Selenium Foods List – Finding selenium on the menu and in your kitchen

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Welcome to your go-to guide for selenium foods….

As noted in the page on selenium benefits, the highest concentrations of selenium are found in meat, seafood and whole grain cereals – the last however depends on the selenium content of the soil in which the grains are grown.  Keep this in mind when looking at the below selenium levels for particular foods, especially plants – they can vary greatly.

selenium benefits, the highest concentrations of selenium are found in meat, seafood and whole grain cereals - here scallops
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selenium benefits, the highest concentrations of selenium are found in meat, seafood and whole grain cereals  -here Brazil nuts
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selenium benefits, the highest concentrations of selenium are found in meat, seafood and whole grain cereals  - Here tuna
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Depending on where you live, inadequate selenium can become a problem. The UK, parts of Europe, the US Northeast and Southeast, and parts of China, among other areas, have low selenium soil levels. 

If you live in a selenium depleted region or rely only on foods from these regions, you may be at greater risk for selenium deficiency. Consider sourcing grains from elsewhere or finding additional sources of selenium. Put this down as a benefit of the global food system.

According to 2010 study, the most common sources of selenium foods for Americans are breads, grains, meat, poultry, fish and eggs.  But as we’ll see there are additional foods that can provide you with the selenium you need for vibrant health. Always good to have new ideas to boost your diet to healthier heights.

Without further ado, your selenium foods guide.

Selenium Foods Guide – Selenium Foods List

Selenium Foods *

  • Brazil nuts, 1 oz/28 mg, 6- 8 nuts544 mcg**
  • Butter, 3.5 oz/100 g146 mcg
  • Smoked herring, 3.5 oz/100 g141 mcg
  • Smelt, 3.5 oz/100 g – 123 mcg
  • Wheat germ, 3.5 oz/100 g - 111 mcg
  • Tuna, yellow fin, baked, 3 oz/85 g - 92 mcg
  • Apple Cider Vinegar, 3.5 oz/100 g -89 mcg
  • Scallops, 3.5 oz/100 g 77 mcg
  • Barley, 3.5 oz/100 g66 mcg
  • Lobster, 3.5 oz/100 g65 mcg
  • Bran, 3.5 oz/100 g 63 mcg
  • Shrimp, 3.5 oz/100 g58 mcg
  • Red Swiss Chard, 3.5 oz/100 g 57 mcg
  • Clams, 3.5 oz/100 g55 mcg
  • King Crab, 3.5 oz/100 g51 mcg
  • Oysters, 3.5 oz/100 g49 mcg
  • Halibut, baked -3 oz/85 g - 27 mcg
  • Sardines, canned in oil, drained solids with bones – 3 oz/85 g45 mcg
  • Cod, 3.5 oz/100 g 43 mcg
  • Ham, roasted, 3 oz/85 g - 42 mcg
  • Shrimp, canned, 3 oz/85 g - 40 mcg
  • Macaroni, enriched, cooked, 1 cup/250 ml37 mcg
  • Beef steak, bottom round, roasted, 3 oz/85 g - 33 mcg
  • Turkey, boneless, roasted, 3 oz/85 g31 mcg
  • Beef liver, pan fried, 3 oz/85 g31 mcg
  • Lamb, 3.5 oz/100 g 30 mcg
  • Turnips, 3.5 oz/100 g 27 mcg
  • Molasses, 3.5 oz/100 g 26 mcg
  • Garlic, 3.5 oz/100 g 25 mcg
  • Barley, 3.5 oz/100 g 24 mcg
  • Chicken, light meat, roasted 3 oz - 22 mcg
  • Cottage Cheese, 1% milk fat, 1 cup/250ml20 mcg
  • Orange Juice, 3.5 oz/100 g 19 mcg
  • Beer, 3.5 oz/100 g 19 mcg
  • Rice, brown, long-grain, cooked – 1 cup/250 ml- 19 mcg
  • Lamb chop, 3.5 oz/100 g 18 mcg
  • Egg Yolk, 3.5 oz/100 g 18 mcg
  • Beef, ground, 25% fat, broiled, 3 oz/85 g - 18 mcg
  • Egg, hard boiled, 1 large – 13 mcg
  • Puffed wheat, fortified ready to eat, 1 cup/250 ml15 mcg
  • Whole-wheat bread, whole-wheat, 1 slice – 13 mcg
  • Baked beans, canned, plain or vegetarian, 1 cup/250 ml13 mcg
  • Oatmeal, regular and quick cooking, non-enriched, cooked in water, 1 cup/250 ml13 mcg
  • Mushrooms, 3.5 oz/100 g 12 mcg
  • Spinach, frozen, boiled, 1 cup/250 ml11 mcg
  • Swiss Cheese, 3.5 oz/100 g 10 mcg
  • Milk, 1% fat, 1 cup/250 ml – 8 mcg
  • Yogurt, plain, low fat, 1 cup/250 ml8 mcg
  • Lentils, boiled, 1 cup/25 ml6 mcg
  • White bread, 1 slice – 6 mcg
  • Wine, 3.5 oz/100 g5 mcg
  • Grape juice, 3.5 oz/100 g4 mcg
  • Cashew nuts, dry roasted, 1 oz/28 g - 3 mcg
  • Corn flakes, 1 cup/250 ml - 2 mcg
  • Onion, 3.5 oz/100 g 2 mcg
  • Green peas, frozen, boiled, 1 cup/250 ml - 2 mcg
  • Bananas, sliced, 1 cup/250 ml2 mcg
  • Potato, baked, with skin, 1 potato – 1 mcg
  • Peaches, canned in water, solids and liquids, 1 cup/250 ml1 mcg
  • Carrots, raw, 1 cup/250 ml0 mcg – 2 mcg
  • Lettuce, iceberg, raw, 1 cup/250 ml0 mcg


*List from  Clinical Nutrition, a functional approach, second edition, Deana Liska among others, published by  The Institute for Functional Medicine, 2004 and US Office of Dietary Supplements NIH’s Dietary Fact Sheet on Selenium

**Selenium levels in plants can vary widely. Eg. The NIH’s figures  for brazil nuts are 554 mcg per 3 oz/80 g of Brazil nuts; whereas Clinical Nutrition’s  figures is substantially less for brazil nuts at 103 mcg per 3 oz./100 g!


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