Many of us may know chromium from the grill or from other chromium coated alloys. But in fact, chromium also plays a role in our body. And it is known as another essential micro element, although the research foundation is not completely stable at the moment. So, for now, we will have a look at chromium as well and we are going to find an answer to the question “Is Chromium really Good for Weight Loss? – The Sugar-Lover!”. And we will also have a look at the reasons why chromium is important for us, how much you need of it and what else might be interesting about this micro element.
Can we see Chromium as a supporter for weight loss?
Why is chromium mentioned at all when it comes to weight loss?
The probably closest explanation is that chromium plays an important role in the carbohydrate- and fat metabolism and there especially in the glucose metabolism.
As chromium influences the hormone insulin, which controls the absorption of sugar into our blood, it makes sure that the fluctuations of the blood sugar level are not so drastically. Big differences in the blood sugar level can lead to ravenous appetite, which leads to a possible higher weight.
Another important factor is, that chromium has an effect within our fat-metabolism, where it has the ability to increase the amount of the good cholesterol, namely HDL (high-density lipoprotein).
Later we are going to have a more in-depth look at the most important functions of chromium in our body and how we benefit from it.
So now that we know that chromium plays an important and essential role in several metabolic processes in our body, we are ready to go further into the world of this micro element.
What is Chromium?
Chromium is a transition metal. A typical compound containing chromium is chromium(III), which is highly available for our body and chromium(IV), which is highly toxic to us. The solubility of chromium-compounds is not very good. And on top, the scientific status of chromium considering the effect of it on the human body is not very clear, firm and precise yet. So there is still some research to do. But for now, we can follow the recommendations of the nutrition science that at least a low amount of chromium is useful for us and for some groups of people even more.
It is for now seen as an essential micro or trace element, which we have to get through our nutrition, although there may be institutions, which don´t declare it as essential.
What is the demand for Chromium?
Depending on the age, health and lifestyle the daily demand for an average and healthy adult for chromium is about
25 – 100 micrograms (μg) per day.
Where can you get Chromium from (Top foods)?
Here are the Top foods, which are rich in Chromium:
1. Yeast (up to 200 μg/100g),
2. Nuts and cheese (up to 100 μg/100g)
3. Pulses like lentils (up to 70 μg/100g)
4. Grain and eggs (up to 50 μg/100g)
What are the functions and benefits of Chromium?
The most important function of chromium is its effect on the enzyme metabolism, predominantly within the carbohydrate and the fat metabolism.
Effect within our metabolism
Chromium has an effect within the carbohydrate metabolism by regulating the sugar absorption through insulin. This happens because chromium works on the development of GTF, which stands for glucose-tolerance-factor helping to bind insulin into the cell walls.
In the fat metabolism, it ensures the increase of the good cholesterol HDL, which stands for high-density lipoprotein. This lipoprotein transports surplus fat from the body cells, including the vessel walls to the liver, where it is broke down. So it is able to prevent arteriosclerosis, which is more likely to be promoted by LDL, which stands for low-density lipoprotein. On top LDL is decreased by chromium.
In the protein metabolism, chromium helps to integrate amino acids into our muscles. Moreover, it is participating in the synthesis of new amino acids.
It is estimated that chromium is also needed for cell division because high amounts of it can be found in the cell nucleus.
What deficiency symptoms of Chromium exist?
A deficiency of chromium is very common as there are estimations that up to 90% of us are lacking it. Typical risk factors are a diet high in sugar and fat, as the tolerance against glucose decreases, stress, pregnancy and a higher age.
The symptoms of a deficiency in chromium are diverse and can lead to the followed symptoms:
- muscle weakness
- psychological disorders like nervousness and depression
- low blood sugar
- weight loss
- peripheral neuropathy
What overdose symptoms of Chromium exist?
An overdose of 3-valent chromium isn´t known for up to 1 mg per day, as it is organic and therefore can be excreted through the urine. 6-valent chromium can lead to overdose symptoms like chromium asthma or contact eczema, which are mostly work-related.
What else may you have to consider about Chromium?
Value in our body
Chromium is stored mostly in the liver, the bones, the spleen, the muscles, in fat and in the grey brain substance.
Antagonists and Advice
It is recommended to get your chromium through your diet.
If you are getting abdominal fat easily or having diabetis type 2 it is good to supplement chromium up to 1 mg per day for a short period of some weeks. But also talk to your doctor.
If you wish to supplement chromium use GTF-chromium or chromium chelate instead of chromium picolinate. Chromium picolinate is a widespread supplement for weight loss. Although it is not harmful in small doses there is no evidence that it promotes weight loss effectively but there are some cases of kidney failure due to high amounts of chromium picolinate (> 1000 μg).
Discovery and Use
Chromium was discovered in 1797 and in 1959 to be found as essential for humans.
The word chromium comes from the Greek word “chroma”, which means color.
In this blog post, we have learned that, although the research situation is not completely clear for chromium, it can be seen as an essential micro element for us at the moment. And that is because chromium plays an important role within our metabolism by regulating our blood sugar and helping to promote good fat and reducing bad fat. So now we know that chromium is not only good looking on wheel rims but also for our body. Yeast, nuts and pulses are a good choice for chromium in food.
Now to you. Was this information helpful? Do you want to know something else? Let us know in the comments.