Treating Cancer with Selenium

Structure of Trigonal Selenium

 "Structural studies of glassy and crystalline selenium-sulphur compounds"
"Structural studies of glassy and crystalline selenium-sulphur compounds"

30 Hubs in 30 Days

Im taking part in the March 2010 Helpful Health Hubs Contest of 30 Hubs in 30 Days. Visit my other Hubs and help with the celebration of Health & Wellness Month.
Im taking part in the March 2010 Helpful Health Hubs Contest of 30 Hubs in 30 Days. Visit my other Hubs and help with the celebration of Health & Wellness Month.

Studies on Selenium

A study at the University of Arizona by Dr. Larry Clark in 1996 showed the effects of taking selenium can protect against cancer. 1,300 senior citizens took part in this study. The occurrence of cancer among those who took 200 micrograms of selenium daily for about seven years was reduced by 42 percent compared to those given a placebo. Cancer deaths for those taking the selenium were cut almost in half, according to the study that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. This study also showed that selenium protected against all types of cancer, but showed more promise with prostate, colorectal and lung cancer.

Life Extension Foundation, a non-profit research-based organization headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida found the use of selenium during chemotherapy in combination with vitamin A and vitamin E can reduce the toxicity of chemotherapy drugs. Research has shown that it also enhance the effectiveness of chemo, radiation, and hyperthermia while minimizing damage to the patient's normal cells.

Additional research shows selenium, when used with vitamins C, E and beta-carotene, works to block chemical reactions that create free radicals in the body. Free radicals can damage DNA and cause degenerative change in cells, leading to cancer.

It is estimated that most Americans only get between 60 and 100 micrograms of selenium daily from dietary sources. The recommended dose of the mineral selenium is 200 micrograms a day.

Natural dietary food sources of selenium includes: Mushrooms, egg yolks, seafood, poultry and kidney, liver and muscle meats. Selenium in vegetables includes: Garlic, onions, broccoli, asparagus, and tomatoes. Others food sources are: Whole grains and seeds.

Even with eating the proper dietary food sources of selenium it is almost impossible to get the full daily amount without supplements. This is because it depends on the richness of the soil in which vegetables, grains and seed grow in relation to the selenium content in the food. It can be hard for average consumers to know how much of the mineral they are actually getting in their diets.

Then there are processed foods from the grocery store. This commercial process can strip the food from many of its vitamins and minerals.

How selenium works is that it activates an enzyme in the body called gluthathione peroxidase that protects against the formation of free radicals. Free radicals can damage DNA.

Selenium, in test tube studies, along with vitamin E showed it inhibited tumor growth and regulated the natural life span of cells, ensuring that they died when they were supposed to instead of turning malignant. The University of Arizona researchers say that selenium could be effective within a fairly short time frame.

This does not mean to stop taking treatment or medication that your physician prescribed. But studies have shown promise with selenium in treating cancer.

Do vitamin E and Selenium Prevent Prostate Cancer

Comments 18 comments

katiem2 profile image

katiem2 6 years ago from I'm outta here

Very Powerful and Informative Hub! Thanks and Peace :)


Darlene Sabella profile image

Darlene Sabella 6 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

Very powerful and wise hub, I enjoyed reading and learning about selenium this is new to me. Thank you and good luck on your challange.


Coolmon2009 profile image

Coolmon2009 6 years ago from Texas, USA

Good and useful information :)


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 6 years ago

Good information on Selenium. I just did one hub on how selenium can also fight wrinkles, in addition to being an exceptional antioxidant. Selenium is such a health heavy-weight. Interesting hub and thank you.


prettydarkhorse profile image

prettydarkhorse 6 years ago from US

it is nice to know that selenium treats cancer as well Sandy, thats good news! thank you, Maita


alexandriaruthk profile image

alexandriaruthk 6 years ago from US

hi Sandy, thank you for the information! it is one of the antioxidnats so it make sense,


entertianmentplus profile image

entertianmentplus 6 years ago from United States

Well done good info thanks for sharing.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia

I heard about this and went out and purchased some selenium! Great info!


itakins profile image

itakins 6 years ago from Irl

Great hub-on my shopping list:)


nancy_30 profile image

nancy_30 6 years ago from Georgia

Thank you for this information. I don't think I've heard of selenium before. I'm glad it can help protect against cancer.


akirchner profile image

akirchner 6 years ago from Central Oregon

That is really, really interesting - I didn't know it was good for prostate cancer, too! Super info.


hypnodude profile image

hypnodude 6 years ago from Italy

I've heard that Selenium can help against cancer. There are a lot of good information here, and pretty well explained. Rated up. :)


adrienne2 profile image

adrienne2 6 years ago from Atlanta

This is some very good information here in your article. I am familiar with Selenium being good for several ailments, didnt know about the prostate cancer and selenium. Great job and presentation.


pinkboxer profile image

pinkboxer 6 years ago from Louisiana

Excellent hub on selenium. I am a fan!


joecseko profile image

joecseko 6 years ago from New York, USA, Earth

The correct spelling of glutathione, combined with the VERY real risk of toxicity from selenium supplementation would have been a plus. That, and the observation that superoxide dismutase is a much more powerful free radical scavenger. Also of note, this study was done in 1996. There is much more recent activity on the subject.


AudreyHowitt profile image

AudreyHowitt 4 years ago from California

This is such an interesting hub Sandy~ well done!


Nadine May profile image

Nadine May 19 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

Great article and i learned something new. I now will search for selenuim in our health stores. Voted up


Sandyspider profile image

Sandyspider 19 months ago from Wisconsin, USA Author

Nadine May Thanks for the vote up and thanks for the visit.

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