Chromium is an essential trace element your body can not produce by itself. Therefore chromium must be consumed via the food you eat or in form of supplements. Chromium plays an important role in carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, as it is necessary for the activation of numerous metabolic enzymes.
In addition, chromium is needed for the synthesis and the actions of the hormone insulin, which is responsible for controlling your blood sugar levels and transporting sugar into the glycogen stores and fat cells of your body. Insulin needs chromium for attaching to the insulin receptors of the cell membranes and for transporting glucose into the cells of your body. The RDA for chromium is between 50 and 200 mcg, which is considered to be too low by many experts. Other sources consider 200 to 400 mcg as an optimal range, while diabetics and people with elevated cholesterol and triglyceride values may profit from even higher amounts in a range of 400 to 1000 mcg of chromium per day.
According to different sources, almost 90% of the population consume too little chromium via the food they eat. While the official recommendation is in a range of 50 to 200 mcg of chromium per day, the actually consumed quantity is on average in a range of 25 to 30 mcg of chromium per day. There are a number of reasons for this discrepancy. On the one hand, the amount of chromium in natural foods is diminishing due to leached agricultural land and on the other hand, the chromium content of our food is reduced by food processing. In addition, there are a number of factors such as stress, infectious diseases, and strong physical exertion that lead to increased chromium requirements. The consumption of sugar, that has reached an average of 40 kilo per person and year in the western world, also increases the demand for chromium, since the consumption of sugar leads to an increased usage of chromium in the human body. If one-third of the daily consumed calories consist of sugar, the demand for chromium increases to the triple!
To make things even worse, the ability of the human body to absorb chromium from food decreases with increasing age. All of these factors can lead to an excessively high chromium need that can not be covered by a healthy diet alone and may make a chromium supplementation necessary. Since chromium plays a key role in the synthesis and actions of insulin, a lack of chromium can have the consequence that insulin can no longer adequately fulfil its main task, which consists in controlling and stabilizing your blood glucose levels. This can result in insulin resistance, weight gains due to an increased appetite because of blood sugar fluctuations, and ultimately type 2 diabetes. Another consequence of an insufficient blood sugar control caused by a lack of chromium is hypoglycaemia, which is caused by an excessive insulin release in response to increased blood glucose levels. Symptoms of hypoglycaemia include dizziness, headaches, difficulties while concentrating, trembling, hunger, lack of strength and weakness. A lack of chromium can also have a negative effect on your cardiovascular health and may promote cardiovascular diseases, including heart attacks and stroke. This is due to the fact that elevated insulin levels can result in increased levels of unhealthy LDL cholesterol and increased blood triglyceride levels and may adversely affect your blood pressure.
A lack of chromium can promote the development of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. Conversely a sufficient supply of chromium can have positive effects for diabetes patients. A scientific study conducted in Israel showed that supplementing with chromium can significantly lower blood glucose levels and HbA1c levels - a marker for long-term blood glucose levels - in patients with type 2 diabetes. A study conducted at the Shanghai Medical College showed that chromium can reduce the release of resistin in cell cultures. Resistin is a peptide hormone that is involved in the development of insulin resistance. The positive effects of a chromium supplementation on insulin and blood glucose levels are often measurable within the first days and weeks of a supplementation. In addition, there is strong evidence that a sufficient chromium intake can have a positive effect on cardiovascular health, as it can counteract elevated cholesterol and triglyceride levels, as well as a calcification of veins. A study comparing the chromium levels of healthy volunteers and patients who already had a myocardial infarction showed that the chromium values were 15% lower in myocardial infarction patients. Subjects with the highest chromium intake also showed a 35% lower myocardial infarction risk than subjects with the lowest chromium intake. It can take several weeks to months until positive changes of cholesterol and triglyceride levels can be measured as a result of a chromium supplementation. A sufficient supply of chromium can also have a positive effect on immune function since insulin is involved in the activation of white blood cells - also known as T lymphocytes - which play a key role in immune defence.
For older people it may be interesting that chromium can increase the production of the hormone DHEA, which acts, among other things, as a precursor for the synthesis of testosterone and oestrogen. The endogenous DHEA production decreases with age and this decrease is associated with complaints during and after menopause, as well as undesirable consequences of low testosterone levels in aging men. As an additional bonus, there is evidence that chromium could counteract an age-related prostate enlargement.
Chromium has gotten a bad reputation as fat loss supplement, since it has been marketed in the past with completely overstated advertising promises. If you already consume sufficient amounts of chromium with your diet and use chromium with such an idea, you will of course be disappointed by its effects. However, this does not mean that chromium is useless to support fat loss and muscle gains. Since chromium plays a crucial role in fat and carbohydrate metabolism, a chromium deficiency can result in unsatisfying fat loss results despite of an optimal nutrition and sufficient exercise. As already explained, approximately 90% of the population suffer from a more or less pronounced deficiency of chromium, which can lead to an impaired carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, insulin resistance and marked fluctuations of blood glucose levels. Severe fluctuations of blood glucose levels can result in hypoglycaemia, which in turn can result in hunger and cravings for carbohydrates and sugars. Such fluctuations often lead to an increased dietary intake that promotes weight and fat gains. Since chromium can stabilize blood glucose levels, it can prevent hunger and cravings as result of low blood sugar levels, which makes it much easier to consume less calories and to lose fat during a diet. An insulin resistance, which is one of the most frequent consequences of a chromium deficiency, leads to a greater storage of glucose in form of fat in your fat cells and a reduced storage of glucose in form of glycogen in the glycogen stores of your muscles and your liver. In other words, a deficiency of chromium promotes body fat gains and can reduce your physical performance due to not maximally filled muscle glycogen stores.
Chromium can not only counteract unwanted body fat gains and prevent cravings, but also promote gains of fat-free body mass – i.e. muscle tissue. Since insulin is the strongest endogenous anabolic hormone that is responsible for the transport of amino acids into your muscle cells, a reduced insulin sensitivity can also impair your muscle gains. In other words, you will not achieve significant muscle gains without adequate amounts of chromium. Numerous scientific studies have shown that all of this is more than just theory. A study conducted at the University of Texas came to the conclusion that a supplementation with 200 to 400 mcg of chromium resulted in significant reductions of body fat and increased muscle gains in all subjects. During another study volunteers, who supplemented 200 mcg of chromium per day, lost almost 4 pounds more fat than subjects of the control group, while at the same time gaining 1.2 pounds more muscle mass. In older people the differences were even more pronounced with a 6.7 pound higher fat loss.
take 1 / 2 tablet without chewing and with sufficient liquid