What Is Chromium & What Foods Can I Find It In?

Chromium is an ultratrace mineral, but we still require it. Chromium's main function is to enhance the action of insulin.

It also appears that chromium is directly involved in metabolism.

But the mechanisms of what chromium does in the body and the amounts needed for optimal health are not fully understood yet.

Chromium May Be Essential

Chromium is an ultratrace mineral. The debate is still going on regarding whether the dietary form of chromium is essential for humans or not. (source )

Chromium is known to enhance the action of insulin. It also seems to be directly involved in the metabolism of carbohydrates, fat, and protein. (source )

Chromium is needed for proper glucose, lipid and protein metabolism, and for the maintenance of normal thyroid function.

Chromium In Foods

Chromium in foods that come from natural sources such as yeast and nuts, has been consumed for a long time by humans.

Chromium is found in many different foods, but most foods only provide a small amount. Relatively good sources of chromium are meat, whole grain products, and some fruits and vegetables. (source )

It's easy to get enough chromium through a well-balanced diet.

Benefits And Side-effects Of Chromium

It is believed that inorganic chromium, can have a beneficial effect on health and the prevention of some diseases.

But chromium in foods can also be a risk factor for a disease called nephrotoxicity.

Nephrotoxicity is rapid deterioration in kidney function due to the toxic effects of medications and chemicals.

Too much chromium in foods can cause significant health problems, including liver and kidney damage, reproductive problems, cancer and heart disease.

There is also another potential danger associated with eating too much chromium.

In the journal Environmental Health, researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that men who had high levels of chromium in their blood were 30 percent more likely to develop prostate cancer than men with lower levels.

Sara Niemelä

co-founder Care Omnia, Head Content Creator

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Nutrition is my passion. I've spent thousands upon thousands of hours reading, analyzing, categorizing and comparing research studies.

I’m a wife and a mother of three. I enjoy the outdoors, cooking, and spending time with my family.