Latest news on selenium

January 12, 2010

Intensive research is going on in utilization of selenium against cancer.
The public in Denmark do not hear much of it, but here is a selection of recent news.

The lack of television and newspaper information may give the impression that there is quiet on the antioxidant front concerning disease control. This is not the case. The news shortage is chiefly due to the censorship that has been introduced. Regarding selenium alone, being one of the major antioxidants, there were in 2009 published more than 900 scientific articles. Here we will mention a selection of recent articles about selenium in the fight against cancer.

A famous attempt to demonstrate whether antioxidants protect against cancer were performed in the years 1985-91 in the Chinese Linxian province. Nearly 30.000 participated in the study, which showed a strong decrease in cancer risk among those who received a supplement of selenium (50 micrograms) and Vitamin E and Beta Carotene (respectively 30 and 15 mg). Now it has been determined, what had happened to the participants 10 years later (2001). Even after so long a time, there were relatively more survivors in this group than among those who received other supplements (eg. Vitamin A + zinc, was of no benefit). In particular, the group had reduced incidence of cancer of the stomach, but it was the participants under 55 years of age who experienced the greatest gain – you must avoid lacking vital nutrients already from the youth.

Apparently this result is contradicted by another famous study, the SELECT trial conducted in the U.S. Here it appeared that you could not prevent prostate cancer using selenium, vitamin E or a combination of both. This study was in large scale and the result a huge disappointment.

One of the world’s leading selenium specialists, Margaret Rayman, did point out however, a few months ago what really is obvious: Supplementation with selenium is of no benefit if you already get enough! As a general rule you get enough in the U.S., where you typically get 3-4 times as much selenium in the diet as in Denmark. Sufficient selenium is essential for the body to form enough of the enzymes which we presume protects against cancer. Amongst others Rayman refer to another U.S. cancer trial where you just saw a massive impact in those who received the least amount of selenium, but no effect in those who got the most.

Heavy metals neutralized
One of the veterans in selenium research is Gerhard Schrauzer from San Diego University of California. He has been involved more than 20 years. Now he points out that selenium is able to detoxify numerous toxic metals that somehow during our civilized environment ends up in our bodies. This applies to lead, mercury, copper, cadmium, arsenic, etc. Selenium inactivates these metals by forming insoluble compounds with them. But, says Schrauzer, one must remember that at the same time selenium is used up, so we for that reason are less protected against cancer. In Europe we already get too little selenium, but heavy metals etc. increases the demand.

Taylor and associates have written an article on new advances in selenium research. They write that the renewed interest in selenium is linked to the fact that the anti-cancer effect is now very well documented in animal studies. This is worth noticing.

And precisely on animals a research team from San Diego University have demonstrated that the effect of chemotherapy (cisplatin) against cancer of the colon is reinforced considerably by large supplements of antioxidants (A and vitamin E and selenium) combined with fish oil. The group believes their achievement justifies that research is made with people. The result is very exciting because cancer doctors in this country often discourages in strong terms their patients from combining antioxidants with chemotherapy. The reason for this warning has hitherto been unclear.

Selenium and chemotherapy
Researchers from The Karolinska Hospital in Stockholm state without hesitation that it is well documented that selenium prevents cancer. They describe several experiments which have shown that selenium has strong anti cancer effects – especially against cancer, which no longer responds to chemotherapy. Normal cells will not be harmed by the selenium doses needed for this!

Italian researchers, however, stresses that people can get too much selenium (but living in Denmark you have take approx. two selenium tablets a day in order to get the same amount as a typical American). They argue that high doses may increase the risk of diabetes, an assertion, however, that is controversial.

In the Netherlands, like in China there has been an interest in selenium and cancer of the esophagus. More than 120,000 persons who was 55-69 years old in 1968, delivered at that time, a portion nail clips from their big toes. 16 years later it was found who and how many have got cancer of the esophagus or stomach in the meantime. Then the selenium levels in their nails was measured and compared with the levels in healthy subjects. It was found that the risk of both cancers was significantly higher among those who only had small amounts of selenium in their nails, and hence their body.

