What is chromium picolinate?
Have you ever heard of chromium? If you think it’s related to the shiny accessories on tricked out sportscars, you’re right. But it’s also an essential trace mineral found in certain foods.
Chromium plays a role in the metabolism of proteins, fats and carbohydrates. What is chromium picolinate? In chromium supplements, chromium is combined with picolinate to enhance absorption.
Understanding chromium picolinate benefits
Why would people take chromium supplements? They’re looking for some of the chromium picolinate benefits.
Chromium for weight loss
Many people turn to a chromium supplement for weight loss because of the relationship between chromium and metabolism. Chromium picolinate supports already healthy glucose levels and your ability to metabolize carbohydrates, fats and proteins efficiently.† That means it supports your body’s efforts to break down that fuel and use it for energy. Research also points to chromium picolinate’s support for maintaining lean body mass when mixed with a low-calorie diet and exercise, which is a key part of weight loss.
Chromium picolinate and diabetes
Chromium picolinate is heavily researched for its effect on glucose levels. Chromium works with insulin to unlock the doors of your cells so glucose can get inside and do what it’s supposed to do—provide energy.
That means many people who are concerned about type 2 diabetes or being insulin resistant (prediabetic) turn to chromium supplements to support their healthy glucose levels. One research study showed that chromium picolinate may reduce the risk of insulin resistance and therefore also the risk of type 2 diabetes.*†
How to take chromium picolinate: food and supplements
Chromium is found in many foods and most people should be able to get the average daily recommended amount as part of a healthy diet. Experts recommend women ages 19-50 consume an average of 25mcg each day; 20mcg for those over 50. It’s slightly higher for men: 35mcg for men 19-50 and 30mcg for those over 50.
Sources of chromium in food include ham, beef, turkey, grain products, lettuce, green beans, apples, bananas and fruit juices such as orange, tomato and especially grape. It’s also found in brewer’s yeast and nuts. Something to note: The amount of chromium in food can depend on the soil and water that was used to produce it and how it was processed.
Chromium picolinate dosage
Those considering a chromium supplement to support weight loss in combination with a healthy diet and exercise or want to support their healthy glucose levels can find a variety of options, said Kristin Morris, a principal research scientist for Nutrilite™ products who has a doctorate in nutrition biochemistry.
Nutrilite Glucose Health delivers 100mcg in each capsule to be taken three times a day and no more than four.
“The chromium picolinate dosage in this formula was chosen because this level of elemental chromium has been associated with beneficial effects in carbohydrate metabolism and helping maintain healthy blood sugar levels,” Morris said.
Are there any potential chromium picolinate side effects?
Individual response to any dietary supplementation will vary and depend on how much people consume. Plus, chromium supplements can interfere with medications, so people should consult their doctors before starting to take them.
With Nutrilite Glucose Health chromium picolinate, side effects could include mild headaches or gastrointestinal discomfort. But if taken in the recommended amounts, any side-effects should be minimal.
†This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.*One small study suggests that chromium picolinate may reduce the risk of insulin resistance, and therefore possibly may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. FDA concludes, however, that the existence of such a relationship between chromium picolinate and either insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes is highly uncertain.