Selenium and Thyroid Health

Good thyroid health depends, in part, upon the bio-synthesis of selenium-dependent seleno-enzymes called deiodinases. These seleno-enzymes are key factors in thyroid hormone metabolism and regulation. Thyroid hormones regulate the body’s metabolism (think: energy expenditure, body weight, body temperature, digestion, heart rate, etc.).

Dr. Jan Alexander - selenium researcher
Guest author Dr. Jan Alexander. MD, PhD, Eurotox Registered Toxicologist, and Professor at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in Oslo. Co-author, together with Professor Urban Alehagen and Professor Jan Aaseth, of many articles about selenium and Coenzyme Q10.

There are three types of deiodinase enzymes. In normal thyroid function, these deiodinases regulate the activation and inactivation of the T4 and T3 thyroid hormones, as needed. Abnormal thyroid hormone function is closely associated with diminished health-related quality of life and with increased risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.

In many selenium-poor regions of the world, including much of Europe and the Middle East, low selenium intake and status may cause sub-optimal synthesis of deiodinase enzymes and, consequently, sub-optimal thyroid gland function. Selenium is an essential trace element found in soil, and humans must get it from their food. read more

Selenium and Graves’ Hyperthyroidism

Thyroid disease. What is the role of the micronutrient trace element selenium in thyroid disease? The thyroid gland is the organ in the body that contains the greatest amount of selenium per gram of tissue [Wang 2023]. Even in times of low dietary selenium intakes, the thyroid gland has high priority for the supply of selenium in the body [Schomburg 2020].

Endocrine system depicted
The thyroid gland is part of the endocrine system. It plays an important role in the body’s metabolism. It has high priority for the supply of selenium in the body.

Dietary selenium intakes vary considerably from region to region in the world. There are large differences in the soil content of selenium and in the factors that influence the bioavailability of selenium to plants. As a consequence, individuals’ plasma/serum selenium status varies accordingly [Winther 2020]. Thus, widespread sub-optimal selenium status has been reported throughout Europe, the United Kingdom, and the Middle East [Stoffaneller & Morse 2015]. read more