Pink Himalayan sea salt made its rounds on social media over the past couple years as a healthy alternative to traditional table salt that is often bleached and stripped of all of its natural properties. After closer analysis and study, it appears that the pink salt so many people are fond of is not better for you, and in fact might be worse.

You’ve most likely heard about its ‘84 trace minerals’ that provide a slew of health benefits. Including improved vascular health, healthy respiratory function, stable pH balance in cells, reduced aging, increased sex drive, stronger bones, lower blood pressure, etc. etc.

It all sounds great on paper, but there is little evidence supporting any of these claims.

The other thing many often wonder about is the color of the salt. While the pink salt is advertised as the “purest salt available today,” its pink coloration would suggest otherwise. Pure sodium chloride is the same color as the salt that we all know and love–white–because it is pure sodium chloride.

The high number of trace minerals that are supposed to be providing a healthy body and mind aren’t all found in the human body, either. Of the 84 trace minerals that supposedly give us a boost, almost all sources say that the human body contains only 41 to 60 of them, and in teeny-tiny amounts.

Furthermore, many of them have been found to be toxic and even radioactive to some degree. A spectral analysis (which can be viewed here) shows that about 15 of the trace minerals have a significant function in a human’s biological processes, meaning only about one-fourth of the minerals provided by pink Himalayan sea salt are actually used by the human body.

The list even includes elements like mercury, arsenic, lead and thallium. And radioactive elements such as radium, uranium, polonium, and plutonium.

And while people often cite the taste as one of the main reasons they use the pink salt versus normal salt, human senses are not the best method of measurement, especially when we consider studies in previous years that show psychology often has more of an effect on our decisions than anything else.

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