Posted: 18 May 2013
Every man, woman, and child (without renal implications) should be supplementing with creatine monohydrate alongside their well-rounded diet. Yes, it is that important. If creatine was ever considered to become a nutrient I would have no problems with it. It’s usages in both athletic and clinical applications has shown consistent promise for the past few decades.
Not only is it the most widely studied supplement in the world, it may also be one of the most comprehensive in terms of benefits to health. The great news is that it has NO negative side effects despite what non-credible media sources have said over the years.
What is creatine?
Creatine is an ergogenic aid (performance enhancing) that is synthesized in the liver and pancreas and is derived from three amino acids: glycine, arginine, and methionine. It is part of phosphocreatine and is used anaerobically to initiate high-intensity activity. However, stored phosphocreatine suffices to support activity for only several seconds and must be resynthesized for use in similar subsequent activities. Creatine is naturally occurring in foods such as meat, fish, and milk.
So how does it benefit you? Here’s a paraphrased list:
- increases muscle strength during training, lean tissue (muscle) during training, high intensity exercise capacity, may prevent athletic injuries
- may prevent depression
- may prevent certain forms of cancer due to DNA protection
- may prevent brain trauma or injury (think about your kids that play contact sports)
- may be beneficial to select medical conditions (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, *Huntington’s)
- may enhance cognition particularly in vegetarians or omnivores that are creatine deficient
Any of these features sound intriguing? By the way, creatine monohydrate is dirt cheap. In this review, I’ll discuss the basics of what you need to know on creatine.