What Is Chromium?
Chromium is a trace mineral element (essential in tiny quantities) necessary for the proper functioning of insulin: the hormone that regulates glucose metabolism in the cells.
Whenever carbohydrates are consumed, the pancreas releases insulin, which stimulates the cells of the liver, muscles and adipose tissues to absorb glucose, the primary fuel source for all cells.
Chromium plays a vital part in insulin signalling. Insulin prompts the uptake of glucose from the bloodstream by attaching to the receptors on the surface of the cells, thereby making the cells’ membranes more permeable to glucose.
As a result, chromium helps people with diabetes to control blood sugar levels. People with diabetes either do not produce enough insulin or cannot use the insulin their bodies make.
Along with treating diabetes, chromium may lower blood sugar levels, improving glucose tolerance and reducing the amount of insulin needed.
Chromium also has a function in the production of HDL cholesterol (good) in the liver. While oxidised LDL cholesterol can precipitate on the vein/artery walls – which can negatively affect the heart and vascular walls – HDL cholesterol can remove this effect.
Glandular Fever Naturopath
Chromium is one of the supplements used in our programme for glandular fever treatment, essential for the reason that glandular fever is linked to chronic fatigue and affects every gland, hormone and lymph node in our body.
In many cases, the pancreas is one of the main glands left weakened by this disease. I have found that people who have not had glandular fever properly diagnosed in the first instance, and who have experienced many recurrent attacks of Epstein-Barr or Cytomegalo (CMV) viruses (both glandular fever mutations), are left with diabetes 2 as a result.
To a lesser degree, many of us know about the common 3 pm sugar crash, when we feel the need to have a cup of coffee and a piece of cake, or something similar, to help us get through the rest of the afternoon.
This is where chromium is invaluable; it prevents the sugar crash and balances the blood sugar, takes away the craving for something sweet and helps keep the head clear and the energy strong.
Foods High in Chromium
Highest sources of chromium in micrograms (ug) per 100 grams:
- Brewer’s yeast 400 mg
- Mussels 128 mg
- Brazil nuts 100 mg
- Oysters 57 mg
- Dates (dried) 29 mg
- Pears 27 mg
Vitamin C enhances the absorption of dietary chromium, therefore foods high in Vitamin C should be consumed at the same time.
Highest sources of Vitamin C per 100 grams:
- Kakadu plums 1200 mg
- Camu Camu berries 2000 mg
- Acerola cherries 1677 mg
- Coriander 566 mg
- Rosehips 426 mg
Chromium Supplements for Glandular Fever
Not all of us are open or able to change up our diets straight away, and sometimes a regularly taken supplement can be a convenient option to help our bodies receive the vitamins and minerals they need.
Our natural chromium supplement at Naturopath can be taken as follows: 1 tablet at breakfast, 1 tablet at lunch and 2 tablets at 3 pm. Prescribed this way, I’ve found it can strengthen the pancreas and reduce the possibility of developing type 2 diabetes.
Many people who are trying to lose weight have also found that, by taking chromium as part of their diet plan, their cravings for sweets are lessened and their weight-loss process starts much quicker.
On the other hand, deficiency of chromium can result in nerve illness, heart problems and increased cholesterol and fat concentrations in the blood.
Our chromium supplement is currently available from our patient-only product range at Naturopath Online.