Chromium Supplement Review

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Chromium
  Evaluated for:
Effectiveness Rating Effectiveness Rating
Type II Diabetes
+2 (Moderate Evidence)
Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar)
+2 (Moderate Evidence)
Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
+1 (Slight Evidence)

PRO

  • Chromium plays an important role in insulin’s regulation of blood glucose, and it acts as a cofactor for a number of enzymes involved in energy production. It is used to treat diabetes, high cholesterol, and obesity.
  • Chromium exists naturally. The form found in food and supplements (trivalent chromium) appears to be quite safe, with few if any serious side effects.
  • The blood sugars of type 2 diabetics who took 200 micrograms (mcg) chromium improved within 4 months and those taking 1,000 micrograms (mcg) chromium improved significantly by 2 months.

CON

  • The long-term effects of chromium use are unknown.
  • Individuals with diabetes will need to monitor their blood sugars more closely until they are certain of the effect of chromium on their overall sugar control.

* *ADVISORY* *
Use of chromium in patients with kidney or liver diseases may not be safe. It should be used with caution in individuals with bipolar disease, schizophrenia, and Parkinson's disease because it may affect the metabolism of the brain neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.

DOSAGE:Although the maximum safe amount is not clear, chromium is believed to be quite safe at dosages of 50-200 mcg daily. Some people may not respond to standard doses in the 50-200 microgram range, and may require doses up to 1000 micrograms.

CONCLUSION:We conclude that chromium is a safe and effective product for treating type 2 diabetes and hyperglycemia (high blood sugar). While it shows promise for hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), there is not enough evidence for us to support its use for this indication. Remember to include it in your list of medications when you visit your doctor and other health care providers.

REFERENCES
“Chromium.” ConsumerLab.com. ConsumerLab.com LLC, 2013. 31 August 2013.
“Chromium.” Natural Standard –The Authority on Integrative Medicine. Natural Standard, 2013.
“Chromium.” Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. Therapeutic Research Faculty, 2013. 8 November 2013.
Chromium. EBSCO Publishing (2010) 1-12
Lamson, D.W., Plaza, S.M. et al. The Safety and Efficacy of High-Dose Chromium. Alternative Medicine Review (2002) 7, 218-235


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