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Are You Getting Enough of This Important Mineral?

By Sara Butler

Nature is amazing. In nature, you can find everything your body needs to work at its very best, including vitamins and minerals. But some people simply don't get enough of what their body needs to work optimally, specifically certain minerals -- minerals such as selenium.

Yes, selenium. Chances are, you probably don't watch your selenium intake but you probably should be. That's because selenium may help to reduce inflammation and reduce your chances of developing cardiovascular disease. Here's what you need to know about selenium and ways you can ensure you get enough of it.

What Is Selenium?

Selenium is a trace mineral that is naturally occurring in foods such as chicken, seafood, pork, beef, and nuts. The body relies on it for many of its most basic functions, from fighting infection to reproduction. The amount of selenium in foods is directly related to the amount of selenium found in the soil where they were produced.

Adults over age 14 need 55 mcg of selenium per day. If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you need 60 mcg of selenium per day.

Great Sources of Selenium

There are several food sources that are very high in selenium that can help you reach your daily goals. These include:

  • Brazil nuts - If you like nuts and are looking for something that packs a selenium-filled punch, then Brazil nuts can help. About eight nuts have over 500 mcg of selenium. But don't go too overboard. Selenium toxicity is a thing and should be avoided by making sure to limit your intake of high-selenium foods. Eat only what you need.
  • Ham - Ham is high in salt but it's also high in selenium, which is why it's a food best enjoyed in moderation. One three-ounce serving of ham can provide you with about 40 mcg of selenium.
  • Fish - Lots of different types of fish are high in selenium. Yellowfin tuna provides over 90 mcg in just three ounces. In sardines, salmon, oysters, crab, and shrimp, you can find up to 60 mcg of selenium per serving.
  • Beef - The amount of selenium in beef depends on how it's cut. Beef liver will provide about 30 mcg of selenium while ground beef has about 18 mcg.
  • Pork - You can get about 33 mcg of selenium in three ounces of pork.

Make sure you're getting enough selenium in your diet to stay healthy.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Madison, Wis.

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