Hypothyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland produces low amounts of the hormones T-3 and T-4. These hormones are used by many of the systems in the body so when their levels drop the body’s systems cannot function as they should.
Selenium deficiency has shown to be one of the main things that a large percentage of hypothyroidism sufferers share. Selenium is a trace mineral that is found in many of the foods that we eat. The level of selenium that the food contains is basically determined by the soil that the food grew in.
Selenium does not just affect the production of the thyroid hormones it also plays a part in many functions of the body. Selenium has been linked to cardiovascular health, fertility, and arthritis. Having adequate amounts of this mineral will allow your body to fight cancer, and be healthier, but this mineral can be highly toxic if you consume too much of it on a daily basis.
Good Selenium levels should be achieved from the food you eat if at all possible. There are supplements that you can buy over the counter with selenium in them, but you will have to be careful to not ingest more than 400 mcg per day. That is the level that is considered toxic.
When it comes to the thyroid selenium plays a crucial role in converting the T4 hormone to T3. Without enough selenium the body cannot produce enough of the thyroid hormones. Many researchers believe that low levels of selenium can cause the thyroid to be damaged permanently.
Scientists are starting to do some research into the antiviral benefits that selenium has and the possible effects increased amounts of selenium would have on people with Hashimoto’s Disease.
Before you consider adding a selenium supplement to your diet consult your doctor about the levels of this mineral that you need, and the best method of getting it into your body. This will keep you from accidentally overdosing on the mineral.
Another way to make certain you get proper amounts of selenium without taking too much from it is to increase the foods that are rich in this mineral in your diet. Foods provide us with trace minerals and our body will take what it needs and reject the excess so we are less likely to experience an overdose from natural foods.
Brazil nuts, wheat germ, liver, brown rice, and shellfish all contain selenium. The soil where plants are grown influences the amount of selenium that is in the food so you need to check the location where the food was grown to determine the selenium amount in the soil. This will keep you from eating foods and thinking you are getting the proper amounts of the mineral and really not be getting enough.
Hypothyroidism cannot be identified without a blood test from the doctor. If you are experiencing any of the signs of this condition see your doctor for confirmation so you can begin treatment. The earlier you begin treatment the better chance you have of controlling the condition.