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Uploaded:2018-02-15
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From pancakes to ice cream, salt goes in so many things to make them taste better! But what is it and where does it come from?

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SOURCES:

http://www.cyh.com/HealthTopics/HealthTopicDetailsKids.aspx?p=335&np=284&id=2689
https://www.gemsociety.org/article/crystal/
[ Intro ].

Squeaks and I love to cook. We’re making a type of vegetable pie for dinner right now!

Combining different ingredients, measuring out the right amounts of everything, testing out different recipes and getting different results — cooking can be a lot like science! We can add all sorts of different things to a recipe: different liquids, like water or cooking oil; parts of plants, like zucchini or carrots; and we can even add crystals. Take a closer look, Squeaks.

I brought a whole container of tiny crystal pieces to add to our recipe. You got it, Squeaks. The salt we eat is actually a type of crystal, which just means that it’s very hard and is shaped in a special pattern.

And it’s really important for keeping our bodies healthy … as long as we don’t eat too much of it! You can get salt from the ocean, or crush up a bigger salt crystal to make the tiny pieces that people can eat. A crystal’s special pattern can make it almost see-through, like glass, and if you take a big piece of salt that hasn’t been crushed into tiny pieces like these yet, you can actually see through it a little bit! [Squeaks suggests a silly idea].

Could you eat a big salt crystal? Well … you could try, but it would probably hurt your teeth, because crystals are so strong and hard. That’s why most of the time, people eat tiny pieces of salt.

Like the salt that was crushed up and put into this shaker. These tiny pieces are okay to eat, and won’t hurt our teeth, because our bodies work to break them up into even smaller pieces. Our mouths are full of spit, or saliva, which is mostly made of water.

And when salt crystals touch water, they start to dissolve, or melt away. Soon, the salt melts away so much that you wouldn’t even be able to see it, let alone hurt your teeth on it. You can see this happening if you try licking a cracker with some salt on it.

Your saliva dissolves the salt, which leaves you with just a plain cracker! And salt is more than just a tasty crystal. We eat salt because it has special nutrients that we ,need.

Salt is made up of two ingredients: sodium and chloride. Our bodies need both of these to help us move around and stay healthy. When salt dissolves in your mouth, it breaks down into those two ingredients.

And then the sodium and chloride go do their special jobs. Sodium helps your body absorb other nutrients from your food, which gives you energy. And it helps with all kinds of other things, too, like with your heart pumping your blood.

Chloride, meanwhile, helps your muscles move around, and helps your brain get messages from all over your body. So you can see why salt is so important! People all over the world eat it to keep them healthy. [Squeaks squeaks].

I don’t want to eat just salt, Squeaks. For one thing, it doesn’t taste very good. But also, if you eat too much salt at once, you can get pretty sick.

Having too much sodium or too much chloride can be too much for your body to handle all at once. It makes people feel very thirsty, and it can make it harder for their heart to pump blood the way it’s supposed to. You don’t have to worry too much about it unless you’re eating a lot of salt every day, though.

Luckily, we need just a little to make this recipe even tastier. [Jessi sprinkles some into the bowl; Squeaks squeaks]. Salt might be a tiny crystal, but it has a big job! And it definitely makes food more delicious!

Thanks for joining us! If you want to keep learning and having fun with Squeaks and me, hit the subscribe button, and we’ll see you next time here at the Fort! [ OUTRO ].