Selenium Toxicity

I've noticed that a lot of members are recommending selenium haphazardly. While it's true that selenium can possibly help, too much selenium can be very toxic.

Common signs of toxicity are hair loss, nail discolouration. Selenium treatment NEEDS to be done along side labs and with the help of a qualified doctor. I did 2 months of selenium treatment myself and ended up with a result of 194mcg/l (safe range is 50-150). And my Endo told me I had to immediately stop before it gets dangerous, this is in just 2 months of taking a low dose (200mcg). On top of that my antibodies actually doubled and my TSH went up and FT4 went down. So it's not just an easy, magical solution for everyone, it can actually be quite detrimental.

Guys if you're going to recommend selenium as a treatment please make sure the other person knows of the dangers, and that they need to be regularly tested for toxicity.



19 Replies

  • Always good to take a break .... so I leave mine behind when I go away ..

  • I didn't know to take a break... I didn't realize one bottle of selenium could send me over range.

  • A few years ago many, possibly most, of the selenium posts were recommending 400 micrograms a day. I posted quite often that I considered that too much, at least long term, with 200 micrograms being more than enough. From your experience, even my suggestion that less is adequate was too generous.

    Pleased to see few 400 microgram products, and quite a lot of 100 micrograms.

    Do you happen to know what level you had before taking any supplementary selenium?

    You weren't an avid fan of Brazil nuts and north American wheat products? :-)

  • I just checked my old results before starting: Sept 26, 2016: 99mcg/l (the range was 50-120 so according to this lab the upper limit is even lower).

    I didn't start selenium until November. Completely Gluten Free and nut free (following AIP diet, so not even cross reactive foods). And I was never a fan of Brazil nuts either way ;)

  • Yes a lot of people take a lot of supplements as hock.

    Very important to know levels.

    There's enough Selenium in two Brazil nuts so that's what I take daily!

  • Have you found benefits from taking selenium? Do you know if your antibodies have reduced?

  • No my antibodies haven't reduced which I'm really pi^*ed of about as I thought I was doing everything! I watched a documentary recently that said that a huge % of people that they tested with Hashis had the Epstein Barr virus and until that was got rid of (or other gut bacteria) that the antibodies wouldn't come down. That's what I'm testing next!

  • Ok we're in the same boat then. I just went through 2 months of tests and exams on my gut, just had my colonoscopy and gastroscopy done 3 days ago and what I was diagnosed with is something I've never heard of on this forum and I'm wondering if it could be connected, something we should all be testing?

    It's called DAO deficiency (diamine oxidase). It's the enzyme needed to break down histamines in foods. I was also diagnosed with ulcerative proctitis and duodenitis, probably caused by the lack of enzyme.

    Do you know anything about it? I'm thinking of making a new post about it here. I've posted in a number of bowel disease forums but they have so few members I've gotten no real help.

  • Gut issues are so relevant to the forum members.

  • Just found this link.

  • Thanks for the link!

  • Actually thats really interesting,I wonder if there is a link??!! I have most of the symptoms and I know so many people on here and all the lectures I've listened to on Hashimotos the patients all have similar symptoms. Would've really interesting to ask some experts, I may email some and ask them about it.

    What did they say you could do about it, any cure as such?

  • I have to take antihistamines (Tefal) possibly forever, along with a couple short term medications (Pantoprazole, and Mesalamine) which would reduce the inflammation or repair damage (hopefully?). The doctors said that's the only treatment, but I'm hoping to find an alternative solution to where maybe I could rebuild that enzyme, it could be wishful thinking, I'm very new to this with very little info so I'm trying not to get ahead of myself (as I often do).

  • Yes read a lot, Drs don't like to give us all the answers!

    Found some other info;

    Alternative treatment

    Depending on the cause of proctitis, alternative medicine has several types of treatments available. appropriate antibiotic treatment is recommended. Supplementation with Lactobacillus acidophilus is also recommended during and following antibiotic therapy to help rebuild normal gut flora that is destroyed by antibiotics. If proctitis is herpes-related, antiviral herbs taken internally, as well as applied topically, can be be helpful. Sitz baths and compresses of herbal infusions (herbs steeped in hot water) and decoctions (herbal extracts prepared by boiling the herb in water) can be very effective. Among the herbs recommended are calendula (Calendula officinalis), comfrey (Symphytum officinale), and plantain (Plantago major). Proctitis related to candidiasis requires dietary alterations, especially elimination of sugar from the diet. Any immunocompromised person needs close medical attention. If proctitis is related to inflammatory bowel diseases, the resolution of the underlying condition should contribute to resolution of the proctitis. Acupuncture and homeopathic treatment can be very useful in resolving inflammatory bowel diseases.

    Also found another site with a blog that may be useful

    The other conditions sound painful :(

    I think your right and there could be a link especially as you were a long time undiagnosed (like me)

    Good luck with research.

  • Wow thanks so much! That's some really good information. Super helpful 😊. I'm really happy to see that change in diet is one of the common treatments.

  • Yes I'd do a separate post. I've not heard of that but will investigate. Lots of us myself included have gut and bowel problems, a lot linked to Hashimotos. I guess if we are all deficient in so many things and have gut microbiome changes it's all linked.

  • Ok I'll make a separate post when I get a chance, probably after spending all night tonight obsessively reading online about it haha. Cheers!

  • Haha you're like me 😂

  • so true...people automatically assume you need it if you are thyroid deficient etc......even drs so I had dr test me b4 I take it and I was HIGH without beware...high can cause hair loss and I don't know why my selenium is high and I also had high vit a and high vit e even after stopping all supplements for 4 beware...all can effect the body if too low or too high

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