Is Himalayan salt a scam??? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 40 Old 01-20-2010, 11:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My SIL and mom use the pink Himalayan salt and raved about it's supposed fantastic qualities (healthier, more pure, etc.) so we bought some and had been using it for a month. I went online tonight to actually do some research into why it was so great for you, and came across a site that said that it's basically a scam.

http://www.poisonfluoride.com/pfpc/html/himalaya.html

It's not mined in the Himalayas. It's mined in Pakistan, in a salt mine.

The site said that the doctor who 'found' it and marketed its super qualities blatantly lied about it being from the Himalayas (therefore free from pollution, chemicals, etc.), and basically every other site promoting it I found cut and pasted his words onto their marketing ads.

So confused. So is this stuff for real or really just another health scam?
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#2 of 40 Old 01-21-2010, 03:44 AM
 
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Actually, the Himalayas do extend into Pakistan. There are six countries in which the Himalayan mountains run, and Pakistan is one of them. For instance, K2 (the second highest mountain on Earth and in the Himalayan range) is on the border between Pakistan and China.

Geography of the mountain range aside, I don't think the salt comes from the actual mountains. I was in a really cool salt shop and their literature said it came from near the Himalayas but not in them ( I think maybe 200 miles away, or something close to that?). I'm sure the name "Himalayan Salt" was coined because it sounds much more exotic, and is more marketable, than "Pakistani Salt."
I think of it as being like when i went to BC Canada and all the tourist spots had "Canadian Maple Syrup" for sale in expensive little bottles. Sure, it was from Canada, but from clear across the country.

And yep, it is definitely mined, but then all non-sea salt needs to be. This particular "sea" salt is from really ancient sea beds: about 600 million years old. The salt is supposed to be very, very pure as far as salt deposits go (97% sodium chloride as opposed to a more common 94% in mined salt), but I don't know the actual mineral makeup. As for pollution and other chemical contaminates: I think it is pretty logical that the deposits, despite not being in the Himalayas, have been well protected deep within the Earth for millions of years and are probably as un-polluted as it gets.

The mine is supposed to be the second largest salt mine in the world. It is the Khewra salt mine, and there is lots of info on it if you do a web search. It's been a source of salt for people since before 300 BC, and actual mining started in the 1200's AD (I think There is a lot of interesting history surrounding it. Apparently it is a huge tourist attraction, and thousands of people visit it every year. There is a beautiful mosque inside made out of salt blocks: it is really lovely.

As for the actual mineral content and the fluoride concerns... i don't know, honestly. Some sources out there say it is really high in fluoride, and other sources say otherwise. Probably the only way to be sure would be to find someone independent, who doesn't have anything to gain or lose by the results, and get a good analysis done. Since many of the sites who are providing the analysis are either selling the salt or are vehemently against it it is hard to know who is telling the truth.

And as to whether it is this amazing miracle salt that all the hype would lead us to believe... I think probably not. It seems to me that the health industry loves to promote cool products, and neat things like this really take off on the health retail market and become a big fad. Some of the claims they make about the salt do seem a little "scammish."
The salt itself is beautiful, the lamps are gorgeous, the salt serving platters are a cool idea, the salt cooking platforms are awesome, and I'm sure it tastes lovely. But at the end of the day I don't think of it as one of those "must have" health items. There are lots of really great sources of salt out there, and this is but one of them.
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#3 of 40 Old 11-01-2011, 01:07 PM
 
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First off we must keep in mind that salt is part of our DNA makeup. It is a mineral that the body needs. However, we cannot get the nutritional value out of simple table salt. It is chemically processed. Natural and organic is the way to go. Secondly do not believe articles such as the one posted stating it is a scam. Those are posted by the competition and do not want us to use another brand/ product. They are only interested in us buying their product only. If you read articles around the net on different products you will find this to be true with many different things, such as, Restaurants, types of foods, organics and etc.

 

Also keep in mind that regular Sea Salt might not necessarily be the healthiest alternative either due simply to how much toxins have been dumped in the oceans throughout the years. Find out how the companies clean the salt. If it is chemically processed then do not use it. The Himalayan salt I use is clean water washed and not chemically processed and you can actually taste how good it is.

 

As far as the Himalaya’s are concerned, that is where Pakistan is so, do not be concerned with that. Eating healthy is very important especially here in the states because of all the processed junk that is in everything now. Our food supply is now becoming the worst in the world due to corporate greed and it is a shame. For more healthy information you can check out one of my favorite sites at: www.mercola.com...

 

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#4 of 40 Old 11-01-2011, 01:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by dabigjh View Post

First off we must keep in mind that salt is part of our DNA makeup.


DNA is made of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. C, H, O, N.

 

 

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Originally Posted by dabigjh View Post

However, we cannot get the nutritional value out of simple table salt. It is chemically processed.


You are joking, right?

 

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Originally Posted by dabigjh View Post

 

As far as the Himalaya’s are concerned, that is where Pakistan is so, do not be concerned with that.

 

Depends on the reasons for the worry.

 

http://www.nti.org/db/china/lopnur.htm

 

"The test site is the world's largest, occupying an area of over 100,000 sq km, with over 2,000 km of highways. Commercial satellite imagery shows that about 20,000 sq km have been used for testing. No duplicate facility was ever built under the "Third Line." Also the site for China's nuclear weapons training. Possibly also the location of a nuclear weapons stockpile. The headquarters of the test base is in Malan, about 125 km northwest of Qinggir."

 

Here's a map, the Himalayas are right there:


http://www.maplandia.com/china/xinjiang-uygur/yuli/qinggir/

 

The salt deposits probably formed before the nuclear testing, though. smile.gif 

 

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#5 of 40 Old 11-04-2011, 06:02 AM
 
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I get Utah Mineral Salt from San Francisco Salt Company. I can see the mineral colors in it; it tastes great, and I figure it is a lot more "local" to me than ordering salt from another hemisphere, kwim?

 

As far as the debate that table salt=mineral salt and that you are getting the same things out of it, it comes up here on MDC every now and again, and I've seen it get pretty heated  lol.gif  Personally, I feel confident that whole foods as close to their original form are a greater benefit to my health than processed foods, so I don't really get into the debate and just stick with my mineral salt whenever possible. :D But I don't feel good about paying for the super expensive stuff from the Himilayas because I do think, even though I'm sure it's great salt, it's just a little excessive for me to pay that much for special salt from that far away (ditto with the Celtic Sea Salt, I'm sure it's great, but pricey and a lot of shipping). That's how I came to the conclusion that the Utah Mineral Salt is the way to go for my family. 

 

Hope that helps!


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#6 of 40 Old 02-07-2012, 11:40 PM
 
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Actually the human body is made of over 60 different chemical elements. Salt roughly being one of them. All though about 96% (roughly) is made of just 4 ingredients; oxygen, carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen, with a lot of the in the form of water.

So I'm nearly positive that salt (or at least the stuff that makes up this salt) is part of our DNA!

 

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#7 of 40 Old 02-08-2012, 01:41 AM
 
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You have to look up the chemical formula of the DNA. Then you'll be absolutely positive that salt is not a part of DNA.

 

See for yourself - here is an illustration - all four bases of DNA are listed there and their chemical elements.

 

Notice the elements C, H, N, O (and the phosphorus bonds between the aminoacids.)

 

 

Salt is not a chemical element. The formula of table salt is NaCl. That's what salt is. Natrium and Chloride, dude.

 

Here is the spectral analysis of Himalayan salt.

 

The main ingredient is Chloride, 590.93 g/kg. The second one is Natrium, 382.61 g/kg. 

 

Note that it contains some P (phosphorus) at <0.10 parts per million. Carbon, <0.001 ppm. Nitrogen, 0.024 ppm. Not much, really. (And it also contains lead, at the same concentration of <0.10 parts per million as well! and traces of cadmium, arsenic,and mercury.)

 

 

Water is H2O, at least those elements are the same as in the DNA. But if someone tried to sell me water "Ooohh, buy this expensive water, from the Himalayan streams, because it's part of your DNA", I'd just laugh at them.

 

Salt is part of our body that is NOT DNA. So if some scammers try to advertise their salt as "essential part of DNA", you should be able to see that it is a scammy claim.

 

If they just said "Hey, it's a nice salt, tastes fine, is visually pleasing with that 'back to Mother Earth' vibe to it, it's from an exotic locale that brings up images of pristine mountains and simpler cultures with natural values. Pay us some extra money for the illusion of purity and harmony with nature, and try it in your lentil stew!" - I would not have a problem with that. The DNA connection is bunk.

