What is Creatine?
Creatine is a naturally occurring substance in the body that helps to supply energy to our muscles. It can also be found in certain food sources such as red meat and fish, or taken in supplement form. Creatine is an amino acid derivative and is most commonly known for increasing strength, building muscle, and boosting performance during high-intensity exercise.
How Does Creatine Work?
When taken as a supplement, creatine helps to increase the body’s creatine levels which in turn can increase the rate at which energy is produced during intense exercise. The energy ultimately fuels the muscle contraction and helps to improve the performance of the muscle.
Creatine also has a variety of other interesting benefits. Studies have suggested that it may help to reduce fatigue, improve anaerobic and aerobic exercise performance, increase lean body mass, and enhance cognitive function in some individuals.
How to Use Creatine for Health and Performance
In order to reap the benefits of creatine, it should be taken daily through a supplement. The suggested methods vary between individuals and should be discussed with your doctor.
It is typically recommended that individuals start with a ‘loading phase’ in which they take a higher dose of creatine for 5-7 days and then reduce the amount to a maintenance dose after this period. The typical loading phase may involve taking 20-25g of creatine per day, followed by a 3-5g daily dose.
The Safety of Creatine
Creatine is deemed to be safe for most healthy people when taken in supplement form, as long as it is taken according to the guidelines. However, it is not recommended for pregnant women or those with kidney or liver problems.
The Bottom Line
Creatine is a naturally occurring substance that can be taken in supplement form to help with strength and performance, as well as a number of other benefits. It is considered safe for most healthy individuals when taken according to the recommended guidelines, and can be a great way to increase energy levels and get the most from your workouts.