A curious study has been conducted in Japan. Here researchers cultivated broccoli-sprouts in a selenium-rich environment, so the sprouts got an extra high content of selenium. In a laboratory study the sprouts was investigated for their impact on prostate cancer tissue. The enriched sprouts inhibited cancer growth clearly better than normal sprouts. Now the Japanese suggests, that men eat that kind of sprouts to prevent cancer of the prostate.

Finally other Japanese mention, that it is well known that selenium can kill cancer cells from humans, but but precisely how this happens is still unclear. They have reached the conclusion that at least part of the effect is due to selenium starts off a cancer cell death process using the same mechanism (apoptosis) as when normal cells must be replaced and die. Such a mechanism is of course necessary, since almost all normal cells divide continuously. There would soon be twice as many, and we would grow indefinitely, if not worn-out cells were put out.

As you can see, the research is really alive. Much of our understanding of selenium is achieved in very recent years. More will undoubtly follow.

By: Niels Hertz, M.D.

References
1. Qiao YL et al. Total and cancer mortality after supplementation with vitamins and minerals: follow-up of the Linxian General Population Nutrition Intervention Trial. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2009 Apr 1;101(7):507-18. Epub 2009 Mar 24.
2. Lippman SM et al. Effect of selenium and vitamin E on risk of prostate cancer and other cancers: the Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT). JAMA. 2009 Jan 7;301(1):39-51. Epub 2008 Dec 9.
3. Rayman MP. Selenoproteins and human health: insights from epidemiological data.
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2009 Nov;1790(11):1533-40. Epub 2009 Mar 25.
4. Schrauzer GN Selenium and selenium-antagonistic elements in nutritional cancer prevention.
Crit Rev Biotechnol. 2009;29(1):10-7.
5. Taylor D. Recent developments in selenium research. Br J Biomed Sci. 2009;66(2):107-16; quiz 129.
6. Ma H. Bi Efficacy of dietary antioxidants combined with a chemotherapeutic agent on human colon cancer progression in a fluorescent orthotopic mouse model. Anticancer Res. 2009 Jul;29(7):2421-6.
7. Selenius M. Selenium and selenoproteins in the treatment and diagnostics of cancer.
Antioxid Redox Signal. 2009 Sep 21. [Epub ahead of print]
8. Vinceti M. Risk of chronic low-dose selenium overexposure in humans: insights from epidemiology and biochemistry Rev Environ Health. 2009 Jul-Sep;24(3):231-48.
9. Steevens J. Selenium status and the risk of esophageal and gastric cancer subtypes: the Netherlands cohort study. Gastroenterology.. [Epub ahead of print]
10. Abdulah R. Selenium enrichment of broccoli sprout extract increases chemosensitivity and apoptosis of LNCaP prostate cancer cells. BMC Cancer. 2009 Nov 30;9:414.

Selenium still helps preventing cancer

January 26, 2009

A huge U.S. study showed that supplementation of selenium do not prevent cancer of the prostate. But this result is only valid if you get plenty of selenium in advance.

12 years ago it aroused hope and optimism when American Larry Clark could tell that the mineral selenium prevents cancer, particularly prostate cancer, the second most common cause of death from cancer in men. He had to stop his trial before expiry when he learned that far fewer selenium-treated than placebo-treated patients (placebo: Inert tablets) got cancer.

Now a second, much larger, selenium trial has been stopped prematurely. Also in this case the focus of interest was the effect against prostate cancer. This was also an American study. But SELECT, as the trial was named, unfortunately showed that selenium had no effect. One could even not exclude an, admittedly very little, harmful effect. So, it was stopped.

