Selenium and Vitamin C: The Stress Connection

A number of nutrients are associated with protection from chronic stress. The basis for this differs between nutrients, but one category of anti-stress nutrients may function through an antioxidant mechanism. Both selenium and vitamin C are important nutrients required for correct antioxidant function in humans, and evidence supports a role for both in the protection from stress. Animal studies have investigated the effects of selenium and vitamin C in experimental models of stress. When animals are stressed they react with a release of cortisol, and this protects them from the stress by adjusting physiological parameters to meet the challenge. However, as the stress continues it overcomes the ability to cope and the cortisol level falls as the mechanism to respond to stress becomes depleted. Selenium and vitamin C both rejuvenate this stress response and allow the animals to continue to produce cortisol to meet the challenge of the stress. Therefore selenium and vitamin C may be considered anti-stress nutrients. 

Eat Well, Stay Healthy, Protect Yourself


Al-Jawad, Z. A. and Al-Fahham, A. A. 2021. The Effect of Ascorbic Acid and Selenium intake on serum Cortisol in Rats Under Restraint Stress. Indian Journal of Forensic Medicine & Toxicology. 15(1): 1681

About Robert Barrington

Robert Barrington is a writer, nutritionist, lecturer and philosopher.
This entry was posted in Cortisol, Selenium, Stress, Vitamin C. Bookmark the permalink.