Chromium is an essential mineral, important for insulin function. Supplementation may be helpful for people who are deficient, particularly those with diabetes. It is also commonly found in supplements for weight loss, where it may provide a small benefit. Other uses for chromium supplements have been proposed.
However, among the chromium supplements that ConsumerLab.com recently selected for review and testing, 2 out of 4 contained more chromium than listed -- a concern because getting too much chromium can have negative effects. And pills of one product did not break apart in solution within the expected amount of time for tablets.
Two of the products passed ConsumerLab.com's tests as did five products tested through CL's Quality Certification Program. These supplements contained what they claimed, did not contain unacceptable amounts of lead, arsenic, cadmium or hexavalent chromium (a potential carcinogen), and, if tablets, broke apart properly). Although the cost to obtain a 200 mcg dose of chromium was as high as 24 cents among the tested products, some of the best chromium supplements cost as little as 1 to 4 cents.
You must subscribe to get the full test results in our extensive report on chromium supplements along with ConsumerLab.com recommendations and quality ratings. You will get results for four chromium supplements selected by ConsumerLab.com and for five others that passed the same testing through CL's voluntary certification program, as well as information about two products very similar to one of those that passed testing.
In this comprehensive report, you'll discover:
- Which chromium supplements failed testing and which passed -- and why
- Direct comparisons and quality ratings of supplements with chromium
- The pros and cons of different forms of chromium (such as chromium picolinate, chromium polynicotinate, chromium chloride, and GTF chromium) and which may be best for you
- Dosage of chromium for specific uses and the evidence for or against those uses (including diabetes, weight loss, and memory enhancement)
- Concerns, cautions, and potential side effects with chromium