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Leading U.S. Research Manufacturing Company Affirms Safety of Chromium Picolinate: Response to United Kingdom Food Standards Agency (FSA) Advisory on Vitamins and Minerals


PURCHASE, N.Y., May 9, 2003 -- Decades of scientific research conducted at leading institutions show that chromium picolinate is not only safe, but also may have important health benefits for human and animals.

Safety and efficacy studies with chromium and chromium picolinate have been conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Human Nutrition Research Center, Duke University Medical Center, Harvard University School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, University of Vermont College of Medicine, and the National Toxicology Program, under guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency.

No evidence of toxicity has been found in any of the numerous studies in which chromium picolinate was administered orally to humans or animals. According to Dr. Richard Anderson, who has conducted numerous published chromium picolinate studies at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center, the Food Standards Agency’s (FSA) committee drew inaccurate conclusions based on data using intravenous injection. “The body’s response to mineral injection is unique compared with oral administration, and does not translate to human supplementation guidelines.”

Chromium is an essential mineral that enhances insulin activity. Chromium picolinate is a form of chromium that is very stable, safe and well-absorbed by the body. A large and growing body of scientific data suggests that chromium picolinate may help lower some risk factors for diseases associated with insulin resistance, such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and even atypical depression.

The results of 11 human clinical trials, including a recent article published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry suggest that chromium picolinate decreases insulin levels and improves blood sugar metabolism in both obese people and people with type 2 diabetes.

About Nutrition 21
Nutrition 21 is a leading developer and provider of nutritional products whose health benefits are substantiated by clinical research. The Company markets Chromax chromium picolinate, the leading brand of chromium, and holds 35 patents for nutrition products, 22 for chromium compounds and their uses. More information is available at


Chromium Picolinate Safety Evidence Highlights:

• USDA research showed that chromium picolinate was safe in a 24-week animal toxicity study in which animals were dosed at chromium levels several thousand times the upper estimated safe intake for humans (Anderson, 1997).
• The National Toxicology Program, a government agency, conducted an AMES test for chromosomal aberrations and a genotoxicity test for mutagenesis with chromium picolinate and found no toxicity. These tests were performed under Environmental Protection Agency standards for evaluating toxicity of minerals (NTP-CASNO 14639-25-9). These same tests were replicated, further confirming the safety of chromium picolinate (Greenberg, 1999; Juturu, 2002).
• The Institute of Medicine (IOM) Food & Nutrition Board recently conducted a scientific review and concluded that there was no basis for setting a tolerable upper level intake (UL) for chromium (The National Academies Press, 2002)
• No adverse effects of chromium picolinate supplementation were found in 2,000 subjects who participated in 35 published clinical trials.
• More than a decade of safe use in human and animal U.S. nutrition markets with more than 10 million consumers using chromium picolinate supplements annually.
• Chromium picolinate is affirmed as Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) in the United States by Environ International’s Expert Panel.

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Contact: Stacey Antine 914-701-4567
Sue Preziotti 646-495-3140

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