Chromium supplements have been shown to possess a number of benefits as well as some distinct dangers. Healthier sugar metabolism, lowered cholesterol, enhanced fat metabolism, and improved muscle mass are among the reported advantages of chromium supplements. There are also some potential drawbacks to taking this mineral; these include possible kidney or liver problems, increased risks of cancer, and muscle breakdown.
Pure Chromium Polynicotinate Supplement - Made In USA - 200mcg + Vitamin B3 for Optimal Absorption, Veggie Cap, 14 week Supply, 100% Money Back Guarantee 4.5 out of 5 stars 1,009. Puritans Pride Chromium Picolinate 500 Mcg Yeast Free, 100 Count 4.6 out of 5 stars 503. There are two forms of chromium: trivalent chromium and hexavalent chromium. The first is found in foods and supplements and is safe for humans. The second is a known toxin that can cause skin.
Chromium is identified as an essential trace mineral, signifying its importance, in small amounts, for proper overall functioning of the body. It specifically helps in supporting healthy glucose levels and in properly metabolizing carbohydrates and fats. These functions can be hindered by a chromium deficiency, which is caused by a lack of trivalent chromium, the nutritional aspect of the mineral. A deficiency can be treated by either eating chromium-rich foods — grains, cereals, and brewer's yeast are the most common — or with the appropriate dosage of chromium supplements.
One of the most widely reported advantages of chromium supplements is an increased ability to metabolize sugar and insulin. Studies suggest that chromium breaks down the body's resistance to insulin and can help diabetics maintain healthier glucose levels. It also aids in transporting sugars more efficiently through the system so they can be turned into energy; similarly, chromium supports the flow of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins to also be transformed into energy.
Due to its role in synthesizing cholesterol, some advocates believe chromium supplements are important to lowering and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. This can also assist in weight loss and in the building of muscle mass. Though no definitive scientific conclusions have been reached on this subject, many have experienced these benefits of taking chromium supplements.
Chromium is not without its potential risks, however. Though there are few — if any — side effects, chromium supplements may have links to some serious medical conditions. In one highly publicized case, a user taking chromium supplements suffered kidney and liver damage as well as anemia. It should be noted, though, that the user was ingesting 6–12 times the daily recommended dose.
An elevated risk of cancer is another often-cited danger of chromium. This was first recognized in the 19th century, when workers at a chromate dye company developed various types of cancers at an alarming rate. Modern research has indicated the possibility that chromium may activate the production of damaging free radicals in the body. Yet just as there has been little scientific research into the benefits of chromium supplements, there has also been scant research into any possible drawbacks.
Generic Name: chromium picolinate (KROME ee um pi KOE li nate)
Brand Name:Cr-GTF, CRM, Chromium GTF
Dosage Forms: oral capsule (200 mcg); oral tablet (200 mcg; 500 mcg; 800 mcg)
What is chromium picolinate?
Chromium is a mineral found in certain foods. The body needs only trace amounts of chromium, and deficiency of this mineral in humans is rare.
Chromium picolinate works together with insulin produced by the pancreas to metabolize carbohydrates.
Chromium picolinate has been used in alternative medicine to treat chromium deficiency, as an aid to controlling blood sugar in people with diabetes or prediabetes, to lower cholesterol, and as a weight-loss supplement.
Not all uses for chromium picolinate have been approved by the FDA. Chromium picolinate should not be used in place of medication prescribed for you by your doctor.
Chromium picolinate is often sold as an herbal supplement. There are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for many herbal compounds and some marketed supplements have been found to be contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.
Chromium picolinate may also be used for purposes not listed in this product guide.
Follow all directions on the product label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.
Before taking this medicine
Before using chromium picolinate, talk to your healthcare provider. You may not be able to use chromium picolinate if you have certain medical conditions.
diabetes (especially if you use insulin);
an allergy to leather products;
a thyroid disorder; or
if you use steroid medicine (fluticasone, beclomethasone, prednisone, and others).
It is not known whether chromium picolinate will harm an unborn baby. Do not use this product without medical advice if you are pregnant.
Chromium picolinate may pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this product without medical advice if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Do not give any herbal/health supplement to a child without medical advice.
How should I take chromium picolinate?
When considering the use of herbal supplements, seek the advice of your doctor. You may also consider consulting a practitioner who is trained in the use of herbal/health supplements.
If you choose to use chromium picolinate, use it as directed on the package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or other healthcare provider. Do not use more of this product than is recommended on the label.
Check your blood sugar carefully if you are diabetic.
The recommended dietary allowance of chromium picolinate increases with age. Follow your healthcare provider's instructions. You may also consult the National Academy of Sciences 'Dietary Reference Intake' or the U.S. Department of Agriculture's 'Dietary Reference Intake' (formerly 'Recommended Daily Allowances' or RDA) listings for more information.
Chromium picolinate may be only part of a treatment program that may also include diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very carefully.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include vomiting, diarrhea, blood in your urine or stools, or coughing up blood.
What should I avoid while taking chromium picolinate?
Avoid a diet that is high in sugar. It may interfere with the effectiveness of chromium picolinate.
Ask your doctor before using an antacid, and use only the type your doctor recommends. Some antacids can make it harder for your body to absorb chromium picolinate.
Chromium picolinate side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction:hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using chromium picolinate and call your doctor at once if you have:
thinking problems, trouble concentrating;
problems with balance or coordination; or
liver problems--nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, tired feeling, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).
Common side effects may include:
sleep problems (insomnia); or
mood changes, feeling irritable.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What other drugs will affect chromium picolinate?
Other drugs may interact with chromium picolinate, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.
Chromium Supplement Benefits
More about chromium picolinate
- Other brands
- Cr-GTF, CRM
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Related treatment guides
- Consult with a licensed healthcare professional before using any herbal/health supplement. Whether you are treated by a medical doctor or a practitioner trained in the use of natural medicines/supplements, make sure all your healthcare providers know about all of your medical conditions and treatments.
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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