If you have health and fitness goals (however modest) and work out at least twice a week, taking creatine can help.
Do you go hiking, running, or biking? Instead of dragging yourself up the hills, imagine conquering them and arriving at the top with lots of energy.
What does it look like in the weight room? Instead of doing sloppy reps just to finish the set, imagine having the strength to keep up a clean and crisp pace until the end and still have a few reps in the tank.
How about pushing your limits in your favorite workout class? Instead of slowing down or getting out, imagine staying on point and on beat.
Yes, no matter who you are or how you exercise, creatine can help you last longer and recover faster. That means you can work out more productively and reach your fitness goals faster..
And when you perform better, your workouts are more fun, more enjoyable, and most importantly, more effective. Right?
Here are some interesting facts about creatine that may surprise you:.
- Many people are creatine deficient - some much more so than others.
- If you're not taking creatine, your energy metabolism isn't as good as it could be.
- Although a creatine deficiency doesn't pose any serious health risks, balanced creatine levels can help you achieve your health and fitness goals.
It turns out that creatine is much more basic than most people realize.
So, do you find yourself in a creatine deficit? Are you curious about how creatine supplementation can help you achieve your health and fitness goals? Are you confused about what form of creatine to buy and how to best use it?.
Here you'll find the answers to your most pressing creatine questions (and then some).
What is creatine?
Creatine is a naturally occurring molecule that is obtained in two ways: It's either synthesized by your liver or derived directly from animal protein. In other words, your body makes some and you take in the rest through food..
For meat eaters, about half of the creatine comes from food, and the rest is processed by the body. Those on a plant-based diet must be content with the amount of creatine that the body processes from the amino acids in the diet, and that's no more than a gram a day.
Ninety percent of your creatine is stored in muscle cells, waiting to be used as fuel. And unlike glycogen and oxygen, creatine can provide energy that's available in the short term.
It's like an afternoon espresso for your cells - it gives you a turbo boost when you need energy fast, but it's relatively short-lived and not available in sufficient quantities..
Creatine is one of the most researched and clinically backed supplements, having played a leading role in over 50,000 studies. The numerous research results highlight especially the benefits for training and performance, such as:.
- Strength performance .
- Muscle power
- Sports recovery .
- Cognitive function
- Lean muscle mass
- Sports performance .
- Prevention of age-related muscle loss
These benefits are attractive, especially for those pursuing fitness goals (more on that later). But as you will learn, the need to consume creatine is much more fundamental than personal record in the gym.
Why you probably need more creatine.
Every day, one to two percent of your body's creatine stores are broken down and excreted during energy production. These losses must be compensated for by creatine intake from food or supplements. The daily creatine requirement is between two and three grams, depending on size, gender and activity..
However, the average adult in Europe consumes only one gram per day for men and 0.7 grams per day for women. (Although recent studies suggest that these numbers are probably closer to 0.35.)
In other words, it's incredibly difficult to get enough creatine without supplements, and the average person is probably well below their daily creatine requirement..
And that's just for the basics.
We're not even talking about the amount of creatine needed for optimal energy and performance, which most studies say is at least five grams per day. That's more than five times the amount most of us take in in our diets!
An active person would need to consume five times their intake of creatine-rich foods like meat and fish to balance their creatine levels-which, frankly, is not easy to do and certainly not easy on the wallet.
Although taking creatine supplements is beneficial for almost everyone, it is especially important for athletes, the elderly, and people who eat a plant-based diet and are at higher risk for deficiency..
The good news is that a creatine deficiency doesn't necessarily put your health at risk the way a vitamin or mineral deficiency might.
It just means you're working at a fraction of your full potential.
Taking creatine will keep you firing on all cylinders and boost your health and fitness efforts. Combined with the right diet and workout regimen, you'll be able to reach your goals much faster than you otherwise would.
Let's take a closer look at creatine's many benefits.
The benefits of creatine.
Both in the short term and as you age, creatine can support your health goals in very profound ways. Here are three of the top ways creatine can support your body and mind:
1. Increased performance and muscle strength.
We have already established that supplementation is essential for maintaining creatine levels in active people, but it can also significantly improve strength and performance..
