Creatine is obtained from dietary sources, primarily meat and seafood, with a smaller portion produced by the body.
Although 1-2 additional reps might not seem like a lot, over time the ability to do 10-20% more repetitions translates to increased muscle building and strength gains.
Does Creatine Work for Everyone?
Although creatine has been studied primarily in men, most studies looking at women seem to show similar benefits. In fact, some studies even suggest a greater response to creatine in women than men. Although some people might not have as robust a response, it’s probably worth giving creatine a shot. It is considered to be the most effective supplement available for purposes of improving exercise capacity and aiding in building muscle.
Is It Safe?
There have been various claims that creatine can cause dehydration and muscle cramping, though the best research does not show that. Additionally, there is a misconception that creatine can promote kidney problems. Both short- and long-term studies in various populations from young and healthy to ill and elderly have not demonstrated any negative effect.
How Do You Take Creatine?
Creatine comes in various formulations, though the cheapest, most popular, and most well-studied is creatine monohydrate. Creatine monohydrate typically comes in both pill and powder form which are equally effective. Creatine’s effects are only seen when the muscles become sufficiently saturated. There are two options when taking creatine: loading vs not loading.
Unlike supplements such as caffeine, where your body develops a tolerance and the effects diminish over time, creatine’s effects are persistent and do not require you to cycle on and off of it.