Selenium: Fights Cancer, Heart Disease and ED
No diet is perfect. No person is perfect. So it makes sense that even the most disciplined man will have trouble sticking to any diet with no setbacks or slip-‐ups.
This is one of the main reasons I advocate daily supplementation as part of of an arsenal regimen towards wellness. Supplements can ensure you fill any nutritional gaps and won’t feel discouraged if you cannot follow a perfect eating regimen all the time and everywhere you go.
One example is selenium...
Selenium is a trace element that is essential for human function. Trace elements are chemical elements that are required in very small (trace) amounts in the diet to maintain health. For example, copper, zinc and iodine are also considered trace elements.
Since 1957 research by Schwarz and Foltz from the National Institute of Health (NIH), developed a scientific paper that changed the perception of dietary selenium from a potential toxic agent to an essential trace element for the prevention of disease. Since then there has been hundreds of studies published on the protective benefits of selenium.
Low selenium levels have been linked to cancer, thyroid problems, heart disease, infertility, cognitive decline and low immune function.
Striking high death rate from low Selenium
What you may have not known is that low selenium levels is connected to all cause mortality. That’s right. People simply die prematurely when there are inadequate levels of selenium in the body.
Numerous studies have linked low selenium with premature death from all cause:
- In a twelve-year US population study of close to fourteen thousand people those with higher blood levels than 130ng/ml lived longer from than those with lower selenium levels. (Sanmartin et al. 2011)
- Another research trial looked to see if selenium status is correlated to kidney cancer in the form of renal cell cancer (RCC) specific mortality in 41 patients and 21 controls. Those individuals with advanced and potentially deadly tumor stage at diagnosis were linked with low Se concentrations and low 5-year survival rate. (Meyer et al. 2012)
- Low serum selenium in older women was linked to all-cause 5-year deaths living in Baltimore, Maryland. (Ray et al. 2006)
- In the 9-year study of 1,389 elderly French individuals living independently, low plasma selenium at baseline was associated with increased overall and cancer mortality. (Akbaraly et al. 2005)
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What does Selenium do?
- Selenium is a key element in the production of Glutathione peroxidase, a powerhouse, protective antioxidant.
- Selenium plays a key part in the production of active thyroid hormone, triiodothyronine (T3)
- Selenium is required for the formation of Selenoprotein P which serves in protecting the inner lining of blood vessels (endothelial cells).
By interacting with the bodies complex biological system, having sufficient selenium levels has shown to reduce the risk of multiple cancers, male infertility, cardiovascular disease and involved in the co-management of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).
While selenium is found in some foods: wheat, cereals and brazil nuts it is also consumed in supplementation.
Here’s the trick: There are numerous form in the dietary supplement industry but the one to consume is high selenized yeast. Numerous have found that selenized yeast is not only most effective, but also it increases natural cell death in prostate cells and reduces DNA damage overall.
The Nutritional Prevention of Cancer (NPC) study published in the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) saw an 63% decrease in risk of developing prostate cancer with the consumption of a type of selenized yeast called SelenoExcell.
The bottom line that selenium have multiple health benefits including; improving male fertility, nudging thyroid function and may reduce the risk of prostate cancer.
Stay tuned and stay well,
Geo Espinosa, N.D., L.Ac, C.N.S., is a renowned naturopathic doctor recognized as an authority in integrative management of male and urological conditions. Dr. Geo is the founder and director of the Integrative Urology Center at New York University Langone Medical Center (NYULMC), a center of excellence in research and integrative treatments for urological conditions.