HEALTH

Creatine – Supplement NOT Steroid – How To Use Creatine to Build Muscle Mass

Creatine is a nutritional supplement that bodybuilders and athletes take. It is not a hormone or a steroid.  Creatine is one of the most-researched sports supplements out there so there really is no mystery involved anymore.  It is an organic amino acid that is naturally produced  in all humans and animals.   About half of the creatine in your body comes from you, the other half comes from food, usually meat or fish, that you eat.   This magical substance helps to supply energy to all cells in the body especially those that require high amount of energy, primarily muscle.  Bodybuilders and athletes that rely on strength such as Football players and Rugby players use creatine supplements to gain help gain muscle mass more effectively.  It is perfectly legal  and supplementation is not currently banned by any athletic organization.  Since creatine is naturally found in your body there really is no need to ban it.

Creatine - Supplement NOT Steroid


What is creatine?


Creatine is a naturally occurring amino acid.  It plays a major role in cellular energy and helps regenerate ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) in the human body. Without ATP, muscle contraction is not possible. Creatine is said to increase energy, power output, and enhances muscle size and strength. Research shows that creatine is most effective in high-intensity training and explosive activities. This includes weight training and sports that require short bursts of effort, such as sprinting, football, and baseball.  Creatine is NOT recommended for people who want to lose weight because the main result and purpose of creatine use is to gain weight.  It won’t help you run faster, or swim longer, or burn calories. 

How does creatine work?

Creatine - Supplement NOT Steroid
Creatine pulls water into your muscle cells, which increases protein synthesis, but this only happens if you take advantage of the boost in energy and hit the gym. Otherwise, it is just water weight.  If you do hit the gym hard after supplementing, you will get bigger because your muscle fibers will increase.  You will be able to do more reps and that will be the cause of your gains. Also, interestingly enough, according to the Wikipedia entry, creatine has been proven to increase intelligence.  Can’t go wrong there!

The most simple and pure creatine supplement is the best.  If it dissolves completely in liquid then it is probably good.  Some cheaper brands don’t dissolve well and leave you with half of the stuff glued to the bottom of the glass.  So you end up wasting your money.  Its best to invest in a highly rated and reviewed brand so you can get more for your money.  In my opinion the best (and only creatine I use) is creatine monohydrate.  Its always best to buy in bulk making your purchase inexpensive in the long run. Various studies have shown that pure powdered creatine monohydrate is absorbed much faster then any liquid forms.


Why should I take creatine  with juice?

You should always take creatine dissolved in a high carbohydrate drink such as fruit juice.  The sugar in the juice raises insulin levels, which helps increase creatine uptake into the muscle.  Remember that you are still supposed to be eating a healthy and complete diet rich in lean proteins, carbohydrates and healthy fats.  You can take all the creatine in the world and see no results if you are not eating a proper diet, especially enough protein.  A commonly claimed side effect of creatine is dehydration.  This has not been proven but I would assume the people who claim to be dehydrated just need to drink more water to make up for the increase in water being used by the body by a sudden increase in muscle mass.  Other than that there really are no proven side effects of creatine supplementation, which is why you can see it all over the shelves at GNC and other supplement shops.  It works if used properly

Is creatine safe for teenagers?


This information is intended for adults over the age of 18.  If you are a child or teenager you must always consult your parents and physician before making any changes to your diet and exercise routine.  It is also recommended that people with kidney problems stay away from creatine because it is processed in the kidneys and it is always better be on the side of caution. 

Where can I buy creatine?


I like to buy my creatine from online sources such as Amazon.com.  They really have good deals and it gets delivered right to my door.  Its also a great place to read reviews from other members.  I rely heavily on reviews.  Look for products that have a large number of reviews rather than just a few.  If a heavily reviewed product has only a few stars just forget it.  You can also find it at Walmart, Target, K-mart, GNC, Sears, and  Vitamin World.

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