Chromium

Reviewed on 6/16/2022

What Is Chromium and How Does It Work?

Chromium is a trace mineral that can be used for weight loss, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, athletic performance enhancement, persistent depressive disorder, high blood glucose (hyperglycemia), low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) (reactive), low HDL cholesterol (beta-blocker related) and as a muscle mass builder.

  • Chromium is possibly effective in lowering blood lipids and maintaining glycemic control.
  • Chromium is likely ineffective for weight loss.
  • Chromium is available under the following different brand names: Chromium 3, Chromium Picolinate, Glucose Tolerance Factor, and Trivalent Chromium.

What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Chromium?

Side effects associated with the use of Chromium, include the following:

  • cognitive dysfunction
  • headache
  • insomnia
  • irritability
  • mood changes
  • motor dysfunction
  • perceptual dysfunction
  • sleep disturbances (insomnia)
  • weight gain (high dose)
  • anemia
  • rupture of red blood cells
  • low levels of red blood cells (thrombocytopenia)
  • low blood sugar levels

Rare side effects of Chromium include:

  • kidney and/or liver impairment (high dose)

This document does not contain all possible side effects and others may occur. Check with your physician for additional information about side effects.

SLIDESHOW

Digestive Disorders: Common Misconceptions See Slideshow

Dosages of Chromium

Adult dosages:

  • Males (14-50 years old): 35 mcg daily
  • Males (over 50 years old): 30 mcg daily
  • Females (19-50 years old): 25 mcg daily
  • Females (over 50 years old): 20 mcg daily
  • Pregnant: 30 mcg daily
  • Lactating: 45 mcg daily

Pediatric dosages:

  • Infants 0-6 months old: 0.2 mcg daily
  • Infants 7-12 months old: 5.5 mcg daily
  • Children 1-3 years old: 11 mcg daily
  • Children 4-8 years old: 15 mcg daily
  • Children 9-13 years old – female: 21 mcg daily
  • Children 9-13 years old – male: 25 mcg daily
  • Children 14-18 years old – female: 21 mcg daily

Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2

  • 200-1000 mcg orally in divided doses

Beta Blocker-Related low HDL Cholesterol

  • 200 mcg orally three times daily

Hyperglycemia, Corticosteroid-Induced

  • 200 mcg orally three times daily or, 400 mcg orally daily

Hypoglycemia, Prevention

  • 200 mcg orally daily

Dysthymic Disorder

  • 200 mcg orally daily or twice daily

Dosage Considerations – Should be Given as Follows:

See "Dosages"

What Other Drugs Interact with Chromium?

If your medical doctor is using this medicine to treat your pain, your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor, health care provider, or pharmacist first.

  • Chromium has no known severe interactions with other drugs.
  • Chromium has no known serious interactions with other drugs.
  • Moderate Interactions of Chromium include:
  • Chromium has mild interactions with at least 45 different drugs.

This information does not contain all possible interactions or adverse effects. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist about all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share this information with your doctor and pharmacist. Check with your health care professional or doctor for additional medical advice, or if you have health questions, concerns, or more information about this medicine.

QUESTION

About how much does an adult human brain weigh? See Answer

What Are Warnings and Precautions for Chromium?

Warnings

  • Psychiatric or behavioral disorders possible with high dosages
  • This medication contains chromium. Do not take Chromium 3, Chromium Picolinate, Glucose Tolerance Factor, or Trivalent Chromium if you are allergic to chromium or any ingredients contained in this drug
  • Keep out of reach of children. In case of overdose, get medical help or contact a Poison Control Center immediately

Contraindications

  • Chromate allergy, leather contact allergy, impaired kidney (renal) function, and breastfeeding (high dose)

Effects of Drug Abuse

  • No information provided

Short-Term Effects

  • See "What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Chromium?"

Long-Term Effects

  • Chromate allergy, leather contact allergy, impaired kidney (renal) function, and breastfeeding (high dose)
  • See "What Are Side Effects Associated with Using Chromium?"

Cautions

  • Psychiatric or behavioral disorders possible with high dosages

Pregnancy and Lactation

  • Use chromium during pregnancy with caution if the benefits outweigh the risks. Animal studies show risk and human studies are not available, or neither animal nor human studies were done
  • It is unknown if chromium is excreted in milk, therefore use caution when breastfeeding
References
Medscape. Chromium.
https://reference.medscape.com/drug/chromium-3-chromium-picolinate-344436#0
RxList. Chromium. Side Effects Center.
https://www.rxlist.com/chromium/supplements.htm

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