Selenium is a mineral found in the earth and the specific soil or water that plants or animals use to enter your food through your soil or water. As a result, you’ll find it in a wide variety of foods, including fish, cereals, pasta, and especially Brazil nuts.
However, its rich content in certain foods as a chemical will depend on where they are produced in the world. For example, in some rural areas of China, people have historically suffered from selenium deficiencies due to low levels of minerals in local soils. The same is true of New Zealand, where attempts have been made to import selenium-rich grains.
How much selenium per day
The recommended daily value (DV) or daily allowance for selenium is 55 micrograms (mcg) per day for adults.
During pregnancy, a woman should eat 60 mcg, and lactating women should eat 70 mcg a day.
Selenium deficiency is rare worldwide. It often takes several years to develop and usually occurs in areas with severely low selenium content in the soil.
Soil selenium levels are low in several parts of China, but population shortages have been addressed through supplementary programs.
Selenium supplements are available but it is better to take any vitamin or mineral through food.
It is not a single individual vitamin or mineral that makes certain foods an important part of our diet but works together with nutrition.
Isolation of certain nutrients in the form of supplements does not necessarily provide health benefits such as taking nutrients from nutritious foods.
Selenium Benefits for Health
Important for thyroid health
Selenium is important for the proper management of your thyroid gland. In fact, thyroid tissue contains more selenium than any other organ in the human body.
This powerful mineral helps protect the thyroid against oxidative damage and plays an important role in the production of thyroid hormones.
A healthy thyroid gland is important because it regulates your metabolism and regulates growth and development. Selenium deficiency is related to thyroid conditions such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, a type of hypothyroidism where the immune system attacks the thyroid gland.
An observational study involving more than 20,000,000 people found that low serum levels of selenium were associated with an increased risk of autoimmune thyroiditis and hypothyroidism. Furthermore, some studies have shown that selenium supplements can benefit people with Hashimoto’s disease.
One review concluded that taking selenium supplements daily for three months resulted in lower thyroid antibodies. It improved the mood and general well-being of people with Hashimoto’s disease.
Increases your immunity
Your immune system keeps your body healthy by identifying and fighting your potential threats. These include bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
Selenium plays an important role in the health of your immune system. These antioxidants help reduce oxidative stress in your body which reduces inflammation and boosts immunity.
Studies have shown that blood levels of selenium are involved in the increased immune response. On the other hand, deficiency has been shown to impair the activity of immune cells and may slow down their resistance.
Studies have linked deficits with increased risk of death and disease in HIV-infected individuals, while supplements have led to fewer hospitalizations and improved symptoms for these patients.
Additionally, selenium supplements can help strengthen the immune system in people with influenza, tuberculosis, and hepatitis C.
It may help reduce asthma symptoms
Asthma is a chronic disease that affects the airways that carry air in or out of the lungs. These airways become swollen and narrow, leading to symptoms such as sores, sores, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and coughing.
Asthma has been linked to increased levels of oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. Due to the ability of selenium to reduce inflammation, some research suggests that this mineral may help reduce asthma-related symptoms.
Research suggests that people with asthma have lower blood selenium. In fact, one study found that lung function was better in asthma patients with high levels of selenium in the blood than in low-level patients. Selenium supplements can also help reduce asthma-related symptoms.
For example, a study found that giving 200 ml of selenium per day to people with asthma reduced the use of corticosteroid actions used to control their symptoms.
Acts as a powerful antioxidant
Antioxidants are compounds in foods that prevent cell damage due to free radicals. Free radicals are a natural byproduct of metabolic processes that occur in your body every day.
These often get a bad rap but free radicals are essential for your health. They perform important functions, including protecting your body from disease.
However, factors such as smoking, alcohol use, and stress can be additional causes of free radicals. This leads to oxidative stress, which damages healthy cells.
Oxidative stress has been linked to chronic conditions such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and cancer, as well as premature aging and stroke risk. Antioxidants like selenium help reduce oxidative stress by monitoring free radical numbers. They neutralize excess free radicals and protect cells from damage by oxidative stress.
Can reduce your risk of certain cancers
In addition to reducing oxidative stress, selenium can help reduce the risk of certain cancers. It has been implicated in selenium’s ability to reduce DNA damage and oxidative stress, boost your immunity, and destroy cancer cells.
A study of 9 studies that included more than 35,000 people found that high levels of selenium in the blood reduced the risk of certain types of cancer, including breast, lung, colon, and prostate cancer.
It is noteworthy that this effect was only associated with selenium obtained through food, not supplementation. However, some studies have suggested that supplementation with selenium may reduce side effects in people taking radiation therapy.
For example, one study found that oral selenium supplements improved overall quality of life and reduced radiation-induced diarrhea in women with uterine and cervical cancer.
Can protect against heart disease
A diet rich in selenium can help keep your heart healthy, as low selenium levels have been linked to a risk of heart disease. In the analysis of 25 observational studies, a 50% increase in blood selenium levels was associated with a 24% reduction in heart disease risk.
Selenium can also reduce the signs of inflammation in your body: – One of the main risk factors for heart disease. For example, a review of 16 controlled studies involving more than 433,000 people with heart disease found that taking selenium supplements reduced inflammatory C-reactive protein (CRP) levels.
Additionally, it has increased levels of glutathione peroxidase, a powerful antioxidant. This indicates that selenium helps reduce the risk of heart disease by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress in your body. Oxidative stress and inflammation have been linked to atherosclerosis or plaque formation in arteries.
Atherosclerosis can cause serious health problems such as stroke, heart attack, and heart disease. Incorporating selenium-rich foods into your diet is a great way to keep stress and inflammation levels to a minimum.
