Chromium potentiates insulin action and influences carbohydrate, lipid, and protein metabolism. It may have a beneficial effect on serum triglyceride levels.

Another possible role for chromium, similar to that of zinc, is in the regulation of gene expression.


Food Sources and Intakes

Brewer’s yeast, oysters, liver, and potatoes have high chromium concentrations; seafood, whole grains, cheeses, chicken, meats, and bran have medium chromium concentrations. Dairy products, fruits, and vegetables are low in chromium.


Chromium deficiency results in insulin resistance and a few lipid abnormalities, which can be ameliorated by chromium supplementation. Some epidemiologic studies suggest low tissue levels of chromium in patients with diabetes.

Infants:   0.2-­5.5 mcg/day, depending on age
Young children:    11­-15 mcg/day, depending on age
Older children and adolescents:   21­-35 mcg/day, depending on age and gender
Adults:     20­-35 mcg/day, depending on age and gender
Pregnant:   29-­30 mcg/day, depending on age
Lactating:  44-­45 mg/day, depending on age