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Just Kick the Salt Habit
by multiple authors

This article is about Salt.   Yes, this includes normal "iodized salt" , and "Sea Salt" either refined or unrefined.  Most people into raw foods that are serious about their health do not consume salt in their diet.  If you want a saltly flavor to foods, you can add a salty vegetable such as salcornia, celery or try using some sea vegetables.

Sodium chloride (salt) consumption. One is that Stone-Age men and women did not consume supplemental dietary sodium chloride (salt), which like protein can also cause increased calciuresis (calcium excretion) [Nordin et al. 1993] and loss of bone mass [Devine et al. 1995]. Because the kidney must obligatorily excrete calcium with sodium [Nordin et al. 1993], high levels of dietary sodium are now generally recognized to be the single greatest dietary risk factor for osteoporosis [Matkovic et al. 1995; Devine et al. 1995; Cappuccio 1996]. It should go without saying that in this context, "high" levels of dietary sodium are simply normal levels in Western societies.

Paul Bragg N.D. Ph.D.
"How to keep your heart healthy and fit"

Would you use sodium, a caustic alkali, to season your food? Or chlorine, a
poisonous gas? "Ridiculous questions," you say. "Nobody would be foolhardy
enough to do that."
Of course not. But the shocking truth is that most people do so... because they
don't know that these powerful chemicals constitute the inorganic crystaline
For centuries, the expression "salt of the earth" has been used as a catch-all
phrase to designate something good and essential. Nothing could be more
erroneous. For that harmless product that you shake into your food every day may
actually bury you. Consider these startling facts:

1. SALT IS NOT A FOOD! There is no more justification for its culinary use
than there is for potassium chloride, calcium chloride, barium chloride, or any
other harmful chemical to season food.
2. Salt cannot be digested, assimilated, or utilized by the body. Salt has no
nutritional value! SALT HAS NO VITAMINS! NO ORGANIC MINERALS! NO NUTRIENTS OF ANY KIND! Instead, it is positively harmful and may bring on troubles in the kidneys, bladder, heart, arteries, veins, and blood vessels. Salt may waterlog the tissues, causing a dropsical condition.
3. Salt may act as a heart poison. It also increases the irritability of the
nervous system.
4. Salt acts to rob calcium from the body and attacks the mucous lining
throughout the entire gastrointestinal tract.
It is frequently claimed that salt is essential for the support of life.
However, there is no information available to substantiate this viewpoint. The truth is that entire races (primitive peoples) use absolutely no salt today and have not used it throughout their entire history. If salt were essential to life, these races would have become extinct long ago. The fact that they are not only alive but have far better health than other races, would seem to indicate that the supposed "necessity" of salt is a commercially-inspired invention or merely the product of the imagination.
An important objection to salt is the fact that it interferes with the normal digestion of food. Pepsin, an enzyme found in the hydrochloric acid of the stomach, is essential for the digestion of proteins. When salt is used, only 50% as much pepsin is secreted as would otherwise be the case. Obviously, under such conditions, digestion of protein foods is incomplete or too slow. The result is excessive putrefaction of protein and, in some instances, gas and digestive distress.
People undoubtedly would not add inorganic salt to their food if they were never
taught to do so in the first place. The taste for salt is an acquired one. When salt is eliminated from the diet for a short time, the craving for it ceases. It is only during the first few weeks after table salt is discontinued that it is really missed... after that, abstinence is of little difficulty. In fact, many of my health students... who have broken the deadly salt habit... write me that NOW they cannot stand salted foods! When someone serves them salted food, it gives them an abnormal thirst for liquids.

Harvey Diamond
"Fit For Life"

Q. Just how harmful is table salt?
A. The Egyptians used salt for embalming. Let's take the hint! This year Americans will consume five hundred million pounds of salt. That's a lot of embalming. Salt is everywhere and in everything from pet food to baby food. Salt is a major contributing factor to the increasing incidence of hypertension, or high blood pressure, in this country. It is so caustic to the sensitive inner tissues of the body that water is retained to neutralize its acidic effect. This adds weight to the body. Overuse of salt can contribute to a severe affliction of the kidneys called nephritis.

"Health Magic Through Chlorophyll"
Dr. Bernard Jensen:

SALT—Table salt should be dropped from the diet. We do not need it when we have plenty of greens everyday. To change from it, use vegetized salt purchased in your health food store. Vegetable concentrates in powdered form and herbs are also excellent seasonings.
Dr. Dicky in South Africa found that he could trade for anything he wanted from the Pygmies with salt. However, when he began giving them plenty of green vegetables, their desire for salt lessened and he could no longer bargain with salt alone because it had lost its value to them. Still further, we find that deer are not attracted to salt licks when they have the greens of the field. It is during the dry grass season, when the chlorophyll is lacking, that they desire this salt. Liquid chlorophyll contains the most potent, vital cell salts a person can take into the body. When we crave salt, I feel it is because the body doesn't have all the elements it should have from these greens.

