Rock salt is another name for the mineral halite which is commonly known as sodium chloride and has a chemical formula NaCl. It is commonly known as table salt or 'Sendha namak' or 'kala namak' in Hindi, 'Rati Uppu' in Telugu, 'Intuppu' in Tamil, 'Kallu Uppu' in Malayalam, 'Kalluppu' in Kannada, 'Shende Lon' in Marathi, 'Sindhalun' in Gujarati and 'Saindhava Lavan' in Bengali. It is mostly colorless or white though its color may vary from light blue, dark blue, purple to pink, red, orange, yellow or grey depending upon the amount and type of impurities present in it.
It is formed by the evaporation of salty water from large water bodies such as inland marginal seas, enclosed bays and estuaries in semi-arid regions where it is found in enormous deposits. In the Indian subcontinent, it is found in the Himalayan region where it known as the Himalayan crystal salt.
There is a difference between the rock salt and the common salt that we mostly consume. Sendha namak is the purest form of rock salt that is available in India in small quantities. Thus, it is costlier than commercial salt. Unlike commercial salt which is iodized, rock salt is more granular with large chunky crystals, has less salty taste and is not chemically processed. It can be used as a healthy substitute of common salt as it is rich in minerals and does not pose health problems like high blood pressure, puffiness in the body or eyes.
It is used in making ice creams as it lowers the freezing point when packed with ice in the ice cream maker, thus making the ice cream colder. It is mostly used for seasoning and preservation. Apart from consumption, it is stocked in massive bags for the purpose of keeping down ice on the roads in winter.
The nutritional value of the rock salt is so high that they have different effects on different parts of the human body. For your convenience we have broken the benefits of rock salt down into the categories of health, skin and hair!
As pointed out earlier, rock salt is the purest form of salt which is devoid of environmental pollutants and chemical components. It contains 84 out of the 92 trace elements required by the body including calcium, iron, zinc, potassium, magnesium, copper and so on. Thus, it is available in drug stores and pharmacies in the form of powder, pill supplement or even as a liquid extract in health beverages. Some of its health benefits are as follows.
Sea salt is made by drying out sea water. So, the cheap rock salt sold in markets comes from the underground salt mines. The more expensive sea salt that we find in gourmet shops comes from the sea. Chemically, there's not much difference as they are both more than 99% sodium chloride.
Let's take a look at how some other salts affect our skin, hair, and health.
Apart from its numerous health benefits, there are also many rock salt uses for your skin in many ways, thanks to its cleansing and detoxifying properties. Some of its benefits for skin are as follows.
Though it might appear unlikely, rock salt can actually be beneficial for your hair in many ways. Due to its cleansing and exfoliating properties, it is often used as an ingredient in shampoos and hair treatments. Some of its benefits for hair are given below: