The bottom line is that there is a very high likelihood that our fancy sea salt is contaminated with plastic particles.
Considered a healthier alternative to table salt, sea salt is derived through evaporative means. Producers collect seawater and evaporate it until only the salt is left (at least that’s what is supposed to happen).
The source of the sea water could be the problem. While it’s quite convenient to collect seawater from the coastline, the concentration of plastic particles from runoff including cosmetics, microbeads and decomposing plastic may explain the plastic particles found in 15 Chinese sea salt brands in a recent study.
As reported by Scientific American…
The highest level of plastic contamination was found in salt sourced from the ocean:
The researchers measured more than 250 particles of plastic per lb of sea salt.
The team, led by Huahong Shi of East China Normal University also found tiny particles of plastic in salt sourced from briny lakes, briny wells, and salt mines, although at lower levels—between 3 and 165 particles/ lb.
We’re not aware of any American sea salt brands having been tested yet, but according to one researcher, it’s very likely that many of them could be contaminated with plastic particles as well.
As reported by NaturallySavvy.com, according to the research, published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, a wide range of plastic pollution is contaminating salt as our ocean’s continue to fill up with plastic debris.
The research comes on the heels of another study pointing to plastic debris in at least 25 percent of fish sampled in the U.S. and Asia.
“Plastics have become such a ubiquitous contaminant, I doubt it matters whether you look for plastic in sea salt on Chinese or American supermarket shelves,” Sherri Mason, an environmental science researcher at the State University of New York Fredonia told Scientific American. “I’d like to see some ‘me-too’ studies,” she added.
In the meantime, sea salt may still be a lesser of evils when it comes to chemically derived table salt which comes from sodium chloride which is often contaminated with sand and glass.
According to Natural News, the best source of sea salt may be Pink Himalayan salt. “Himalayan salt is one of the most profound and fundamental health re-discoveries of our time. This crystalline, unrefined salt comes from the original prime body of sea—The Primal Sea.”
We’ll be following this developing story with hopes that sea salt producers will take action and begin sourcing their seawater from deeper and cleaner waters.
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