oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Trivalent chromium, in atherosclerosis and diabetes

Volume 37, Issue 11
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



The known effects of trivalent chromium (Cr) in lowering blood levels of low density lipoproteins (LDL), raising high density lipoproteins (HDL) and improving glucose tolerance are summarised. Chromium deficiency cannot easily be established by direct means, but can be inferred by the reversal of symptoms and signs following the administration of trivalent chromium. This evidence can be supported by knowledge or suspicion of a deficiency in the diet, common in those who use highly refined cereal foods. It is considered that the beneficial effects of chromium repletion are now so well established and the trivalent form is so free of toxicity that it should now be used in clinical medicine for the benefit of those with some forms of diabetes and its complications and those suffering from atherosclerosis. Of perhaps more importance is the public health aspect, since most chromium is discarded in the cereal refinement process, we now have added evidence for a return to the diets in which complex carbohydrates predominated. In those who refuse or are unable to do this, possibly the addition of chromium to their drinking water may be of value.

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