Chromium and cholesterol

Although many medications do an excellent job of lowering LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels, most are much less successful at boosting HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels. Niacin is an exception, but it can have unpleasant side effects. But if lifestyle changes don’t help, chromium may be worth a try. Four randomized clinical trials have reported a benefit; from chromium supplements in doses ranging from 200 mcg to 600 mcg a day. More study is needed to sort things out, but since chromium supplements are inexpensive and safe, it is reasonable for people with low HDL5 to try them for two to four months to see if they can help, researchers says.

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