Skip to content
Complete Guide to Selenium for Cancer Prevention

Can Selenium Be Useful In Cancer Prevention?

Complete Guide to Selenium for Cancer Prevention


In the United States, cancer is a big health problem and is one of the top reasons people get very sick or even pass away. Every year, a lot of people are told by their doctors that they have cancer.

Here's what experts from the American Cancer Society thought would happen in 2022:

  • New Cases: They expected that about 1.9 million people would be told they have cancer that year.
  • Lifetime Risk: They also said that about 38.4 out of every 100 people (which is almost 4 out of every 10 people) might get cancer at some point in their lives. This guess is based on information from the years 2021 to 2023.

Understanding Cancer

Cancer is a tricky disease that doesn't have just one cause but many. It's like a puzzle made up of pieces from your genes, the world around you, and your choices. Here's a more straightforward way to understand what might make cancer more likely to happen:

Genetic Factors

Think of your body like a computer. Your genes are the code that tells the computer how to work. Sometimes, there are mistakes in the code, or "mutations," that can make you more likely to get cancer. These mistakes can be something you're born with, like in families where breast or ovarian cancer happens a lot, or they can occur over time because of things like sunlight or chemicals. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), genetic factors play a significant role in determining an individual's risk for developing cancer, making it crucial to understand and address these factors in cancer prevention.

Environmental Exposures

The world around us can also affect our cancer risk. Here are some examples:

  • Tobacco Smoke: Smoking can seriously increase your chances of getting lung and other types of cancer.
  • Sunlight (UV radiation): Too much sun can damage your skin and lead to skin cancer.
  • X-rays and Radiation: These can help look inside your body or treat some cancers, but too much exposure can increase your cancer risk.
  • Pollution and Chemicals: Asbestos in old buildings or benzene in some workplaces can make cancer more likely.

Lifestyle Choices

How you live your life can also either increase or decrease your cancer risk:

  • Eating Habits: Eating lots of processed food and red meat can increase your cancer risk, while fruits, veggies, and lean meats can help lower it.
  • Activity Level: Moving and staying active can lower your cancer risk.
  • Drinking Alcohol: Drinking a lot of alcohol can increase your risk of cancer in places like your liver and breasts.
  • Smoking Tobacco: Smoking cigarettes or using other tobacco products is one of the most significant risks for cancer, especially lung cancer.

Infectious Agents

Germs like viruses and bacteria can also increase the risk of cancer:

  • HPV: This virus can lead to cervical cancer and other types.
  • H. pylori: This bacteria can increase your risk of stomach cancer.
  • Hepatitis B and C: These viruses can make you more likely to get liver cancer.

Age, Gender, and Hormones

Getting older, being a specific gender, and certain hormones can also play a role in your cancer risk. For example, women might have a higher risk for breast cancer, and things like hormone therapy can affect this risk, too.

Understanding all these factors can help us see the big picture of cancer. It's not just about one thing but a mix of our genetics, environment, and lifestyle choices. By knowing this, we can make better decisions to keep ourselves healthy.

Cancer Prevention Strategies

Cancer can be a scary topic because it's a complex disease, but there's good news: we can do things to help fight against it by making smart choices every day. One of these smart choices involves a special mineral called selenium. Let's break it down so it's easier to understand.

Think of your body as a superhero team working hard to protect you from villains like diseases. Imagine selenium is like a power boost that helps your superhero team work even better. The amount of this power boost you have is your "selenium status." Scientists use a "randomized trial" to study how things like selenium can help our bodies. In these trials, they give some people a selenium supplement, like giving them extra power boosts to see if it helps them fight off villains, such as cancer, more effectively. This process is part of what's known as a "randomized controlled trial."

