Health benefits and side effects associated with selenium

Selenium is one of the essential trace elements that have a wide range of health benefits. It has strong ability in protecting the body against heart diseases, boosting the immune system, maximizing thyroid function, preventing cancer, and fighting the symptoms of premature ageing. Selenium is also helpful in boosting hair health, balancing the hormones, and reducing inflammation.

Selenium is one of the organic chemicals. It is mainly obtained from plant materials, water and soil. Plant sources are the best sources of selenium. Even if this mineral is necessary for cellular functions, its large quantities can be toxic to the body. The main sources of selenium include cereals, mushrooms, eggs, fish, mushrooms, meat, cereals, crabs, tuna, crabs, lobsters, and eggs. The richest source of selenium is Brazil nuts. The following are the main health benefits associated with selenium.

Relieving inflammatory conditions

Selenium is helpful in protecting the wearing out of the body as well as preventing the body from feeling older. It is also beneficial in reducing oxidative stress that occurs mainly around the bones and joints leading to  inflammatory conditions such as gout, arthritis, lupus, weakness of the joints and eczema.

Preventing cancer

This mineral is used in the cellular processes of the body. Research has shown that intake of selenium can help in reducing the formation of the cancerous cells. In addition to this, it is helpful in boosting the repair of the DNA cells thereby preventing mutation from occurring.

Improves thyroid health

Selenium is used in regulating the body’s hormones especially those of the endocrine system. The hormones produced by the thyroid gland are helpful in controlling and improving the metabolic functions of the body.

Improving heart health

Being an effective blood thinner selenium is helpful in reducing the clotting of blood. Besides, it is known for reducing the amount of the bad cholesterol thereby reducing the build-up of plaques in the blood vessels and arteries. Plaque is one of the leading causes of atherosclerosis, strokes and heart attacks.


Treating Kashin-beck disease

Kashin-Beck disease is a health condition that affects individuals having a deficiency of selenium. It is one of the most noticeable and severe effects of selenium deficiency. This disease is characterized by retardation of growth and death of the cartilage cells. Its symptoms include joint stiffness, pain, and lack of flexibility.

Side effects

Both the deficiency and toxicity of selenium are very dangerous. Symptoms associated with toxicity of selenium include the following

  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Garlic-odoured breath
  • Liver cirrhosis
  • Difficulty concentrating





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