Chromium Polynicotinate is often deficient in the soil and it’s well known as lacking in New Zealand soil. This important mineral plays several roles in the body in relation to weight management and blood sugar and blood fat control.
Chromium is necessary for the uptake of sugar into the body’s cells by insulin. If sugar is not taken into the cell to be used for energy then the body must take it away from the blood vessels to prevent harm.
Where does the body take the sugar to be quickly out of the way? Firstly to the liver to be stored as glycogen for future use. But liver stores are limited therefore excess glucose is then taken to your body’s fat cells to be stored as fat. If the body is supplied with chromium a healthy blood sugar balance is more easily maintained because the body is able to utilize more sugar for energy into the cells where it is needed.
On a molecular level, chromium enhances the effect of insulin on insulin receptors, glucose transporters, and glycogen synthase, the enzyme that converts glucose to glycogen.
CHOLESTEROL AND FAT
It is well known that raised blood sugars and raised blood fats go hand-in-hand.
In addition to balancing blood sugar, chromium is used by the body to balance cholesterol and metabolize fat. Some studies have shown that it both helps to lower LDL so-called ‘bad’ cholesterol and raise HDL so-called ‘good’ cholesterol.
Chromium inhibits resistin, the hormone that causes insulin resistance in fat cells (adipocytes).
DIETARY SOURCES OF CHROMIUM
If the soil is well supplied and organic then chromium is found naturally in onions, lettuce, broccoli, nuts, potatoes, peas, prunes, mushrooms, beets, whole wheat, bee pollen, barley grass, oat straw, and red clover.
Unfortunately, due to chemical fertilizers and pesticides, soils are so deficient in chromium (along with many other minerals), that we can no longer expect the food we eat to supply adequate amounts of chromium.
Some people eat a healthy diet, low in refined carbohydrates (which have a high glycemic index), and with adequate protein and high in vegetables and fruit. They also follow a regular exercise routine but still fail to lose the desired amount of weight (body fat). These people may benefit from supplying their body with this necessary tool to decrease sugar conversion to body fat.
Likewise for anyone suffering any kind of blood sugar disease or pre-diabetic condition such as Syndrome X which is accompanied by raised blood fats, raised cholesterol and raised blood pressure as well as high blood sugars.
SUPPLEMENTING WITH CHROMIUM
Best results will come from supplemental chromium. If you have signs of sufficiency such as sugar cravings or cravings for foods high in refined carbohydrate, fatigue, palpitations, dizziness and or if you have already developed insulin resistance or diabetes then supplemental chromium will help.
The average person becomes chromium deficient with age.
Satisfed is Brett Elliott’s capsule formulation supplying chromium along with herbs that support pancreatic function. The form of chromium used in Satisfed is a point of interest. We use chromium polynicotinate (not to be confused with the more commonly used picolinate). The polynicotinate form of chromium has been shown to have an even higher bioavailability and better safety profile than chromium picolinate.
Chromium picolinate is chromium tightly bound with picolinic acid. This means that chromium may be excreted from the body as it remains bound to the picolinic acid. Apart from evidence that this commonly supplemented form of chromium is not so well utilized by the body, there are concerns over the safety of chromium picolinate. Although inconclusive, some studies have suggested that picolinate may destroy the genetic material in cells.
In addition, several studies have shown that chromium picolinate does not improve glucose metabolism or result in weight loss in obese people.
As with all nutrients, the dose also plays a role so we recommend reading the label of your chromium supplement or a weight loss supplement that contains chromium. We choose to use the chromium polynicotinate form for safety and efficacy at a therapeutic dose.
Chromium polynicotinate is formed when chromium is bound to vitamin B3 molecules. Because Vitamin B3 plays a role in stabilizing blood sugar, this combination makes a useful, safe and readily available form of chromium for improving conditions of blood sugar imbalance.
Research has identified the polynicotinate form as the active component of true Glucose Tolerance Factor (GTF) which is responsible for binding insulin to cell membrane receptors.
Satisfed also contains therapeutic doses of Gymnema, a herb that greatly supports the pancreas. Gymnema sylvestre has been shown to not only protect the cells of the pancreas (islets of Langherhans) that produce insulin but also to aid insulin uptake of sugar into the body cells. Chromium and Gymnema make a mighty fat balancing duo when teamed up with insulin.
People who have used the Satisfed product report that they have increased energy and excitingly, they have reduced cravings. This makes the whole process of eating right to lose weight much more rewarding. A reduction in cravings also shows that the body is well nourished and not ‘crying out’ for something it is missing.
When chromium is taken with the herbs in the specialized Detox and Slim product range along with the program dietary guidelines you have a way of cleansing the system and allowing fat metabolism and weight loss while enjoying simple good food.
Chromium polynicotinate should not be underestimated as a weight management mineral.
Chromium can be found in the following herbal products.
Brett Elliott ®