What Is Unrefined Salt?

by Lissabeth Ross ; Updated September 28, 2017

White table salt is usually refined salt.

Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

While everyone should have some salt in their diet, most people consume way too much, whether they sprinkle it on their food or buy prepared foods that contain large quantities of it. Most foods contain refined salt, which is considered unhealthy. However, studies have shown that unrefined salt can actually be healthy to consume.

Basic Facts About Unrefined Salt

Unrefined salt is often called sea salt. It is composed of 84 percent sodium chloride and 16 percent other minerals. Because of these other minerals, unrefined salt can have a grainy texture and is not usually pure white. By comparison, refined salt is 97.5 percent sodium chloride.

Where Unrefined Salt Comes From

All unrefined salt comes from the sea. It can either come from freshly dried seawater or can be harvested from inland sources where oceans existed in ancient times and old seabeds remain in rock form.

Identifying Unrefined Salt

Salt that is unrefined will be labeled as such on the package. Sea salt and Kosher salt are likely refined if the word "unrefined" does not appear on the packaging.

Why Unrefined Salt is Healthier

Unrefined salt provides more nutritional value and can actually be good for you due to the 16 percent other minerals that are found in it. It helps to balance your body's electrolytes and supplies 92 vital trace minerals.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

About the Author

Lissabeth Ross began her career in journalism in 2005 as a staff writer for the "Journal of the Pocono Plateau." In addition to writing for several different newspapers, she served as the editor of the travel publication "News of The Poconos." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Rutgers University.