If there’s one supplement that — since its introduction into the fitness world — has stood the test of time, it’s creatine monohydrate. Creatine is used by junior athletes, hobbyists, and professionals alike.
To date, over 500 peer-reviewed studies have examined the effects of creatine monohydrate, showing its beneficial effects on decreasing muscle recovery time, increasing non-aerobic endurance, and upping muscle gains. What’s more, it does so with minimal side effects.
What Is Creatine?
Creatine is a natural compound that’s made out of three amino acids: l-arginine, glycine, and theanine. Although many people wrongfully call it an anabolic steroid, it is nothing more than a combination of amino acids that are naturally found in the body. Your body is already using creatine right now!
Our bodies produce creatine in the liver or kidneys. However, they can also absorb and store the creatine found in protein-rich foods, such as meat, fish, and eggs.
The vast majority of the creatine in your body is stored in your muscles. During bouts of intense physical activity, your body delivers the creatine to assist with performing the movements (more on this below).
So, what is creatine monohydrate? Simply put, it is creatine with a water molecule attached to it. Because of its more stable composition, this is the type of creatine you’re most likely to find in supplement form. Micronized Creatine is another form of creatine that is ground into even smaller particles which makes for easier mixing and absorption.
How Does Creatine Work?
Without delving too deep into the (pretty complex) biochemistry of creatine, let’s break down exactly how this molecule works in the body.
If we remember anything from our high school science class, it’s that adenosine triphosphate (ATP) provides energy to your body’s cells. However, in order for your cell to use ATP, it has to break it down into several small molecules.
When ATP is broken down, several byproducts are produced. One such product is called adenosine di-phosphate (ADP) — which is ATP with one phosphate molecule missing.
On its own, ADP is essentially useless to the cell. However, when you add back the missing phosphate to the molecule, it can be converted into ATP and used by the cell again.
So, where does creatine come into play? Well, creatine donates its phosphate to ADP. As such, instead of having a bunch of useless molecules floating around, you create more ATP to charge your body’s physical activity.
That’s not all creatine does. In addition to increasing ATP production, creatine can increase water supply in muscle cells. The more hydrated your muscle cells, the greater the protein synthesis that allows your muscles to grow bigger and stronger.
As the cherry on top of the sundae, increasing muscle cell hydration means your muscles will look bigger. So, not only are you improving your performance, but looking great while doing so. An added bonus of building more muscle is increased testosterone. The more heavy compound lifts you do, the more your body will need to keep up and naturally produce more testosterone.
Is Creatine Safe?
Naturally, you may be wondering if supplementing with creatine is safe. Unlike many workout supplements, creatine has decades of research and hundreds of peer-reviewed studies to back up its safety.
As a molecule made of amino acids that is naturally produced by your body, creatine is very unlikely to pose any risks to your health. Studies support this, showing that supplementing with as much as 30 grams of creatine per day — over the course of decades — is not associated with any negative side effects.
Does Creatine Improve Athletic Performance?
Creatine can improve your athletic performance by increasing how much energy is available to your muscle cells. It is most effective with high-intensity exercise, such as those that require explosive movement.
Most notably, creatine is used by weightlifters to increase how much they can lift while cutting down on recovery time between sets. However, creatine can also enhance sprints, cycling, calisthenics, or any other movement that is focused on explosive power.
So, if you’re a long-distance marathon runner, does that mean that you should look the other way when you see a creatine supplement? Not so fast. Studies show that creatine can aid with muscle recovery, which can benefit athletes of any kind.
Boosting Your Athletic Performance With Muscle Boost
Creatine monohydrate is an effective supplement that can increase your energy during workouts, increase your muscle’s protein synthesis, and aid with muscle recovery.
Of course, to get the full benefits of this supplement, you want to go for the highest quality that you can find. For this, Muscle Boost has got your back. For a clean creatine supplement that has no fillers or additives, check out Muscle Boost — for your best performance yet.