Chromium

Chromium is a trace element found widely in the environment. It's found in the air, water and soil, and in plants and animals.

Good food sources of chromium include meat, whole grains (such as wholemeal bread and whole oats), lentils and spices.

How much do I need?

You should be able to get all the chromium you need by eating a varied and balanced diet.

Adults need at least 0.025 mg of chromium a day.

What does it do?

It's thought to influence how insulin behaves in the body, so chromium may affect the amount of energy we get from the food we eat.

What happens if I take too much?

There isn't enough evidence to know what the effects might be of taking high doses of chromium each day.

What is our advice?

You should be able to get all the chromium you need by eating a varied and balanced diet.

If you decide to take chromium supplements, it's a good idea not to take too much because this might be harmful.

Having 10 mg or less a day of chromium from food and supplements is unlikely to cause any harm.

Previously the Agency advised people not to take chromium picolinate supplements, following the 2003 report of the Expert Group on Vitamins and Minerals (EVM).

However, following a review of new research by the Committee on Mutagenicity (COM), the Agency has decided that it is no longer necessary to advise people to avoid chromium picolinate.