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I had a question regarding thyroid nodules, their cause, and possible treatments. In my opinion, the majority of thyroid nodules are caused by selenium deficiency, and they can be treated with selenium supplementation, vitamin E, and cod liver oil.
In this article, I will cover:
- The basics of thyroid nodules
- The primary cause of nodules: selenium
- What kind of selenium you can take
What Are Thyroid Nodules?
Thyroid nodules are solid or fluid-filled lumps that can form in the thyroid gland. Most nodules aren’t serious and do not cause obvious symptoms. That said, sometimes these nodules can:
- Be felt
- Be seen as swelling at the base of the neck
- Press on the windpipe or esophagus, causing shortness of breath or difficulty swallowing
In some cases, these nodules can actually cause your thyroid gland to excrete extra thyroxine hormone. This can lead to hyperthyroid symptoms like:
- Unexplained weight loss
- Increased sweating
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
If you develop any of these symptoms or symptoms of hypothyroidism - which include coldness, tiredness, dry skin, memory problems, depression, and constipation - then you should see your doctor and discuss your concerns.
The Primary Cause of Thyroid Nodules: Selenium Deficiency
There are many possible causes of thyroid nodules. These can include:
- Overgrowth of normal thyroid tissue
- Thyroid cyst
- Chronic inflammation of the thyroid
- Multinodular goiter
- Thyroid cancer
- Iodine deficiency
That said, it’s my opinion that thyroid nodules are usually caused by a selenium deficiency. Most of the selenium in the body - and most of the iodine - is stored in the thyroid. The thyroid needs both of these trace minerals in the right ratios to function properly.
If you’re deficient in selenium and you have too much iodine - or vice versa - that could be very damaging to the thyroid. You need the balance of both of these minerals.
Now, one important thing to note about selenium is that it acts as a powerful antioxidant. The base of that antioxidant is called glutathione. Glutathione helps to reduce the hydrogen peroxide that’s generated by the different biochemical reactions that happen in the thyroid.
If you have an autoimmune disease of the thyroid called Hashimoto’s - and the great majority of hypothyroid problems are Hashimoto’s - then the thyroid will generate a lot of hydrogen peroxide as a byproduct.
When hydrogen peroxide builds up in the tissues, it creates damage to the thyroid cells themselves, and that can create this fibrosis of the thyroid. This, in turn, can contribute to the development of thyroid nodules.
Why Is Selenium So Important?
Selenium has the ability to get rid of the free radical damage and the oxidation that occurs from the Hashimoto’s autoimmune condition. It can also reduce the antibodies that are involved in this condition.
Selenium is also involved in converting T4 to T3. So basically selenium is just as important as iodine in the thyroid function.
What Kind of Selenium Should You Take to Help?
The next question is what kind of selenium should you take to help this condition?
You need organic selenium. I’m not talking about the definition of “organic” being “without pesticide.” I’m actually talking about a different definition involving a specific type of bond of the selenium molecule.
Organic minerals are usually plant-based minerals bound to a protein.
The alternative is elemental minerals. The type of selenium that I’m going to recommend for either a thyroid nodule or Hashimoto’s is selenomethionine or selenocysteine. Don’t take both (it should be one or the other) but you would want to take one of these if you have nodules or Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism.
Now, there are two other things that I’m going to recommend to enhance your results:
- Vitamin E: Take a vitamin E supplement, but don’t get the synthetic version. Instead, get the version that has all the tocopherols and all of the tocotrienols in a complex.
- Cod liver oil: You can get cod liver oil in little pearls or in a liquid.
The combination of vitamin E and cod liver oil is very important because these two compounds provide vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, and selenium in the perfect combination. If you have the right amounts of these nutrients,
Disclaimer: Our educational content is not meant or intended for medical advice or treatment.
Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for quality and relevancy.