Can vegetarians eat sea salt?

Please let’s not turn this into a vegetarian-bashing thread.

This thought occurred to me, and I’m curious: Can vegetarians eat sea salt? The reason I ask is that, as a diver, I’m aware of the vertiable “soup” of living organisms in seawater. Many of these organisms are animals. I would assume that these animals would dry out and die in the process of evaporating the water to make sea salt; or they would be filtered out, which would likely be fatal.

If this were true, then how could vegetarians drink water?

Drinking seawater is dangerous.

That seems like it get’s more into a strict veganish type diet. (I know it’s not vegam, I just can’t think of the name of it. I’m trying to think of the people that won’t each vegetables until they fall off the plant on their own, sweep the ground infront of them to keep from stepping on bugs…)

I consider myself to be a vegetarian. I do eat food which contains sea salt. I am more concerned with the inhumane slaughter of animals than the natural results of Mother Nature.

in a sort of, maybe not hijack of this thread. the NYC water supply has been found to contain small (microscopic?) shellfish making it unsuitable for orthodox jewish humans. So does this mean that vegans can;t drink NYC water?

Vegetarians obviously can eat sea salt, the real question is will they. Since there’s no Vegetarian Code, that’s something that’s up to the choice of the individual vegetarian.

I’d doubt that many would cut sea salt from their diet though, at least not for the reason in the OP. Few vegetarians are completely devoted to the idea that no living creature should die as a part of their diet. . .which is good for them, as I believe such a thing is impossible.


OK, so here’s my take.

There are many different degrees of vegetarian. The least strict is generally called a lacto-ovo vegetarian. They don’t eat meat or fowl but do consume milk products and eggs. They may or may not consume fish, by personal preference. I fit into this cataegory for a little over 2 years and eventually see myself going back.

Vegetarian. No meat, fish, poultry, eggs or milk. May still consume some animal products, mostly due to the difficulty of eliminating them entirely.

Vegan. Makes the effort to eliminate all animal products, including yeast, from their diet.

Frutitarian. Attempts to live without killing anything for food, including plants. These are the folks that wait for fruit to drop off the plant before eating it.

These are arranged in decsending order of popularlity and are not totally rigid categories.

It seems to me, barring orthodox Jews, the only folks that would have a problem with sea salt are Vegans and Fruititarians. I’ve never heard of someone refuising to eat sea salt, but I suppose if could happen.

You’re probably thinking of Jainism.

I’m not talking about seawater. I’m talking about good old everybody ordinary tap water, which is treated to kill billions of bacteria, filtered to strain out multiple organisms, evaporated from salt water, and otherwise transformed to make it potable and palatable.

Following the standard you set, no food would be edible.

Damn! Back to urine.

You might also want to do something about that bloodthirsty immune system you’ve got there. :wink:

When I read the title of this thread, my heart dropped into my stomach… I was a chef over the summer and I fed many, many vegetarians food that I cooked with sea salt. I was taught to use sea salt with everything. Now I must say, I feel somewhat guilty

Don’t worry Johnnyt27, the vast majority of vegetarians would have no objection to your use of sea salt.

There are other threads dealing with vegetarian lifestyles, so I’ll try to restrict my response a bit…

This is mostly untrue. Vegans have no problem eating yeast or breads. I’m sure there are vegans out there who avoid yeast, especially since some people are allergic to yeast, but I have never met one.

To a Jain, bacteria and plants fall into the same category (yeast would fall into this category as well). It is okay to eat (and kill) bacteria and plants as long as violence is kept to a minimum and one only eats enough to survive. However…
Some Jains may avoid yeast but not because it is alive. Yeast is a fungus and thus considered “unclean” and not fit for consumption. Jainism is a religion descended from Hinduism which has similar proscriptions. Orthodox Hindus will not eat onions or garlic because many Hindu texts say they are unclean or give rise to negative emotions. IMO the smell doesn’t help much either :wink: In any case it has nothing to do with animal or vegetable status, but more to do with other precepts of the religion. And as with all religions, there are varying degrees of conformance among disciples.

Now to the OP, I don’t believe any dietary code restricts ALL life, as that would be suicidal. However, a strict Jain would probably avoid sea-salt in favor of… land-salt(?) if they were convinced that fewer organisms were killed in its production. Since it’s hard to believe a strict Jain would eat at a restaurant, I’d say Johnnyt27 is pretty safe.

Who’s Johnnyt27? :confused:

Vegetarianism is about what you eat. Sea salt was never a living entity, so is of no concern to a vegetarian.

What may or may not have died in the process of manufacturing may be of concern, but isn’t vegetarianism.

If one includes any animal as part of one’s diet, whether the animal lives on land or sea or flies in the air, one is not a vegetarian. Fish are animals. By definition vegetarians do not eat animals, so someone who eats fish is not vegetarian, whether lacto-ovo or any other stripe.

Johnnyt27 changed their name to chefIL11.

I doubt vegans would have a problem with sea-salt. After all, any animals that might potentially be in there wuld be dead. If they were that strict, they would not be able to eat any commercially grown food for fear that an animal had inadvertantly been killed in the making of it.