Saturday, May 18, 2013

Selenium: Healthy Food Chemical with Anti-Cancer activity in a Brazil nut Diet

Deep in the Amazon forest in South America lies some of the most unique plant species that cannot be found anywhere else on the Planet. The Brazil nut (Lecythidaceae) is one of such rare but popular plant species. As on of the healthy things to eat, the Brazil nut is a delicious nut, which has been cherished by the Amazonian natives for ages, provides the much needed properties for healthy living. With a vast array of protein, fats and other essential nutrients, the Brazil nut ranks high among many foods which have been grouped by nutritionists as ‘healthy things to eat’. It has high calorie, contains good quantities of vitamins, anti-oxidants and minerals. It is believed that 100g of Brazil nut provides 656 calories, much of which comes in form of fat. The fat present in this food is mono-unsaturated fatty acids, which helps to lower bad cholesterol or LDL and increases good cholesterol or HDL. This non anti-cancer healthy blood lipid profile which the Brazil nut provides is helpful in preventing coronary diseases and stroke. Another non anti-cancer importance of Brazil nut is that it is gluten-free which can serve as a healthy alternative for people with wheat flour allergy and celiac disease.

As it relates to our anti-cancer diet, the food chemical which gives the Brazil nut its anti-cancer abilities is one that we don’t get enough of. The food chemical that makes the Brazil nut one of the healthy things to eat and a part of our anti-cancer diet is selenium. Yes, the chemical compound selenium. Recent research studies have shown that proper selenium intake correlates with a reduced risk of both prostate and breast cancers and Brazil nut is the only food with the richest dietary source of selenium known to man. This has led food scientists to recommend the consumption of Brazil nut as a preventive measure for cancer. A 28g can (6-8 nuts) contains 544 µg/L of the food chemical, selenium which is about 10 times the adult US Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). This food chemical, according to multiple studies, has shown anti-cancer activities in warding off cancer of the breast, stomach, esophagus, prostate, liver and bladder.

Further studies have examined the anti-cancer effect of selenium in conjunction with other nutrients and vitamins that can be added to an anti-cancer diet and the results have shown that this food chemical, in conjunction with vitamin C and E, and beta carotene work in harmony to block chemical reactions that can create free radicals in the body. Other research studies have also shown that this food chemical, selenium aids the slowing of cancer progression in patients. A report published by the Life Extension Foundation revealed that the use of selenium, in combination with vitamin A and C during chemotherapy, reduces the toxicity effect of chemo drugs.

One study showed the anti-cancer importance of selenium in our anti-cancer diet, and why the Brazil nut is one of the healthy things to eat. A study of 1,300 people who took 200 µg of selenium a day for 7 years showed a 42% reduction in the risk of cancer occurrence which is a testimony of the effectiveness of this food chemical in preventing and fighting cancer. Another research study suggested that the reason why American men are 5 times more likely to die from cancer than Japanese men could be that the Asian diet contains 4 times more the amount of the food chemical, selenium than the American diet.



  1. I would like to thank for creating this interesting blog and i think most of the peoples are getting good knowledge from here get more about anticancer .Anticancer Manufacturer in India

  2. Amazing to know that there are some kind of nuts that can be used to deal with the cancer cell treatment i liked it . the post is amazing and i like to have more such information looking for more..


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