Kala Namak (Black Salt) Benefits & Side Effects
Kala Namak (also known as Himalayan Black Salt or Indian Black Salt in English) is a type of Rock Salt, which is generally dark reddish black in color and has pungent smell and sulfurous odor. The powder of Kala Namak has pinkish gray or light purple color.
In ayurveda, Kala Namak has medicinal importance and it is an ingredient of some ayurvedic medicines. These ayurvedic remedies are usually beneficial for diseases of digestive system.
Other Names of Kala Namak
- Kala Loon
- Black salt
- Himalayan Black Salt
- Indian Black Salt
- Namak Kala
Kala Namak (Black salt) mainly contains Sodium Chloride and traces of various minerals and chemical compounds such as Sodium sulfate (Na2SO4), magnesia (MgO), iron in form of ferrous sulfate (FeSO4), greigite (Fe3S4), ferric oxide, etc. Black salt contains 36.8% to 38.79% sodium content, which can vary according to different brands available in the market.
Common Salt vs. Black Salt
Table salt and black salt both contain Sodium Chloride. Here are some differences according to their composition.
|Particulars||Table salt||Black Salt|
|Sodium||38.7 to 39.1%||36.8% to 38.79%|
|Magnesium||Less than 0.01%||0.1%|
Kala Namak has following healing properties.
- Digestive Stimulant
- Haematinic (increases hemoglobin levels)
- Hematogenic (helps in formation of red blood cells)
- Fat Burner
Kala Namak is beneficial in abdominal discomfort and other symptoms related to digestive system disorders.
- Abdominal pains or cramps
- Intestinal Gas
- Abdominal Distension
- Skin diseases
Benefits and Uses
Black salt is beneficial in diseases listed above in therapeutic indications. Herbalist, naturopaths and ayurvedic physicians generally recommend black salt in these diseases. Here we will discuss main uses and health benefits of Kala Namak.
Indigestion & Loss of Appetite
Kala Namak is digestive stimulant, which means it balances natural production of acids in the stomach and stimulates bile production in the liver. It helps digesting foods and increases appetite.
In ayurveda, it is used with TRIKATU (three pungent spices including black pepper, ginger and long pepper). People with acidity, heartburn or ulcer should avoid this mixture, but they can take Kala Namak alone.
Acidity & Heartburn
Kala Namak is also beneficial for acidity and heartburn. It reduces acid reflux and balances the acid production in the stomach.
It is best to use it with coriander seeds powder, cumin seed powder and fennel seeds powder in equal proportion for maximum benefits in acidity and heartburn.
Gas, Flatulence & Abdominal Distension
Black Salt reduces intestinal gas and flatulence due to its anti-flatulent characteristic. It also helps heaviness in the abdomen after meal.
If you have any of these problems, then you can use black salt with lemon water. Lemon water with black salt also helps improving digestion.
Black Salt contains small amounts of iron compounds, which are highly beneficial for iron deficiency anemia.
Caution & Side Effects
Black Salt or Kala Namak is LIKELY SAFE in dietary amounts. The dietary amount of black salt should not exceed from 6 grams (elemental sodium in it is around 2.3 grams) a day. Therapeutic amount of black salt is less than dietary amount and it is used along with others herbs and spices. These herbal mixtures usually contain around 250 mg to 500 mg black salt, which is also considerably safest dosage.
FAQs about Black Salt (Kala Namak)
Is black salt good for blood pressure?
Black salt (Kala Namak) also contains sodium chloride (NaCl). Sodium in black salt can vary from 36.8% to 38.79% according to different brands available in the market. It also contains a small amount of potassium, magnesium and other minerals for which it is considered best for heart patients, but the amount of these minerals is insignificant.
It will likely to affect your blood pressure similarly as common salt affects. Therefore, patients with high blood pressure (hypertension) should not eat it more than 3.75 grams (equivalent to around 1.5 grams elemental sodium) for precautionary purposes.
If you are healthy individual, then you can eat it up to 6 grams per day (equivalent to around 2.3 grams elemental sodium).
Is black salt healthier than table salt?
Table salt is a refined salt fortified with Iodine. However, black salt also contains Iodine, but the amount of iodine present in it is not sufficient. Therefore, if we consider iodine importance, then we can understand that table salt is better than black salt.
However, black salt contains trace minerals, which is also important for us. If we consider this point, then black salt is healthier than table salt.
For maximum benefits, you can use black salt mixing with table salt in your food. It will provide sufficient amount of iodine as well as trace minerals.
Black salt also possesses medicinal properties, so it helps in digestive ailment, indigestion, loss of appetite, flatulence, heartburn, gas and abdominal distension. If you use black salt in your diet, it also prevents these problems. According to these benefits, we can consider black salt is healthier than common or table salt.
In addition to these benefits of black salt, it also contains iron content, which aids in the production of hemoglobin. Therefore, it is also good for people suffering with anemia or other blood disorders.
Is black salt healthier than sea salt?
Black salt is healthier than sea salt. Sea salt contains harmful chemicals such as aluminum silicate and potassium iodate. These two chemicals have harmful effects on the health, so sea salt is banned in some countries. Black salt does not contain these chemicals, so black salt is better than sea salt.
How to use black salt in food
Take equal amounts of black salt and table salt. Mix them properly and use this mixture of salts in your food for maximum health benefits.