Chromium(III) picolinate

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Template:Chembox header| Chromium(III) picolinate
Chromium(III) picolinate
Chemical name Chromium(III) picolinate
Chemical formula Cr(C6H4NO2)3
Molecular mass 418.33 g/mol
CAS number [14639-25-9]
Density ? g/cm3
Melting point ? °C
Template:Chembox header | Disclaimer and references

Chromium picolinate is the chemical compound that is sold as a nutritional supplement to prevent or treat chromium deficiency. This bright red coordination complex is derived from chromium(III) and picolinic acid. Small quantities of chromium are needed for glucose utilization by insulin in normal health, but deficiency is extremely rare in developed nations.

Health claims and debates

Some commercial organizations promote chromium picolinate as an aid to body development for athletes and as a means of losing weight. But a number of studies have failed to demonstrate an effect of chromium picolinate on either muscle growth or fat loss[1].

Claims have been made that the picolinate form of chromium supplementation is of benefit in reducing insulin resistance, particularly in diabetics. A meta-analysis of chromium supplementation studies showed no association between chromium and glucose or insulin concentrations for non-diabetics, and inconclusive results for diabetics.[2] But this study has been challenged on grounds that it excluded significant results.[3]

There is concern that chromium picolinate is more likely to cause DNA damage and mutation than other forms of trivalent chromium.[4], but these results are also debated. Other studies indicate that chromium picolinate is safe at even very high doses.[5]


  1. Vincent J.B. (2003). "The potential value and toxicity of chromium picolinate as a nutritional supplement, weight loss agent and muscle development agent". SPORTS MEDICINE. 33 (3): 213–230. PMID 12656641.
  2. Althuis MD, Jordan NE, Ludington EA, Wittes JT (2002). "Glucose and insulin responses to dietary chromium supplements: a meta-analysis". AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CLINICAL NUTRITION. 76 (1): 148–155. PMID 12081828.
  3. Kalman DS (2003). "Chromium picolinate and type 2 diabetes". AMERICAN JOURNAL OF CLINICAL NUTRITION. 78 (1): 192. PMID 12816793.
  4. Chaudhary S, Pinkston J, Rabile MM, Van Horn JD (2005). "Unusual reactivity in a commercial chromium supplement compared to baseline DNA cleavage with synthetic chromium complexes". JOURNAL OF INORGANIC BIOCHEMISTRY. 99 (3): 787–794. PMID 15708800.
  5. Anderson R, Cheng N, Bryden N; et al. (1997). "Elevated intakes of supplemental chromium improve glucose and insulin variables in individuals with type 2 diabetes". DIABETES. 46 (11): 1786–1791. Text "[1]" ignored (help)

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