Selenium and cardiovascular diseases--an update.


Huttunen JK




Biomed Environ Sci


Dietary deficiency of selenium has been incriminated in the etiology of cardiovascular diseases. Thus, cardiomyopathy associated with low selenium intake has been described in areas of exceptionally low selenium intake and in patients receiving total parenteral nutrition. Epidemiological studies have provided some evidence for the role of selenium deficiency in the etiology of atherosclerotic disease. An inverse association between the incidence of ischaemic heart disease and selenium intake has been described in population comparisons. The results of longitudinal studies within populations are conflicting. While some investigations have observed a relationship between low serum-selenium levels and the risk of coronary disease, others have not. Final evidence for the role of selenium in preventing atherosclerotic disease can be obtained only from controlled prevention trials.