A dash of healthy pink

Holistic, wholesome, and unaltered, Himalayan salt is in vogue, having elbowed aside the milky white sodium chloride.

Published: 04th March 2017 10:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th March 2017 11:29 AM   |  A+A-

Image for representational purpose only.

Express News Service

Seen the pink champions making their way as blushing lamps in the comfort of your living rooms? Or jostling for attention in the condiments section of upmarket food stores? Holistic, wholesome, and unaltered, Himalayan salt is in vogue, having elbowed aside its chemical-dispositioned cousin, the milky white sodium chloride (table salt).

There are lamps of the salmon-shaded crystal darting through the decor of home spaces. Himalayan salt lamps are known to cleanse and deodorise the air by absorbing water molecules strapped with dust and grime, and then releasing the cleansed water vapour in the air while retaining harmful particles. The sense of calm and positive energy the lamp infuses in the environment through the neutralisation of free radicals is a perfect foil for the urban weary souls.

“Such lamps are an excellent inclusion, as they purify the environment hygroscopically, provided you switch off electronics in your house when not in use. The problem arises in places by the sea, where owing to the excessive humidity, the lamp sweats and leaves salt deposits that need to be cleaned regularly,” says decor stylist Jasmine Jhaveri in Mumbai.

Use a lint-free cloth to pat the crystal dry if moisture builds up on the outer surface of the lamp.

So if you wish to breathe better while keeping bronchial ailments at bay, get the saviour salt.

“Himalayan salt de-clogs our arteries detoxifies our biological system and most importantly, balances the pH in the cells of our body. This keeps us healthy, as an acidic body is more likely to fall ill. A proper pH boosts immunity and aids digestion,” says Sarika Nair, nutritionist, in Mumbai. The salt contains less sodium than table salt and also has essential minerals such as sulphur and potassium that combat infection.

These tiny crystals contain 84 minerals and pack the punch in your daily intake. Sarika says, “It can be used as a ‘finishing salt’. You can add these to your food after preparing a dish for a lovely flavour. Cook fish with the salt and lemon, and bake; it enhances the flavour. Replace white salt in brine with pink salt or sprinkle on popcorn,” she says.

It is as natural as it gets, having crystallised in the earth for over millions of years. Then there are flavoured versions of the salt to bring in the tang, zest and spice. You can choose from a palatable array of Hawaiian, chilli, lemon. Sprinkle it in your salads and soups for that extra zing. “Bring into meat marinades, salads and curries or even in the basting mix prepared to grill asparagus, root vegetables, mushrooms, seafood and meats,” says Swasti Aggarwal, food strategist, Foodhall, Delhi.

Himalayan salt can be used as a block or slab on which you can cut vegetables and mince meat and leave in the refrigerator to restore freshness and crispiness. Chennai-based nutrition and dietetics consultant Deepalekha Banerjee says, “You can use a Himalayan salt mortar and pestle to grind fresh herbs and spices. This infuses the food with the good taste and essential minerals of the salt.

As the crystal has anti-microbial properties, clean up is very simple. A salt bowl is a durable and wise inclusion in the kitchen. It can withstand extreme temperatures and can thus be used for baking and serving food. You can store frozen food in the refrigerator, as the salt has the ability to sustain both hot and cold temperatures.”

Due to the crystalline structure, the heat spreads evenly throughout the block rather than radiating from the middle and cooling down at the edges. It helps the food to hold its temperature uniformly, whether it’s hot or cold. Cooking on the salt block imparts good taste and also brings in additional health benefits. While the crystals help in bettering your immunity and control your blood pressure, remember, too much of anything is avoidable.

“Just as excessive sodium is bad, so is less sodium. Himalayan salt is low in sodium. So keep a watch on the consumption,” Sarika advises.

In the kitchen
It can be used as a block or slab on which one can chop vegetables and mince meat and store in the refrigerator. A salt bowl is a durable and wise inclusion in the kitchen.

As preservative
Himalayan salt has been used as a preservative since ancient times, to protect food against bacteria, mould, and spoiling. The salt absorbs water from foods, making the environment too dry to support harmful mould or bacteria.

In food
Himalayan salt de-clogs our arteries detoxifies our biological system and most importantly, balances the pH in the cells of our body. This keeps us healthy, as an acidic body is more likely to fall ill. A proper pH boosts immunity and aids digestion.

Home decor
Salt lamps cleanse the air by absorbing water molecules strapped with dust and grime, and then releasing the cleansed water vapour in the air while retaining harmful particles. The sense of calm and positive energy the lamp infuses in the environment through the neutralisation of free radicals is a perfect foil for the urban weary souls.

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