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Boost your selenium levels with these powerhouse foods

Boost your selenium levels with these powerhouse foods Which Foods Contain the Most Selenium (photo: Freepik)

Selenium is an essential trace element necessary for the proper functioning of the body. While supplements containing this micronutrient are available in pharmacies and stores, it is entirely possible to meet the daily requirement through diet, according to the medical community site Take Care of Yourself.

Daily requirement

There are two forms of selenium: organic-selenomethionine (SeMet) and selenocysteine (Sec), and inorganic-selenite and selenate. Organic compounds are found in plant and animal products, while inorganic ones can be obtained from dietary supplements.

The daily requirement of selenium for women and men ranges from 15 to 70 micrograms, depending on age and other factors. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, women need slightly more of this micronutrient.

Some people may be at increased risk of severe selenium deficiency, in which case supplements are prescribed. These include people undergoing dialysis for kidney failure, those living with HIV/AIDS, and others.

Effects on the body

Selenium is essential for regulating metabolism, proper brain function, and preventing the development of many diseases.

The highest concentration of selenium is found in the thyroid gland of all the organs. Like iodine, it plays a crucial role in synthesizing and metabolizing thyroid hormones.

The use of selenomethionine supplements for hypothyroidism in women during pregnancy may be a promising strategy, especially in the presence of postpartum thyroiditis.

Research is also ongoing to determine whether selenium supplements can improve brain function and reduce the likelihood of developing Alzheimer's disease, cardiovascular diseases, and various types of cancer. The current data are contradictory.

Selenium is necessary for adequately functioning the heart, blood vessels, and overall metabolic processes. However, the available data on selenium supplements are insufficient to speak of their impact on preventing or reducing the risks of these severe conditions.

Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action

Selenium is needed to activate enzymes that protect cells from free radicals (antioxidant protection).

The fact is that during various reactions in the body, thousands of which occur every moment, free radicals are released - active elements that can damage cells.

If there are too many of them and the effective defense against them does not work, inflammation develops. Selenium deficiency is also associated with the risk of developing a number of viral diseases, including COVID-19.

Food sources of selenium

Brazil nuts, seafood, and organic meats are the richest sources of this micronutrient. It is also abundant in meat, poultry, eggs, grains, and dairy products.

Eating a balanced diet ensures that you get the necessary daily intake of selenium from food.

Doctors noted that selenium supplements do not have proven efficacy for disease prevention but may be indicated for people with certain medical conditions.

This material is for informational purposes only and should not be used for medical diagnosis or self-treatment. Our goal is to provide readers with accurate information about symptoms, causes, and methods of detecting diseases. RBС-Ukraine is not responsible for any diagnoses that readers may make based on materials from the resource. We do not recommend self-treatment and advise consulting a doctor in case of any health concerns.