Chromium helps to keep insulin activity in the body efficient, an effect that may
be bone-protective in a couple of ways:
- by promoting the production of collagen by our bone-building cells (called
- by moderating bone breakdown (resorption).
This latter effect was demonstrated in a study where postmenopausal women supplementing
with the insulin-sensitizing nutrient chromium picolinate were found to have less
calcium and collagen protein molecules in their urine.
A third bone-protective aspect was identified in a similar study, where along with
improving insulin regulation and lowering calcium excretion, supplementing with
chromium picolinate raised blood levels of DHEA, a hormone that may play a physiological
role in preserving bone density among postmenopausal women.
Chromium absorption from foods tends to be poor and, according to Dr. Richard Anderson
of the Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center in Maryland, chromium levels in
the blood can also be diminished by a number of stressors: high sugar intake, intense
exercise, pregnancy, breastfeeding, infection, and physical injury. Chromium levels
also tend to diminish with age. These concerns can all be addressed by supplementing
with a medical-grade formulation containing certain chelated forms of chromium,
such as chromium polynicotinate or chromium picolinate.
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