How Much Selenium In Brazil Nuts? Brazil Nuts Selenium Content

selenium in brazil nuts

You may be wondering about how much selenium in Brazil nuts you can get. Or how much you should eat to obtain this important mineral you need.

First of all, selenium is a must-have in your diet as it helps support thyroid health. You also need it to maintain the proper function of this gland in your body.

But then again, getting too much selenium is just as bad as not obtaining enough of it. This is why it helps to understand Brazil nuts selenium content to make sure you maintain the right level you need.

Let’s explore more about Brazil nuts and selenium and how much of this mineral you can actually get from these healthy nuts.

How Much Selenium In Brazil Nuts

The selenium in Brazil nuts is quite impressive as it contains such a high amount of this mineral. In fact, these nuts have been used for selenium supplementation.

In South America, where these nuts are grown, the soil conditions are quite unique because of its composition. There is not much sulfur, which is why the plants absorb more selenium instead of sulfur. This then forms essential amino acids – the selenocysteine and selenomethionine.

Moreover, the soil contains inorganic selenate and selenite. These are then converted into an organic form of selenomethionine once the plant takes them up. These are used to replace cysteine and methionine found in protein but without losing function.

As we have mentioned earlier, Brazil nuts are high in selenium. But the amount of this mineral found in these nuts is considered as highly variable.

What this means is that the selenium content largely depends on where the tree is grown. Other factors that impact the selenium in Brazil nuts are the soil’s pH level.

The USDA states that a typical Brazil nut contains 96 µg of this mineral. Per serving, there is about 544 µg.

Additionally, just one serving of these nuts is about an ounce or 28 grams and each nut weighs about 5 grams. Again, depending on the region where these nuts were grown, the selenium content can vary. But when it is the highest concentration of selenium, just one serving or 6 whole nuts contain as much as 14515 µg. This is significantly higher than the RDA!

How Much Is Too Much?

The RDA for selenium is 55 µg per day for adults. It can go up to 400 µg. But going beyond this would lead to certain side effects such as selenosis, typical with over 1500 µg of selenium daily. This leads to selenium toxicity symptoms such as tremors, cardiac failure, gastrointestinal issues, and hair loss.

Too much selenium can also lead to DNA damage, respiratory distress, and worse, death. Hence, it is best to make sure you do not go way beyond the RDA for this mineral to prevent toxicity. Knowing your daily intake of selenium is important to prevent any problems.

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