Most sea salt and table salt by volume contain about forty percent sodium by mass. But in one quite significant regard there is generally little difference between these: table salt contains sodium chloride while sea salt contains sodium chloride. (Wikipedia) This is a simple chemical fact of nature. In any salt crystal whether oceanic or freshwater, sodium chloride will dissolve in water.
The trace minerals which are commonly found in sea salts and table salt differ primarily in their molecular size. In table salt, calcium and magnesium ions have a slightly larger molecular structure than do trace minerals such as iron, sulphur, and boron. This difference results in more rapid rate of dissolving of magnesium and calcium ions in seawater. Potassium and chloride ions, on the other hand, are much less dissolved in seawater, which makes them slower to dissolve in ocean waters. Also, they release their ions into the water column sooner than do the trace minerals.
The composition of salt mineral particles in seawater varies with depth. At the bottom of the ocean, the salt contains trace amounts of iron, sulfur, and boron. As it rises, these elements change to gold, silver, copper, and nickel. The uppermost layer of seawater consists mainly of sodium chloride. The further the salt moves down, the higher its concentration of minerals becomes. The most common salt on earth is sodium chloride.
In nature, organisms living in salt lakes and seas use these minerals dissolved in the water to help them regulate the temperature of the water, keep track of food and energy, seek shelter, and search for other species. In fact, the trace amounts of these minerals that are present in sea salt are used by organisms for the purpose mentioned. Organisms like plankton, bacteria, crustaceans, and fish use the sodium chloride in the water to form salt glands, which produce the trace amounts of these minerals. As these minerals move up and become heavier, they settle to the bottom and are eventually washed away by rivers and streams. These bodies of water contain a wide range of minerals from sodium chloride to magnesium sulfate. Most of the salt lakes have enough salt to make it an essential salt deposit and all the creatures living in it have adapted to this extremely salty environment.
Salt rocks contain a wide range of minerals. The minerals contained in these rocks are important for maintaining the Earths environment. The trace amounts of magnesium, calcium, and potassium found in these rocks provide food for microorganisms and animals that live in the water. The trace amounts of iron found in the rocks can be used by plant life for the production of carbohydrates, and the trace amounts of sulfur are used by the algae for the production of oxygen. In short, the earth’s ecosystem depends on the salt in the air to be able to function.
Some people are concerned about table salt being so high in sodium that their intake could be harmful. If you consume too much table salt, it is possible to develop high blood pressure, kidney stones, and even an increased risk of developing diabetes. This is because when you eat too much sodium it raises your blood pressure and reduces the amount of energy your body has to burn. This reduction in energy results in your body burning less fat, which results in you consuming less calories, or simply not burning all the calories you take in. While it is true that reducing your sodium intake can have a significant effect on your blood pressure, most scientists agree that it is too early to link blood pressure to salt. While it is true that you may experience a rise in your blood pressure after you reduce your salt intake, this is a very minor effect and your doctor will probably recommend that you maintain your current intake of table salt.
Refined salt is not the only type of salt that contains trace minerals. Many types of sea salt contain small amounts of zinc, copper, and magnesium. Each of these minerals is important for maintaining a healthy diet. When shopping for table salt, make sure that you choose a brand that contains trace minerals rather than a salt that is simply salt.
Salt is important for your health, but not as essential as many other minerals. If you don’t need large quantities of sodium in your diet, then taking a small amount of table salt every day will not have any negative effects on your health. However, if you do need to eliminate sodium from your diet, then choose your salt wisely. By avoiding refined salt, you can ensure that you are eating a balanced diet that still provides all the important trace minerals that are good for your health.