as too much sodium will increase the loss of calcium in the urine.

    The more you exercise the more sodium is lost through perspiration. Active individuals can lose 800 mg or more of sodium per liter of sweat, making replacement vital.

    When your sodium level drops too low (less than 200 mg/day) activation of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system kicks in and increases the retention of sodium and water. 1200 mg of sodium per day is needed in order to suppress this system.

    The average North American now consumes about 3,400 mg of sodium per day and this is too much. Most experts recommend that we consume less than 2,300 mg per day.

    The information I provide is based on research and while I am not a nutritionist my wife is and we work together to help individuals improve their health and fitness.

    Sincerely,

    Bruce Krahn

  11. Dave C says:

    The only real differences between sea salt and table salt are that table salt is iodized (a good thing) and sea salt has dirt in it (a bad thing) giving it, its colour.

  12. Cary Castagna says:

    Bruce has emailed me his rebuttal. Here it is:

    This is clearly a subject that many people are interested in discussing and the feedback is interesting and appreciated. The article needs some clarification and so, if I may, here are a few more points to consider:

    To be very clear — I am not advocating a “high sodium” diet as some are implying and yes, people who frequently consume refined and packaged foods are well advised to avoid adding extra sodium into their diets. However, for those people who already avoid eating processed foods and do not have high blood pressure the use of sea salt in their diets instead of table salt is well advised.

    Fact is regular table salt is refined. This refining process removes trace minerals, magnesium and iodine. In addition, aluminum and dextrose (sugar) are often added back into table salt.

    In terms of science, according to a May 2009 study in “Clinical Science,” Dr. Barry Hurwitz and University of Miami researchers determined that the magnesium in sea salt improved mineral balance and low blood pressure in chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers.

    Sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium also form alkaline reactions once inside the body. An alkaline state is beneficial to bone health, muscle mass as well as other health benefits. However, don’t take this too far as too much sodium will increase the loss of calcium in the urine.

    The more you exercise the more sodium is lost through perspiration. Active individuals can lose 800 mg or more of sodium per litre of sweat, making replacement vital.

    When your sodium level drops too low (less than 200 mg/day) activation of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system kicks in and increases the retention of sodium and water. 1200 mg of sodium per day is needed in order to suppress this system.

    The average North American now consumes about 3,400 mg of sodium per day and this is too much. Most experts recommend that we consume less than 2,300 mg per day.

    The information I provide is based on research and while I am not a nutritionist my wife is and we work together to help individuals improve their health and fitness.

     

    Sincerely,

     

    Bruce Krahn   

  13. T, Roberts says:

    Sorry, SALT is SALT!! NaCl, and all salt started as sea salt. Sea salt may contain trace elements , but table salt contains added iodine which prevents thyroid problems. But both, in excess, are extremely bad for one’s health. Also, read the salt content of processed foods. Adding more is lethal!

    An irresponsible article!!

  14. Ben L says:

    Bruce’s rebuttal is well written, but this argues against the original tone of the article. Suggesting that people should be adding sea salt because they MAY be deficient of common ions, when he readily admits that most people already get too much salt was nowhere within the original article.

    Furthermore, I looked up this article…and that wasn’t what was said at all. Like I said, it is irresponsible to write something like what was written, and then cite articles which do not support ones position.

    As for engaging the renin-angiotensin syndrome, this is far more likely to occur due to high BP, which would be most likely due to high salt diet.

    I will agree with one thing that is written, if you sweat a lot, you need electrolyte replacement, but a bottle of gatorade is a better solution in such a scenario then guessing how much salt you should add to a glass of water (which tastes horrible and doesn’t have the other electrolytes required).

    Finally, sea salt has LESS iodine then table salt and the TRACE amounts of other minerals make up less then 0.1% of their content. So for those very few that are actually diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome, they should get tested for what their electrolyte status is prior to potentially hurting themselves.

Leave a comment

 characters available