Colloidal chromium is a colloid of chromium, a colloid being a mix of substances where minute particles are suspended in either a gas, a solid or a liquid. With colloidal chromium the chromium is suspended in a substance, most likely a liquid. Colloidal chromium may be entered into a colloid in the form of chromium chloride.
Supplements of colloidal chromium may be in deionized water and mixed with vanadium, another trace mineral. Chromium is one of several trace minerals; “trace mineral” meaning that the element is needed by the human body in small quantities. Foods may contain chromium, especially plant foods. Through certain types of processing, such as processing using stainless steel equipment, this food can increase the concentration of chromium. Chromium can also be in scarce supply to the body due to the bioavailability of any given food. Colloidal chromium, the suspension or colloid of chromium in a liquid, may help resolve many health issues.
Chromium in any form is used in the body to allow for proper metabolism of sugars and fat. Chromium augments insulin in its function. Chromium is found in the human body in the kidneys, bones, spleen and liver in mentionable quantities. Chromium levels in the body could become low or always be low without supplements. Signals that a person has a deficiency of this substance include elevated insulin levels and a problem with glucose tolerance.
Animals may be given chromium supplements. Some animals, such as pigs, have advantageous reactions to taking chromium supplements including a larger proportion of lean tissue in their physiques and an increase in the size of their litter. Additional benefits among farm animals include an increased resilience to stress and in turn the immune function of these animals.
When the human body absorbs chromium from the intestinal tract, this chromium is trivalent, which means it has a valency of three. Valency of an element is the number of hydrogen atoms that an atom can combine with or displace when forming compound substances. Having a valency of three or being trivalent makes colloidal chromium much safer than other chromiums such as the hexavalent chromium that is considerably more toxic. Chromium supplements such as colloidal chromium have been shown to reduce serum cholesterol, low density lipoproteins, also known as Apolipoprotein B, and triglycerides, and to increase the high density lipoproteins in the blood which are the ‘good’ cholesterol lipoproteins. Persons who continue to have low levels of chromium may increase their risk for obesity, tiredness, atherosclerosis and heart disease.