Salt isn't supposed to be white Mineral Celtic Sea Salt Pink Himalayan

Salt isn’t supposed to be white…

What type of salt do you use in your cooking?

Salt isn't supposed to be white Mineral Celtic Sea Salt Pink Himalayan

Despite all the warnings about how we should limit our sodium intake, if you eat a healthy unprocessed, natural diet, you may actually need more salt in your diet.

Salt shouldn't be the sodium chloride – a highly refined, processed white substance devoid of nutrients – which so many people consume. The common processed table salt that most people use in their cooking and to season their meals with, is missing over 80 minerals. Yet they only put ONE mineral back into processed table salts, and that’s iodine. So the only real benefit of table salt could be argued to be the iodine content (read what can happen if you get an iodine deficiency – and what to do to avoid it).

Natural Mineral Salt

Natural mineral salts can have as many as 84 minerals and trace minerals. That’s 84 minerals you might not get elsewhere.

There are so many different natural salts available, how do you decide which one to use? I like to try different types. I'm currently using Celtic Sea Salt in my cooking, and I have a Pink Himalayan Sea Salt grinder that I use to season my food.

I usually buy salt from iHerb as I find them so much cheaper and they have a much bigger range than my local health food store. IHerb currently have a Pink Himalayan Sea Salt grinder on sale for $3.24 – on which you can get a $5 discount* (or $10 if your order is over $40) using the promo code duv741.  So if you've not tried mineral salts, why not give them a go and let me know what you think.

Which salt are you using at the moment? I’d love to hear about your favourites in the comments below.

*Don't blame me if the price goes back up!
Iodine paleo diet deficiencies supplement-min


So you’re following a “perfect” Paleo diet… surely you can’t be deficient in any vitamins or minerals that your body needs? Well, you might be surprised; have you thought about your iodine levels lately?

I've been looking into some of the popular supplements that people take, and minerals that some are careful to ensure they are not deficient in. I’ll be writing about a few of the popular ones, but iodine is one of the first minerals that regular seems to be spoken about.

Iodine paleo diet deficiencies supplement-min


What actually is iodine?

It’s a trace element that has quite a big impact on our health and is especially associated with our thyroid. While iodine deficiency is mainly linked with third world and developing nations, research shows that even those living in developed countries like Australia or the United Kingdom have been found to be deficient. It’s probably no surprise, given the SAD diet so many people in the developed World live on.

Iodine deficiency is not a good thing and can cause a number of health issues.

Conditions such as Goitre can be caused by iodine deficiency. The thyroid gland enlarges, as it lacks the necessary iodine in order to compensate for the imbalance. This produces a large and highly visible lump in the neck. Not pretty.

Cretinism occurs when a woman is iodine deficient during a pregnancy. This can result in the child being born with a lower IQ and abnormal neuro-development.

Another result of iodine deficiency is Hypothyroidism.  Iodine is one of the major ingredients in the thyroid hormone, so where thyroid lacks enough, it will reduce the thyroids ability to makes the hormone. Symptoms of a thyroid lacking iodine include – elevated blood lipids, infertility, weight gain and the inability to lose weight, dry skin, hair loss and a lack of libido – just to name but a few.

So why do iodine deficiencies occur?

Especially on a Paleo diet, when you eat natural, real foods? Foods such as sea food and seaweed are rich in iodine – so not having many of these foods in your diet, makes it harder to get decent levels of iodine.

A common source of iodine is iodised salt – which of course on a Paleo diet, is often replaced with mineral and sea salts – naturally iodine free!

Mineral Deficiency

Some foods are rich in Goitrogen, such as broccoli. If eaten to excess, these foods may interfere with the iodine uptake needed by the thyroid gland. While this doesn’t lead to a whole body deficiency it does limit the thyroids ability to get the amount of iodine it needs.

Where can you get iodine from?

Seaweed is a great source, especially from kelp (or Kombu) and hijiki, just add a strip to your next pot of chili, soup or curry. Eat more seafood – crustaceans, fish, and shellfish – anything that lives in the ocean, provided it is high quality. While the iodine content of fish varies you can get the most from abalone, codfish and pollack. The way you cook also determines how much iodine will remain. If you boil fish it will lose most of its iodine content but if you fry it most of the iodine content will remain. Grilling retains more than boiling does, but a little less than frying.

