Fact Check: Can selenium cure cancer?

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Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Quick Take

A social media post claims that selenium cure cancer. The post states that the miracle mineral, selenium, when used by itself, dramatically reduces prostate cancer and lung cancer. We fact-checked and found this claim to be Mostly False.

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The Claim

A Facebook post includes the caption, ‘The miracle mineral you’re not supposed to know about #selenium #cancer #naturalremedies #holistichealth.’ In the video, the narrator claims, ‘When selenium is used by itself, there is a dramatic reduction in prostate cancer. It is a remarkable therapeutic agent.’ He further explains that since selenium is a naturally occurring substance, it cannot be patented. Consequently, there is no profit margin, and as a result, universities and pharmaceutical companies are not pursuing it.

The post has received 7.7k likes and 5.8k shares till we last checked. Also, we have attached a screenshot of the post below:

Selenium is a therapeutic agent for cancer

Fact Check

What is cancer?

Cancer occurs when there is an uncontrolled cell growth that damages the normal functioning of the affected body part and spreads to other regions. There are many different types of cancer, each with its unique characteristics and treatment options. Cancer can occur in any part of the body and can affect people of all ages, although the risk of developing cancer increases with age.

Is selenium a therapeutic agent for cancer?

Not exactly. Selenium is a mineral that is essential for human health and has been studied for its potential role in cancer prevention and treatment. However, its role as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established, and more research is needed to determine its efficacy.

Selenium is an important component of several enzymes that have antioxidant properties and may help protect cells from damage caused by oxidative stress. Some studies have suggested that selenium supplementation may reduce the risk of certain cancers due to its effects on DNA repair, apoptosis, and the endocrine and immune systems. However, other research has not shown a significant protective effect against cancer.

A randomized controlled trial concluded that selenium supplementation doesn’t prevent prostate cancer. 

The Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center states that no clear evidence to support the use of selenium for cancer prevention. In fact, the long-term use of selenium may increase the risk of certain types of cancer.

Oncologist

Dr. Moujhuri Nandi, Consultant Radiation Oncologist at Karkinos Healthcare Pvt. ltd., states, “Selenium (Se) research has focused on its potential chemo-preventive role against cancer, but clinical trials, including the SELECT (Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial) study, did not confirm its effectiveness in reducing prostate cancer risk. However, Se-containing compounds have gained interest as anti-cancer therapeutics due to their pro-oxidant properties, showing promise in targeting cancer cells. Pro-oxidant Se compounds induce oxidative stress and have demonstrated therapeutic synergy with anticancer drugs in xenograft models. Initial clinical trials combining high-dose SLM with axitinib for renal cell carcinoma showed promising results with manageable toxicity, and further trials are expanding to include immune checkpoint inhibitors.
In conclusion, Selenium as a therapeutic drug in cancer is very much still in the trial phases, and though the early results look promising, more clinical studies are being conducted/ need to be conducted on a larger scale to evaluate its efficacy and we will know the results in the near future.”

Cancer is a complex and multifaceted disease, and its treatment requires rigorous scientific research, clinical trials, and approved medical interventions. The American Cancer Society suggests that alternative and complementary therapies utilize the body, mind, or natural elements, making them attractive. However, they can falsely assert cancer prevention, diagnosis, or treatment without scientific backing.

 Cancer treatment needs a multimodal approach, including surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy, and immunotherapy.  

Dr P Rammanohar

Dr P. Rammanohar, Research Director, Amrita School of Ayurveda, highlights this by stating, “Cancer is not a single disease, and there is no remedy for cancer. Different types of cancer are treated with different procedures of chemotherapy. One drug does not work across all cancers.” 

It’s important to note that while selenium is an essential nutrient, taking selenium supplements at high doses can be harmful and may increase the risk of adverse effects. The use of selenium as a cancer therapeutic agent is still under investigation, and any potential benefits cannot prove it to be a therapeutic agent for cancer until research proves it so.

What can be the dangers of not seeking medical advice for treating cancer?

Cancer is a complicated disease that requires more than eating selenium for treatment. Relying on unproven treatments and not seeking proper medical treatment can worsen the condition making cancer incurable. Several people fall prey and believe claims, such as herbal supplements can fight cancer, but that is not true. In extreme instances, such therapies can be unsafe or fatal, possibly hindering conventional cancer treatment. It is important to be cautious of unsubstantiated claims or miracle cures that lack proper scientific validation. Remember, cancer multiplies quickly and spreads throughout the body in a short span. Any delay in the treatment will make the condition difficult to treat.

Similarly, THIP Media has fact-checked another claim that stated that cancer cells die without sugar in the body and the drug Fenbendazole can cure cancer.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer
Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Dr. Shikha Shiromani
Dr. Shikha Shiromani
A dental surgeon by education and medical writer by profession, Shikha is responsible for research and fact-check.

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Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

More in

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Fact Check
Interviews
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Videos
Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Is selenium therapeutic agents for all types of cancer?
Not exactly. Selenium's use as a therapeutic agent for cancer is not well-established. Some studies suggest benefits, but others do not show significant protection. High-dose selenium supplements can be harmful. Cancer treatment requires a multimodal approach which depends on the type and location of the cancer. Selenium is not a proven cancer therapeutic agent. Scientific research and clinical trials are essential in cancer treatment.

Last Updated on October 26, 2023 by Neelam Singh

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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