Here is the best way to take creatine effectively and safely for beginner. Learn about creatine monohydrate, what is loading and unloading before you start.
Quite a long time among food additives for bodybuilder or gym lover is popular creatine, which is spoken literally at every corner, it is a favorite kind of sports nutrition for many athletes. This substance is of natural origin, in large quantities found in meat and fish.
Role of creatine
In the body, creatine plays the role of a unique catalyst for metabolic processes and directly participates in the energy exchange process, which cannot occur without creatine in principle.
Also, creatine is a constituent component of such additives as a gainer, protein, and others, but in pure form differs from them in that a complex effect on the body, developing and power quality, and muscle simultaneously.
In addition, it is present in the human body, in small amounts produced by the liver, kidneys and certain glands of internal secretion. But the main reserves of creatine are found in human skeletal muscles, or rather in their fibers. In those of them that are responsible for the strength of muscles, there is the greatest amount of this substance. In fibers that are responsible for endurance, creatine is much less, but its level is restored several times faster.
There are a lot of myths and unverified data about it, which appear more and often take on very bizarre forms, but we’ll talk about this a little later.
How to use
There are two ways to use creatin depending on your workout and timing:
- The essence of this scheme is to take daily 20 grams of creatine in four divided doses for 4-6 days. That is, in the first week, consume 5 grams of the substance 4 times a day between meals together with protein cocktails or sweet juices.
If it is a training day, take one serving immediately after training. After a week, take 2-3 grams once a day after training or in the morning, if you have a day of rest. The course lasts a month. The break between the courses is a month.
- Another scheme says that you need to take 5 grams of creatine every day for two weeks, then 7 days to allow the body to recover without using this supplement. Or, you can take 2 months, and then for 30 calendar days to take a break.
On training days, take creatine at the end of the workout. It is desirable to combine it with protein cocktail or sweet juices.
What is best for you
At the same time, scientists came to the conclusion that both schemes of creatine intake are basically the same in effect. However, there are a number of features that differ from these schemes and can affect your choice.
The circuit with the load has a more powerful evidence base and faster results than the circuit without loading.
But, in the first case, a higher consumption of the substance and a higher risk of side effects.
Studies have shown that the optimal time to take creatine – before or after active sports. This is due to the fact that during and after exercise, blood flow and metabolism are accelerated.
If today you do not exercise then drink creatine in the morning! In the morning, a high concentration of testosterone is observed in the body, which makes it possible to accelerate the absorption of creatine.
Amount of creatine
Swedish researchers carried out a comparative analysis of two subgroups that took creatine: one of them – according to the classical scheme (20 g / 2 g) with loading, the second received daily 3 g. A month later, it was found that the degree of muscle saturation with nitrogen amine increased by 20% in both subgroups, despite the fact that the latter received a significantly lower amount of the additive. The need for loading will disappear if the daily dose is increased from 2 g to three.
The experiments proved that the muscles are able to maintain a strictly limited amount of the nitrogen amine, its excessive intake is not absorbed by the body. When using a non-loading scheme, it is advisable to apply it for 9 weeks with 4-6 week rest periods from the drug.
The researchers argue that the full saturation of the muscles during loading does not require a daily intake of the drug. Comparative analysis of the daily intake of supplementation and its application only on the day of training showed an equal effectiveness: in the supporting phase, it is sufficient to use it 3-4 times a week.
Nutrition magazine published in 2010 the results of the experience of using creatine in 20 healthy women and men in low dosages (less than 2 g per day). The study found that small doses of creatine did not produce a noticeable result: after 6 weeks, the test subjects had explosive force, the percentage of fat tissue and dry muscle mass remaining at the same level.
Possible consequences and features of creatine at different ages
Despite the fact that the European Food Safety Agency regular intake of creatine, not exceeding the daily three gram dose, was categorized as “minimally risky for side effects to health”, the drug may have a negative effect on some groups of people:
- Pregnant women: Bearing a child is an unconditional contraindication.
- People with kidney or liver disease: Medical consultation is absolutely required.
- Suffering from diabetes: Creatine should be taken under the control of blood sugar and doctor’s supervision.
People with bronchial asthma, diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, hypertension the decision to take a creatine supplement and the choice of dosage should be taken after consulting a specialist.
Use of creatine depending on age group
Take creatine effectively without harming your health depending on your age.
Children and teens
Special studies of the influence of creatine on children’s body have not yet been carried out and no remote consequences have been identified. Trainers of children’s teams, taking a decision on the recommendation of taking the drug, you should keep this in mind.
The organs and systems of the child are not yet completely formed. During the growth spurts, the muscles, lagging behind in the growth rate from the bones, are in a strained and stressed state. The use of creatine, which increases muscle strength, can provoke the development of deformities of the organs of the musculoskeletal system.
