Creatine is a naturally occurring chemical found in muscle cells, and it aids in producing energy in your muscles during heavy lifting or high-intensity activity. Athletes and bodybuilders widely use creatine supplementation to gain muscle, increase strength, and improve workout performance. It has a lot of similarities to amino acids in terms of chemistry, and the amino acids glycine and arginine can be used to make it. Meat consumption, exercise, muscle mass, and hormone levels such as testosterone and IGF-1 impact your body’s creatine storage.
Approximately 95 percent of your body’s creatine is kept in the form of phosphocreatine in your muscles. The remaining 5% is stored in your brain, kidneys, and liver. Phosphocreatine reserves are increased when you supplement. This is a type of stored energy in the cells that aids in producing ATP, a high-energy molecule. ATP is sometimes referred to as the body’s energy currency. Your body can function better throughout exercise if you have more ATP. Creatine affects several cellular processes, improving muscular mass, strength, and healing.
What is Creatine?
Creatine is a natural source of energy for muscle contraction in your body. Its name is derived from a Greek word that means “flesh.” A carnivorous diet provides roughly half of the body’s supply, while the other half is created in the liver and kidneys and then supplied to the skeletal muscles for usage. Approximately 95% of creatine is stored in your skeletal muscle and utilized during physical activity. Creatine aids in the ongoing energy supply to active muscles by maintaining muscular development. It’s also found in minor amounts in your heart, brain, and other organs.
Creatine can also be present in milk, red meat, and seafood. One to two grams of creatine per day is consumed in a typical omnivorous/carnivorous diet, and Creatine levels in vegetarians’ bodies are likely to be lower. Creatine coexists in a steady state with creatinine, a related molecule that may be detected in lab testing as a kidney function marker. It is excreted from the body through the urine. To maintain normal levels, your body must release stored creatine daily, with the amount varying based on your muscle mass. Although your body produces creatine naturally, you must maintain your levels through your regular diet.
Why do People Take Creatine Supplements?
Creatine supplements have been used by professional and amateur athletes of all levels to aid their workout routines and increase workout recovery. Creatine boosts performance by providing a “quick burst” energy and greater strength but has minimal effect on aerobic endurance. Most creatine supplement users are male athletes who participate in power sports like football, wrestling, hockey, and bodybuilding. Before taking creatine supplements, consult your doctor or healthcare professional, regardless of your age or health condition.
Are Creatine Supplements Recommended for Athletes?
Many athletes take creatine supplements. Professional sports associations, the International Olympic Committee, and the National Collegiate Athletic Association have approved the supplement (NCAA).
Men and women have claimed benefits, albeit most research has been conducted on men. According to research, women who take creatine supplements may not gain as much strength or muscle mass as males while training.
Micronized Creatine Monohydrate Powder
- 5 grams pure creatine monohydrate per serving
- Supports increases in energy, endurance, and recovery
- Maximum potency supports muscle size, strength, and power
- Supreme absorbency micronized to get the most out of each dose
- Unflavored can be mixed in your favorite beverage with ease – The product does not come with a scoop
What are the Potential Benefits of Taking Creatine Supplements?
Taking creatine supplements has been shown to:
- Improve your exercise performance.
- Help your recovery after intense exercise.
- Prevent and reduce the severity of the injury.
- Help athletes tolerate heavy training loads.
- Increase your fat-free muscle mass during training.
Vegetarians may benefit more from the supplements because their intramuscular creatine storage is lower. Building up levels in the muscles, on the other hand, may take longer.
According to several studies, the creatine supplement users have fewer cramps, heat illness/dehydration, muscle tightness, muscle strains/pulls, non-contact injuries, and overall injuries/missed practices than individuals who do not take creatine supplements. The results appear to last a long time.
Furthermore, taking creatine supplements has been shown to help with neurodegenerative diseases (such as muscular dystrophy, Parkinson’s disease, and Huntington’s disease), diabetes, osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, disorders of creatine metabolism or transport, aging, brain health, and heart ischemia in studies.
What are the Side Effects of Taking Creatine Supplements?
Creatine is a relatively safe substance, with only a few known adverse effects. However, take in mind the following:
- You may gain weight if you take creatine supplements since your body’s muscles retain water. Depending on how much creatine you already have in your body, it will take seven to 28 days to experience energy effects.
- When you’re dehydrated or trying to reduce weight, taking creatine pills can be risky.
The International Society of Sports Nutrition recently concluded that there is no scientific evidence that using creatine monohydrate for short or extended periods causes any harm to otherwise healthy people. However, before taking creatine or any other supplement, always see your doctor.
Is it Safe to Take Creatine Supplements?
Although your body produces creatine naturally, taking additional supplements appears safe. However, keep in mind that nutritional supplements are not regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration. Store-bought creatine supplements may differ in creatine supplement quantity, quality, and other substances, and there are no safety or purity requirements in place.
If your child is under 18, talk to your doctor about taking creatine supplements. There isn’t enough information about creatine supplement safety in pregnant or breastfeeding women. Before usage, consult your healthcare professional if you have kidney problems. Taking the supplement could aggravate your kidney problems. Many drugs have the potential to harm your kidneys. If you’re taking any medications, talk to your doctor first; a combination of creatine supplements and medications could harm your kidneys.
Doctors aren’t sure how creatine supplements affect major organ systems like the heart, brain, kidneys, liver, and reproductive organs or how they interact with over-the-counter pharmaceuticals, prescription prescriptions, vitamins, and energy drinks.
Creatine monohydrate, a dietary supplement that improves muscle function during short-duration, high-intensity resistance activities, is the most common. According to studies, these supplements have been shown to aid athletes during strength exercise, notably weightlifting and cycling. Other types of creatine have not been found to provide further benefits. Creatine supplements are available under a range of brand names and various products. Over-the-counter supplements are available at vitamin, drug, and grocery stores and online. Creatine gives your muscles energy, and the rest threatens your liver and kidneys with around half of your diet. Many athletes use creatine pills to help them gain strength and improve their performance.
In healthy persons, supplements are relatively safe; however, before taking creatine supplements, always with your doctor. Creatine is a substance that occurs naturally in the human body, and it’s also found in red meat and shellfish. It’s frequently utilized to boost athletic performance and muscular mass. Creatine aids in the production of energy for muscles, and Skeletal muscle contains around 95% of it. Creatine is found in the majority of sports supplements in the United States. People who begin taking creatine with lower levels appear to benefit more than those with greater levels. Creatine is often used to increase muscle mass and improve workout performance. It’s also used to treat muscle cramps, exhaustion, MS, depression, and other ailments.