 

(It is a nice salt, I'd use it, it's just when I hear that it is necessary for loving nourishment of our DNA, then it's funny.)

 

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#8 of 40 Old 02-21-2012, 01:52 PM
 
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I once did a Him. salt flush, and it did nothing but made me feel HIGHLY irritable. Like the way people describe a Herx reaction. And no, it's not because I have some sort of "mercury based mineral transport derangement" or any of that stuff. It did not seem right going down, like Celtic SS does. I'd stick to high quality sea salt.

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#9 of 40 Old 05-01-2012, 02:34 PM
 
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Double Dude, you need to go back to your books.  NaCl is the formula for salt.  Cl is chloride, but Na is sodium, not natrium.  Sodium is the element that gets everyones panties in a twist.  Yet it is one of the three key elements between every nerve to allow nerve conduction in our body.  The three elements are calcium, potassium, and sodium.  There needs to be a balance of all three.  Most people get far more sodium in their diet than needed.  Yet again there are people who are prone to low sodium.  Now about whether this salt being talked about is a scam, It will have other trace minerals incorporated into it.  again it depends on what those other minerals are.  Natural flouride is harmless in the minute amounts you would get in this salt.  The harmful flouride is the processed flouride you get put in today's products and how it is processed.  This salt has far less of the harmful chemicals today's table salt in the round canisters at the grocery stores have in them. 

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#10 of 40 Old 05-02-2012, 04:11 AM
 
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Double Dude, you need to go back to your books.  NaCl is the formula for salt.  Cl is chloride, but Na is sodium, not natrium.

Actually you need to go back to *your* books, frcontrone. Natrium is the Latin term for sodium and is where the chemical symbol Na derives from. Not commonly used today perhaps but not incorrect either.
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#11 of 40 Old 09-16-2012, 02:27 AM
 
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So is it a scam or not? (confused)

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#12 of 40 Old 09-16-2012, 06:19 AM
 
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Scam in the it gets promoted, but probably delicious anyway.

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#13 of 40 Old 09-16-2012, 08:02 AM
 
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The interesting thing to me about himalayan sea salt (uh, and other gourmet salts, because let's be real, that's what this is) is that they all taste slightly different and also taste different from table salt.  I prefer the himalayan because it tastes good and is easily accessible for me from our grocery store.  I was under the impresson, however, that the different flavors of gourmet salts (like fleur de sel, for example) are because they have slightly different mineral contents?  I will say that I'm not completely clear on this, though.

 

I am clear on the fact that DNA is not the same as our bodily make up, so I'm with Doubledouble, there.  Salt is part of our bodily composition, but not part of the DNA molecule itself... or at least that's what my biology degree tells me.  lol.gif


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#14 of 40 Old 09-16-2012, 11:02 AM
 
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It's not a scam in the sense that it really is salt, and, when applied to your food, really will make it taste salty. It's mined in Pakistan. Enjoy.

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#15 of 40 Old 09-18-2012, 09:05 PM
 
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#16 of 40 Old 10-11-2012, 03:23 PM
 
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DoubleDouble, thanks for the lesson in the dead language, I really always wondered why the Periodic table had Sodium as "Na" (no really). However, English teachers gave up (over 20 years ago) the philosophy of using big & confusing words to seem smart. As soon as I started college (way too long ago), all the English teachers focused on clarity, which means catering to your intended audience, who in this case, is the average Jane.

 

Too often people just live for arguments on newsgroups picking on a couple of mis-spellings or grammar as proof the writer is smart the wrong way, and since I caught it, "I'm smarter than you!" While I appreciate the lesson on Natrium, it didn't become clear until frcontrone called you on it.

 

Practically speaking, your argument about the nuclear testing does bear concern, but supposedly the salt is dug up from way deep under the earth, and I feel it's still "purer" than the mass produced Morton's. I certainly don't have any facts either way, but unless someone provides traceable data of the radioactivity of the Himalayan salt, neither do you.

 

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#17 of 40 Old 10-12-2012, 06:29 AM
 
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Actually, Germans call sodium Natrium; and potassium is Kalium (corresponds to the periodic table's names). So it's not dead, doubledouble might not be a native English speaker. ;)

 

Apart from that, sheesh, I just bought some Himalayan salt to try it. Should I be worried now? I usually buy grey celtic sea salt, but since we will move soon I didn't want to order another 5lb bag of salt! I also found the pink salt from Utah at the health food store and it tastes great. The big crystals from Pakistan will go into my salt grinder. Does it really have a lot of fluoride? 

