Chromium is a mineral found in small amounts in our body. We need Chromium to aid in our digestion, but also in other areas of our regular bodily functions. Most people obtain Chromium through their foods, but it does come in supplement form for people who may not eat foods containing Chromium.
Chromium can be found in foods like meats, cheeses, potatoes, and fresh fruit. You can also find Chromium in your drinking water if you have hard tap water, and you will increase the amount of Chromium in your body just by drinking hard tap water. This is most commonly referred to “city water,” as well water isn’t as hard and does not contain a lot of calcium build up.
Who Can Benefit From Higher Chromium Intake?
If you are like most people and you are relatively healthy, then the amount of Chromium you need is going to be small. If you are wanting to increase the amount of Chromium in your body naturally, try eating Chromium rich foods before trying it as a supplement.
People with diabetes are more likely to have a Chromium deficiency and will need to take a supplement to help them keep their Chromium levels where they need to be. People over the age of 60 will also experience a decrease in their Chromium levels and will benefit more from having the supplement than they would by simply eating certain foods.
Why Is Chromium Important?
Chromium is used by our bodies to convert certain items into the energy that we need. It aids other functions in the body to help produce energy, but it does not do it by itself. It will take fats, carbs, and proteins and help to turn them into the energy that our bodies need. It also helps to move glucose into cells to convert them into energy.
Glucose starts out in our bloodstreams and the Chromium helps to bring it from the bloodstream and into our cells. While Chromium is not necessarily needed to bring the glucose into the cells, it certainly helps get it there a lot faster, which helps you to have energy at a quicker rate.
There are four things you need to keep in mind when it comes to Chromium and Chromium supplements.
Chromium Can Help Your Visual Health
Research has indicated that if you have lower levels of Chromium in your body, you are at an increased risk of developing certain eye diseases. Glaucoma, in patients who have no medical history of the disease, has been popping up in patients who have those low Chromium levels. So, it is important to your eye health to make sure that you are getting the right amount of Chromium on a regular basis.
Chromium Can Help With Diabetes
Early research studies have indicated that Chromium can help people with Type 2 diabetes maintain their blood sugar levels. Studies have also indicated that it could be used as a way to manage Type 2 diabetes, but more research needs to be conducted to know for sure.
Chromium Helps Build Strong Bones
As women age, they begin to lose their bone mass which causes their bones to become brittle and break. Studies have indicated that Chromium can help to slow the process of bone loss, by keeping calcium in your body. The higher your levels of calcium, the stronger your bones are going to be and the less likely you are to break any bones.
Chromium May Help With Weight Loss
Studies have not been conducted on this particular area of Chromium, however, Chromium supplements are being used as a way to build muscle and burn fat. Since no research has been conducted on the Chromium supplements in this capacity, it cannot be proven to be true. But it is believed and is being marketed as a supplement for the fields of weight loss and muscle building.
How Much Chromium Is Too Much?
Now you may be asking yourself: is something like this safe to take on a regular basis? What about the food that contains Chromium, how much of it should you truly be eating at one time, or on a regular basis? As with anything else, you should always take medications of any kind in moderation or as it is prescribed to you by your medical doctor.
Consuming too many Chromium supplements can cause damage to your stomach, kidneys, nervous system, and can even cause you to have an irregular heartbeat. So, you want to make sure that you are in contact with your doctor or pharmacist and make sure that you are only taking the necessary amount of Chromium supplement that you need and no more than that.
Eating foods rich in Chromium will not harm you, even if you eat them on a regular basis. The amount of Chromium in those foods are so low that it would take a significant amount of those foods to have any negative impact on your health.
And while the levels are low in the foods, you should still practice good eating habits and consume your foods in moderation. If you suffer from acid reflux or something similar that requires you to take antacids, you should be aware that the antacids can lower the amount of Chromium in your body.
So, if you are needing to increase the Chromium levels you have, you may need to find an alternate antacid source if you are only getting your Chromium from the foods you eat.
Chromium And Electroplating
High levels of Chromium can also be found in jobs that deal with electroplating. Studies have indicated that it can cause damage to your kidneys as well as lung cancer and skin conditions. So, it is important to make sure that your Chromium levels are being checked by your doctor on a regular basis if you are working in those types of fields.