In the meantime, Clark’s trial has been studied more closely. Was it really as convincing as was first believed? With 1.312 participants it was not nearly as large as SELECT where 35.000 attended. Very important was that the final report which came in 2003 showed that the benefit was smaller than first believed. Some cases of prostate cancer among selenium treated had for various reasons been overlooked.

What was left was a statistically significant benefit among those who at the beginning of the experiment had the least selenium in the blood and with most certainty did not have incipient cancer of the prostate. The latter could be concluded from the very low values of PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) in the blood of these people. In this group, while the trial was in progress, the incidence of cancer of the prostate was three times less than in the placebo group.

More selenium in the U.S.
Now the question is whether the much larger SELECT trial cancels Clark’s trial. It seems to be the general opinion as for example reflected in the leading article of the same issue of the American medical journal, JAMA, where SELECT was published. So far physicians should not recommend selenium as a prevention against prostate cancer, it says.

And yet one can rightly come to the diametrically opposite conclusion: There is every reason to believe that selenium prevents cancer of the prostate, and presumably also other kinds of cancer.

The fact is that Americans, but not all Americans, get far more selenium in their diet than we Scandinavians. In Clark’s study, participants were selected on the basis of consistently having relatively little selenium in their diet for U.S. standards. Two-thirds had less than 122 micrograms of selenium per. liter of serum. In the SELECT study only one in five had that low values. In other words, it is conceivable that most of the SELECT participants already got plenty of selenium so that additional supplementation would not benefit them. In Denmark almost everybody get less selenium than the participants of both the first and the second study mentioned. Our values are typically 80 micrograms per liter.

This is in excellent compliance with the fact that incredible few participants died from prostate cancer during the SELECT study. Statistically one would have expected 75 to 100 deaths for this reason, during the 5.6 years duration of the study. But only one died (!).

A contributory cause may have been that the vast majority of participants in the SELECT study on their own underwent PSA measurement annually. Possible prostate cancer was therefore detected and treated early. On the other hand, other studies have shown that annual PSA measurement does not reduce mortality. Therefore it is not recommended in Denmark.

Despite the termination of the SELECT study, as a Dane you should still remember that the research that involves us – as opposed to Americans we get very little selenium in our diet – suggests that supplementation with selenium in the order of 1-2 tablets (100-200 micrograms) per day seems to reduce the risk of prostate cancer to a third.

By: Niels Hertz, M.D.

References:
1. Lippman SM et al. Effect of selenium and vitamin E on risk of prostate cancer and other cancers. JAMA online December 9, 2008: E1-E13
2. Gann PH. Randomized trials of antioxidant supplementation for cancer prevention. JAMA online December 9, 2008: E1-E2.
3. Selenium supplementation, baseline plasma selenium status and incidence of prostate cancer: An analysis of the complete treatment of the Nutritional Prevention of Cancer Trial. BJU Int. 2003;91:608-12.

jama.ama-assn.org
www.bjui.org

Selenium, A Potent Substance Against Cancer

January 18, 2006

Studies from all angles support the idea that selenium works against cancer. Even though there is need for more research, an optimal dose can be suggested.

Selenium prevents cancer. This is common knowledge which is only awaiting conclusive confirmation. It received recognition when, in 1996, an American researcher (Clark) showed in a randomised study that the frequency of cancer fell by 38%, and that the fatality rate of those with cancer fell by 50%, in participants who received daily supplement of 200 micrograms selenium.

The supposition that selenium is preventative for cancer is in fact much more extensively backed. This has been shown by a leading selenium expert, Margret Rayman from the University of Surrey in England, in a thorough, but also complicated, summary. She has also illuminated who selenium prevents cancer and, even more importantly, how much is needed.

Rayman reviews the many geographical studies that have, since the 1960’s, consistently shown that the populations who received the least amount of selenium also had the highest cancer rates. Animal studies are also discussed. If one gives selenium to a male dog, not only is there less damage to the DNA of prostate cells, but the damaged cells that remain also die normally instead of living on as cancer cells.

