Tags: chromium | nutritional | supplements

Chromium and How It's Used in Nutritional Supplements

Image: Chromium and How It's Used in Nutritional Supplements
Sliced fresh vegetables-potatoes, peas, paprika, beans and broccoli. (Spychala Pawel/dreamstime)

By    |   Monday, 20 Oct 2014 07:52 PM

Chromium is a mineral required by humans in tiny amounts, and is a key part of the bodily functions that regulate blood sugar, and help the process that provides energy. It is also necessary for maintaining normal metabolism and storage of carbohydrates, fats and proteins.

Insufficient amounts of chromium can lead to glucose intolerance, which is often found in type 2 diabetes. On the positive side, adequate amounts can also raise HDL ("good cholesterol") levels, and help prevent heart disease, according to Dr. Andrew Weil.

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Chromium remains a widely used supplement, and is available as a lone-ingredient supplement or as part of combination drug, specifically those geared toward weight-loss and improved performance.

As recently as 2003, Nutrition Business Journal reported estimated sales to consumers in 2002 at $85 million, which represented 5.6 percent of the total mineral-supplement market.

Doses generally range from 50 to 200 micrograms, though the safety of chromium supplements needs more investigation. The National Institutes of Health, Office of Dietary Supplements recommends consultation with a trained healthcare professional before ingesting chromium or any dietary supplement.

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Common chromium supplements include: glucose-tolerance factor (GTF), chromium chloride, chromium nicotinate, chromium picolinate, high-chromium yeast, and chromium citrate. Citing limited data on chromium absorption in humans, NIH said it's not certain which form is the most effective.

According to WebMD, chromium appears to have few side effects, though there have been reports of occasional irregular heartbeats, sleep disturbances, headaches, mood changes, and allergic reactions. It may also increase the risk of kidney or liver damage.

Without supplements, most people can get enough chromium naturally from foods such as: broccoli, potatoes, green beans, whole-grain products, beef, poultry, apples, bananas, and dairy products.

This article is for information only and is not intended as medical advice. Talk with your doctor about your specific health and medical needs.

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Chromium is a mineral required by humans in tiny amounts, and is a key part of the bodily functions that regulate blood sugar, and help the process that provides energy.
chromium, nutritional, supplements
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2014-52-20
Monday, 20 Oct 2014 07:52 PM
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