This post was originally written by By Eddie Gillani of The Salt Lamp Shop.
Pink salt is gaining popularity everyday, but at the same time it still remains just a little shrouded in mystery. What makes it pink? Is it really a better alternative to regular salt? How can you make sure you’re getting the best quality pink salt? Good questions! Pink salt is sourced from a rather remote region of the world, the foothills of the Himalayas in Northern Pakistan. So, It’s no wonder that little is known about it’s sourcing and makeup. Luckily, I happened to have travelled there and worked hands on with the salt miner’s for my own salt lamp shop and I’m ready to share the secrets I’ve learned, so keep reading. Rock salt or sea salt? Himalayan salt is actually both! Himalayan salt is mined from one of the worlds largest underground salt ranges that extends for almost 300 kilometres along the Himalayan mountain range. This underground ‘layer’ of salt was once a salt bed that formed around 200-300 million years ago! Scientists believe that a large prehistoric sea became landlocked and evaporated under the Mesozoic sun leaving behind a bed of sea salt laden with pink ‘salt loving’ bacteria, this eventually became Himalayan rock salt. Why is it pink? The pink colour came from the pink salt loving bacteria that was infused into the salt bed, but to be more specific, the colour comes from ‘iron oxide ll’, aka – rust! Iron oxide is a great source of iron for us which is essential for our blood cells to be able to carry oxygen. Pink salt contains more than 80 trace minerals which are thought to have come from the bioorganic live that was present in it while it was forming, making it great for consumption. Pink salt shouldn’t solely be relied upon for the daily intake requirements of minerals, however it can help just a ‘pinch’ in reaching those targets. Regular table salt is usually iodized artificially to address a natural iodine deficiency in our diets, however Pink salt can skip this step altogether because it naturally contains the required level of iodine. How is it made? High quality pink salt is one of the few salt types in the world that doesn’t need any chemical or artificial processing before it’s tested and approved for consumption. This is because the salt deposits it’s being extracted from are already contaminant free and quite pristine, being untouched for such a long time. However, there can be a differences in quality depending on where you buy it from. Different mines and different depths will produce salt with varying mineral densities. When buying pink salt a deeper pink colour indicates higher iron content. You may want to shop around until you find one that tastes and looks best to you. The difference in taste. Pink salt most definitely has a different taste to sea salt and regular salt. Within Himalayan salt there are different varieties yet again, black Himalayan salt which has a different composition altogether, light pink and red Himalayan salt. Pink salt is known to have a less ‘sharp’ and less ‘bitter’ taste since it contains less actual salt than table salt and more trace minerals. The only way to find out if you like it and if it’s for you is to try it yourself. I hope this article has been insightful and with the above tips and suggestions you can’t go wrong.
By Eddie Gillani The Salt Lamp Shop