6 Potential Health Benefits Of Selenium

By: Kratika Tue, 01 Nov 2022 9:57:26

6 Potential Health Benefits of Selenium

Selenium is an essential mineral with antioxidant properties that may be more valuable to your health than you realize! So should you make a beeline for selenium-rich foods like Brazil nuts or experiment with organ meat to increase your dietary intake of this nutrient? A quick look at some of the potential health benefits from adequate levels selenium should have you convinced.

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# Helps You Fight Infections

The selenium in your body may have a role to play in the maintenance of immunity. The body’s immune system relies on minerals like selenium to support white blood cells, which are your body’s line of defense against infections. Having the recommended levels and avoiding deficiency may boost your system’s ability to fight off viral diseases like influenza A infections and HIV. It could even help augment the effectiveness of vaccines against infections. When one study investigated the effect of selenium and zinc supplementation in the elderly, it was found that their immune systems took to the flu vaccine better than if they hadn’t taken additional minerals.

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# Protects You From Certain Cancers

Selenium is important for multiple functions in the body, including the healthy function of your immune and endocrine systems. It plays a part in apoptosis or programmed cell death and DNA repair and is also an antioxidant. All of these combined have huge potential in anticancer treatments. Which is why getting adequate selenium could have a protective effect against the risk of cancers of the lung, esophagus, breast, and prostate and even gastric cancer.

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# Checks Aging And Slows Cognitive Decline

The antioxidant properties also make selenium a good addition to your toolkit to fight aging. A lot of aging-related processes in the body have been linked to free radical damage. Unfortunately, as you grow older your serum concentrations of selenium also seem to drop. These reduced selenium levels have also been associated with lower performance levels in neurological tests of coordination in an elderly population. Whether or not selenium supplementation will actually help reverse or halt this needs further study, but early results merit attention.

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# Helps Arrest Progression Of HIV To AIDS

For those with compromised immune systems, like HIV patients, selenium is even more important. Its antioxidant effects may even help inhibit the offending virus. Studies have revealed a link between low selenium levels and HIV incidence, with those infected typically having lower serum levels of selenium. Researchers say there is a connection between a deficiency in selenium in the body and how your system progresses from having HIV to developing AIDS or succumbing to the condition.

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# Protects Your Thyroid And Pregnancy: Health Benefits For Women

Your thyroid has a larger amount of selenium than most other parts of the body and this is needed for thyroid hormone synthesis and metabolism. Researchers have found that thyroid volume and risk of thyroid tissue damage as well as goiter are all inversely related to the amount of selenium in the blood of female test subjects with a mild iodine deficiency. Which means selenium may have a protective effect on your thyroid if you’re a woman.

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# Improves Fertility: Health Benefits For Men

Selenium is being studied for its importance in male reproduction and fertility. The mineral is needed to maintain normal sperm motility. Along with other antioxidants, it plays an important part in determining how the body creates proteins present in sperm. Some researchers have even suggested that taking selenium as supplements could help improve male fertility in those with low selenium levels. As with other instances of supplementation with selenium, caution is warranted because very high levels may actually be counterproductive and hamper sperm motility.

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