Creatine is a dietary supplement that is consumed by many athletes, especially those in the areas of bodybuilding or sports that require muscle explosion, such as speed races. This supplement helps in gaining lean mass, increases muscle fiber diameter and improve physical performance as well as helping in preventing sports injuries.
Creatine is a substance naturally produced by the kidneys, pancreas and liver, and is a derivative of amino acids. Supplements of this compound can be taken for approximately 2 to 3 months, under the guidance of a doctor, nutritionist or neurologist; varying the maintenance dose between 3 and 5 g per day according to weight and for a limited period.
How to take creatine
Creatine supplementation should be done under the guidance of a doctor or nutritionist and should be accompanied by intense training and adequate nutrition so that it may favor the increase in muscle mass.
Creatine supplements can be taken in 3 different ways, and all may have benefits in increasing muscle mass and they include:
1. Supplementation for 3 months
Creatine supplementation for 3 months is the most used form. It involves consumption of 2 to 5 grams of creatine per day for 3 months is indicated, and then recommended to stop for 1 month so that another cycle can be started then, if necessary.
2. Overload supplementation
Creatine supplementation with overload consists of taking 0.3 g/kg of weight during the first 5 days, dividing the total dose 3 to 4 times a day, as this favors muscle saturation.
Then, one should reduce the dose to 5 grams per day for 12 weeks, and the use of creatine should always be accompanied by regular bodybuilding workouts, which should preferably be guided by a physical education professional.
3. Cyclic supplementation
Another way to take creatine is cyclicly, which consists of taking 5 grams every day for about 6 weeks and then taking a 3-week break.
What creatine is for
Creatine is a cheap supplement that can be used for several purposes; it serves to:
- Provide energy to muscle fibers, avoiding muscle fatigue and favoring strength during training
- Facilitate muscle recovery
- Increase muscle volume because it promotes fluid accumulation within cells
- Promote fat-free muscle mass gain
- Prevent injury
In addition to having benefits related to physical activity, some studies also indicate that creatine has neuroprotective function, hence it prevents and reduces the severity of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease and muscular dystrophy.
This supplement can also have positive effects and benefits when used as a way to supplement the treatment of diabetes, osteoarthritis, fibromyalgia, cerebral and cardiac ischemia as well as depression.