Himalayan salt

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Himalayan Salt (white colored)
Red rock salt from Pakistan

Himalayan salt is rock salt or halite from a mine in the Punjab region of Pakistan, which rises from the Indo-Gangetic Plain. It is mined in the Khewra Salt Mine, located in Khewra, Jhelum District, Punjab region, Pakistan. The foothills of the Salt Range are located 300 km from the Himalayas, 298 km from Amritsar, India and 260 km from Lahore. The salt sometimes occurs in a reddish or pink color, with some crystals having an off-white to transparent color.[1]

Mineral composition[edit]

Himalayan salt crystals

In 2003 the Bavarian consumer protection agency Bayerisches Landesamt für Gesundheit und Lebensmittelsicherheit (the Bavarian State Office for Health and Food Safety) analyzed 15 specimens of Himalaya salt sold in Germany and could detect at least ten different minerals, in addition to sodium chloride (98%).[2]

The chemical composition of Himalayan salt includes 95–96% sodium chloride, contaminated with 2–3% polyhalite and small amounts of ten other minerals. The pink color is due to iron oxide.[3]

Uses[edit]

It is commonly used in cooking, in place of other table salt, in brine, and for bath products such as bath salts.[4] Blocks of salt are also used as serving dishes and in the preparation of food. Fish and some meats can be preserved for use in certain dishes, and blocks of salt can be slowly heated to a temperature of around 400 degrees Fahrenheit and used as a cooking surface thereafter.

Salt lamps[edit]

Himalayan salt lamp

Large crystal rocks, mined in Europe and Asia, are also used as salt lamps. A salt lamp is a lamp carved from a larger salt crystal, often colored, with an incandescent light bulb or a candle inside. The lamps give an attractive glow and are suitable for use as nightlights or for ambient mood lighting. When illuminated, salt crystals emit a soft glowing light. Some believe that heated salt crystals emit negative ions or positive energy waves into the air.[5] There is, however, no scientific evidence that salt lamps actually give out a measurable amount of "negative ions", nor is there any evidence of any health benefits from the lamps.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Weller, J. Marvyn. "The Cenozoic History of the Northwest Punjab, in The Journal of Geology, Vol. 36, No. 4 (May–June 1928), pp. 362–375". jstor.org. Chicago Journals. Retrieved 24 February 2015. 
  2. ^ Alles nur Kochsalz - LGL nimmt 'Himalayasalz' genauer unter die Lupe Bayerisches Landesamt für Gesundheit und Lebensmittelsicherheit. 11. August 2003
  3. ^ Freeman, Shanna. "How Salt Works". HowStuffWorks. InfoSpace LLC. Retrieved Oct 20, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Himalayan Bath Salts – True Health Benefits or Marketing Hype?". OrganicSkinHerbsOnline.com. 13 October 2013. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  5. ^ Neil Nedley, Depression: The Way Out (Ardmore, OK: Nedley Publishing, 2002)
  6. ^ Lisa Berger. "Salt Lamps - Is it a Scam?". Today in Alternative Medicine. Retrieved 2012-10-23.