5 Benefits of Supplementing With Creatine
What is creatine?
Creatine is an nitrogenous organic acid which occurs in vertebrates. In our body its producted by the liver and kidneys. Het helps to suppley energy to all cells in the body, but primary to the muscles.
This supporting role is achieved by increasing the creation of adenosine thriposphate which usually gets shortened to ATP. Creatine was discovered in 1832 by Michel Eugene Chevreul. He was able to isolate it from basified water-extract from the skeletal muscle. He named the cristallized product after the Greek word for meat (Kreas).
We can derive it from our diet by eating meat and animal products.
Creatine (monohydrate) is a colorless and crystalline powder used in muscle tissue for the production of phosphocreatine, an important factor in the formation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), the source of energy for muscle contraction and many other functions in the body.
Creatine does not qualify as an essential nutrient.
This is mainly because its also produced in our own bodies from glycine and arginine which are both amino acids. First step in the biosynthesis is combining these two aminoacids to form guanidinoacetate. This guanidinoacetate then is methylated by guanidinoacetate n-methyltransferase, using S-adenosyl methionine as donor. Creatine itself can be phopsorylated by creatine kinase to create phosphorcreatine, which is used as enerygy reserve by skeletal muscles and the brain. Synthesis finds primarily place in kidney and liver after which creatine travels through the muscles via the blood. Around 95% of the bodies creatine is stored in the skeletal muscles. In humans and most animals, half of the stored creatine finds its origine in food. Mostly from consuming meat products.
How creatine normally works in the body
In our body, creatine changes into a molecule called “phosphocreatine” which serves as a storage reservoir for immediate energy. This Phosphocreatine is extra important in parts of the body like as the voluntary muscles and our nervous system. These are the big users when it comes down to energy requirements.
Why would an athlete use creatine?
We know since a long time, and backed by studies which have shown us, that creatine increases athletic performance when engaged in explosive activities which require burst of energy. You should think sprinting, Jumping, but also lifting weights. Creatine can assist an athlete in faster recovery after those high burst of muscle contractions and the resultng energy expenditure.
Creatine is a must for the serious but also the wannabee bodybuilder. It will help in increasing muscle mass, not so much in muscle endurance. So it is less suited for the athlete who is participating in endurance activities. Some of the increases can be because if water retention and not so much due to an increase in muscle tissue.
Is there a link between creatine usage and neuromuscular disorders?
There are a couple of scientific studies which have indicated that creatine may be good for neuromuscular disorders.
The first one, a study by researcher M. Flint Beal of Cornell University Medical Center showed creatine to be twice as effective as the riluzole, a prescription drug, in live extension of mice with ALS (or Lou Gehrig’s disease). This paper dates back to March 1999 and was published in the issue of Nature Neuroscience.
The Second one, a study by Canadian researchers Mark Tarnopolsky and Joan Martin of the McMaster University Medical Center in Ontario found that creatine can cause some increases in strength in people with a variety of neuromuscular disorders. This paper was published in Neurology issue.
Starting with creatine
Creatine has been around for a long time and there are almost no know cases of adverse side-effect from taking it. There is also no known toxity been reported in studies aon supplementing creatine. One does however need to take care of sufficient hydratation when taking creatine.
When starting out with creatine its common to load for 5 to 6 days by taking up to 20 grams of creatine a day. Then after that initial loading dose switching to a maintenance dose of 2 to 5 grams a day.
About Side effects
There is not much literature on the long-term side effects of creatine. What we do know is that there are no toxity reports to be found in any studies on creatine supplementation.
In one study on the side effects of creatine supplementation the most commonly reported side effect was diarrhea. On the second place cam muscle cramping. There are a couple of reports that show that kidney, liver and blood functions are not effected by short-term intak of higher amounts. There is a small study which shows that prolonged intake of 5-30 grams a day doesn’t result in kidney functioning after up to five years of taking creatine. The cramping of muscles has only been reported incidentically.
A word of caution though, the Mayo Clinic states that the usage of creatine has been linkek to asthmatic sypmtoms and also warns against consumptions by persons that have a know allergy to creatine(duhhh)
Little over ten years ago the EFSA(the European Food Saftey Authority) published a record which stated that long term intak of 3g creatine every day is free of risk.
Great Creatine Bundle discount
Benefits of supplementing with creatine
To summarize this article about the benefits of creatine supplementing.
* Increases Muscle Mass. Partly due to water retention your muscles look fuller…
* Is Beneficial for Multiple Muscular disorders. As shown in a couple of studies
* Increases Athletic performance. The more ATP you have available in your body the higher your peak performance becomes.
* Is Safe to use. There are no studies out there that showed negative effects of taking Creatine.
* Is one of the cheapest performance enhancing supplements out there on the market
One of the methods you can use when taking a supplement like Creatine is cycling periods where you take Creatine and alternating them with periods where you stop supplementing. That could also be a good way to prevent your body from becoming lazy in producing its own creatine.
creatine, creatine powder, kre-alkalyn creatine, creatine monohydrate