Chromium update: examining recent literature 1997-1998

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Abstract

Trivalent chromium is an essential nutrient required for sugar and fat metabolism. The majority of people eating typical Western diets consume less than the upper limit of the estimated safe and adequate daily dietary intake, which is set at 50-200 μg per day. Insufficient chromium intake is associated with signs and symptoms similar to those seen in diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. The efficacy of chromium in the general population relates to its prevention of deficiency or a reduction in the risk of chronic diseases. It is possible that doses above the estimated safe and adequate daily dietary intake are necessary for the treatment of certain chronic disease states. In a study performed in China, the use of 1000 μg of chromium per day (five times above the upper limit of the estimated safe and adequate daily dietary intake) was highly effective in relieving many of the symptomatic manifestations of type 2 diabetes mellitus, including a return of the HbA1C levels into the normal range. Most recent evidence strongly supports the conclusion that there is little fear of toxic reactions from chromium consumption. In addition to type 2 diabetes mellitus, chromium supplementation may be useful to direct overall weight decrements specifically towards fat loss with the retention of lean body mass and to ameliorate many manifestations of aging.

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