As a health and performance supplement, creatine has been used by athletes and fitness enthusiasts for decades. Studies show that it can increase muscle mass, strength and exercise performance. Some people believe that creatine is unsafe and has many side effects, but these claims are not supported by evidence. In fact, it is one of the world’s most tested supplements and has an outstanding safety profile. To start let us take a look at what Creatine Monohydrate really is.
Creatine is a substance that is found naturally in muscle cells. It helps your muscles produce energy during heavy lifting or high-intensity exercise. Chemically speaking, it shares many similarities with amino acids (See previous blog post for more info on amino acids). Your body can produce it from the amino acids glycine and arginine. About 95% of your body’s creatine is stored in muscles in the form of phosphocreatine. The other 5% is found in your brain, kidneys and liver. When you supplement, you increase your stores of phosphocreatine. This is a form of stored energy in the cells, as it helps your body produce more of a high-energy molecule called ATP. ATP is often called the body’s energy currency. When you have more ATP, your body can perform better during exercise. Creatine also alters several cellular processes that lead to increased muscle mass, strength and recovery.
Benefits of Creatine
1. Our muscles rely on a substance called adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is a byproduct of our phosphogenic energy system, to effectively perform short, fast bursts of energy, such as sprinting, ballistic movements, Olympic lifting, a heavy squat, etc. Creatine’s direct effect on the production of ATP in our muscles can help create more potential available ATP, in turn, improving the performance of short, intense exercises and efforts.
2. One of creatine’s primary functions as a supplement is to increase muscle size and strength. In fact, it has shown to be the most effective supplement on the market for such a task. The initial gains are seen via the additional water being pulled into the muscle cells. Over time, prolonged supplementation activates specific channels that aid in muscle tissue growth, strength, and performance.
In this study, 25 male subjects (7 control, 8 creatine group, and 10 placebo group) were subjected to a 42-day strength training program. At the end of the program, the control and placebo groups did not see any change in their lean, skeletal muscle mass. However, the creatine group saw gains of 2.0kg (4.4lbs) in mass.
3. More recent studies on creatine have been exploring its positive effects on brain function and overall neurological health. Your muscles aren’t the only body parts that rely on ATP. Your brain relies on it, as well, when completing complex tasks. The brain produces ATP, so supplementation can aid in that production. Creatine can also assist in increasing dopamine levels and enhancing mitochondrial function.
These benefits are most profound in older individuals. The above benefits can help older adults maintain or improve memory recall. This boost in brain function might also help in mitigating or treating chronic neurological diseases. It is unclear whether younger adults can enjoy the same benefits. More research is needed.
4. Creatine supplements may also reduce fatigue and tiredness! In a 6-month study in people with traumatic brain injury, those who supplemented with creatine experienced a 50% reduction in dizziness, compared with those who did not supplement. Furthermore, only 10% of patients in the supplement group experienced fatigue, compared with 80% in the control group. Another study determined that creatine led to reduced fatigue and increased energy levels during sleep deprivation. Creatine also reduced fatigue in athletes taking a cycling test and has been used to decrease fatigue when exercising in high heat.
In conclusion, there are so many benefits to Creatine Monohydrate. If you are into working out and truly want to tone your body Creatine is a must-try. At Jane's we have over 2,000 mg of Creatine per serving in our Pre-Workout blend what more could you need! The recommended dosing of Creatine is 20g (2,000 mg) and we even have more than enough caffeine and CBD to give your workout the proper boost.