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Defining Chromium Supplements

Posted Jul 01 2010 5:12am
In the past years, the safety of taking chromium supplements and benefits have always been a subject that researchers have wondered about. Individuals who take chromium supplement such as chromium picolinate often do so in the hopes of reducing their cholesterol levels, managing their diabetes, losing that extra weight and building up their muscles. But how can you really define chromium supplements and its benefits?

Chromium is an essential mineral contained in your body in trace amounts. Most people take a chromium supplement to manage their diabetes, reduce HDL cholesterol levels, maintain a healthy weight, and increase muscle efficiency. Chromium is found naturally in foods such as grains, fruits, meat, poultry, seafood and vegetables, but research indicates that we don’t always get the chromium we need from food because this mineral isn’t easily absorbed by the body. To help with this problem, taking a chromium supplement is better absorbed by the body thus giving you the amount of this essential mineral you need.

Maintaining healthy glucose levels is of vital importance in the treatment of diabetes; diabetics don’t process pancreatic insulin well. Chromium insures that the right amount of glucose, or sugar, is supplied to body cells. Physicians may prescribe a chromium supplement along with a careful diet to pre-diabetic patients to help prevent the occurrence of diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes most commonly develops with a late onset in adults between the ages of 45 to 50 who are accustomed to a high-sugar intake. Other risk factors for diabetes are obesity, stress, and excessive exercise. Eating sugar-rich food not only contributes no chromium to speak of, but these foods actually deplete your body’s supply of chromium. Thus, for people with diabetes and/or glucose intolerance, endocrinologists often prescribe a chromium supplement.

Aside from taking chromium supplements, you can eat chromium-rich foods in order to increase the levels of this mineral in your body. Great food sources include potatoes, green beans, broccoli, nuts, whole grains, seafood and prunes. Foods rich in sugar do not only contain a little amount of chromium but they also cause chromium loss. In order to stimulate the body to absorb chromium faster, you can always take Vitamin C.

A word of caution: some medical studies have appeared to show that chromium picolinate may be harmful to cells, while other studies find just the opposite effect. This is why your physician must be a vital “player” in helping you decide whether or not you need a chromium supplement. Some people who suffer from serious health problems should not take chromium picolinate.

You may have heard that some medical studies indicate that chromium picolinate is harmful to cells, there is yet no definite empirical evidence to support this theory; other studies indicate that just the opposite is true. However, chromium picolinate supplements should not be taken by people who have serious health problems, and never without a physician’s instruction.

When buying, make sure your sources are reliable and reputable. You can even check out the internet for additional information about chromium supplements and where you can buy them.

Are you health conscientious? Check out for everything about supplement to help you enjoy life more. Includes advice on the Sources of chromium supplements to Supplements and Deficiency and much more.

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