I’ve written about how iodine is necessary for your thyroid to function, but I may have missed mentioning another important nutrient. Selenium. Selenium is necessary mineral, in trace amounts, to facilitate the uptake of iodine into your cells. I used to worry that I wasn’t getting enough of this mineral to assist my iodine uptake, but as it turns out, I was probably getting enough of it, as the foods which are high in selenium content are frequently in my cupboards, and on my snacking list.
I’ve known since I was a child that parsley and Brazil nuts were suppliers of selenium (Yes. You Should eat the parsley garnish!) but I wasn’t sure about any other foods. As it turns out, other nuts that also make it into the list of good selenium suppliers are: black walnuts (which my daughter doesn’t like, but I do),cashews (which my Grandson can’t eat) tuna fish, which, as far as I can tell, we all can, and will eat, and some other fish (which may or may not be eaten by various members of the family), including: Halibut, Rockfish (Sea Bass), Tilapia, Mackerel, Swordfish (which I don’t see any of us eating, any time soon), and Snapper (Thanks Game Cube, and Animal Crossing for letting me know what that looks like 😉 .
Most of the Shellfish are also good sources of selenium (always cook those). Octopus, and Squid also make it onto the list of selenium suppliers, but again, I don’t see any of us eating that anytime soon. We are mostly land locked, and not too adventurous with marine life. Fortunately, or unfortunately, depending on how you view it, Wheat is a good source of selenium. In my case, I may have to pass on it, as the gluten it supplies has a tendency to put me to sleep for excessive amounts of time. Fortunately, I can still get selenium from other grains as well, such as: Brown Rice, Oatmeal, Rye, and Pearl Barley.
My frequent snack list has some good selenium suppliers on it. It turns out that the salted and roasted pumpkin seeds I like are a good source, and so are the sunflower seeds. I could expand my snack sources to include squash seeds, if I remember to roast and salt them when I have a squash, and I could add flaxseed (which I understand has several other health benefits as well), if I could figure out how to incorporate it into my meals… I don’t see using that one as a “snack” item. On the plus side, Sesame seeds, which I love in Thai cooking, are also good suppliers of selenium…. So, I may get enough of this source of nutrient, after all.
In case these sources aren’t enough, you can also get selenium out of many of your meats, such as: chicken, pork, lamb, turkey, and venison. If these suppliers of protein aren’t sufficient, or convenient, you can also get selenium in the more commonly eaten mushrooms, like Crimini, Portabella, and Shiitake.
If you combine these selenium rich foods with the iodine rich foods, Seaweed, whole dairy, whole eggs, whole potatoes, cranberries, any dark berry jams, you’ll get a pretty balanced diet. ……I’m going to have sign off now… I’ve been eating some wheat products because I sometimes can’t resist it…:( and now.. I’m excessively sleepy….. Catch you on the flip side;)
© Ellen M Story and emariaenterprises, 2016.
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