Initially Posted: 07/07/2018
Chromium Supplements Reviewed by ConsumerLab.com

Alphabetical list of chromium-containing supplement brands compared in this review

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365 [Whole Foods] Chromium Picolinate

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ez Melts Chromium

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GNC Chromium Picolinate

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Ortho Molecular Products Reacted Chromium

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Puritan’s Pride Chromium Picolinate

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Source Naturals Chromium Picolinate

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Spring Valley [Walmart] Chromium Picolinate

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Summary

  • What does chromium do? Chromium is an essential trace mineral needed for insulin function. Supplementing with chromium may be of modest benefit to some people with type 2 diabetes. One study suggests it may help people with reactive hypoglycemia. Although touted for weight loss, the evidence is weak. (See What It Is and What It Does).
  • How much chromium should I take? The daily requirement for chromium ranges from 11 mcg in young children to 45 mcg in lactating women. These amounts can be obtained from the diet (see Adequate intake and Chromium from food). However, much greater amounts (200 mcg to 1,000 mcg per day) are typically taken for therapeutic uses (See Dosage). Certain forms may be better absorbed than others (See Chromium from supplements).
  • Best choice for chromium? Among the products Approved in testing, CL selected three (of different strengths) as its Top Picks.
  • How to take chromium? You can take chromium with water or food, but it may be best not to take it along with a supplement or dairy foods providing large amounts of calcium because calcium may reduce chromium absorption.
  • Safety and side effects of chromium: Chromium at doses of 200 mcg or more daily can cause side-effects (See Concerns and Cautions).
You must be a ConsumerLab.com member to get the full test results and reviews for seven chromium supplements. Six of these were selected for review by ConsumerLab.com and one other product passed the same testing in CL's voluntary Quality Certification Program. In the review, you'll learn: 
  • ConsumerLab's Top Picks for chromium supplements based on quality, dose and value
  • Which products passed or failed our tests and why
  • How chromium supplements compare on ingredients, dosage, and cost
  • The pros and cons of different forms of chromium (such as chromium picolinate, chromium polynicotinate, chromium chloride) and which may be best for you — plus, what you should know about "GTF" chromium
  • Dosage of chromium for specific uses and the evidence for or against those uses (including diabetes, weight loss, hypoglycemia, and memory enhancement)
  • Safety, side effects, and other concerns to consider when using chromium supplements

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