Difference Between Salt and Epsom Salt

Salts is a term we often use in our day-to-day life. The most common type of salt we generally know is table salt which is also known as sea salt. But there are numerous types of a wide range of salts used for different purposes. Epsom salt is one of them, which we may have heard of in recent times.

Salts are natural products derived from saltwater regions or minerals from different places of the earth. When it comes to the application of salts, the normal sea salt and Epsom salt are the most popular ones and have great demand all over the world.

Salt vs Epsom Salt

The main difference between Salt and Epsom Salt is their chemical composition. Epsom salt is the crystals formed from waters that contain a high level of magnesium and sulfates. Whereas sea salt or common salt is formed from the crystallization of seawater, which contains a high amount of Sodium Chloride (NaCl).

Salt and Epsom Salt

Salts are used in various fields. The main purpose served by common sea salt is to add a salty taste to food. It is easily available at grocery stores. Salt, which contains Sodium Chloride, also balances the ratio of the electrolyte in our body. It is an important raw material for various chemical compounds preparation like caustic soda, bathing soap, sodium hydroxide, etc.

Epsom Salt is largely used for healing and soothing purposes. The salts are derived from natural products and carry significance for remedies for pains and ailments. This salt was first discovered in the city of Epsom, which is present in Surry, England. It also heals stress and soreness in our muscles.

Comparison Table Between Salt and Epsom Salt

Parameters of ComparisonSaltEpsom Salt
OriginFirst found in ChinaFirst found in Surry, England
Chemical CompositionContains Sodium ChlorideContains Magnesium and Sulfates
Structure A hygroscopic adsorbent crystalline structureResilient structure
Uses In preparation of food and manufacturing
of chemical compounds like Caustic Soda, Sodium Hydroxide, Soaps, etc.
Used to treat flu, itchy skin, etc. Also used in beauty products.
Healing propertiesIt has minimal healing properties.It has various healing properties like anti-inflammatory, relieving sore muscles.

What is Salt?

Salt is a naturally found chemical compound Sodium Chloride. It has balanced positive and negative ions. It is produced in the form of crystals on the evaporation of seawater. Salt has been playing an integral part in the life of humans for centuries. The salt is also called Common Salt, Sea Salt, or Table Salt.

Salt is highly soluble in nature and is a great absorbent; hence it is seen as a great option to add in essential oils. Also, Salt is highly hygroscopic in nature. Due to this property, it needs to be stored in a cool and dry place. Sea Salt depending on the source of its withdrawal, contain a few traces of certain minerals like iron, potassium, zinc, and in hard water areas and damped conditions, it also contains some lead in it.

Salt is used on a large scale in food to add taste. It is also used as a food preservative. The dead sea salt is also used to add Oils, Ointments, and Balms as it can treat skin complications like small bumps, cellulite, and dry bumps. The crystalline and grainy structure of salt helps in improving the blood flow and also heals skin blemishes.

What is Epsom Salt?

Epsom Salt is a different chemical compound that is not salt. It is manufactured from places where the concentration of minerals like magnesium, sulfur, and oxygen in the water is very high. It was initially discovered in Epsom, a place in the Surry City of England.

Epsom Salts don’t contain NaCl, but these salts look very alike to normal sea salt. They are crystalline in nature. Also, these types of salts have a resilient structure. Storage is easy and can resist damped conditions, unlike normal salts. There are different types of Epsom salts depending on their grades, manufacturing processes, and motto of application.

Epsom salts are useful in many ways and have a wide range of applications in various fields like agricultural use, cosmetic use, medicinal use, etc. They show anti-inflammatory properties. It is also used to cure flu and cold symptoms. It also treats itchy skin and relieves stress. It has the ability to relieve soreness of muscles. They are used in cosmetic and beauty products related to skin.

Main Differences Between Salt and Epsom Salt

  1. Sea salt or normal salt is real salt and contains NaCl. Whereas Epsom Salt is not really a salt as we call it so. It has a high content of Magnesium and Sulphur.
  2. Normal salt was discovered in China around 6000 B.C. Epsom salt has a late origin as compared to Normal Salt. It was first found in Epsom, a place in the Surry city of England.
  3. Salt is very hygroscopic in nature. Epsom Salt is comparatively less hygroscopic and can be stored in damped conditions as well.
  4. Salt is mainly used in the food industry to add tase and preservative of food. Whereas Epsom Salt is majorly used for its therapeutic use and in the cosmetic industry.
  5. Epsom salts and Sea salts are completely different in terms of their composition but are great alternatives for their respective applications.

Conclusion

Salt and Epsom Salt are two compounds that have completely different chemical structures. But both have a similar appearance, are crystalline in nature, and have grainy structures. Normal salt is derived from normal seawater containing NaCl, and Epsom Salt is derived from water containing high levels of minerals like Magnesium and Sulfur.

Common salt or normal salt is used to add to food for taste and preservation purposes. Epsom Salt is added to various medicinal products as well as used as a cosmetic product. Both sea salt and Epsom salt can be used as a great alternative for the application of each other.

References

  1. https://alternativehealth.co.nz/cancer/liver/Fatal_Hypermagnesemia_Caused_by_an_Epsom_Salt_Enema.pdf
  2. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/265450
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