Friday, July 20, 2018

ABC's of Nutrition: Chromium

Meats and whole grains are high in chromium, compared to fruits, vegetables, and dairy which are low in chromium. Chromium picolinate is a common form of chromium. Another good form of chromium is TRAACS™ chromium nicotinate glycinate chelate.

The most noticeable sign of chromium deficiency is glucose intolerance distinguished by elevated blood sugar and insulin levels. Refined sugars and carbohydrates, and lack of exercise can deplete chromium levels in the body. Calcium carbonate and antacids may reduce chromium absorption.

Dr. Michael Murray explains how the body regulates blood sugar levels, so that one can truly appreciate how chromium works. “After a meal, the body responds to the rise in blood glucose levels by secreting insulin. Insulin lowers blood glucose by increasing the rate that glucose is taken up by the cells throughout the body. Declines in blood glucose, which occur during food deprivation or exercise, cause the release of glucagon–another hormone produced by the pancreas. Glucagon stimulates the release of glucose stored in body tissues, especially the liver, as glycogen. If blood sugar levels fall sharply or if a person is angry or frightened, it may result in the release of adrenaline and cortisol by the adrenal glands. These hormones provide quicker breakdown of stored glucose for extra energy during a crisis or increased need.”

Due to poor diet and lifestyle these stress mechanisms become over worked and do not function properly which results in diabetes and hypoglycemia. Obesity is also linked to to blood sugar imbalance. Chromium, a trace mineral, is essential for proper insulin regulation by increasing the body’s sensitivity to insulin, improving blood sugar control and weight.

Chromium can help regulate cholesterol and triglyceride levels in both diabetic and non-diabetic patients. However unless body chromium levels are low, supplementing chromium does not produce as good results.

by John Connor, CNC

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