Study Shows Additional Selenium Benefits
Diabetes is a common disease that often times leads to many health complications. According to the CDC, diabetes can increase the risk of heart disease in women by four times. Fortunately, a new study found that selenium could provide potential health benefits to women with diabetes. Find out what this new study has to offer.
The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) reviewed data regarding increasing a woman’s intake of selenium when they had type 2 diabetes and the effect on telomeres. Unfortunately for men, this wasn’t the case for them. But you can keep reading so you know how to help the women in your life.
What does this mean to you? First, you need to understand telomeres. Then, you need to figure out what the best option is for you, especially if you are a woman with diabetes.
Telomeres are a portion of a repetitive DNA sequence at the end of each chromosome. Telomeres protect the ends of chromosomes from fraying, which would cause the chromosome to shorten. Genome.gov explains that as the chromosome shortens the cell can no longer divide and the cell dies.
The NutraIngredients article about the NHANES study explains this about telomeres: The aging and lifespan of normal, healthy cells are linked to the so-called telomerase shortening mechanism, which limits cells to a fixed number of divisions. During cell replication, the telomeres function by ensuring the cell’s chromosomes to not fuse with each other or rearrange, which can lead to cancer.
Why is this important? Telomeres are affected by oxidative stress and inflammation and telomere length may be a marker for biological aging. That’s where selenium comes in.
Selenium is an essential trace mineral that supports a variety of your body’s functions. Selenium can help with cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline, thyroid disorders, and cancer. (Note: In 2003, the FDA allowed a qualified health claim on foods and dietary supplements containing selenium to state that while “some scientific evidence suggests that consumption of selenium may reduce the risk of certain forms of cancer… FDA has determined that this evidence is limited and not conclusive” .) In the NHANES study, they focused on diabetes and found that increasing selenium in women with diabetes and increased the length of telomeres.
Selenium has been a focus for cancer research as well. Selenium is the only mineral that qualifies for a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved qualified health claim for general cancer reduction. That’s a big deal! As time goes on, other studies, that are in the works, will likely validate the other benefits selenium offers.
Getting Enough Selenium
Selenium is found in a variety of foods, like brazil nuts, eggs, seafood, brown rice, and meats. The catch is the amount of selenium in these foods varies depending on the soil and water where they were grown/raised. To help with your selenium levels, you can take a supplement, but make sure it is high-quality, like Youngevity’s Ultimate Selenium. Ultimate Selenium includes selenium and other trace minerals and vitamins that support the body’s functions that selenium is supporting.
Science is an amazing thing and as additional studies are conducted, we’ll continue to learn more ways to support our health.