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Ir J Med Sci. 2002 Apr-Jun;171(2):81-4.

Selenium status of Irish adults: evidence of insufficiency.

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Department of Food Science, Food Technology and Nutrition, University College, Cork, Ireland.



Sub-optimal selenium status may have a role in the aetiology of various pathologies. Selenium status depends on adequate selenium in the diet. A relatively high proportion of Irish adults (17% men; 46% women) have an inadequate dietary intake.


A study was designed to examine the selenium status of healthy Irish adults.


Ninety-one healthy Irish adults, aged 18-67 years, were recruited from the Cork City area. A fasting blood sample was collected from each subject and each was assayed for serum selenium an index of serum selenium.


Mean (+/- SD) serum selenium concentration in healthy Irish adults was 76 (+/- 21)microg/l. There was no significant difference in values between males and females or between postmenopausal and premenopausal women or between the three main age categories.


Current serum selenium values of Irish adults would not appear to be sufficient to achieve optimal activity of glutathione peroxidase, which occurs at serum selenium concentration around 95microg/l. Sub-optimal selenium status may increase susceptibility to various chronic disorders.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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