A recent meta-analysis of 22 different studies showed impressive results when creatine monohydrate was taken in combination with strength training. Subjects who took creatine improved:
Muscle strength by 20% (compared with 12% with placebo).
Weightlifting performance by 26% (compared with 12% with placebo).
Bank press performance increased by up to 43% (compared to 16% with placebo).
Because creatine is able to fuel muscles during exercise and higher-intensity activities, it can also support performance in moderately active people..
Although creatine is commonplace in the bodybuilding world, it's not just for lifting heavy weights. It is suitable for anyone who exercises regularly..
2. Better cognition for plant-based eaters.
Because animal products are the main source of creatine, vegetarians and vegans have lower creatin levels than people who eat meat..
This double-blind, placebo-controlled study of vegetarians found that six weeks of creatine monohydrate supplementation (five grams per day) had a significant positive effect on working memory and intelligence.
Another double-blind study in young adult women showed that 20-g creatine supplementation for five days improved memory in vegetarians even more than in omnivores.
3. Prevention of age-related muscle loss in older adults.
The aging process naturally leads to a decrease in muscle mass, bone density, and strength. However, there is evidence that creatine supplementation positively influences these age-related changes.
A studyshowed that short-term, high-dose creatine supplementation led to increased body mass, increased fatigue resistance, increased muscle strength, and improved activities of daily living in older adults, independent of physical training.
Another double-blind, placebo-controlled study of healthy older women showed improvements in strength and power when creatine supplementation was combined with a 12-week strength-training program. The creatine group also gained significantly more lean mass and muscle mass than the no-creatin group.
Creatine provides both your body and brain with the energy it needs to keep up with the daily demands of an active lifestyle. For athletes, people who eat a plant-based diet, and the elderly, creatine is even more important because of its positive effects on strength, performance, muscle mass and cognition.
How to choose the best creatine supplement.
There are a wide variety of different forms of creatine to choose from, but not all suppliers use the same quality of raw materials or follow the same manufacturing standards.
Here's what you need to know:
Creatine monohydrate is undoubtedly the best form of creatine available..
It has the most scientific evidence.
It has the best bioavailability and absorption.
It is often less expensive than other forms of creatine.
However, not all creatine monohydrate supplements are created equal.
When buying creatine monohydrate, look for the following:.
Avoid fillers or additives. Additional ingredients are unnecessary.
Look for a vegan origin for vegans and vegetarians.
Check the quality of raw materials and manufacturing standards..
If you're looking for the gold standard in creatine monohydrate, look no further than le melo Yuzu Creatine.
What makes creatine different at le melo?
Our creatine is made from 100% Creapure®, one of the purest and highest quality forms of creatine monohydrate available - the "gold standard" for creatine..
Quality you can trust - Creapure® is manufactured in Germany using the purest raw materials, strict manufacturing standards, and precise analytical control..
Regularly tested for purity - Creapure® is on the Cologne List® and is regularly tested for purity and banned substances. By using only Cologne List® products, athletes reduce the risk of becoming unintentional victims of doping..
Backed by research - Compared to other types of creatine, Creapure® has been studied most extensively scientifically. It has been shown to be safe for long-term use and incredibly effective.
Superior Bioavailability - Creapure® is absorbed almost immediately after ingestion with a bioavailability of over 95%. This means that virtually all of the le melo creatine you ingest is used directly for your body. There is no excess or waste.
Vegan - le melo Creatine is vegan and vegetarian friendly. It is produced exclusively by chemical synthesis and contains no animal or vegetable raw materials or intermediates. This makes it an ideal option for people on a plant-based diet to get the cognitive and performance-enhancing benefits of creatine without consuming animal products. It is also kosher and halal certified, and free of gluten and soy products..
How to use creatine: Answers to your questions.
If you're still confused, here are 10 of the most frequently asked questions about creatine:
1. How much creatine should I take daily?.
Take five grams of creatine per day. If you like, you can adjust your dosage between three and ten grams, depending on your size, muscle mass, activity level, and personal response to creatine.
2. Do I take creatine before or after a workout?.
Both, depending on your goals. Creatine is best taken immediately before or after a workout to help recover and build muscle mass, or first thing in the morning to boost cognitive function.