A certain pattern emerges when one looks at studies where the blood concentration of selenium is compared to the cancer rate in groups of people. In a French study of this type from 2005, the death rate from cancer after nine years was four times greater in the 25% of the study-group who received the least selenium than in those who received the most selenium. Typically the French receive as little selenium in their diets as the British. Many studies from many countries have shown similar results for lung cancer (a 26% lower risk of cancer was reported in those with diets rich in selenium), oesophagus cancer, stomach cancer, and not in the least, prostate cancer as well as possibly cancer of the large intestine.

How much is enough
The best evidence can always be found in randomised studies where neither the patients nor the doctors know who receives what. A Chinese study of this type has shown that selenium has an especially effective against liver cancer. As mentioned before, Clark’s study had similar results. It is intriguing that, even though Americans receive an average of 200 micrograms more selenium daily than us, an additional 200 micrograms was beneficial to most. The effects were nevertheless minimal in those who received the most selenium beforehand. These individuals already received close to the optimal dose. But third of the population who received the least beforehand, had their cancer risk halved, and their prostate cancer risk decreased by 86%, after taking supplementary selenium.

Typical Europeans receive too little selenium while Americans receive double as much and Japanese receive almost three times as much. It has become apparent that 70 micrograms of selenium is needed in the daily diet to maintain levels of the selenium based antioxidant GSHpx in the body. The Japanese and most Americans receive this amount in their diets while we do not. But why is their cancer risk reduced when they receive supplementary selenium? The reason cannot be GSHpx and may not even be the anti-oxidizing effects alone.

Rayman examines many possible explanations. One is that high doses of selenium lead to the formation of the simple selenium compound methylselenol; which can kill cancer cells, counteract the formation of blood vessels (which the cancer cells need to survive) and can inhibit cancer in other ways. But selenium is naturally an antioxidant, an immune system stimulant, an activator for cancer inhibiting genes, an inhibitor for growth factors, etc. There is not one, but many, mechanisms of action.

Unchecked amounts of selenium should not be taken. Studies indicate that sufficiently high doses of selenium can increase the risk of cancer as much as insufficient amounts. Clark’s study, as well as others, suggests that a daily supplement of 200 micrograms is optimal.

The reward can be large, but more research is needed. Currently a large clinical trail (called SELECT) is being undertaken in the U.S.A., but a study in the more selenium poor Europe would be better. Rayman believes that such a study should be undertaken. But who wants the placebo!?

By: Vitality Council

References:
1. Rayman M P. Selenium in cancer prevention: A review of the evidence and mechanism of action. Proceedings of the nutrition society. 2005;64:527-42.
2. Clark LC et al. Effects of selenium supplementation for cancer prevention in patients with carcinoma of the skin. A randomized controlled trial. Nutritional Prevention of Cancer study group. JAMA 1996;276:1957-63.
3. Akbaraly NT et al. Selenium and mortality in the elderly: Results from the EVA study. Clin Chem. 2005;51:2117-23.

www.cabi-publishing.org/Journals.asp
jama.ama-assn.org
www.clinchem.org
www.iom.dk

Selenium May Prevent Degenerative Joint Disease

November 24, 2005

For the first time ever, researchers have studied the correlation between selenium deficiency and osteoarthritis, which correlation is surprisingly strong and indicates that selenium supplementation may prevent the Western World’s most common cause of mobility-impairment.

There is a general agreement that selenium is a mineral which western Europeans get less and less of through their diets. Modern agricultural methods and the acidification of the soil has have caused a lowered amount of this vital antioxidant I crops, and thereby a lowered amount of selenium in our bodies. The deficiency is severe enough that, as early as the 1980’s, it widespread problems in Danish pigs so severe that, after some political tug-of-war, supplements were added to their feed. But does this deficiency mean anything for people?

