Creatine Types, Benefits, And Side Effects

Creatine

Introduction

Creatine has taken control of the fitness world for the last decade. It is the number one health supplement that can improve your gym performances!

Creatine comes with ample health benefits such as it can increase exercise performances and boost your natural muscle strength. Also, it can increase the lean muscle mass in your body and help you to lose extra weight! Creatine protects against many neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Ischemic diseases, and many more.

The nitrogenous organic acid creatine supplies energy to muscle cells throughout your body. Generally, it occurs in fish and red meats and made by the body itself. But you can also intake it through supplements! 

Want to know everything about the creatine supplements? Then you are on the right track!

In this article, we will tell you everything about the creatine supplements, what it is, how does it work, dosage, and other factors. So without wasting any more of your precious time, let’s start!

What is Creatine?

Creatine is a nitrogen-rich acid that is formed with three important amino acids, glycine, L-arginine, and L-methionine. Around 95% of the total creatine of our body is stored in the skeletal muscle and the other 5% is in the brain. Creatine takes up to 1% of the total blood volume. 

Almost 1.5-2% of the body’s total creatine percentage is used each day by the internal organs like the kidney, liver, and pancreas. Creatine gets transported into various body parts through the blood. It goes to the body parts that come with high energy demands like the brain or skeleton.

Usually, the types of creatine used in health supplements are creatine monohydrate and creatine nitrate. Creatine supplements are used to improve the performances of the athletes to increase muscle mass and metabolism.

Types of Creatine Supplement 

Well, there are different variants of creatine supplements available in the market. These types are-

1. Creatine Monohydrate 

Usually, creatine monohydrate is the basic creatine that comes in its natural form. It is very easily absorbable.

2. Creapure

Creapure is the type of creatine that undergoes a liquid chromatography technique. Therefore, it is completely free from any contaminants like Creatinine, Dicyandiamide, and Dihydrotrizine.

3. Creatine Ethyl Ester

It’s a common type of creatine that comes with quicker absorption and superior utilization. It is produced by the reaction of carboxylic acid and ethanol.

4. Tri Creatine Malate

Tri creatine malate is a bonding form of malic acid. It binds with the creatine monohydrate. This creatine is a water-soluble supplement. Another type of this is tri-band creatine is tri creatine orotate. It is formed with bondings between creatine monohydrate and orotic acid in a 2:1 ratio. This is the next generation creatine supplement that shows results really quickly.

How Does Creatine Work?

Creatine is a type of supplement that helps to strengthen the muscles and increase muscle mass. This nitrogenous acid is naturally found in the muscles. Creatine helps to provide more energy to the muscle cells and grows them. Thus creatine improves health and athletic performances.

  • It boosts the workload and grows the muscles.
  • Enhances the cell. signaling procedures and repairs the muscles.
  • Increases anabolic hormones like IGF 1.
  • Boosts the cell hydration and increases the water content of the cell.
  • Also, creatine decreases the protein breakdown and lowers the myostatin level in the cell.

How Can You Intake Creatine?

You can mix the creatine powder with milk, juice, or water and also take it before or after workouts. You can consume creatine in any two ways mentioned following.

1. Loading Creatine 

Creatine loading is the standard dosage of creatine supplement. Here, you can intake 20-25 g of creatine supplement powder and split it into 4-5 equal doses and take it for 5-7 days.

To maintain the creatine store in the muscles 3-4 g of creatine supplement powder is necessary. Your muscles need at least 5-7 days of creatine loading. 

2. Dose Maintenance

Apart from this creatine loading, another dose maintenance of creatine is 3-5 g per day. But in the case of dose maintenance, it takes almost 28 days to show any result.

Remember to take the supplement, the maintenance dose is more convenient than creatine loading as it comes with daily 1 dose rather than 5-6 g per day.

Also Read: 10 Best Creatine in India

Benefits of Creatine Supplements

Well, creatine supplement powder comes with ample health benefits. Let’s check them!

1. Brain Health

The best effect the creatine supplement shows is in the brain. Creatine helps in reducing the death of neurons and brain cells. This supplement supplies energy to the brain cells thus protects them to make them live longer. Therefore, creatine is very important for those who are suffering from any brain injury! It can also limit the frequency of fatigue, dizziness, and even headaches.

2. Muscle Growth and Recovery

This creatine supplement increases the water content of the muscle cells. Also, creatine enhances the nitrogen balance and helps in transforming proteins into muscles. Another best thing about creatine is that it helps to speed up the process of muscle recovery by altering the muscle’s myogenic factors and reducing atrophy.

3. Sustained Energy

As we know that adenosine triphosphate or ATP is the main energy source of our body. The cells use these ATP for any movements and workouts. Thus, when you are exercising hard, you are using more ATP and the body gets fatigued quickly. Creatine helps you so that your energy doesn’t fade quickly. Thus it will push you harder during your workouts.

4. Improves Strength

As we have already told you that creatine helps in ATP’s sustainability. Thus the creatine supplement provides extra ATP to the body and thus it helps to reduce fatigue and improves muscle strength. It has been found that the creatine supplement can improve muscle strength and also helps in weight lifting performances.

5. Boosts Cardio Muscles

Creatine also helps in the time of any cardio workouts as well. This supplement can help you to bounce back quickly from time off! Creatine affects oxidative stress and inflammations, thus helps in acute repeated-sprint exercises.

6. Anti Depressant

Creatine can keep your brain way more healthy thus, it fights off the mental fatigue. It has been found that consuming creatine supplements along with antidepressants can help to treat depression two times faster. Also, it helps to reduce the factors that trigger depressive episodes. 

Side Effects of Intaking Too Much Creatine

Well, apparently creatine is very safe. But consuming a quantity way higher than the naturally recommended dosage can show some minor side effects.

1. Bloating

A higher amount of creating loading can make you gain weight and also make you feel a little bloated. Also, this weight gain can disturb your muscle growth as well as water retention of the cells. Therefore, you should definitely go for dose maintenance rather than creatine loading.

2. Discomfort in the Stomach

Taking a creatine loading can result in serious stomach discomfort. It can cause diarrhea, stomach upset, and even belching. Make sure to consult a diet expert first before you go for incorporating creatine loading in your diet regularly.

Risk of Creatine Intake

Some people are at the risk of creatine intake. It can show detrimental effects on some people.

  • People with kidney trouble can show some serious problems while intaking creatine supplement powders.
  • People suffering from type 2 diabetes may impair kidney functions.
  • To be on the safe side the lactating and pregnant women should consult a doctor before intake the creatine supplement.

Also Read: BCAA Sources, Benefits, And Side Effects

Bottom Line

Creatine is one of the most important sports supplements that can easily improve athletic performances! Also, it comes with potential health benefits related to brain function, metabolism, increasing muscle mass, and aging.

As we have already said that the main form is creatine monohydrate. Creatine can also increase the testosterone levels of the body. We have written about everything that you need to know about the creatine supplements in this article.

Did you find this article helpful? Did we miss anything? Have you ever used any of these creatine supplement powder? Don’t forget to tell us in the comment section below!

Dr. Pritpal Singh, MBBS
Dr. Pritpal Singh is amongst the best doctors in Kolkata who is specialized in Nutrition. Dr. Pritpal Singh practices at Addlife Caring Minds Clinic in Sarat Bose Road, Kolkata. A highly trained & specialist doctor who has completed MBBS, and has experience over 6 years as a practicing doctor in Nutrition.

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