Natural Remedies for Immunity
Selenium is a trace mineral that our bodies use to produce glutathione peroxidase, an enzyme that serves as a natural antioxidant. Glutathione peroxidase works with vitamin E to protect cell membranes from damage caused by free radicals. Selenium rank with vitamins C and A as a powerful promoter of immunity.
The importance of selenium in thwarting viral infections
is illustrated by the fact that a number of deadly viruses (such as HIV, Ebola, etc.) have emerged from regions in Africa such as Zaire, which appear to be selenium deficient.
Selenium is essential for healthy immune functioning. Selenium supplementation
reduces the incidence of hepatitis in deficient populations.(2) In a population of elderly people that was not deficient in selenium, selenium supplementation has been found to stimulate the activity of white blood cells-primary components of the immune system.(3) Selenium is also needed to activate thyroid hormones. Selenium provides protection against a large number of cancers and, against a broad spectrum of diseases.
Selenium is an essential component of a powerful antioxidant manufactured by the body. This antioxidant, called glutathione peroxidase, defends specifically against peroxides, a type of free radical that attacks fats. Like other antioxidants, glutathione peroxidase also reduces the risk of developing cancer and heart diseases and stimulates the immune system's response to infections.
Selenium and Immunity
Selenium Deficiency and AIDS
How Selenium Fights Infections
Natural Sources for Selenium
Form of Selenium Supplements
The symptoms of selenium overdose
Next Topic: Selenium and Immunity
Sheldon S. Hendler MD, The Doctor's Vitamin and Mineral Encyclopedia, Simon and Schuster.
Yu S-Y, Li W-G, Zhu Y-J, et al. Chemoprevention trial of human hepatitis with selenium supplementation in China. Biol Trace Element Res 1989;20:15-20.
Peretz A, Néve J, Desmedt J, et al. Lymphocyte response is enhanced by supplementation of elderly subjects with selenium-enriched yeast. Am J Clin Nutri 1991;53:1323-28.