So far the only answer is “probably.” Large population studies in Finland etc. have shown that members of the group which gets the least selenium via diet have the greatest risk of getting cancer.

Just as importantly, in an American randomised study with 1,300 participants undertake nine years ago, it was found that supplements of selenium halved the frequency of new cancer cases. The less selenium presents in the blood beforehand, the greater the positive effect with the supplement. The result was so certain that the study was stopped early for ethical reasons and is being repeated on a larger scale. If selenium prevents cancer so effectively, we should be absolutely certain of its effects.

Meanwhile, researchers from North Carolina’s university in cooperation with the American Center for Disease Control (CDC) discovered another relationship: Selenium deficiency causes an increased risk of arthritis of the knees. The risk of arthritis of the knees increases by 15-20% every time that the body’s selenium content is reduced by 10 micrograms (per kilo body weight). For comparison, the blood of the average Dane contains about 80 microgram/litre while the blood of the average American contains 110.

Among the nearly 900 people who were followed for 15 years, the risk was 40% lower in the third who received the most selenium. If they developed arthritis anyway, there was a tendency that it was to a lesser degree.

This is just a statistical relationship. It has not yet been published in the press, but has been presented in a congress (15.11.05) in San Diego for American arthritis doctors and can be read in an official press release from North Carolina’s university.

Nevertheless, the study’s leader, professor Joanne Jordan, has declared that the group is very excited about their findings. It could indicate that there is a possibility of preventing arthritis in the knee and possibly in other joints. In other words, it might be possible to prevent the most common reason for activity reduction in the western world. In China it is known that extreme selenium deficiency can cause severe cartilage injury in joints as early as during childhood. Does this point in the same direction?

Maybe, but it is not known for certain. According to Joanne Jordan, the next step in to study selenium’s effect on cartilage in the laboratory. The obvious hypothesis is that this effect is due to selenium’s function as an antioxidant. Clinical studies, in other words randomised studies, should be undertaken to find out whether selenium supplements effect pain and the level of function in people with arthritis.

The new finds are not final, but it is the first time that anyone has studied the correlation between arthritis and selenium. It is very surprising that the relationship is so apparent.

By: Vitality Council

References:
1. Rayman M. The importance of selenium to human health. The Lancet 2000:;356:233-41.
2. News Release. Study links low selenium levels with higher risk of osteoarthritis. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: http://www.unc.edu/news/archives/nov05/jordan111005.htm
3. Clark LC. et al. Effect of selenium supplementation for cancer prevention in patients with carcinoma of the skin. A randomized controlled trial. JAMA 1996;276:1957-63.

www.thelancet.com
www.unc.edu/news/archives/nov05/jordan111005.htm
jama.ama-assn.org
www.iom.dk

Perhaps selenium can prevent hereditary breast cancer

May 30, 2005

Women with a genetic tendency towards breast cancer have unstable chromosomes. Studies now show that these chromosomes can be stabilized by taking selenium supplements.
About every twenty cases of breast cancer are due to inheritance. Most often, the cause is an innate mutation in the so-called BRCA1 gene, which, under normal circumstances, repairs damage to chromosomes.

If you carry this mutation, you already have a high risk of breast cancer: Approximately 60% will get the disease before they reach 50, and approximately 85% will get it before they reach 70. At the same time, the risk of ovarian cancer is no less than 60%.

By: Vitality Council

Reference:
Kowalska E. et al. Increased rates of chromosome breakage in BRCA1 carriers are normalised by oral selenium supplementation. Cancer Epidem Biomarkers Prev 2005;14(5):1302-6.

www.iom.dk

Depressed Due to Vitamin Deficiency?

April 11, 2005

Several reports show a connection between depression and Vitamin E deficiency. There is a similar relation between depression and lack of Vitamin C and selenium. So far this gives food for thought.

Could it be that lack of vitamin E plays a role in depression? Something in that direction according to a preliminary Australian survey.