Henry Lindlahr
"The Practice of Nature Cure"

Vinegar and Condiments Injurious. Green vegetables are most beneficial when eaten raw with a dressing of lemon juice and olive oil. Avoid the use of vinegar. It is a product of fermentation, and a powerful preservative which regards digestion as well as fermentation, both processes being very much the same in character. Lemon juice being a live vegetable product, rich in vitamins, promotes digestion.
Do not use pepper, salt or sugar on fruits and vegetables at the table. They may
be used sparingly in cooking, . Strong spices and condiments are more or less
irritating to . the mucous linings of the intestinal tract. They gradually benumb the nerves of taste. At first they stimulate the digestive organs, but like all other stimulants, produce in time weakness and atrophy. Fruits and vegetables are rich in all the mineral salts in the live, organic form, and therefore the addition of inorganic mineral table salt is not only superfluous but positively harmful.

John T. Richter
"Nature The Healer"

Q. Would it not be all right to put a little salt on one's food if it seemed to taste "flat" otherwise?
A. Table salt, and all other salts except those found in their organic stages in fruits and vegetables, are inorganic substances which cannot be assimilated by the body and must be discarded by the bloodstream at the earliest opportunity.
Usually the salt is deposited in the joints, particularly the knees, elbows, ankles, wrists, and the like, resulting later in arthritis and rheumatism. It makes no difference whether you have gotten your salt in the form of the table variety, or as saleratus (bichloride of soda) in hot biscuits, or Epsom salts prescribed for internal use in cases of constipation; all are productive of the same injurious results. What is the first symptom of salt deposits in the joints? Do they crack when you do a knee bend? If so, your joints are commencing to become dry due to the salt deposits having absorbed all the synovial fluid which acts as a lubricant in those regions. Salt has a tremendous attraction for water and all other liquids. No wonder doctors prescribe innumerable glasses of water daily so that their patients may to some extent satisfy the incessant craving for liquid caused by the salt they are eating. Remember that salt may dissolve in water and in the saliva of the mouth, but it will recrystallize within a very short time and under no circumstances will it be absorbed into the bodily structure. It will collect wherever there is room for it to be deposited,
but it will no more be absorbed than sand is absorbed by the gears into which you may have thrown it. Salt, in its effect, is like that of sand in gears; it irritates and slowly but surely destroys. Our bodies are wonderful machines, self-oiling, provided we furnish the food out of which the oil may be manufactured and stop abusing them.
You ask, "Do we need salt? Is not salt present in the healthy bloodstream?"
True, but you must get your salt from the vegetable or fruit, which in turns gets it from the earth. Your bloodstream will not require checking provided you eat natural, uncooked foods. Nature will take from these exactly the right amount of salt which is needed, and no more. In the first place, it is organic, and therefore usable in the building up of the body; in the second place, as mentioned, there will never be an excess of salts no matter how much live food you may eat.

