Himalayan pink salt is all the rage these days. People buy them to put on their food (it’s delicious and has a handful of health benefits perhaps) and buy chunks of it with lights in them to serve as a lamp. They’re very pretty lamps, but are there better reasons to have them?
There are some radical claims out there about what Himalayan salt lamps can do for your home and your health. One of the claims is that they purify the air by releasing negative ions…somehow. But here’s the problem with the claim:
They don’t release ions.
There’s no mechanism for creating said ions. Lights and candles don’t do it. You could dissolve the salt lamp in water and create sodium and chloride ions, but that’s pretty much the only way to get ions out of salt. I’ve heard the argument that the heat is what releases the ions, but heating doesn’t do anything unless you melt it. And even if it did release ions, ions don’t clean the air.
They also don’t do anything for depression.
There are tons of reports that negative ions can have impacts on our mental and emotional health. It’s well documented. There are hundreds of papers on it. Some buildings have a high positive ion level which can lead to “sick building syndrome,” leading you to feel depressed just because of where you live or work.
That’s where salt shills step in and talk about the aforementioned ions that aren’t actually being released.
If you sit under, say, a nice, relaxing, warm waterfall, you feel better. It’s because the waterfall actually releases negative ions. But if you were to go home and watch a video of a waterfall, it might relax you a bit, but it won’t be because of negative ions because the video doesn’t emit them. Neither do salt lamps.
There are many strong supporters of Himalayan salt lamps, and that’s fine. You’re free to believe what you want, but that’s all it is. A belief. There isn’t a shred of clear scientific evidence that supports the claim that Himalayan Salt Lamps produce a measurable amount of negative ions, let alone enough to impact your health or air quality. If someone makes the claim they do, simply ask for proof.
But wait, why should you have a Himalayan salt lamp in your home?
Because you think they look nice.