Everything You Need to Know About Chromium

There are many different types of chromium since it is a mineral. While industrial pollution is a harmful source, many foods naturally contain a harmless version.

Trivalent chromium, the safest form, is considered an essential nutrient and must be consumed regularly. Several scientists have doubted the importance of this mineral. However, it has multiple crucial roles in keeping the body running. In the case of the hormone insulin, it is a component of a molecule called chromodulin that facilitates the hormone's effects in the body.

The pancreas secretes a chemical called insulin, which plays a crucial role in how your body handles carbohydrates, fat, and protein. Nevertheless, less than 2.5% of ingested chromium is absorbed in the intestines, a significant barrier to adequate chromium levels. On the other hand, Chromium picolinate is a more absorbable form of the mineral. Because of this, you'll often find it in nutritional supplements.

Chromium picolinate consists of chromium bound to three molecules of picolinic acid.

It may help Curb Appetite and Food Cravings

Those who have attempted and succeeded in maintaining a weight loss plan know all too well the struggles with hunger and cravings accompanying such an endeavor. So, there is widespread curiosity about potential anti-craving aids such as food, supplements, and drugs. Whether or not chromium picolinate can serve this purpose has been the subject of several research works.

An 8-week research found that healthy overweight women who took 1,000 g of chromium per day (as chromium picolinate) had a reduction in food intake, appetite, and cravings.

According to the study's authors, these outcomes may have resulted from chromium's effects on the brain. Those with binge-eating disorder and depressed individuals have been the focus of other studies because they may benefit most from reducing their appetite. One hundred and thirteen depressed participants were given either 600 micrograms per day of chromium picolinate or a placebo for eight weeks. Supplementing with chromium picolinate, as opposed to a placebo, significantly decreased hunger and food cravings.

Benefits were also shown in a short study of persons with binge-eating disorders. A decrease in binge eating episodes and depressive symptoms may have resulted in dosages of 600 to 1,000 g/day.

As a Result, Blood Sugar Levels may go Down

To signal glucose transport from the blood into the body's cells, insulin plays a crucial role in the body's normal functioning.

Diabetics have trouble responding normally to insulin, which causes various health complications. Using chromium supplements has been shown in many trials to reduce glucose levels in people with diabetes. According to single research, taking 200 micrograms of chromium daily for 16 weeks improved insulin sensitivity and decreased blood sugar levels.

According to other studies, supplement chromium may work better for those with more excellent blood sugar and lesser insulin sensitivity. In addition, individuals who took chromium supplements were 27% less likely to develop diabetes in a massive research including over 62,000 people.

Studies of chromium supplementation in individuals with type 2 diabetes lasting three months or more have shown conflicting results.

In addition, studies in overweight persons without diabetes showed that chromium picolinate at 1,000 g/day had no effect on insulin sensitivity.

An extensive study including 425 healthy participants concluded that chromium supplementation did not affect blood sugar or insulin levels.

In persons with diabetes, using these supplements has been linked to some positive outcomes.

Does It Assist in Weight Loss?

Several research works have looked into chromium's efficacy as a weight reduction supplement because of its function in nutrition metabolism and potential impacts on eating behavior.

To determine whether this mineral is helpful for weight reduction, a meta-analysis pooled data from 9 independent research including 622 overweight or obese participants.

In these experiments, chromium picolinate doses as high as one thousand micrograms per day were employed. After 12-16 weeks, chromium picolinate led to modest weight reduction (2.4 lb., or 1.1 kg) in persons who were overweight or obese. The researchers found that this level of weight reduction was not very significant and that the supplement's efficacy still needed to be determined.

The results of another comprehensive review of studies on chromium and weight reduction were consistent with the first. Researchers examined chromium supplementation's effects on weight reduction over 8-26 weeks and found a measly 1.1 pounds (0.5 kg) lost. Several additional studies conducted on healthy individuals have shown that this supplement, even in conjunction with exercise, has no impact on body composition (fat and lean mass).

Chromium Supplements: Do You Need Them?

Because of its vital functions, many people have questioned whether or not supplementing with chromium is an intelligent way to improve their health.

A Maximum Allowable Concentration of Chromium Has Not To Be Determined

Much research has gone into chromium's potential to help with glucose regulation and weight reduction.

Nonetheless, it is essential to consider the hazards and advantages of vitamin overconsumption.

An Upper Limit, or safe maximum consumption limit, is typically established for certain nutrients by the National Academy of Medicine. Toxic effects or other health concerns may occur if this threshold is exceeded.

As a result of data gaps, however, no UL has been established for chromium.

Chromium Picolinate, a Safe Supplement

Several scientists have doubted the safety of chromium picolinate, the form of the mineral most often seen in supplements since there is no established UL for it.

This type of chromium may lead to the formation of free radicals termed hydroxyl radicals, depending on their metabolism in the human body.

Several issues may arise from exposure to these substances, including harm to your DNA.

Surprisingly, these adverse effects may only occur when taking chromium in the form of picolinate, even though picolinate is a prevalent type of chromium supplement.

Further to these worries, a case study found severe renal difficulties in a lady who took 1,200 to 2,400 g/day of chromium picolinate for weight reduction.

There have been sporadic reports that this supplement may cause other health issues.

Updated on: 14-Apr-2023


Kickstart Your Career

Get certified by completing the course

Get Started