Salt has become all the rage in the health world, from the pink salt in your grocery store to the Dead Sea salt mud mask at your local spa. Each salt is different, and some can be a great therapeutic for inflammatory and skin conditions, boost hair health, and be a relaxing part of your weekend regime. But, what are the specific health benefits of sea salt? This article will be going through 5 uses of sea salt and what health benefits these incur.
Health Benefits of Sea Salt
Sea salt is primarily made up of sodium, iron, aluminum, manganese, and other micronutrients . The different components (and their quantities) differ by the type of salt and location . But salt can be a great addition to your overall health regime, and we’re going to show you why.
Sea salt can protect against hypertension and kidney disease
Recent studies in rats showed that those consuming natural sea salt had lower rates of hypertension than those who did not. Rats then subsequently had lower rates of kidney damage due to the lower blood pressure .
This suggests a bit of sea salt now and then might be just what the doctor ordered for good blood pressure and kidney health.
Sea salt baths might improve skin health
Magnesium salt in sea salt water can reduce inflammation and seal dry skin. In a recent clinical trial, participants who bathed dry skin in sea salted baths found better skin hydration, less roughness and redness, and overall better skin barrier health .
Magnesium is responsible for many of these effects, particularly increasing barrier repair, making your skin that much stronger. Dead sea mud is a popular choice (containing a high amount of sea salt) for skincare. It improves hydration, reduces water loss, and results in healthier skin after routine application .
Sea salt is great for reducing inflammation
As hinted at in the previous paragraph, sea salt seems to reduce inflammation in the skin, which can aid in wound and barrier healing. By taking microscopic samples of the skin, researchers found that those participants receiving a topical application of sea salt and sea salt resulted in healthier skin with lower rates of inflammation [6, 7].
Atopic dermatitis (also called eczema) is an inflammatory skin condition similar to psoriasis resulting in dry, red itchy skin . In a recent study of Dead sea salt as a bathing additive, research suggests the anti-inflammatory action of this mixture might reduce symptoms and severity of atopic dermatitis .
Dead sea salt has also been noted to improve symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, another inflammatory disease that causes joint pain .
Psoriasis is a skin condition where the skin is extremely dry and fragile, eventually resulting in a rash . Many people get psoriasis on their elbows or other joints during dry spells, but some cases are far more severe than others.
In a cell model of psoriasis, the application of Dead sea salts was found to result in stronger cells and a reduction in psoriatic markers . Guinea pigs bathed in sea salt were found to have improved psoriasis symptoms .
Sea salt could be our next intervention for use against this condition, affecting more than 8 million Americans .
Sea salt can improve hair health, too.
Sea salt is thought to improve hair health and is supplemented with shampoo in clinical trials . Adding the salt is thought to strengthen hair and increase the shampoo’s viscosity, which benefits hair health . There is much more in this area of research to come.
Sea salt could reduce the severity and risk of cardiovascular disease
The micronutrients in “deep seawater” were noted to reduce cardiovascular strain in mice and have a variety of inflammation and immunity effects . Many of these improvements were noted to likely be due to the salt content of the water.
There’s a catch
Some research groups have noted little evidence for using transdermal magnesium or salt absorption as a supplement to health . This is true. But it’s an ongoing field of research. Studies being performed currently will likely shed more light on the usefulness of topical sea salt application for overall health in years to come.
In conclusion, 5 uses of sea salt
Sea salt might be just what you need in your self-care routine. Adding some to your bath or hair care routine might be a way to improve your skin and hair health naturally. However, evidence is still being discovered for this, and little is known yet. Make sure you talk to your doctor before trying sea salt as a medication supplement for atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, or other medical conditions.
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