By: Vitality Council

References:
1. Owen AJ et al. Low plasma vitamin E levels in major depression: Diet or disease? Eur J Clin Nutr 2005;59:304-6.
2. Tiemeier H et al. Vitamin E and depressive symptoms are not related. The Rotterdam Study. J Affect Disord 2002;72:79-83.
3. Maes M et al. Lower seriúm vitamin E concentration in major depression. Another marker of lowered antioxidant defense in that disease. J Affect Disord 2000;58:241-6.
4. Benton D et al. The impact of selenium supplementation on mood. Biol Psychiatry 1991;29:1092-8.

www.nature.com/ejcn/index.html
www.sciencedirect.com
www.iom.dk

Chemotherapy: Selenium Increases the Effect and Reduces Side Effects

September 20, 2004

There are still a few cancer specialists, who warn their patients against taking antioxidants while undergoing chemotherapy. They think that when antioxidants decrease the side effects of the treatment, they will also decrease the benefits of chemotherapy. However, pursuasive studies now show that this advice is neither correct nor beneficial.

Scientists at the famous and internationally acclaimed American Roswell Park Cancer Institute – the oldest independent cancer research centre in the world – are putting forward these new results.

Highly detailed studies on mice have shown that not only does selenium protect healthy tissue from the destructive effect of chemotherapy – it also quite dramatically enhances the effect of chemo therapy on tumours! For the first time, it has been established that it is possible to increase the effect of chemotherapy with a treatment that is actually harmless in itself.

The studies were carried out on so-called naked mice that had various human tumours surgically implanted and then were given various types of chemo theray. Some of the tumours were moderately sensitive to chemotherapy while the sensitivity of others was very small. However, when the mice were treated with large doses of selenium, they were able to tolerate up to four times as much chemotherapy as they normally would and thereby, not only the usual 20 – 30% of the mice could be cured, but in some cases up to 100% of the mice were cured!

Just as convincing was the effect on moderately sensitive tumours which are usually cured in about 50% of the cases. With selenium, the success rate went up to 100% and, to a very large extent, the mice were also free from side effects.

The preliminary results indicate that there might be several reasons for these results, but selenium in combination with chemotherapy seems to be able to force the cancer cells into committing suicide, so-called apoptosis.

Attention must be paid to the fact that this is an animal experiment. However, the results have been so exceptional and promising that the researchers at Roswell Park Cancer Institute are already setting up the first studies for testing the treatment on humans.

By: Vitality Council

Reference:
Shousong Cao, Farukh A. Durrani, and Youcef M. Rustum. Selective Modulation of the Therapeutic Efficacy of Anticancer Drugs by Selenium Containing Compounds against Human Tumor Xenografts. Clin Cancer Res. 2004;10(7):2561-9.

clincancerres.aacrjournals.org
www.roswellpark.org
www.iom.dk

Selenium Reduces the Risk of Serious Prostate Cancer by 50%

July 19, 2004

More research indicates that the mineral selenium protects men against prostate cancer.

In the largest comparative study thus far, a large group of American doctors were examined and it was demonstrated that the ones who were in the top 20% with the highest content of selenium in their blood had a 48% reduced risk of getting advanced prostate cancer compared to their colleagues with less selenium in their blood.

This reduction correlates well with several other studies in recent years, but the present study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute in America is the largest on this subject so far. A total of 586 male doctors who during the course of 13 years were diagnosed with prostate cancer were compared to 577 male doctors who avoided the disease.

Many men get prostate cancer but this does not necessarily result in long-term consequences because the disease is often localized and non-invasive. These mild forms of cancer were apparently not prevented by selenium. Only the risk of advanced cancer was reduced. This indicates that selenium delays the development of the disease rather than prevents it from arising in the first place.

Large studies of the connection between selenium and prostate cancer are on their way. Particularly a large American study (SELECT) which is also designed to bring light to the effect of vitamin E on this disease is anxiously anticipated.

