Submitted to: International Symposium on Metal Ions in Biology and Medicine
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/30/2004
Publication Date: 5/1/2004
Citation: Anderson, R.A. 2004. Metal Ions Biology Medicine. In: M.A. Cser, I. Sziklai Laszlo, A. C. Etienne, Y. Maymard, J. Centino, L. Khassanova, P. Collery, editors. John Libbey Eurotext, Paris, FR, Vol.8, p.3-7. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Aging has negative effects on glucose, insulin, blood lipids, insulin sensitivity, body weight, body fat and lean body mass. In addition, aging and high sugar diets also have negative effects on chromium status. Chromium intake and status decline with age. In a study involving over 40,000 people, chromium content of the hair, sweat and urine were shown to decline with age. The addition of chromium to the diet of rats led to an increase in lifespan by 33% and improved blood glucose and insulin sensitivity. High sugar low chromium diets fed to goats also led to age-dependent increases in food intake and body weight with the associated increases in blood glucose and decreased insulin sensitivity. The declines in insulin sensitivity are reflected by changes in chromium metabolism with patients with diabetes having lower chromium levels in the blood and higher chromium losses with further declines in chromium status associated with aging. Food patterns common in aging including increased consumption of high sugar foods also leads to higher chromium losses and decreased chromium status. These foods also tend to not only increase chromium losses but are also low in chromium leading to decreased chromium intake with increased losses. Consumption of foods that increase insulin is also associated with weight gain, increased fat mass and decreased lean body mass which are improved by improved chromium nutrition. The increases in obesity and chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases may not be normal consequences of aging but rather suboptimal dietary patterns that are manifest with age. Improved chromium nutrition is one of the factors that leads to reversal of suboptimal health that manifests with age.