Hygienic Review
Vol. XXXIV October, 1973 No. 7
Herbert M. Shelton

In their effort to supply a basis for the salt eating habit men who call themselves scientists uncritically repeat the popular folklore that wild animals seek out "salt licks" to obtain salt. Salt eating is an acquired habit and serves no useful purpose. The practice of eating salt has never been universal.
Thoreau says he gave up salt eating when he found that the Indians did not use it. It is highly probable that he was influenced in this as much by Graham as by the Indians.
In his Eskimo Life, Stefansson, the famous arctic explorer, says: "After you have been a month or so without salt you cease to long for it, and after six months I have found the taste of meat boiled in salt water distinctly disagreeable. No Eskimo will touch salt if he can help doing so. Many other people have existed for ages without taking salt.
One who has been accustomed to adding salt to his food finds unsalted food dull, flat, insipid and tasteless until his sense of taste has regained its normal tone. Robinson Crusoe had no salt and, at first, he found food unappetizing. The giant crawfish which he caught were unpalatable.
Naturalists inform us that in some parts of the earth, certain animals, such as the elephant, African antelopes, etc., do frequent and lick certain places.
Analyses of these "licks" show that sodium chloride (common table salt) is frequently lacking in them. The different "licks" contain different minerals, such as phosphorus, manganese, copper, sulphate, magnesium, nickel and iron. As the "licking" process is not universal, but is confined to a few restricted places in the earth, and as the animals can make no constructive use of the elements existing in the "licks", the licking habit, where observed, is probably in the nature of a perversion. I have been assured that deer sometimes lick the salt flats of Utah, but here, also, the salt in these flats is not all sodium chloride. As the flats are certainly not within reach of all the animal population of America and, as "licks" are not found elsewhere, we need not take seriously the myth that animals supply their alleged need for salt by visiting "salt licks". We cannot determine the normal needs of animal life by recourse to the rare practices of a few animals in those extremely infrequent places where mineral outcroppings exist. We know that animals do not mine Salt and do not ship it great distances to supply their alleged needs, as we do. Science is the ever-subservient handmaiden of commercialism and we should not be surprised by the fact that the scientists can find and have found jurisdiction, even if only fictional, for all the practices that are fostered by the commercial world for profit.
Before the coming of the white man to this continent most Indians knew not the taste of salt, and the few that had and employed salt, did not add it to their foods. Even today in parts of Alaska, Canada, Mexico and South America, the Indians still manifest a distaste for this substance. It is also well known among students of the subject that the Bedouin people regard the use of salt as ridiculous. Great numbers of instances of this kind, some of them reaching back into prehistory and involving great numbers of generations, prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that man does not require the addition of salt (sodium chloride) to his food or to be taken in drink or as pills. Great numbers of tribes in tropical and desert regions have existed for ages without taking salt, proving that we do not require it to resist heat. Indeed, the supposed need for salt in hot weather and in hot climates is a very recent modern notion.
Among the Indians there were a few tribes along our western coast that had and
employed salt. They administered it as a magic potion, not as a part of their daily diet. Their medicine men employed it in their sorcery to drive out devils from the bodies of the sick. It was not administered internally. Could its "use" by other parts of the world and at other periods of man's existence have originated in the same way? This is most likely. I cannot offer any strong support of this view. In view of the most probable origin of the "use" of all other condiments, there is reason to believe that the Indian medicine man was not the first to introduce salt in his sorcery. Its "use" antedates recorded history, but, it is a fact that whole tribes and even whole nations of men during this vast period of time, have not known the taste of salt. This is due more to the fact that the medicine men of these tribes had not discovered it
than to any credit that belongs to them for not introducing it to man. I once thought that it may have come into general "use" among those people who do take it, as a result of eating foods that had been salted to preserve them, man having, by some accident, discovered that the addition of quantities of salt to flesh and certain other foods would preserve these. At present it seems more likely that salt was added to these foods, originally, not as a preservative, but to impart its magical virtues to these foods. Its antibiotic (preservative) qualities were thus made known.
The mountains of facts of contemporary animal life and of the history of man, which prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that salt eating is not essential to life, even that the eating of this inorganic mineral is definitely injurious, are ignored by our so-called scientists who continue to urge us to take this substance with our foods. Only in a few states of disease are "salt-free" diets advised by physicians and not all physicians are agreed that such diets are beneficial. Once a mistake becomes a part of established science, it is next to impossible to weed it out. Science does not like to admit its mistakes; it does not like to surrender its pet illusions. It is as cock-sure that we need sodium chloride in the form of ordinary table salt as it is that we must have flesh foods. People who desire to live rationally will simply have to ignore the
decrepit old hag and go on ahead of her.
Trall gave it as his opinion of salt as a "dietetic" article that "it is worse than useless-common opinion, and the frequent assertions of medical books to the contrary notwithstanding. " He pointed out that the "free use of salt irritates the mouth, throat, and stomach, causing thirst and fever, and provoking unnatural appetite, while it loads the circulating fluids with a foreign ingredient, which the excretory organs must labor inordinately to get rid of. "
In his day the antiseptic quality of salt was much to the fore and this quality was often adduced as evidence in favor of its use. Trall declared that "this is precisely the quality that renders it most unfit for nutritive purposes."
There is no doubt of the need for various salts by the animal organism, but these must be taken as organic salts, as synthesized by fruits and vegetables; not as inorganic, as taken from the sea or salt mines. Sodium chloride, formerly called muriate of soda (this term was particularly applied to sea salt, the word muria meaning brine) is but one salt; we need several. Why do we make so much ado about our supposed need for one salt and ignore all the others? The salts of calcium, phosphorus, silica, iodine, magnesium, etc. are removed from our foods by the milling and processing of foods and by various cooking processes.
Were the organic salts left in our foods, and these are the only salts that are usable by the animal body, we would not feel the "need" to add sodium chloride to our foods to make them palatable. Certainly the addition of this salt to our foodstuffs does not compensate for the deficiency of the other salts that our regular diets present.
The use of salt imposes considerable exertion upon the body in eliminating it, for it is not readily excreted. It tends to accumulate in the body so that the organism finds it necessary to retain within itself a superfluous quantity of water to dilute the retained salt and thus defend itself against this substance.
A hidden edema (one that is often not so hidden) is the result of salt intake, giving one a body-weight that is composed of a considerable amount of water rather than healthy flesh.
The increased flow of saliva, gastric juice and mucus that follows the; taking of salt, as well as of other condiments, is due to the effort to dilute and wash away the irritant substance, the juices containing no digestive enzymes. Instead of accelerating the digestive processes, as is commonly believed, the use of such substances retards digestion. Their use, under any and all circumstances and conditions, is always an evil.
All fruits and vegetables in their natural state abound in organic salts of various kinds, and a diet composed of these substances will amply supply the body with all needed salt. No deficiency of mineral salts can arise if one eats freely of uncooked fruits and vegetables, nor will one 'feel" the "need" for the addition of table salt to his food. These salts of fruits and vegetables are in forms that may be utilized by the animal organism in the building of tissue.
They are foods, not irritants.


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