Chromium Supplementation and Diabetes*
Chromium is a mineral, needed by humans. It is believed to enhance the action of insulin, a hormone that is critical for handling carbohydrates from our diet. Diabetics are often taking chromium as a supplement, hoping to see better blood sugar control.
Chromium is readily found in foods, but only occurs in small doses. Meat, whole grain bread as well as some fruits and vegetables provide small amounts of chromium. Absorption from our gut however, is very poor, so that over 90% of the chromium in our diet is not absorbed. People who eat excessive amounts of simple sugars are also believed to excrete more chromium in their urine.
For many of us, it makes sense to take extra chromium as a supplement, to correct blood sugar intolerance. Unfortunately, there is no large clinical trial to test this theory. So the question is, what is a safe amount of Chromium to take every day as a supplement? There is no exact answer to this question. Most people believe that using between 200 mcg to 1,000 mcg of Chromium per day is safe.
Many of my patients on The OWL Diet have either impaired glucose tolerance or Type 2 Diabetes. Losing weight with my diet plan leads to significant improvements of blood sugar control for these people. Taking Chromium as a supplement also sounds to me to be a very good idea. For this reason, The OWL Diet vitamins and supplements, when taken one tablet with food, three times a day, provides 200mcg of Chromium as a supplement.
We are now also combining Chromium with Phentermine, compounded into a SR (sustained release formulation) that can be taken up to twice per day. This new option expands the treatment options that we can make available to our OWL Dieters.
*Any article that talks about supplements, such as this one, needs to include the FDA statement that the above comments have not been evaluated by the FDA, and these statements are not intended to diagnose or treat a medical condition. The use of any supplement should be discussed with your doctor prior to taking it.