Selenium: What are the Health Benefits?
Author: ANCP Date Posted:26 May 2016
Selenium is an essential dietary supplement that is needed for normal thyroid function.
Selenium is a naturally occurring mineral that is essential for human health. It has numerous actions and functions in the body that include boosting immune health, mens fertility and normal production and activation of our thyroid hormones.
Healthy Immune System Function
Selenium has been identified as being beneficial to the health of the immune system due to its ability to enhance the activity and quantity of some types of white blood cells, cells which play an important role in the body’s defences against infection.
Selenium: A Powerful Antioxidant!
Selenium is also a powerful antioxidant, playing an important role in the body’s own antioxidant systems and protecting our cells from the damaging effects of free radicals.
Fertility in Men
Healthy selenium levels are essential for male fertility, as it plays an important role in the maturation of sperm cells and their motility and is also required for the production of testosterone. Because a low selenium status in men has been associated with infertility, supplementation may be useful as part of a preconception program.
Selenium & Thyroid Health
Selenium is necessary for the normal production and activation of our thyroid hormones. The thyroid is the gland responsible for producing the hormones involved in all of our metabolic processes, making selenium an important mineral for our normal growth and development.
Dietary sources of Selenium
Soil selenium levels can directly affect the amount of selenium that is found within our food. The main dietary sources of selenium in both Australia and New Zealand are seafood, poultry and eggs. However, brazil nuts are considered to be one of the highest plant-based sources of selenium. On average, the recommended daily intake of selenium is 60mcg for women and 70mcg for men.