Using salt in our cooking has been carried on for millennia by several demographics around the world. In fact, salt is not just used for cooking. It is a quintessential addition to human life. Apart from its obvious health benefits and taste-enhancing properties, it has myriad other merits. It is not an exaggeration if historians quote salt utilization to be an indicator of civilization’s development. Today, we will have a look at the growing popularity of Himalayan pink salt and discuss the buzz around it!
What Is Himalayan Pink Salt? [Explained!]
Himalayan pink salt is very similar to the normal table salt that many of us know. Almost 98% of Himalayan pink salt is comprised of sodium chloride (NaCl), which is the same as the table salt. The balance 2% is comprised of other elements like iron, calcium, potassium, etc. It is estimated to have around 80 trace minerals.
How Is Himalayan Pink Salt Produced?
Himalayan pink salt is extracted from the Himalayan salt range, which is situated in Pakistan. In fact, Pakistan is the biggest exporter of pink salt. Mountains in the salt range are formed as a result of seabed evaporation that happened millions of years ago. Khewra Salt Mine in Pakistan is the biggest facility used for pink salt mining. Miners still use traditional methods to mine the salt blocks from the underground tunnels that run several miles. The extracted pink salt blocks are not processed (sometimes minimally processed) and exported to other countries (including India) where they are treated as required.
Why Is Himalayan Pink Salt Used?
1. Health Benefits: Himalayan pink salt is widely believed to be a healthier alternative to table salt. A huge chunk of people consume pink salt for its supposed health benefits. Some of the issues for which it is consumed are: respiratory illness, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, skin diseases, etc.
2. Lifestyle Improvements: Weight loss induction, de-aging, improve appetite, increase libido are just a few of the claims by the new age lifestyle advocates for referring the Himalayan pink salt. Spas use pink salt for its cosmetic benefits. Also, a few establishments have gone the extra mile by establishing artificial salt caves and promoting it for the above-said reasons.
3. Luxury and Novelty Products: Yes, you read that right! Novelty products like salt lamps are made from blocks of Himalayan pink salt. The salt blocks are carved in attractive shapes with a candle in it. Some claim the salt lamp helps in air purification, while others say it’s simply used for enhancing the ambiance. Apart from these, there is a wide array of novelty products like bath bombs, cooking tile, massage stone, tooth powder, jewelry, etc.
Should I Use Himalayan Pink Salt?
Yes, if you can afford to spend 10-30 times more than the normal table salt and would like to explore options for fun.
But, no, in my opinion, if you would like to buy it as a novelty product and gift it to make a statement. For instance, there is no scientific backing for articles on salt lamps aiding in air purification. But it is an attractive product and due to the placebo could boost your morale. Starting from Himalayan pink salt soaps to bath bombs, from body scrubs to massage stones, Himalayan pink rock salt to gourmet pink salt taste enhancers, every product here has an equal substitute – if not better. That too at a much more affordable cost.
No, if you buy Himalayan pink salt for its skin, enriching properties. I would not claim that bath soaps made out of pink salt will fail to nourish the skin. But my concern is about the impact of using several times costly products which may or may not work wonders. As said, pink salt and table salt are almost the same that the results would not be substantial if interchangeably used.
And definitely no, if you consume it for health reasons. All the claimed health benefits are either a result of alternative medical experts prescribing without evidence-based knowledge or the effective marketing campaigns by MLM companies. As said, pink salt is just a minute percentage different from that of table salt, and that does not make it a healthier option. A person suffering from high blood pressure should consume less sodium – be it a regular table salt or the Himalayan pink salt. If he consumes a bit more pink salt as he believes it has less sodium, then it will worsen the blood pressure.
A product’s value is only limited to the seller’s marketing mind. Our new age marketers masquerading as “influencers” have a really good imagination. As a result, there are endless products listed on exclusive stores in your city and e-commerce websites around the world. Everyone from your mom to your hippie friend, a spiritual guru to a Siddha doctor, the actor in the television advertisement to the salesperson in the store, tells you to try the miraculous product. It definitely is a subjective matter. But, know your facts before you choose or ignore it. Not everything you read on the internet and see in advertisements are true. Even this article. But, after considering all the evidence, make an informed decision. Cheers!