Critical Element Chromium

Chromium is essential part of metabolic processes that regulate blood sugar, and helps insulin transport glucose into cells, where it can be used for energy. Even mild chromium deficiency can lead to problems in regulating blood sugar, which over time may lead to the development of diabetes. Deficiency can lead to altered cholesterol metabolism, contributing to heart disease.

Our absorption of chromium is very poor. We can lose chromium when we are under stress, eat lots of sugar, have an infection or experience physical trauma. Many of us may be at risk for mild deficiencies of chromium because of the low levels of chromium in soil and the amounts lost from our body due to medications and refined and processed foods. If you eat foods high in added sugars (sucrose and fructose), they increase its excretion from the body. Good new for all the gym sharks out there - weight training increase absorption of chromium.

So what can we eat to fortify ourselves with chromium? The level of chromium in plant foods varies so much depending on the soil they were grown in and how they were processed. What is interesting that Brewer’s yeast is one of the richest sources of biologically active chromium, containing around 60 mcg per tablespoon. Meat, whole grains, broccoli, green beans, romaine lettuce, raw onions, ripe tomatoes, nuts, and eggs are good sources of chromium.