3. Do I take creatine every day?.
Yes. Take it once a day or as recommended by a doctor.
4. How do I know if creatine is working?.
In the short term, depending on your diet, exercise program, and lifestyle, you can determine*:
- Improved athletic performance .
- Delayed onset of muscle fatigue .
- Faster recovery between workouts .
In the long run, depending on your diet, exercise regimen, and lifestyle, you may notice*:
- More lean muscle mass .
- Improved body composition .
- Improved overall athletic performance and capacity .
- Accelerated progress towards your health and fitness goals .
*There is evidence that a certain percentage of the population does not respond to creatine. This means that the response to creatine supplementation may not be as obvious physically as others, or that it may take longer. Even as a "non-responder," you can benefit from creatine supplementation..
5. Do I need to take creatine in cycles?
Not if you're taking a high-quality form of creatine monohydrate like le melo Creatine. le melo Creatine can be safely taken daily for the long term and cycling is not necessary..
6. Do I need to load up with creatine?.
No. Although a loading phase with creatine can lead to an acute increase in strength and body weight, daily supplementation over a longer period of time will produce similar results..
7. Is Creatine Bad for the Kidneys?
Creatine in normal doses is not harmful to the kidneys. However, people with kidney problems should exercise caution..
Kidney health is a common concern when taking creatine because high doses can increase creatinine levels, a biomarker of impaired kidney function..
Long- and short-term studies, however, have found that creatine doses of up to 10 grams per day do not affect kidney health in people with healthy kidneys.
For people with weakened kidney function, further long-term studies are needed. If you have a history of kidney problems, talk to your doctor before taking creatine.
8. Will creatine make me gain weight?.
Creatine may cause an increase in lean mass and an improvement in body composition due to some water retention..
While higher dosages can result in water retention that can exceed five pounds, lower dosages usually result in minimal weight changes, aside from an increase in muscle mass.
9. Should women take creatine?
Despite the common misconception that creatine causes weight gain (see above), creatine actually offers some unique benefits for women, especially those concerned about maintaining their health and quality of life as they age..
Women over 50 may experience significant loss of muscle mass and bone density. As this study shows, creatine combined with regular exercise can help mitigate age-related declines in health and function, and even improve quality of life in postmenopausal women.
10. What else should I know about creatine?
Here are some other things you should keep in mind when taking creatine:.
- Storage - Keep creatine in a cool, dry place, such as your pantry or cupboard. .
- Maximum amount to consume - Currently, there are no known serious side effects of creatine intake. However, some studies have reported that single doses of more than 10 grams may cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea or loose stools. Unless recommended by a health care professional, you should stick to the recommended dose of 3-10 grams of creatine per day. .
- Risk Groups - People with kidney problems or high creatinine levels should be careful when taking creatine. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, under 18 years of age, taking prescription medications, have diabetes or bipolar disorder, you should discuss with your doctor whether taking creatine is appropriate for you.
Key points about creatine.
The key takeaway from this article is that most people are creatine deficient and could benefit from creatine supplementation.
Other important points to remember:
- Creatine provides energy to your muscles, brain, and organs, and is especially important during exercise.
- Restoring creatine balance is extremely difficult and impractical without supplementation.
- Active adults, vegans and vegetarians, and the elderly benefit the most from creatine supplementation, as they are among the most deficient.
- The best form of creatine is creatine monohydrate.
- When considering different brands, pay special attention to the origin, quality of raw materials, and manufacturing standards. .
- Ingesting creatine can...
- compensate for a creatine deficit .
- improve athletic performance .
- accelerate the achievement of health and fitness goals .
- improve cognitive skills.
- moderate age-related loss of muscle mass, strength, and function
le melo uses only 100% Creapure®, which is the purest creatine monohydrate on the market. Here are the details:
- Manufactured using the purest raw materials, strict manufacturing standards and precise analytical control.
- Regularly tested for purity and banned substances.
- Intensively researched and proven safe for long-term use and incredibly effective.
- High bioavailability (over 95%), meaning virtually all of the le melo creatine you ingest is used directly for your body. No excess or waste.
- Vegan and vegetarian friendly, kosher and halal certified and free of gluten and soy products. .