Through these studies, we're learning about the "effect of selenium supplementation," which means we're trying to understand how these extra power boosts can help our body, especially with the function of an essential part, the thyroid. Think of your thyroid as the mission control center that allows your body's superhero team stay on track. Keeping your thyroid working well is super important for your overall health. But, just like in superhero stories, too much power can sometimes cause problems. That's why scientists are also studying what happens when people have "high levels of selenium." They want to make sure that getting extra selenium is helpful and not harmful.

Another area that scientists are curious about is how selenium affects our body's ability to fight off virus invasions, or "viral load." This is like checking if the selenium power boost helps our superhero team defend against sneaky virus villains trying to make us sick.

To put all the puzzle pieces together, scientists do a "systematic review." This means they look at all the evidence from different studies to get a big-picture view of how selenium helps, how much we need, and if there are any risks. Understanding all of this helps us make smart choices in our daily lives to boost our body's superhero team and fight off villains like cancer. So, keeping an eye on our selenium status and how it affects things like thyroid function and viral load can be part of our plan to stay healthy and strong.

Here's a guide to help you understand how you might lower your chances of getting cancer:

Avoid Tobacco

Think of tobacco like a naughty friend who causes trouble. Smoking or using tobacco can lead to many types of cancer, such as lung, throat, and bladder cancer. Saying "no" to smoking and staying away from smoking from others can make a big difference.

Keep a Healthy Weight

Our body is like a machine that works best when not carrying extra weight. Being overweight can increase the risk of getting cancer, including breast and colon cancer. Eating well and staying active can help keep your body in good shape.

Eat Well

Imagine your body as a garden. Just as plants need sunlight and water, your body needs food to grow strong and avoid sickness. Eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains is like giving your body the best fertilizer to prevent cancer and other chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease. Try to eat a healthy diet, including less junk food, and sugary treats, to reduce your risk for cancer research and other chronic diseases and promote lower risk for heart disease and diabetes.

Stay Active

Moving around isn't just fun; it's excellent for your health! Who knew that playing tag, riding your bike, or joining a sports team could help keep cancer away? Doctors recommend getting your heart pumping with exercise most days of the week.

Drink Less Alcohol

Drinking a lot of alcohol is like a rainstorm for your garden; it can be too much of a good thing. Keeping it to just a little bit (no more than one or two drinks a day) can help protect you from cancers like liver and breast cancer.

Be Smart and Safe

Making good choices about who you hang out with and how you treat your body can protect you from germs that cause cancer, like HPV, which can lead to cervical cancer. Remember, looking after yourself is essential.

Get Checked Out

Just like you might get a check-up to see how tall you've grown, getting screened for cancer can help catch it early when it's easier to treat. Depending on how old you are and your family's health history, there are different tests, like mammograms for breast cancer, skin checks for unusual moles, and colorectal cancer screenings. It is also essential to maintain a healthy weight and engage in regular physical activity, such as exercise or sports, as these lifestyle choices can also lower the risk of certain types of cancer, including postmenopausal breast cancer, endometrial cancer, and colorectal cancer, by preventing weight gain and supporting a healthy immune system. Along with limiting alcohol consumption, these actions can significantly decrease the risk of developing cancer.

Know Your Family Tree

Your family's health history is like a map that can show if you have a higher chance of getting certain kinds of cancer. If cancer runs in your family, talking to a doctor about when to start screenings or tests can be a smart move.

Remember, while we can't prevent all cancers, making healthy choices and being aware of our health can significantly lower our risk. Start with these simple steps and lead a healthier, happier life!

The Case for Selenium

Did you know that taking enough selenium might help prevent cancer? Selenium is essential for our bodies because it allows us to stay healthy. Let's learn how selenium is like a superhero fighting bad guys called "oxidants."

Think of oxidants as tiny troublemakers that can hurt our cells. Our bodies have a special team called antioxidants that protect us from these troublemakers. Selenium is a big part of this team. It works by being part of superheroes like:

Glutathione Peroxidase: A group of superheroes inside our body stops destructive oxidants from harming us. They can turn the oxidants into harmless substances before they damage our cells, helping our bodies stay strong and healthy.

