Although it is a vital element, not much is heard about selenium. This chemical aids in many functions within the body, including the creation of enzymes that serve as precursors to testosterone production.
When absorbed by the body, selenium works in unison with other essential vitamins and minerals. Namely, selenium has a positive reaction with Vitamin E that allows the body to repair oxidative damage. As an antioxidant, selenium also interacts positively with Vitamin C. The twosome improve overall cellular protection. In turn, this strengthens the immune system.
Most importantly, selenium has a positive impact on hormone production. We are going to look at this little-known mineral and its role in the testosterone production process.
Benefits of Selenium
- Lowers High Blood Pressure
As noted, selenium has strong antioxidative properties. However, what makes it such a cornerstone in immune-system building is the fact that is necessary for selenium to be present in order for the body to create its strongest antioxidant, glutathione.
Containing such high antioxidative properties, selenium helps boost the immune system. In turn, white cells are under less stress and are able to clean away at the debris that builds up in the arteries due to dietary choices, medication, and lack of exercise. In turn, blood flows more freely throughout the body, putting the heart under less stress. The end result is lower blood pressure.
High blood pressure has been linked in studies to low testosterone for these exact reasons.
- Boosts Testosterone
A natural reaction your body makes to receiving more oxygenated blood is to create more testosterone. If blood pressure is up and arteries are clogged, then blood is not reaching the penis. That means erection frequency begins to decline. When erections and ejaculations become less frequent, the testes do not release testosterone into the bloodstream. Selenium has been shown in studies to increase testosterone levels of men aged 30 and over. This is important because testosterone levels drop 1% a year once you turn 30.
- Increases Sperm Count and Quality
When more sperm is used, more is created. It’s like working out a muscle. The more it gets worked out, the larger it becomes and the easier it becomes to work out. A 2009 study confirmed these thoughts when researchers supplied 468 men with selenium and N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC). After 26 weeks, the male subjects saw a boost in not only sperm count and quality, but in testosterone as well.
How To Know if You Are Selenium Deficient
Selenium derives from the soil. Like each region in the world has different cultures, outfits, and skin tones, the soil is also different. Most people tend to not be deficient in selenium unless they reside in areas where the soil does not contain high concentrations of the element, like China, for example.
However, selenium deficiency can and does happen. Here are some of the symptoms of the deficiency:
- Malfunctioning thyroid
- Weak immune system
- Bouts of depression
- Muscle Weakness
- Body pains
- Infertility in both women and men
- Heart Disease
The Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA) suggests humans consume 55 mcg/day of selenium. The easiest way to ensure that you are meeting your RDA for selenium is to eat foods that are rich in the element.
Top 5 Foods Rich in Selenium
- Brazil Nuts
The number 1 source of selenium is FULL of the mineral. Just 1 ounce (6 to 8 nuts) equals 544 mcg, which well exceeds your 100% DV. Don’t eat too many too often because too much selenium creates the opposite of the desired effect. Over time, it can actually cause cellular and DNA damage.
Brazil nuts are also high in Vitamin E, which works in unison with selenium to repair cells, leaving for healthier skin. They also contain a lot of HDL (good) cholesterol and several B-vitamins that provide brain-boosting capabilities.
- Yellowfin Tuna
Native to the Gulf of Mexico, as well as the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, yellowfin tuna is very high in selenium as 77 mcg is equal to 110% of the DV. Yellowfin tuna also contains 24% of the DV of phosphorous and 11% of the DV of potassium. Its main vitamin is niacin. This B-Vitamin is essential in aiding your body in creating energy from the fat, proteins, and carbs that humans consume.
- Cooked Halibut
Yet another selenium-rich fish, just 6 ounces of halibut contains 135% of the DV of selenium. On top of those nutrients, cooked halibut contains 91% of the DV of Vitamin B-12, a vitamin that the human body cannot create on its own. It also contains 71% of the DV of niacin, 37% of Vitamin B6, 40% of magnesium, and 36% of phosphorous.
- Subtitles Sardines, Canned
They may be smelly, but they are full of selenium, with 3 ounces carrying 87% of the DV of selenium. Sardines also contain 23 grams of protein with 61% omega 3-fats. This makes for a very heart-healthy and testosterone boosting food. Lastly, sardines contain a ton of energy that humans cannot create naturally as it has 338% of the DV of Vitamin B-12.
- Grass-Fed Beef
What makes grass-fed so important in eating selenium-rich foods for the sake of testosterone production, is that you are not eating the hormones that typical slaughterhouse inject into their livestock. These hormones wreak havoc when they come in contact with human hormones.
On top of injecting animals with hormones to make them bigger, these slaughterhouses also tend to give the animals feed that contain other animals, who have also been injected with hormones. These are no longer worries if the animals are grass-fed. When you eat grass-fed beef, you get a ton of nutrients, including selenium. 3 ounces of grass-fed beef contain 47% of the DV of selenium.
Now You Know Selenium
Selenium has kept a low profile, but it is an important chemical element. Eating a diet rich in selenium will give the body a ton of benefits. These benefits include lower blood pressure which in turns leads to higher testosterone, and results in strong sperm production and quality.
Supplementing with selenium is not necessary. There is plenty of selenium in every day, easily accessible foods. Upping foods high in selenium into a diet may help the body replenish the vital mineral and in turn, pump up testosterone production.