Selenium is a mineral element with the atomic number 34.
Selenium and vitamin
E are synergistic and the two together are stronger than each one on its own. Selenium slows down ageing and hardening of tissues
through oxidation. Males seem to have a greater need for this
mineral. Nearly half of the total supply in the body is concentrated
in the testicles and in the seminal ducts adjacent to the prostate
gland. Selenium is useful in keeping youthful elasticity in tissues.
It also helps in
the prevention and treatment of dandruff and improves the condition
of hair and nails.
Selenium is important to mental health as it plays a role in the workings of the thyroid gland and can help to alleviate the mood and reduce symptoms of depression. It is also known to alleviate hot flushes and menopausal distress.
Selenium is an important antioxidant that plays a role in the body's utilisation of oxygen. Alcoholics, as well as patients with candidiasis, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia and arthrogryposis-renal dysfunction-cholestasis (ARC), have all shown low levels of selenium. In addition, heart disease and cancer are higher in people with diminished selenium levels.
Selenium also has a role in detoxifying poisonous phenols, formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, hydrocarbons and chlorine. Many people with allergic reactions to these substances have found relief through the use of selenium. However, selenium can be toxic in large amounts.