Thioredoxin Reductase: Thioredoxin reductase is another superhero with selenium. It helps keep everything in balance inside our cells, allowing them to defend themselves against oxidants and not get hurt.

Protection Against Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS): These super antioxidants fight against the troublemakers, called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS), which are like the bullies of the cell world. ROS can damage important stuff inside our cells, like DNA and proteins, leading to oxidative stress. But, thanks to selenium, we have a defense system that stops these bullies from causing too much trouble and preventing oxidative stress, reducing the risk of developing acute respiratory distress syndrome and male infertility.

Regeneration of Antioxidants: Selenium is also like a helper that gives more power to other superheroes, called vitamins C and E. With more power, they can protect our cells even better!

DNA Repair: Lastly, selenium is like a doctor for our DNA. It helps fix any mistakes in our DNA so that cells do not become cancer cells. Enough selenium is essential—it keeps us healthy in many ways!

Evidence Supporting Selenium’s Efficacy

Let's make this easier to understand as if we're reading an excellent book for our 6th-grade class!

Imagine your body is like a superhero team working to keep you healthy. Now, a selenium mineral is like a special power-up for our superheroes. Some scientists studied how this power-up works against a lousy guy named Cancer.

There is a study which you can read here that showed how selenium can bind to selenoproteins as selenocysteine. Selenium has been shown to protect against cancer in adequate levels. However, the level of intake in Europe and some parts of the world is not adequate for full expression of protective selenoproteins. The evidence for selenium as a cancer preventive has been shown in prospective studies on oesophageal, gastric-cardia and lung cancer have reinforced similar findings that have been connected to the prevention of prostate cancer. Interventions with selenium have shown benefit in reducing the risk of cancer incidence and mortality in all cancers combined, and specifically in liver, prostate, colo-rectal and lung cancers.


Then there was another study here that was studying how selenium retards the growth of certain chemically induced tumors in animals.The results of the epidemiological studies in this review suggested that the human cancer mortality is lower in areas providing an adequate dietary intake of selenium, and that one factor that could be contributing to cancer is arsenic toxicity. Ironically, selenium is an arsenic antagonist, thus helping to remove the metal out of the body. 

Lastly, they did an experiment where they gave some superhero teams a daily dose of 200mcg of selenium. Guess what? Those teams were even better at stopping Cancer from hurting people.

So, what these studies tell us is that selenium is like a superhero's best friend. It helps them fight Cancer more effectively so people can stay healthier. And that's pretty amazing, right?


In conclusion, the battle against cancer might seem daunting, but you have the power to lower your risks. Think of taking care of your body as a way to arm yourself with the best defenses against this disease. By avoiding tobacco, eating healthy foods, staying active, and being smart about alcohol use, you're like a superhero working to keep your body safe. It's also important to know your family history and get regular check-ups, as catching cancer early can make a huge difference. And remember about selenium, a mineral that's like a secret weapon in your health arsenal, helping your body's superhero team fight off potential dangers. Remember, every healthy choice is a step towards a more robust, more resilient you, ready to stand up to cancer. So, let's make those choices count and keep our bodies happy and healthy!

In the end, making sure you have enough selenium is a vital piece of the puzzle to help stop cancer before it starts. If you're considering taking extra selenium, look for a good supplement like our Upgraded Selenium. But before you start, testing how much selenium you already have is a great idea. You can do this by getting a test called HTMA, which stands for Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis. This test can let you know if you need more selenium, ensuring you're on the right track to keeping your body healthy and strong. Schedule your HTMA with us today!

Older Post
Newer Post
Close (esc)


Use this popup to embed a mailing list sign up form. Alternatively use it as a simple call to action with a link to a product or a page.

Age verification

By clicking enter you are verifying that you are old enough to consume alcohol.


Shopping Cart