Free range eggs are another great source – although the specific amount will depend on the laying hens diet – if there is iodine in the chicken’s diet it will show up in the yolk.

Finally supplements are a popular alternative to ensure you are getting sufficient levels of iodine in your paleo diet.

So how do you ensure you get enough Iodine?

Paleo iodine wraps nori-min

Paleo Iodine Wraps

Since my new supply of himalayan salt arrived with a big warning on the outside “this does not contain iodine”, I've been craving salty foods.  I'm sure this is psychosomatic, but it has lead to quite a lot of reading about iodine deficiency in the last week.

Himalayan-Salt-Iodine-paleo iodine wraps-min

It does appear to be quite possible to become deficient in iodine when eliminating regular iodised salt and conventionally raised animal products.  Apparently they started adding iodine to salt many years ago – and to animal feed, as many people were deficient in the mineral.  Iodine plays a crucial role in thyroid function and is an essential mineral.  I had quite extensive blood work a couple of months ago but for some reason, despite my thyroid function being tested, iodine levels were not part of the tests.  I will get my levels checked out, but in the meantime, I need to make sure I get enough iodine, be it from my diet, or supplements.  Kelp Supplements seem to be quite popular, so perhaps they will be a good choice?

Wild caught fish is a good source of iodine, but I don't incorporate this in my diet regularly – this is probably something I need to change.  Seaweed is supposed to be an excellent source of iodine, so to that end, I created “Paleo Iodine Wraps” for dinner this evening, using Nori sheets.

The wraps were going to contain beef, but I actually found some fresh turkey today – and it was on sale, so I had to buy it (I've got no idea why it's so hard to find turkey in Australia – it's got such a fantastic nutritional profile!).  As you might have noticed I'm quite keen on putting fruit in with savoury dishes, so thought I'd experiment with some apricot to go with the turkey and seaweed flavours.  I'm really enjoying coconut aminos at the moment, so I used it to marinate the turkey and beef in.



Fresh Turkey
Thinly Sliced Beef
Capsicum (bell pepper)
Nori Sheets
Coconut Oil
Coconut Aminos
Coriander (Cilanto)
Himalayan Sea Salt


I cut the turkey and beef into thin strips and let them marinate in the coconut aminos for a few minutes, whilst I prepared the rest of the ingredients.

I cut the onion, capsicum, zucchini, mushrooms and apricots into strips and then stir fried the meat in the coconut aminos and a spoonful of coconut oil.

Once the meat browned off I set it aside, and stir fried the vegetables and apricots in the same oil.  I added the salt and some coriander to this and kept the vegetables on the heat for a few minutes.

Whilst the vegetables finished cooking, I cut the lettuce, tomatoes and avocados into strips, since these did not require cooking.


When the vegetables were ready, I assembled all of the ingredients on one edge of the nori sheets, and rolled them until they resembled (paleo!) sushi rolls.

I was pleased with this impromptu dinner and will add it to my list of good foods to make for on the go!  I think these would store fine in the fridge overnight, so would be another good option for work lunches – or even as a grab and go breakfast.  I really liked the contrast of the seaweed taste with the sweetness of the apricot.  I think next time I'll use fish instead of turkey and beef to full embrace a sea theme for this dish – and to get in a bit more iodine!


I've not checked yet, but hopefully if I incorporate Nori a few times a week, I won't have to worry about iodine deficiency.

I'd be very interested to hear your thoughts on Iodine intake and deficiency, is this something you actively address in your diet?

Paleo iodine wraps nori-min

Paleo seaweed-min


I love looking around my local Asian supermarket.  I found a whole section of seaweed and seaweed related products (though the products seem to contain lots of ingredients that are far removed from Paleo).  Seaweed is something I've never had at home before – and certainly haven’t cooked with – and I'm curious to try.

Seaweed paleo-min
Seaweed is supposed to be a great source of iodine that is otherwise hard to obtain through diet, but which plays a crucial role in the thyroid.  It contains lots of different health promoting minerals.

I've been looking into what I can do with different types of Seaweed.  Apparently dulse granules can be sprinkled on many foods and nori can be used to make paleo wraps!  Kelp is supposed to be good as a snack on its own.

Next time I venture near the Asian grocery store, I'm definitely going to buy some!

Have you incorporated Seaweed into your diet?  What is a good type and dish to start experimenting with?  I’d be very interested to hear your seaweed comments, below!

Paleo seaweed-min