Brazil nuts are the highest source of selenium, a needed trace mineral, that your body uses to utilize iodine efficiently by protecting your body through certain processes, one of which is selenium's involvement of the antioxidant enzyme glutathione peroxidase's activity.
This activity is extremely important as it helps counter oxidative damage from oxidation of iodide, illnesses and other toxic agents that your body must deal with.
Without enough selenium, the body's protective mechanism may be impaired.
The book Iodine: Why you need it, Why you can't live without it , by Dr. Brownstein, addresses the need for selenium as being a range of 100 micrograms to 400 micrograms a day, and the safe range of 100-200 micrograms. He states that this has been proven a safe range for selenium supplementation without causing selenosis (a condition caused by too much selenium.)
So as our daily regimen with our supplements and cod liver oils, we also each eat a few Brazil nuts.
How many Brazil nuts should I eat?
An ounce of Brazil nuts (approximately 8 nuts) contains about 544 micrograms of selenium.
Half that amount (about 4 nuts) contains 272 micrograms of selenium, an amount within the recommended range.
If you have a small child, 1 nut contains approximately 96 micrograms of selenium, so you can decide what amount you think is appropriate for them.
See this link for an idea on the nutritional content of Brazil nuts, (it is adjustable to your entry.)
If you supplement with iodine, then you need selenium as well. If you don't supplement with Brazil nuts, then you need to find a source to get the minimum amount needed by your body in some form.
Some of sources of selenium are:
- 3 ounces of tuna (63 micrograms)
- 3.5 ounces of cooked beef (35 micrograms)
- 3.5 ounces of turkey (32 micrograms)
Who is Dr. Sircus?
Here is a past post on Dr. Brownstein's book: Iodine, you might have missed.