Selenium: Adverse Reactions. Interactions. Pregnancy Use.

Toxicity

Long-term ingestion of excessive levels of selenium (> 1000 µg/day) may produce fatigue, depression, arthritis, hair or fingernail loss, garlicky breath or body odour and gastrointestinal disorders or irritability.

Adverse Reactions

Nausea, vomiting, nail changes, irritability and fatigue have been reported.

The organic form of selenium found in high-selenium yeast is often preferred because it is less toxic.

The National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia states that selenium intake should not exceed 600 µg/day.

Significant Interactions

CISPLATIN

Selenium may reduce associated nephrotoxicity, myeloid suppression and weight loss, according to in vitro and in vivo tests — beneficial interaction.

HEAVY METALS (E.G. MERCURY, LEAD, ARSENIC, SILVER AND CADMIUM)

Selenium reduces toxicity of heavy metals such as mercury, lead, arsenic, silver and cadmium by forming inert complexes — beneficial interaction.

Contraindications and Precautions

Sensitivity to selenium.

Pregnancy Use

Considered safe in usual dietary doses; safety at higher levels is unknown.