Poster Topical Area: Global Nutrition

Location: Hall D

Poster Board Number: 573

P12-050 - Global status of dietary selenium intake and selenium biomarkers

Sunday, Jun 10
8:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Objectives: Selenium is a trace element essential to maintaining human health. To-date, assessment of the global selenium distribution and its health impacts has been limited by insufficient comparable and reliable data by country, age, and sex. The objective of this study is to estimate global, regional and national selenium intakes/biomarkers in healthy adults.


Methods: Studies reporting dietary selenium intake, and various selenium biomarkers of healthy adults, published in 1980 or later, were systematically identified. A total of 643 studies across 97 countries were included. Dietary selenium intake was reported in 113 studies. Studies reported selenium concentrations in various tissues including whole blood (14%), plasma/serum (70%), urine (4%), toenail (2%), and others (10%). Selenium concentrations in different tissues were converted to whole blood and/or plasma selenium using factors derived from meta-regression. Country-level mean selenium intakes/biomarkers were combined using inverse-variance weighting methods.


Results: The global average daily selenium intake is 60 µg/day (95% CI: 21, 143), the global mean selenium concentrations in whole blood and plasma/serum are 148 µg/L (95% CI: 55, 313) and 90 µg/L (95% CI: 51, 151), respectively. Selenium intake/biomarkers were highest in the Arctic, other coastal regions, parts of China and Brazil, followed by the USA, Canada, Japan, Norway and Finland, the most European countries and India, whereas the lowest in Austria, New Zealand, and China in general.


Conclusions: Our review highlights the enormous spectrum of selenium intakes/biomarkers worldwide. These data are valuable for highlighting gaps in dietary surveillance, determining the impacts of selenium on global health, and targeting dietary policy.



Funding Source:

Northern Contaminant Program of the Government of Canada
Canada Research Chair Program

CoAuthors: Gabrielle Jaquemet – University of Ottawa; Laurie Chan – University of Ottawa

Xuefeng Hu

Postdoctoral Fellow
university of Ottawa
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada