Monday, December 16, 2013
Creatine: Does It Work, and Is It Safe?
Q. Where does Creatine come from?
A. Protein-rich foods like meat and fish naturally contain creatine, and the body produces some as well. Creatine supplements are also sold on the market that are extremely popular with athletes. They contain amino acids that increase the body's ability to quickly produce energy. In fact, 40 percent of college athletes and about half of professional athletes use creatine supplements to increase their strength and performance.
Q. Are Creatine supplements safe?
A. Some who have used creatine have reported side effects such as bloating, headaches, weight gain, stomach cramps, nausea and diarrhea. But the greatest concern in using creatine is using too much. High doses of creatine could cause harm to the kidneys, liver and heart.
Q. What is the proper way to use Creatine?
A. Creatine works by creating a rapid production of energy, particularly to the muscles, and it has been shown to increase muscle mass. However, the creatine and the high-endurance activity go hand-in-hand. Just taking creatine is not going to give the expected results. The idea is to use the energy to exercise and lift weights, thereby increasing the performance and also the results.
According to the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, muscle fibers grow in people who take creatine, but only if they use the energy it creates to their advantage by exercising or lifting weights. Creatine is a natural product, and it does work, but it may not be for everyone and it needs to be used responsibly.
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