Chromium assists dairy cows with efficiently partitioning glucose. High producing dairy cows undergo extreme stress prior to giving birth and during early lactation, when glucose demands are high. Without chromium, large amounts of available glucose would otherwise be supplied to the growing fetus and to the milk component lactose, reducing the dietary glucose available to the transition cow for normal maintenance.
The primary role of chromium is to potentiate the action of insulin. Increased insulin activity has been shown to promote intracellular glucose uptake and reduce circulating non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA), ensuring that transition dairy cows are portioning glucose efficiently.