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#18 of 40 Old 10-12-2012, 08:18 AM
 
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DoubleDouble, thanks for the lesson in the dead language, I really always wondered why the Periodic table had Sodium as "Na" (no really). However, English teachers gave up (over 20 years ago) the philosophy of using big & confusing words to seem smart. As soon as I started college (way too long ago), all the English teachers focused on clarity, which means catering to your intended audience, who in this case, is the average Jane.

 

Latin is hardly a "dead" language. Sad when someone thinks it is.

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#19 of 40 Old 10-12-2012, 10:01 AM
 
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#20 of 40 Old 10-12-2012, 10:10 AM
 
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Back to salt -- there is one health reason that I know of for using old sa. If you are using sea salt, and are allergic to shellfish, ocean water sea salt has microscopic crustaceans in it. Salt from ancient seas doesn't cause allergic reactions.
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#21 of 40 Old 10-12-2012, 10:19 AM
 
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What? Yes it is.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extinct_language

 

LOL Sorry, but... Wikipedia is hardly a respected source. My kids both took Latin in HS. Within the past 6 years. Latin is used in all medical fields, much science, etc. It is also a significant basis for English and Romance Languages. You may not understand it, but that doesn't mean it's dead. Sorry.

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#22 of 40 Old 10-12-2012, 10:37 AM
 
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I thought "dead language" referred to the fact that there are no societies that speak latin as their typical way of speaking, not that it's not used in other ways (which of course it is).

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#23 of 40 Old 10-13-2012, 07:14 AM
 
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I just wanted to say that this thread is awesome! Nutrition, cell biology, biochemistry, linguistics, geography and a sprinkling of geopolitics for depth of flavour. luxlove.gif Awesome, I say. Kudos to you all. 

 

For the record, I'm with those who point out that

-human bodies contain lots of chemicals, including Na and Cl, but DNA has a specific chemical composition that doesn't include Na or Cl or NaCl.  

-Latin is not a native language used in ordinary, everyday spoken or written communication within a community and thus, it's considered "dead" even though it is studied and persists in many different ways

- salt, including Himalayan pink, is delicious. 

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#24 of 40 Old 10-17-2012, 11:04 PM
 
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Yes, way awesome! I just turned off the Kardashians to fully enjoy this thread!

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#25 of 40 Old 10-22-2012, 06:53 AM
 
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Never tried Himalayan salt - it reminds me of the "Himalayan ketchup" on The Regular Show. Oops, back to popular culture.
 


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#26 of 40 Old 02-25-2013, 11:34 AM
 
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I apologise for bringing up this thread, but it is one of the TOP results when searching for "himalayan sea salt" on Google.  It would be a shame if people are only getting poor information.

 

If you look on Google, the majority of search results are as follows:

  • Amateur marketing web pages that try to SELL YOU THE PRODUCT.
  • Forum posts with many people unsure of what to believe
  • Bigger name, alternative health websites that try to SELL YOU THE PRODUCT

 

Look at 90% of the "informational" web pages - they either have links to sell you the product, OR they are created by people with NO formal education on this matter (who likely have monetary reason to create these web pages).  Yes, Dr. Mercola does have a web page that features this product - but guess what?  It's a product page that sells you the product.

 

A normal family only has so much income.  Are you seriously going to pay a premium for this marketing sham, when you could be spending that on food products that are scientifically proven to be healthier for your family?

 

Let's take organic produce for example.  There is plenty of scientific literature that suggests a variety of pesticides are harmful to animal and human health.  You can make good health choices that are backed by evidence and fact, rather than believing the typical lies (or stretched facts) of marketing webpages and salesmen.

 

Please start thinking by yourselves, not believing what alternative health salesmen want you to believe.  They want you to buy their product just as much as the conventional "bad guy" big name companies.

 

 

Quote:
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Actually the human body is made of over 60 different chemical elements. Salt roughly being one of them. All though about 96% (roughly) is made of just 4 ingredients; oxygen, carbon, hydrogen and nitrogen, with a lot of the in the form of water.