Which results would be found in a similar British study is unclear. Americans get far more selenium through their diet than British people because the American soil is richer in this mineral. Perhaps this is the reason why British men are more exposed to prostate cancer in its aggressive and malignant form.

By: Vitality Council

 

Reference:
Li H et al. A prospective study of plasma selenium levels and prostate cancer risk. J Natl Cancer Inst. 2004;96(9):696-703.

jncicancerspectrum.oupjournals.org
www.iom.dk

Important Nutrient Substance Protects Women Against Pre-eclampsia

December 17, 2003

According to a new British study, defiency of the trace mineral selenium might quadruple the risk of pre-eclampsia in pregnant women.

According to British researchers, pregnant women with a low content of the vital trace mineral selenium have up to four times as high a risk of developing pre-eclampsia compared to women who are not deficient in this substance.

This is the result of a new study published in the November issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. The researchers behind the study are not quite aware why some women develop pre-eclampsia which involves hypertension, kidney damage, and reduced blood supply to the placenta.

They suggest, however, that it might be connected with the decreasing intake of selenium in several countries. In Britain, the selenium content of wheat is 10 – 50 times lower than that of the USA and Canada, for example, making it difficult to maintain an adequate intake of this important substance.

The risk of premature delivery
In the recently published study made by a group of scientists led by Dr. Margaret P. Rayman at the University of Surry in Guildford, the toe nail clippings of 53 pregnant women with early signs of pre-eclampsia were studied and compared to toe nail clippings from 53 healthy women. Selenium accumulates in nails which makes nail clippings such a good gauge of people’s selenium status.

The researchers observed that the average selenium content of the toe nail clippings were considerably lower in the women with early signs of pre-eclampsia. The researchers also found that the pre-eclamptic women with the lowest selenium values were far more likely to deliver prematurely.

One of the reasons for pre-eclampsia is believed to be oxidants (a kind of toxins) that arise as a consequence of a poorly functioning placenta. As selenium is an effective antioxidant, it is very likely that a lack of this substance can contribute to the development of pre-eclampsia.

Worries of reduced selenium intakes
The leading researcher, Margaret Rayman, has expressed her concern about the declining intake of selenium in Britain where the dietary selenium intake is reduced by more than 50% compared to what it was 20 – 25 years ago. This is due to the selenium content of crops being significantly lower than it used to be.

“Selenium is an extremely important substance which is known to be able to prevent various forms of cancer, including prostate cancer and skin cancer. What really worries me is the observation that the authorities systematically reduce the recommended daily dose of selenium while new research shows just how important it is to get adequate amounts of this substance. 15 – 20 years ago, the recommended daily dose (RDA) was 125 mcg. a day – recently the RDA was reduced to 40 mcg. This completely opposes common sense,” says Claus Hancke, the chairman of the Danish Vitality Council.

The British group of researchers are already planning a new study intended to clarify if dietary supplements of selenium can protect against pre-eclampsia.

By: Vitality Council


Reference:

American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (vol. 189, no. 5).

www.ovid.com/site/catalog/Journal/369.jsp
www.iom.dk

Selenium against Breast Cancer!

June 19, 2003

A combination of nutritional research and knowledge on genetics may lead to an earlier discovery and prevention of breast cancer. New scientific research seems to indicate that dietary supplements with selenium may prevent breast cancer in those women genetically predisposed to breast cancer.

A combination of nutritional research and knowledge about genes may lead to an earlier discovery and prevention of breast cancer. New research suggests that dietary supplements with selenium can prevent breast cancer in women who are genetically exposed to the disease.

The researchers believe that there is an opportunity to find out who is in the danger zone – before the disease develops – and then preventing using selenium supplements.

By: Vitality Council

Reference:
Cancer Research, 15. June 2003.

cancerres.aacrjournals.org
www.icnet.uk