Belly fat. Yeah, that sneaky visceral fat that hugs the hips, bulges at the waistband and gives you a nice saggy pouch tummy. Think I'll pass, thanks. But it is not that easy. Belly fat is all too common and is one of the most stubborn fats to shift.
As we age, our metabolism naturally slows down, and our overall body fat ratio can gradually increase. This is dependent on a number of factors including your age, gender, diet and lifestyle; whether you lead an active or sedentary life, are middle aged, female and menopausal, or male and a heavy beer drinker. There are also many health conditions that can trigger excess belly fat such as adrenal fatigue, poor gut health and digestive issues, pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes , and chronic stress to name a few.
For the most part, a well-balanced, wholefoods diet, plenty of sleep and water, and regular exercise goes a long way in preventing belly fat, but some things are harder to control than others. You might eat well, but be less active than you'd like to due lack of time and setting your priorities on work, family and the kids. Perhaps your are a bit of gym rat but enjoy beer and pizzas every weekend. Lifestyle choices do make a big difference but what about those triggers you cannot change like genetics, ageing and stress. These take a toll as well--for even the most healthiest eater and fitness conscious. This is where, balancing an otherwise healthy diet and lifestyle with a supplement , like chromium*, can be of benefit to shift unwanted and stubborn kilos.
What Is Chromium
An essential trace mineral, chromium is needed for the growth and overall health of the body. Among other things, it is needed for the breakdown of dietary fat, carbohydrates, and protein. Chromium has become the most popular mineral supplement in Australia, after calcium. And for good reason-- it was reported that chromium can help burn fat and lower blood sugar levels, and are also supposed to build muscle mass, help lower cholesterol, and reduce the risk of heart disease. Recent studies have shown that chromium also seems to have mild cholesterol-lowering effects. Further research may prove that chromium is helpful in lowering triglyceride levels, while raising the HDL (good) levels.
Chromium May Help Control Diabetes
In people with type 2 diabetes, the pancreas tries to regulate blood sugar levels by secreting insulin. A molecule called “glucose tolerance factor” (GTF) increases the sensitivity of cells to insulin. The GTF molecule contains chromium. Therefore, chromium supplements may help normalise blood sugar levels in those experiencing issues. Several clinical tests have proven that diabetics who were on chromium supplements were able to reduce their dosage of medication (under a qualified physicians care).
The effects of chromium are enhanced when taken with niacin (vitamin B3). Studies have also revealed that chromium may have a stabilising effect on people with hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), thus doing away with symptoms like headache, nausea, fatigue, and irritability.
Assist Weight Loss
Chromium has been used to support those struggling with obesity to lose weight. The essential mineral helps by improving body composition by increasing muscle mass and reducing fat. While some studies have revealed mixed results, it is possible that when combined with a healthy diet and a regular exercise program, chromium supplements have a proven effect.
Newly released, this support multivitamin (click here) is an example of a chromium supplement designed to support normal metabolic processes and assist in your body’s conversion of food to energy with effective ingredients. Taking it regularly can help reduce bloating and belly fat while complimenting an otherwise healthy diet and exercise program.
Each capsule of Metabotrim provides essential vitamins and minerals including chromium as mentioned to help normalise insulin function and promote the conversion of macromolecules into energy. Paired with B-vitamins (B3, B6, and B12), this naturally improves fat and carbohydrate metabolism. Taken with your morning and evening meals, this supplement could earn a place in your weight loss program.
While there is no recommended dosage for chromium, 50 to 200 mcg taken on a daily basis is adequate for adults. Most basic vitamin-mineral combinations have enough chromium to prevent a deficiency. The body seems capable of absorbing all forms of chromium equally well. For optimal absorption, it is better to combine chromium with vitamin C. Taking antacids may impair absorption of this mineral. Excessive amounts of chromium may lead to a deficiency in zinc.
*Before trying any dietary supplement or changing your diet, consult with your regular GP or health professional. Long-term and high-dose chromium supplements may damage the body. Chromium picolinate also alters certain brain chemicals like serotonin and dopamine. Therefore people with any behavioral disorder should consult a doctor before taking chromium supplements. Chromium may have unknown effects on pregnant or lactating women.