So I'm nearly positive that salt (or at least the stuff that makes up this salt) is part of our DNA!

 

When someone says your information is incorrect, the respectable thing would be to actually spend 5 minutes to read up on the topic and see if (s)he is actually correct.  It is simply irresponsible if people continue to push on their wrong information as fact; this is even more of an issue if your children gain this habit.  It's not a personal attack against this person or people who have this habit - do you REALLY want your children thinking in this manner?  

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#27 of 40 Old 10-06-2013, 06:40 PM
 
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So at the end of the day it's still "he said, she said" and no one knows for sure if the Himalayan Sea Salt has any merit or not.

But that's ok, I will continue to use it because I like it better, and it is one of the changes I have in the past few months, that seem to be making a difference in how I feel, and it is helping to detox my body.

Jon Gabriel doesn't sell salt (that I know of), but he lost 200+ lbs and one of the things he did was switch to Himalayan salt.

While that doesn't guarantee that the stuff is good, I'd rather follow his steps, based on evidence :)

The thread is about Himalayan salt being a scam or not. There was no need to have to read through a whole university curriculum, to end up back at square one 2 pages later.

But that's just my opinion :)

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#28 of 40 Old 11-04-2013, 06:58 PM
 
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And, the winner of the mostest smartest person on the Internets is....  :mischief

 

Anyhow, I recently purchased this because I was curious about it.  I don't think it will make any difference, but I was curious enough about the claims to try some. 

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#29 of 40 Old 11-05-2013, 10:14 AM
 
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LOL Sorry, but... Wikipedia is hardly a respected source. My kids both took Latin in HS. Within the past 6 years. Latin is used in all medical fields, much science, etc. It is also a significant basis for English and Romance Languages. You may not understand it, but that doesn't mean it's dead. Sorry.

 

I missed this before, but you are incorrect. You can still learn a dead language in high school. I took it too. You can study all sorts of dead languages, like Ancient Greek and Old English and Occitan. Latin words are indeed a significant basis for later languages, and we still use Latin to name things in certain academic fields, like biology. That doesn't mean it is in common fluent use amongst populations, which is the requirement for a living language.

 

And Wikipedia is a respected source, especially for something as simple as the definition of "extinct language". You seem to think that a language is considered living if root words from it still exist and you can take it in high school. That isn't right.

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#30 of 40 Old 11-05-2013, 08:54 PM
 
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"Latin is a language

As dead as dead can be

It killed the ancient Romans

And now it's killing me."

 

-My venerable father, who as far as I know never studied Latin at all.

 

Also, this whole 'Pssh, Wikipedia' thing has got to stop. The merits and flaws of Wikipedia are widely known by now. I wouldn't use it for a source on, say, philosophy - the philosophy pages are highly incomplete and biased. But it's excellent for matters that are well-known-well-documented and less theoretical/arcane. It's a great place to look up historical facts, information about animals, statistics about countries... Yes, you wouldn't reference it in an academic paper, but that doesn't mean it's wrong or stupid. If Wikipedia says Latin is a dead language, chances are very high that it's correct. (And it is. I've studied a touch of Latin too, and that doesn't make it a living language. You can, very rarely, have a dead language revived - Hebrew, for instance, though modern Hebrew is different from ancient in many respects - but being spoken semi-fluently by a tiny handful of obsessives and used in poetry, medical terms and papal documents does not count. Rule of thumb - has Latin naturally and organically evolved words for refrigerator, automobile, internet and so on? No - because it's dead.)

 

Not super relevant to Himalayan salt, of course. :p

 

I used Himalayan salt for ages - simply for cooking, not for soaking. It was delicious. I eventually stopped because the grains were the wrong size. I like to sprinkle coarse salt on my flatbreads, but the chunky bits were getting chunkier and chunkier, until you were ending up with a gag-worthy mouthful of salt. And the fine grains weren't suitable for sprinkling, because they were just like regular table salt. So I switched to other brands. I've since tried a plain-jane iodised rock salt and a flaky Marlborough sea salt. The flaky salt has a beautiful texture for sprinkling, but both salts taste very harsh and... well, over-salty! If the Himalayan salt people were somehow able to manufacture a flaky version, I'd buy it. I suppose that'd contradict their 'barely touched, roughly hewn out of the ground' thing, though....

Springshowers likes this.

If decomposition persists please see your necromancer.

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