If you are eating foods that are rich in Chromium and then working where there are high levels of Chromium, your body will have too much and will be unable to process it correctly.
This can cause you to have large health problems that can last for the rest of your life. Make sure you mention your job to your doctor at your regular checkups, so they are able to help keep your level in a healthy range.
Chromium supplements are sold in pharmacies and health stores in capsule form. It is important to remember that the FDA does not sign off on supplements and research studies do not have to indicate if said supplement is safe for consumption.
If you are going to take a Chromium supplement, you should definitely have your medical doctor check your Chromium levels to see if you need the extra Chromium. Your doctor will also need to monitor you while you are on a Chromium supplement to see how it interacts with any other medications that you might be taking.
There are medications that cannot be combined with supplements due to negative interactions and the supplement causing the prescriptions not to work properly. You should also not replace a prescription medication with a supplement unless your doctor deems it appropriate for your situation.
Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should talk with their doctors before they begin taking a supplement. Because the FDA only requires little to no research to be submitted on whether a supplement is safe or not, most doctors will not sign off for a pregnant or nursing mother to take them.
If you are going to go with a supplement form of Chromium instead of using food sources, or you are adding the supplement to your existing diet, there are a few things that you need to consider before you start taking it.
As with any new medications, there is a chance of side effects and negative reactions. Make sure that you do your reach before you begin taking a new supplement. This will help to ensure that you do not combine it with prescription medications and cause a negative reaction.
Some supplements can cause prescription medications to not work properly, or it can cause them to negatively affect your body. You should report any side effects to your doctor and discontinue use if you notice any negative side effects. Some supplements can also cause allergic reactions, so check all of the ingredients before taking one.
It is always better to find a supplement that contains only natural ingredients, as you are less likely to have any type of allergic reaction that way. You will notice less of a negative reaction or any side effects if you consume foods that are rich in Chromium instead of the supplements.
When you are out looking for your Chromium supplements, be sure to keep in mind that supplements will vary from company to company. It does take around two weeks for supplements to “kick in” and start working, so if you are wanting to try different brands, you will need to allow at least two weeks to see if a certain brand works for you.
Different brands also might differ when it comes to the ingredients that they use in their supplements. So, you will want to make sure that you do your research and choose one that is completely natural, as much as possible, to try.
And remember that like other medications, even supplements will have an expiration date. Choosing the smallest bottle will give you the chance to test different supplement brands without worrying about the supplement going bad before you are sure which brand to go with.
Long Term Effects Of Chromium
Because of the limited research that is submitted when supplements come on the market, long term side effects are unknown. As with any supplement, Chromium supplements should only be taken as directed and only for the time that is stated on the bottle.
You should also not take more than the dosage that is recommended. This will help to ensure that you are not doing any significant damage to your body. Your medical doctor or your pharmacist should be able to tell you how long you should take a supplement and what signs you need to look for when it comes to any side effects that could be potentially harmful.
Chromium is a mineral that your body needs in order to help maintain a healthy function for energy. There are many Chromium rich foods that can help you to reach and maintain the levels that your body needs naturally, but you can also get Chromium in supplement form.
If you are going to be taking a Chromium supplement, you might want to limit the intake of Chromium rich foods to make sure that you are not getting too much of it in your diet. While it is a mineral that your body needs, too much of it can actually cause more damage to your body and your internal organs.
Before you begin taking a Chromium supplement, you should have your levels tested by your doctor to see if it is something that you even need. You may be getting enough Chromium in your regular diet, or your doctor may suggest that you try increasing the amount of Chromium rich foods before you try a supplement.
If you and your doctor decide that it is necessary for you to have a Chromium supplement, then they will probably want to keep a check on your levels to make sure that you are not getting too much of the Chromium in your diet. Too much Chromium can be similar to having not enough, but it can lead to more serious medical conditions.
Always make sure that you are doing your own research on supplements before you begin taking them. It is important to stay informed on what, if any, side effects and other complications that may come with taking them.
While most people do not have issues with Chromium supplements, it is still important to make sure you know the risks that are involved before you start taking them. Chromium is great for your body and it is important to make sure that you are getting enough of it.
Consulting with your medical doctor is a great way to make sure that you are getting the right amount that you need and that your levels are staying steady.