Creatine is a substance that is found naturally in muscle cells, helping muscles produce energy during heavy-duty workouts, high-intensity workouts, and heavy lifting. About 95% of the body’s Creatine is stored in muscles in the form of phosphocreatine, while the other 5% are stored in the brain, kidneys, and liver.
Creatine supplements are highly popular among athletes and bodybuilders, and also the number one supplement you can use for improving your performance in the gym, enhancing your strength and increasing fat-free mass.
When you supplement, you increase your stores of phosphocreatine, as a form of storing energy in the cells, which helps your body produce a high-energy molecule called ATP (Adenosine triphosphate).
ATP is found in every cell of your body. Its job is to store and supply the needed energy that powers almost all cell activities, such as muscle contraction, protein construction, transportation of substrates, communication with other cells, activating heat control mechanisms, and dismantling damaged and unused structures.
There are a lot of ways in which Creatine can improve your health and athletic performance. But especially with muscle gaining, it can:
- Increase cell hydration: increases the water content in muscle cells, action that causes a cell volumization effect that plays an important role in muscle growth.
- Improve maximal strength
- Boost workload: it increases the workout volume in a single training session, also helping a lot in the muscle growth process.
- Improve maximal endurance
- Improve cell signaling: Creatine supplementation increases satellite cell signaling – muscle signaling helps with repair and new muscle growth
- Reduce protein breakdown: increase muscle mass by reducing protein breakdown
- Lower myostatin levels: increase muscle growth potential by lowering myostatin levels that can slow or totally inhibit new muscle growth.
- Increase fat-free mass
- Increase anaerobic power and performance: including jump squats, knee extensions, continuous jumping and sprints
Research shows that Creatine is most efficient in explosive activities and high-intensity training, such as weight training, sprinting, football, baseball and many other sports that require short bursts of effort.
Creatine can also help you gain and maintain metabolically-active muscle tissue, which improves weight-loss and fat-burning.
For supplementation, powder is the way to go, because studies show that liquid and Creatine is unstable and breaks down in your blood system. To ensure your body maximizes the benefits of Creatine, you need to purchase 100$ pure Creatine powder.
The way you can tell if the powder is of a lower quality is if the powder dissolves hard and leaves residue at the bottom of your glass after you drink it. That’s extremely important, as you want the powder in your muscles, not in the glass. If this happens, you should consider trying a different brand.
Although some people might not react to Creatine, taking into consideration their genetic component, if in a week’s time your training volume increases, it means it’s working for you!
Creatine alone will not make your muscles bigger. With Creatine supplementation, diet is also important, as it is for anyone with a muscle-building plan. If you don’t have a strict healthy diet you follow, there’s no point in consuming Creatine. Instead, you should focus on eating better sources of lean protein and carbohydrates.
At recommended doses, Creatine is considered safe to consume. However, we advise you to talk to your doctor before taking Creatine supplements. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, too much Creatine can cause mild side effects that can include:
- Stomach pain
- Muscle cramping
Here are some key points about Creatine:
- Athletes use it to assist in high-intensity training
- It can cause water retention
- It’s being studied for use in a number of diseases including Parkinson's disease and depression
- Because it helps build muscle, it may be useful for individuals with muscular dystrophy
- There is some evidence that it can boost memory
We recommend giving Creatine some serious thought and consideration, as it’s one of the least expensive muscle-building and sports performance supplements available and it has a lot of benefits to it.
Check with your doctor or physician first! The information contained in this article is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. All of our content, including images, graphics, text available in this article is for general information purposes only. Mava Sports makes no representations and assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of information available in this article, and such information is subject to change without notice. We encourage you to verify and confirm any information you obtained from this article with other sources, and review all information regarding any medical condition or treatment with your doctor and physician. Do not disregard any professional medical advice because of something you have read in or accessed through this article.