Chromium picolinate linked to brain activity boost

By Stephen Daniells

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Chromium picolinate Magnetic resonance imaging

A daily supplement of chromium picolinate may increase brain
activity in older people experiencing early memory decline,
researchers have reported.

Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans showed that a daily dose of 1,000 micrograms led to greater activation in various parts of the brain, researchers from the University of Cincinnati presented the study results at the 19th annual meeting of the American Neuropsychiatric Association. "The current study showed that older adults taking chromium picolinate exhibited greater brain activation while engaged in a cognitively demanding task,"​ said lead researcher Robert Krikorian. The new study, which included about 30 people, adds to a growing body of science reporting potential health benefits of chromium picolinate, most notably for blood sugar control in diabetics. The full data from the randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study have not been seen by However, the results have been presented at two peer-review medical conferences. Chromium is an essential trace mineral that occurs naturally in small amounts in some foods, including brewer's yeast, lean meat, cheese, pork kidney and whole grain bread and cereals. It is poorly absorbed by the human body but is known to play an important role in the metabolism of carbohydrate, fat and protein. Several reports have indicated that chromium picolinate is better absorbed by humans than other forms of the mineral. Krikorian and co-workers looked at a subset of 13 older adults (average age 72.5) with signs of early memory decline and randomly receiving the chromium picolinate supplement or a placebo for 12 weeks. Brain activity was measured using fMRI while the participants worked on a challenging cognitive task that involved holding in mind and manipulating visual information. According to the researchers, the fMRI scans showed an increase in activation in right thalamic, right temporal, right posterior parietal and bilateral frontal regions in participants receiving chromium picolinate. "These brain imaging results support findings from the prior study suggesting that chromium picolinate may be beneficial for older adults with early memory decline and metabolic irregularities, factors that substantially increase the risk for dementia,"​ said Krikorian. "These findings substantiate the need for continued research to determine the nature and extent of this enhancement,"​ he added. The research was welcomed by James Komorowski, vice president of scientific affairs at US-based Nutrition 21, which makes the picolinate form of chromium. "The earlier memory study conducted by the University of Cincinnati team in addition to the current data using functional MRI supports the ability of chromium picolinate to help improve working memory in the elderly,"​ said Komorowski. Nutrition 21 provided both the chromium picolinate and funding for the study.

Related topics Research Minerals Cognitive function

Related news

Show more

Related products

show more

Formulate for women’s health – formulate empowerment

Formulate for women’s health – formulate empowerment

Content provided by Verdure Sciences | 26-Mar-2024 | Product Brochure

Women’s health trends are mirroring bigger conversations of empowerment and wellbeing. Within the women’s health category, upticks in areas of lean muscle...

Go Beyond the Ordinary: Cognitive Health-BacoMind

Go Beyond the Ordinary: Cognitive Health-BacoMind

Content provided by Natural Remedies Private Limited | 27-Feb-2024 | White Paper

Experience the potency of BacoMind®, the #1 branded bacopa with 9 key bioactives for unparalleled cognitive support.

Nootropics Report 2.0: Brain Health Insights

Nootropics Report 2.0: Brain Health Insights

Content provided by dsm-firmenich | 22-Feb-2024 | Insight Guide

The brain health market is constantly growing and evolving, with more consumers looking for innovative ways to support total mind and body wellness.

Related suppliers

Follow us


View more