asparagus-3342144_640If you are past the age of 35, an athlete or living with a chronic condition like diabetes then it is possible that you might deficient in the mineral chromium.  That is because the 4-6 milligrams of chromium normally typically stored in a healthy human’s liver, muscles, bones, heart, and bones deplete with age or with extreme exertion.  Increased physical activity can cause chromium to be released into the blood and then eliminated through the urinary tract.

Chromium is not as well known as other minerals because it is considered to be a trace mineral, but health studies such as the 2007 study done at Harvard Medical School have shown that a lack of chromium can affect your blood pressure, heart function, depression, and blood glucose levels.

Some of the benefits of raising your chromium levels include:

1.  Improved blood sugar levels. A study done in the UK has shown that chromium is highly beneficial to people with insulin resistance and Type 2 Diabetes.

2.  A study done in Georgia showed that  chromium helped regulate blood pressure levels by regulating lowering bad cholesterol (LDL)and raising good cholesterol (HDL)

3.  A study described in Better Bones and conducted at the University of Maryland came to the conclusion that the mineral moderates the thinning and breaking down of bone as we age, thus stressing how important it is to have enough chromium in our bodies.

4.  An article in Livestrong’s online magazine  Healthfully relates that several studies have proved that chromium is essential for preventing depression and that the mineral helps improve the brain’s serotonin uptake.

Yet another issue affecting our intake of chromium is that it is one of those minerals that is depleted due to the ravages of industrial agricultural farming so that vegetables that are normally rich in the trace mineral, such as asparagus, broccoli, and garlic are much less so.

Chromium From Food Sources

Thankfully there are both vegetarian and animal-based sources of chromium that can help you build up and maintain stores of chromium in your liver and bones.

To optimize your chromium levels eat the following foods as often as possible:

•    Asparagus
•    Broccoli
•    Garlic
•    Grapes
•    Organic pears
•    Organic grass fed beef
•    Shellfish, mussels, and oysters
•    Tomatoes

Of course, you should always make sure that you are eating organically and locally and that you are not allergic to any of the foods on the above list.

Not All Chromium Supplements Are Alike

Two of the most popular forms of chromium supplements are chromium picolinate and chromium polynicotinate. The difference between the two is that chromium picolinate is synthetic, whereas chromium polnicotinate is bound to the B vitamins known as niacin or nicotinic acid.

People considered to be most at risk for chromium deficiency include:

•    Elderly
•    Diabetics
•    Athletes
•    Pregnant Women

Before you self-prescribe any chromium supplements you should talk to a naturopath, get some blood testing and find out what type of chromium supplement works for you.
Here at the Pinewood Natural Healthcare Center we provide blood testing, natural cleanses, anti-aging, naturopathic testing, weight loss program, infrared blood analysis, hypnotherapy, nutritional advice, homeopathy and more. To review the other services and treatments we offer, visit the Pinewood Natural Healthcare Centre website that has a list of full services and products at or call our Toronto Office at  (416)-656- 8100.  We also have an office in Pickering, Ontario at (905)-427-0057. You can also email us at and we would be happy to answer any question that you have about our holistic health services.

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