Free radicals are natural parts of your immune system that can get out of hand. Certain lifestyle choices and environmental factors can increase the levels of free radicals in your body, which leads to oxidative stress.
This type of stress can cause all sorts of diseases from heart disease to diabetes. Selenium, however, is a
powerful antioxidant that puts free radicals in check and prevents the inflammation that harms your bodily tissues. When you get plenty of selenium in your diet, you
age slower, and you’re less at risk of developing conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and stroke.
A meta-analysis of the available research found that
increasing your selenium levels by 50 percent reduces your risk of coronary artery disease by 24 percent. Selenium reduces inflammation throughout your body, and since inflammation is one of the main causes of heart disease, these results make a lot of sense. Specifically, supplementing with selenium increases levels of glutathione peroxidase, which
reduces your risk of both coronary artery disease and atherosclerosis.
People with Alzheimer’s disease have lower levels of selenium, and research indicates that
supplementing with selenium may improve the symptoms of this condition.
Selenium deficiency slows down the
responsiveness of your immune system. Supplementing with this nutrient appears to improve the immune responsiveness of patients with immune-compromising conditions like AIDS, tuberculosis, and hepatitis C.
People with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
experienced symptom reduction after supplementing with selenium. Additionally, supplementing with selenium appears to improve the
symptoms of asthma.