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Selenium Health Benefits, Properties, and Uses

Selenium

Properties: Antioxidant, Immune system booster, Anti-asthmatic, Cholesterol-lowering

What is Selenium?

Selenium is a chemical element found in small amounts in the body. It’s considered an essential mineral, meaning your body needs it to function properly. Selenium is important for thyroid function and the immune system. It’s naturally found in the soil but can’t be produced by the body. It is present in foods like whole grains, brazil nuts, and seafood. The amount of selenium in the food depends on how much selenium was present in the soil where it was grown. The best way to get selenium is to eat whole, unprocessed foods.1,2 It can also be taken as supplements to treat selenium deficiency.

Some people may experience selenium deficiencies if they drink alcohol, smoke, or take birth control pills. Certain medical conditions can also keep your body from absorbing enough selenium, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn disease.1

Selenium Uses and Health Benefits

Selenium is a powerful antioxidant that is said to reduce cancer death rates by up to 50 percent.3 It pairs especially well with vitamin E. Together, the two can help fight free radicals, which are particles that can damage cell membranes and DNA.1 Therefore, selenium can help fight or reduce the risk of health conditions like heart disease and cancer.1 It’s also said to have antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties.4 Other selenium uses include for:

  • Tuberculosis - Research has shown that selenium-containing multimicronutrient supplements can help individuals with tuberculosis.
  • AIDS (HIV) - Individuals with AIDS have been shown to have selenium deficiencies. The same selenium-containing supplements that can help tuberculosis patients has also been shown to help with HIV.
  • Arthritis - People with rheumatoid arthritis tend to have low levels of selenium in the body. Take selenium supplements to help with arthritis symptoms.
  • Asthma - Research shows that people with asthma tend to have low levels of selenium in the blood. Taking selenium supplements may help.
  • Breast Cancer - Selenium has a strong reputation as an antioxidant and being able to protect from and fight cancer, including breast cancer.

Selenium Side Effects and Precautions

Selenium supplements should only be taken in recommended doses. Selenium side effects may occur when you take more than is recommended by your doctor on the product label. For example, though selenium benefits male fertility, too much can affect the sperm’s ability to swim. High doses can also increase your risk of developing diabetes.1,2

Long-term use of selenium in high doses can cause selenium side effects like:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Lack of energy
  • Tremors
  • Flushing
  • Easy bleeding or bruising
  • Strong body odor

Hair loss or changes in your fingernails may also occur since selenium plays a role in helping with keratinous tissues, such as the hair, nails, and skin.2,6

Dosage requirements may change if you are pregnant, nursing, or have chronic kidney disease, underactive thyroid, or skin cancer.2 Do not use selenium supplements while pregnant or nursing without consulting your care provider first. Stop taking selenium if you experience any side effects, including signs of allergic reaction, such as hives, rash, or swelling.2

 

References

  1. http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/supplement/selenium
  2. http://www.uofmhealth.org/health-library/d00484a1
  3. http://www.drwhitaker.com/selenium-can-reduce-cancer-death-rates-by-as-much-as-50-percent/
  4. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/10/03/selenium-benefits.aspx
  5. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/04/25/selenium-disease-prevention-benefits.aspx
  6. http://www.herbs2000.com/minerals/selenium.htm

CuresDecoded worldwide community recommends Selenium for:

Tuberculosis Effective
Ovarian Cancer Effective
Arthritis Effective
Hepatitis C Effective
Dyslexia Effective
Endometriosis Effective
Asthma Effective
Depression Effective
Pancreatic Cancer Effective
Psoriasis Effective
AIDS (HIV) Effective
Infertility Effective
Prostate Cancer Effective
Liver Cancer Effective
Breast Cancer Effective
Osteomyelitis Effective
Prostatitis Effective
Hepatitis B Effective

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