HOW TO RECOGNIZE A SHORTAGE OF SELENIUM
Selenium (also known as Seleen) is a trace element that functions as an antioxidant in the human body. Selenium helps to reduce the harmful aspects of heavy metals that sometimes end up in our food. It’s essential for the functioning of multiple processes in our bodies, like cognition, a healthy immune system, and fertility. Selenium contributes to the hormonal metabolism of the thyroid and the DNA-synthesis. It also helps to protect us from infections and oxidative damage according to the United States Office of Dietary Supplements.
Selenium is a important trace element to the human body. Since our body is unable to create this trace element itself, we need to get selenium from our foods. Selenium naturally appears in cereals, dairy products, brown rice, mushrooms, bananas, eggs, Brazilnuts, spinach, fish and plankton.
In the U.S., it rarely happens that someone suffers from a selenium deficiency. However, according to a study from 2017, about one billion people worldwide suffer from a shortage of selenium (1
The same research predicted that the effects of the current climate change will decrease the selenium concentrations in our soil in different places around the world, including southwest America.
There are certain groups of people that have a higher risk of creating a selenium deficiency. Those people may benefit from using selenium supplements next to their daily meals. It is, however, important to note that if you suspect you have a shortage of selenium, you should always consult a doctor before taking any supplements.
People with a higher chance of having a shortage of selenium are:
- People with AIDS or HIV,
- People with dialyzes or kidney dialyzes,
- People with a chronic bowel disease, like Crohn’s disease,
- People that consume foods from selenium-deficient soils.
A shortage of selenium can be recognized by the following symptoms. If you recognize one or more, please consult your physician.