Helps to prevent mental deterioration
Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating condition that impairs memory and negatively affects thinking and behavior. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States
The number of people with Alzheimer’s disease is increasing. Therefore, it is important to find ways to prevent this degenerative disease.
Oxidative stress is believed to be involved in both the onset and progression of Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease. Several studies have shown that patients with Alzheimer’s disease have lower levels of selenium in their blood.
Furthermore, some studies have shown that both dietary and supplemental antioxidants can improve memory in Alzheimer’s patients.
A small study found that daily supplementation with a selenium-rich Brazil nut improved oral cognition and other emotional functioning in patients with mild cognitive impairment.
Selenium Rich Foods
Brazil nuts are one of the best sources of selenium. One ounce, or about six to eight nuts, contains about 544 mcg. Make sure you serve Brazil nuts several times a week to avoid selenium toxicity.
Yellowfin tuna contains about 92 mcg of selenium per 3 ounces (oz), which is encouraged as a source of selenium. It is followed by sardines, oysters, clams, halibut, shrimp, salmon, and crab, which range in size from 40 to 65 mcg.
Some products, including pasta, whole wheat bread, and whole-grain cereals, are enriched or preserved with selenium and other minerals. The amount of selenium in these products may vary but you can usually serve with 1 cup of noodles or cereal and get about 16 mcg from 2 pieces of whole-grain toast. Just make sure you balance foods rich with plenty, of plant-based foods for optimal nutrition.
The selenium content of beef depends on the cut but the round beef steak at the bottom will give you about 33 mcg. The beef liver delivers about 28 mcg and ground beef about 18 mcg.
You can get 31 mcg of selenium from 3 oz of boneless turkey. Eat turkey sandwiches on whole wheat bread in the castle for extra selenium.
The chicken will give you 22 to 25 mcg of selenium per 3 oz of white meat. This translates into a serving that is like a deck of sized cards, an easy way to add some selenium to your diet
One cup of cottage cheese provides about 20 mcg or 30 percent of your daily recommended selenium.
A hard-boiled egg provides about 20 mcg of selenium. Don’t like hard-boiled? No worries, go for eggs cooked in any way you like, and you’ll still get a dose of selenium.
One cup of cooked long-grain brown rice will give you 19 mcg of selenium, or 27 percent of the recommended daily amount. Enjoy this grain with your preferred 3 oz portion of chicken or turkey to get almost the full recommended daily amount for adults – 50 miles of selenium. You can substitute rice for barley which provides 23 mg in 1/3 cup serving.
A quarter cup of sunflower seeds provides about 19 mcg of selenium, making them a great snack, especially if you haven’t eaten animal products that contain high levels of selenium.
Mushrooms are fungi that contain many nutrients, including vitamin D, iron, and about 12 mcg of selenium per 100 grams.
One cup of regular oatmeal, cooked, will give you 13 mcg of selenium. Enjoy it for breakfast with two eggs to get 53 mcg.
Cooked vegetables, frozen, will provide you with about 11 mcg of selenium per cup. It is rich in folic acid and vitamin C.
Milk and yogurt
Milk and yogurt contain about 8 mcg of selenium per cup or 11 percent of your daily requirement. Add some milk to your rich cereal for your intake.
One cup of cooked lentils provides about 6 mcg of selenium, as well as a healthy dose of protein and fiber. Add selenium to a soup with their mushrooms for a full vegan-friendly meal.
Dried fried cashews offer 3 mcg per ounce. It doesn’t seem like much, but every bit helps, especially if you follow a vegetarian diet. Breakfast in some dried fried cashews and you will get a small amount of selenium in the amount of 3 mcg per serving of one ounce.
One cup of chopped banana gives 2 mcg of selenium or 3 percent of your recommended daily intake. Again it doesn’t seem like much but most fruits only provide minimal traces of selenium or none at all. Add bananas to smoothies with a yogurt or your favorite oatmeal for more selenium.
Potential health risks
The upper limit per day for selenium is 400 mcg for adults.
Selenium toxicity due to overdose is rare, especially from dietary sources, but excessive doses of extremely frequent supplements can have negative effects.
These may include:
- Smells like garlic in the breath and a metallic taste in the mouth
- Fragile nails
- Kachu or decaying teeth
- Gastrointestinal problems such as nausea
- Nervous abnormalities
- Fatigue and irritation
- Skin lesions and rashes
- Wearing hair
In extreme cases, it can lead to kidney failure, heart failure, and death. Selenium supplements may interact with certain drugs, including simulation, a chemotherapy drug. The use of this drug can reduce the level of selenium in the body.
Is 200 mcg of selenium too much?
Although some studies have used doses of 200 mcg, there is some evidence that this amount could increase your risk for diabetes. DO NOT exceed the upper tolerable limit of 400 mcg. Remember that you may also get some selenium in the foods you eat. Over time, high doses of selenium can be toxic.
Is it safe to take selenium everyday?
Selenium is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in doses less than 400 mcg daily, short-term. However, selenium is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in high doses or for a long time. Taking doses above 400 mcg can increase the risk of developing selenium toxicity.
How much selenium do I need?
The recommended daily intake of selenium is 50–70 micrograms/day for adults. Additionally, the upper tolerance level for safe intake is about 300 micrograms/day for adults.
How much selenium should I take daily for thyroid?
Studies have shown that supplementing with 200 mcg of selenium per day may help decrease thyroid antibodies and improve mood in people with Hashimoto's. Myo-Inositol. Inositol is a type of sugar that plays an important role in thyroid function.