Among people who are concerned about their health, Himalayan pink salt is atop the list of things to buy. There are a lot of claims out there about its health benefits for you, but what's the straight dope on this pink salt?

One of the claims about pink salt is that it's healthier because it contains more minerals than the regular kind. Some websites even claim that it has minerals in it that are actually deadly to people. The truth is, pink salt does contain important minerals like zinc, boron, and phosphorus, but most people aren't deficient in those minerals. One more radical claim says that pink salt contains 84 important minerals. This is not the case.

Here's something worth considering: table salt has iodine added to it and has since the 1920s. This is good for the thyroid and helps prevent iodine deficiency disorders.

Another claim is that pink salt is less processed than table salt. The only processing table salt goes through is grinding. Anti-caking agents are sometimes added to table salt. That's pretty much it. That said, pink salt crystals tend to be larger which causes you to feel fuller sooner. If you're trying to lose weight, pink salt is a great choice.

Another claimed health benefit of pink salt is that when you sit in a cave full of it, it can help relieve skin conditions such as psoriasis. This one actually kind of holds weight maybe. There's some research supporting that bathing and sunbathing in with the salt is good for treating psoriasis, particularly Dead Sea salt.

“Much of this is due to the Dead Sea’s high levels of magnesium," says Joshua Zeichner, a doctor at New York City's Mount Sinai Hospital. "Which has a hydrating, anti-inflammatory effect that improves skin function, strengthens the skin barrier, and increases moisture content. It is safe to assume that Himalayan salt might have the same effects.”

The last claim is that pink salt can help with allergies, asthma, and other respiratory conditions. While some speak with authority on the matter, we're not really sure about it yet. The claim says that inhaling salt-infused air helps clear mucus and reduce inflammation. At this time, there is not enough research to know for sure.

That said, some doctors think pink salt can ease some short-term symptoms, but aren't totally convinced. One concern is that the salt can irritate the lining of your lungs, which would cause your allergies to worsen. At any rate, we don't recommend inhaling salt-infused air.

To summarize, most of the claims surrounding Himalayan pink salt are unfounded or uncertain. More research is needed. If you prefer pink salt, knock yourself out. Just don't expect it to be healthier for you.