It is more reasonable to wait until the end of the puberty period. Another reason is that in case of detection of delayed negative consequences, the young people will be more exposed to them than the adult.
If a teenager is intensely engaged in sports, it is acceptable to take an additive from 12 to 14 years of age, halving the dose recommended by an adult. The child and his parents should be well informed about the proper use of the supplement. Training of young athletes should take place only under the supervision of the coach.
In the human body the nitrogen amine reserves are limited, and after the puberty period, the creatine supplement can be used more actively. At the age of 45 and over 60 years it is recommended:
- With insufficient body weight for muscle building with the necessary strength loads – a two-month course for 5g per day.
- adhering to strict vegetarianism if in a dosage of 5g per week.
With intensive physical loads, the metabolite reserve in the body is consumed, the energy reserve of muscles is exhausted and additional creatine intake is needed to improve personal indicators. Creatine supplements are useful for running, fitness, cycling, bodybuilding, etc.: both professionals and amateurs of active movement.
The result of taking the drug in adults depends on the type of training: aerobic exercise increases muscle tirelessness, uniform with a small intensity strengthens muscles, and continuous heavy workouts increase their volume.
Old aged people
The aging process of the body is accompanied by a decrease in the synthesis of creatine, a decrease in muscle mass, its strength, and energy supply. Taking a creatine supplement on a background of feasible physical exercises increases muscular energy, does not let the muscles grow old.
With age, organs and systems are already overworked, and there is a risk of the appearance of ailments. Creatine has shown itself well in the complex treatment of certain diseases.
With chronic heart failure, the drug strengthens the heart muscle. After heart surgery and valves in two-thirds of cases helps to overcome the arrhythmic syndrome.
Prevention of atherosclerosis is its ability to lower blood cholesterol and lipoproteins. Nitrogen amine is able to reduce local edema and soreness in inflammatory processes in the joints.
The effect on the central nervous system of the natural metabolite is manifested in the smoothing out of the consequences of its oxygen starvation, protection from Parkinson’s disease, increasing the possibility of training.
The influence of creatine on the body is significantly reduced in people older than 70 years. The problem with success is solved by an active way of life and regular feasible physical exercises.
Natural Sources of Creatine
Creatine is found in many natural products also and no company or product can take part of natural creatine, it is better to take natural creatine in place of artificial creatine. Below are the natural food products which are a rich source of natural creatine:
|Food product||Creatine content per 1 kg|
|Herring||6.5 – 10.0|
From the table, it follows: in order to get 5 g of nitrogen amine with food, it will be necessary to eat 700 grams of herring daily, or 1 kg of meat, or 1.5 kg of chicken or cod. It must be taken into account that the heat treatment of the product destroys a significant part of the creatine. Hence, the figures should be doubled.
Excessive consumption of meat and fish has a disastrous effect on the liver and kidneys, leading to vitamin C vitamin hypovitaminosis, which actively participates in the assimilation of proteins. Residual unsplit protein, acidifying the body, causes osteoporosis, atherosclerosis, edema, joint diseases, allergy, and gout.
A vegetarian will have to eat more than 200 kg of plant food daily, and this is not realistic.
Myths and Misconceptions
Creatine is fanned with many myths and misconception – it’s impossible, it’s necessary, do not go there, do not stand there … Disgrace some popular myths about taking the supplement:
The loading phase is mandatory
Not at all! The intake of creatine is effective without loading. The main thing to observe is the correct scheme of its reception. Don’t think that taking extra creatine makes you stronger fast, No, it will damage your body instead. Take the standard amount of creatine as discussed above and never forget to consult an expert before starting to take creatine.
Creatine can damage kidneys and liver
If you have contraindications, then yes, it can also hurt. If not – then everything should be normal. Such fortune-telling will be saved by the doctor in a white coat, to which one must regularly walk, be examined and follow all his recommendations. Also, never forget to take creatine effectively as suggested by the doctor.
Is use of creatine is absolutely safe
No! Before taking the supplement it is necessary To consult a doctor! You may have some kind of illness, some special features that should not be taken, you may get confused with the dosage. Remember – when you receive all sports supplements, you should visit a doctor.
Cheap and expensive creatine are the same
And why then this difference in price. Not the same. Expensively is cleaner and more efficient, cheap is less quality and with more impurities. It’s still a market, and its laws have not been canceled.
The drug should be drunk with grape juice
Why with grape? Nonsense! The main thing is that the dosage should be related to 100 g of juice to 5 g of creatine. And so – the juice can be anything! The only nuance may be that the sugar stimulates the production of insulin, which will carry creatine into the muscles. Choose sweet juices.
As you can see, taking creatine is justified, it allows you to improve the quality of training and achieve better results in building muscle mass. Dosages in the article are indicated averaged, more detailed consultation will be given to you by a doctor, to which you must go before the reception. Work on yourself and everything will turn out.