Benefits of Chromium Picolinate
Chromium picolinate is a supplement that is claimed to help with several conditions. For instance, some of the reported chromium picolinate benefits include aiding in weight loss, lowering blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes, and treating polycystic ovarian syndrome. Of all the common uses, using it for type 2 diabetes has the most scientific evidence.
Chromium picolinate is commonly used in multivitamins and supplements. Humans require a small amount of chromium, and most people consume it through their diet. As with most other vitamins, minerals, or supplements, people use chromium picolinate for many different uses. These supplements are often claimed to:
- Aid in weight loss
- Lower blood sugar in people with type 2 diabetes
- Increase blood sugar in people with hypoglycemia
- Help with depression or other mood disorders
- Treat polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
- Help in athletic training (such as for body building).
Of all the common uses for chromium picolinate, using it to help with type 2 diabetes has the most scientific evidence. The other uses have little (or sometimes no) evidence in their favor (see Does Chromium Picolinate Work? for more information).
You may read on the Internet that most people can benefit from chromium picolinate supplements because deficiencies are common. However, it is difficult to diagnose a deficiency, because tests (such as blood, urine, or hair sample tests) do not accurately reflect the level of chromium in the body.
Therefore, most of the claims about the frequency of chromium deficiencies are based on the dietary intake of chromium, even though some studies have shown that most Americans get enough. However, the body seems to adjust its absorption and excretion of chromium as necessary, so a low dietary intake may not actually indicate a chromium deficiency. If you do not get enough chromium in your diet, your body may be able to compensate somewhat by absorbing chromium better and excreting less of it into the urine.