I read somewhere years ago that it’s easy to cut a salt addiction (unlike sugar, which is exceedingly difficult). Just eat food without salt for A FEW DAYS and your taste buds will get a lot more sensitive to salt and in the long run you’ll need less to satisfy your taste buds. I’ve found this to be very true. As mentioned, sadly this is very rarely the case with sugar! Putting aside all the health ailments that go along with a diet high in salt, sodium also makes you retain water meaning it will make you bloat… nothing any of us want! When it comes to beauty however, salt has LOTS of benefits! I spend a good part of the year in Israel nowadays so I’m flooded with Dead Sea salt products and using them does wonder for your skin (even more so if you can get yourself to the actual Dead Sea regularly!).
“Salt is a natural detoxifier with an incredible natural mineral content that helps restore the protective barrier in skin, balance oil production, hold onto hydration and can help reduce inflammation,” says celebrity nutritionist Amanda Hamilton. Ironically, according to Hamilton, when applied topically the high magnesium in sea salt may also help reduce water retention, which is often felt as uncomfortable bloating.
Given these benefits it’s fitting that, these days, mineral salts are hugely popular with a celebrity following around the world for a wide range of natural treatments. “They are recommended by mainstream doctors as an alternative to prescriptions for steroid creams, used extensively in spa treatments and of course, for general wellbeing and relaxation,” explains Hamilton.
Dead Sea salt in particular is very beneficial. “Since ancient times the waters of the DeadSea have been renowned for their therapeutic properties and healing qualities. What makes the Dead Sea special is its high salt content, which is rich in beauty boosting minerals including most notably, calcium, potassium and magnesium. Of these, magnesium is the most valuable for skin and wider health benefits.”
With that in mind we asked Hamilton to highlight what makes these minerals so rich in beauty benefits:
► Magnesium – Magnesium deficiency is a modern epidemic. Magnesium is not stored but needs constant replenishment and transdermal magnesium absorption (absorption through the skin) is thought to be the most effective way of doing this. Magnesium promotes cell metabolism, speeds up healing of skin tissue, soothes damaged skin, protects skin from microbes that cause allergies, helps with muscle relaxation.
► Calcium – Balances sebum, enhances skin hydration, promotes cell renewal.
► Potassium – Replenishes much-needed moisture, reduces puffy skin, reduces water retention.