What is Creatine and Should You Use It?

Creatine monohydrate is an organic substance with the minimal biological formula CNCH₂CO�H. This substance is found mainly in aquatic invertebrates where it assists recycling of adenosine triphosphate, the main energy currency of the organism, mainly in brain and muscle tissue. In all vertebrates, it plays a key role in the regeneration, formation, and maintenance of tissues and cells. It also enhances exercise performance and helps reduce fatigue during physical stress or overuse.

Reduce the risk of congenital muscular dystrophy

Long-term creatine supplementation has been shown to reduce the risk of congenital muscular dystrophy (CMD), a progressive non-demented progressive muscle weakness that begins in children and manifests through age 25. However, there are still some debates about the benefits of high levels of creatine intake in children. It is not clear how much supplementation is safe for children given the fact that they do not mature fully when exposed to high levels of supplemental doses. There is also some evidence that long-term creatine intake has some beneficial effect on athletic performance, but this has not been proven conclusively.

Can cause an electrolyte imbalance

Children have very sensitive kidneys that can absorb a large amount of creatine in their bodies. The kidney will then release large amounts of creatinine into the bloodstream, causing an electrolyte imbalance. High levels of creatine can cause an increase in kidney stones. If the creatine in the bloodstream is stored in the muscles instead of being passed into the bloodstream, then this will stimulate the accumulation of creatinine in the muscles, which will eventually result in the formation of kidney stones. To prevent this from happening, doctors advise patients to take care of the amount of creatine taken into the body.

Enhance the strength gained during exercise

One of the most widely known benefits of creatine is its ability to enhance the strength gained during exercise. It may improve strength gains in weight training, which is beneficial for athletes. It is believed that creatine plays a role in the recovery process after strenuous exercise. The increased level of creatine within the body could promote faster muscle recuperation and possibly prolong exercise sessions.

Help in the treatment of diarrhea caused by excessive protein intake during meals

Creatine supplementation may also help in the treatment of diarrhea caused by excessive protein intake during meals. The excess protein in the diet could provide the necessary nitrogen, which the liver requires for the disposal of waste. However, when the liver cannot effectively dispose of the waste, it releases it into the blood, where it could potentially cause diarrhea. The consumption of creatine may reduce the number of excretory fluids produced in the kidneys and thus improve the efficiency of the kidney’s excretory system. This may reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and easing symptoms of protein-calorie malnutrition, which are both associated with excess protein ingestion.

Creatine sources

The main source of creatine is red meat, but some vegetarians are now turning to plant-based sources of creatine. The most widely studied of these is creatine monohydrate, which is found in whole grains, beans, nuts, and fish. Plant creatine is derived from plant materials such as liver, seeds, and even animal skin. It differs from creatine in that it does not contain ammonia or nitrogenous waste products. Some experts believe that this form of creatine is more bioavailable and may therefore be better for people with poor renal or liver function.

To sum up

There are a number of potential side effects of creatine supplementation. Because of its effects on muscle contraction, it may hinder exercise. For some individuals, this may also interfere with hormone treatments, especially those used to treat depression and fatigue. In very rare cases, creatine has been known to lead to cramps in the heart, vomiting, nausea, and diarrhea. These side effects may decrease over time as the body adjusts to the creatine intake. While the long-term health impact of creatine supplementation is unknown, it is safe for most people and helpful for increasing strength and energy in non-athletes.