Itís interesting that a simple little nutrient can do so much. It is also interesting that on the same page telling me how important this nutrient is was an advertisement for reducing the selenium in your water. Talk about mixed messages. If I am ever diagnosed with heart problems I hope I remember to have my selenium levels checked before I agree to taking medication. Then again, since I am taking a good multi-vitamin supplement, I donít ever expect to have that problem, since it contains Selenium.
The FDA states that only drugs can prevent or cure disease, but fortunately the local medical authorities in areas with low soil selenium levels are taking a more effective path to the prevention and treatment of a serious heart condition. Keshan Disease, a type of heart failure that leads to an enlarged heart, a weakened heart muscle and eventual death, is named after a low selenium area in China where the disease was first discovered. Keshan Disease has been found in many areas of the world that have low soil selenium levels and it is not only prevented, but also cured with the addition of selenium to the diet- a fact that the FDA must despise.
Selenium is a naturally-occurring mineral found in soil, drinking water and plants and is essential to human health in small amounts. The vast majority of selenium is obtained through eating plants, but selenium levels in individual plants vary widely from area to area and depend entirely upon the selenium content of the soil. Areas that have low soil selenium levels naturally have plants that contain low levels of selenium; the people who live in these areas often have overt symptoms of selenium deficiency unless they receive regular selenium supplementation. One area of the world that is known to have low selenium levels is the Keshan province of China where a form of heart failure, subsequently called Keshan Disease, was first discovered. Once it was found that the heart condition was related to selenium deficiency, local medical authorities instituted an inexpensive and extremely effective selenium supplementation program which virtually eradicated this serious and often deadly heart condition.
Here in the US, thousands of mostly elderly people get diagnosed with heart failure every year and must continually manage their condition with drugs that require frequent blood tests in order to avoid the ever present possibility of electrolyte imbalance. Their heart's inability to pump strongly forces sufferers to constantly walk a razor's edge between dehydration and fluid overload- either of which could require a frightening trip to the emergency room. Because most sufferers are elderly and often manage a complicated medication regimen for other health conditions as well, heart failure patients have an extremely high rate of emergency room visits and hospital admissions causing untold emotional and financial costs to the sufferers, their families and society.
Yet despite the fact that selenium deficiency is a known and entirely reversible cause of heart failure, virtually none of these patients will be checked for selenium deficiency even though an accurate blood test is available. Few will even be offered simple multivitamin supplementation despite multiple studies showing that heart failure patients, as a group, are almost always malnourished; even fewer will have selenium supplementation as a part of their treatment regimen. Unless a heart failure patient is diagnosed in a known selenium deficient area and has a cardiologist who is familiar with Keshan Disease, heart failure is considered 'incurable'. In other words, nearly 100% of these mostly elderly patients are doomed to a lifetime of managing a complex, frightening and debilitating heart problem without ever even being evaluated for selenium deficiency with just a simple blood test.
Kerri Knox - Natural News