Himalayan salt refers to a type of marine rock salt found only in the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains. This ancient kosher salt has been found to have a number of unique characteristics that set it apart from all other salts of this type. Even today, its use in cooking and baking is one of the most popular for various reasons. It is an excellent addition to desserts, soups, salads, fish dishes, as well as many other dishes.
To understand the effects of Himalayan salt on the body you must first understand the nature of rock salt. Rock salt is created through the evaporation of water that contains minerals like sulfur and magnesium. As a result of the evaporation process, the water turns into a thin film of magnesium and sulfur. These minerals are carried away by wind and eventually find their way to the sea, which then salts it. This process takes place over again and each deposit carries with it smaller deposits that are lighter in weight and fall to the sea.
Salt is the result of the evaporation of impurities in the air. Impurities can include carbon dioxide, dust, and other solid matter. The concentration of impurities on the surface of sea salt is what determines its typical fine texture and lack of odor. As these impurities settle to the bottom and are washed away by the wind, lighter minerals like sodium and chloride replace them.
The thickness of the kosher salt deposits found in the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains are determined by the amount of sunlight they receive and how long they remain exposed to the sun before succumbing to natural decay and eroding. As the salt crystals in the Himalayan Sea evaporate, heavier elements such as potassium and sodium move with them. As a result, sea salt has a fine grain structure with fine lines of color running through it. This creates an appearance similar to fine sand.
Because of the fine grains and because of their small solid pieces, pink Himalayan salt can take decades for it to form. As a result, Himalayan sea salt comes in various qualities including white, crystal clear, thick, and coarse. It's used in many food and pharmaceutical products and its trace minerals are highly desired for their antioxidant properties, improving the skin's health and preventing diseases.
A variety of industries rely on Himalayan sea salt for their health and well being, using it in a variety of chemical processes to help with the purification of water and eliminate heavy metals and bacteria. The heavy metals found in impure water are toxic to living organisms, making treatment through ion exchange or electrolysis necessary to safely rid the environment of impurities. However, these trace amounts of metals do not cause damage to humans when taken in small enough amounts. These industries have used this knowledge for a long time to produce quality water that is safe to drink, without impurities.
A large proportion of impurities is made up of heavy metals such as lead, copper, and mercury. Trace amounts of other chemicals such as selenium and zinc are also found. Microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses are present naturally in seawater as well. They need an environment that is alkaline and a lack of acidity will kill them. However, acid environments create perfect growing grounds for microorganisms which then create the highly toxic heavy metals and microorganisms.
There are two ways to purify water. These include chemical methods and mechanical methods. In the chemical method, impurities are converted into sodium and potassium ions. However, this process leaves behind sodium and potassium traces which are not suitable for drinking. Mechanical means of purifying water include raising the temperature of the water through boiling or treating water through electricity. However, they do not remove the trace minerals that are important for human health.