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New Research Shows Nutrition 21's Chromium Histidinate Improves Markers for Mood and Carbohydrate Cravings

U.S.D.A. Animal Studies: Chromium Picolinate and Chromium Histidinate Down-regulate Gene in Brain that Precedes Alzheimer's Disease

Additional Studies Continue to Demonstrate Safety and Efficacy of Nutrition 21's Chromax Chromium Picolinate

PURCHASE, N.Y., May 14 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Nutrition 21, Inc. (Nasdaq: NXXI), the developer and marketer of nutritional supplements under the Iceland Health(R) and Diabetes Essentials brands, recently presented results of a research study testing its chromium histidinate in animal models of obesity and of diabetes. The addition of chromium histidinate to the diet significantly increased brain serotonin levels. Increased serotonin levels are known to improve mood and decrease carbohydrate cravings. These results were presented at the Experimental Biology 2009 conference in New Orleans.

Additional research on chromium was presented by scientists from the U.S.D.A. and from the Medical College of Georgia (MCG). The U.S.D.A. study in animals showed that chromium histidinate and chromium picolinate reduced the expression of the gene in the brain that produces TAU proteins. The TAU protein is involved in the development of Alzheimer's disease. Research by MCG demonstrated that high doses of chromium picolinate are safe and does not cause kidney dysfunction in animal models of obesity and of diabetes.

James Komorowski, M.S., vice president - technical services and scientific affairs for Nutrition 21, stated, "These results provide a mechanism by which chromium histidinate and chromium picolinate improves mood and reduces carbohydrate cravings. The research by the U.S.D.A. provides evidence to support additional research in new chromium applications that address significant quality of life issues in our society. The research by MCG continues to support the safety of chromium picolinate, even at high doses." Nutrition 21 owns issued and pending patents on multiple uses of chromium, chromium picolinate and chromium histidinate.

Michael A. Zeher, president and chief executive officer of Nutrition 21, commented, "We believe that the research work done by independent organizations like the U.S.D.A. and Medical College of Georgia continues to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of our chromium products in conditions such as obesity and diabetes, and begins to demonstrate the potential to address additional health issues like Alzheimer's Disease. We are pleased with the results of these studies and we remain dedicated to continuing scientific research and product development initiatives going forward."

About Experimental Biology Conference

Experimental Biology is a multi-society, interdisciplinary, scientific meeting featuring plenary and award lectures, symposia, oral and poster sessions, career services, and exhibits of scientific equipment, supplies, and publications. Over 13,000 independent scientists representing the sponsoring and guest societies attend this meeting.

About Nutrition 21

Nutrition 21, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXXI), headquartered in Purchase, NY, is a nutritional bioscience company and the maker of chromium picolinate-based and omega-3 fish oil-based supplements with health benefits substantiated by clinical research. Nutrition 21 holds more than 30 patents for nutrition products and uses. Nutrition 21's portfolio of health and wellness products include: Iceland Health Chromax(R), Iceland Health Advanced Memory Formula(TM), Diabetes Essentials, Iceland Health(R) Maximum Strength Omega-3 and Iceland Health(R) Joint Relief. The company also manufactures private label supplements and ingredients for third parties. Nutrition 21 distributes its products nationally through more than 29,000 major food, drug and super center stores throughout the United States and internationally. For more information please visit

Safe Harbor Provision

This press release may contain certain forward-looking statements. The words "believe," "expect," "anticipate" and other similar expressions generally identify forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates. These forward-looking statements are based largely on the Company's current expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including without limitation: the effect of the expiration of patents; regulatory issues; uncertainty in the outcomes of clinical trials; changes in external market factors; changes in the Company's business or growth strategy or an inability to execute its strategy due to changes in its industry or the economy generally; the emergence of new or growing competitors; various other competitive factors; and other risks and uncertainties indicated from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Form 10-K/A for the year ended June 30, 2008. Actual results could differ materially from the results referred to in the forward-looking statements. In light of these risks and uncertainties, there can be no assurance that the results referred to in the forward-looking statements contained in this press release will in fact occur. Additionally, the Company makes no commitment to disclose any revisions to forward-looking statements, or any facts, events or circumstances after the date hereof that may bear upon forward-looking statements.

    Company Contact:                    Investor Contact:
    James Komorowski, M.S.              Alan Kirschbaum
    Vice President                      Chief Financial Officer
    914-701-4500                        914-701-4500

SOURCE Nutrition 21, Inc.
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