Creatine is one of the most well researched supplements. Research has found that it can increase muscle mass, strength and performance.
Why wouldn’t you want to add this to your daily dose of supplements? Sounds great! If you’ve just started looking into supps to buy, then you will want to know the best creatine.
Firstly, let’s just give you a little background on what creatine is and what it does.
What is creatine?
Creatine is naturally in your muscle cells. It’s job is to help your muscles produce energy during heavy lifting or intense exercise.
How much creatine you have in your system will depend on a couple of factors. These include:
- Meat intake
- Muscle mass
- Levels of testosterone
When you take creatine you can increase your bodies own stores of phosphocreatine. This will then allow you to produce more ATP. When you have more ATP you can produce more energy. More energy means lifting more, running harder, you get the idea.
How can creatine help you make gains?
- You have more energy in your muscles so you will be likely to lift heavier or more volume in a session. Overtime, this can help with hypertrophy.
- More water pulled into your muscle cells to help muscle to grow and hydrate
- Reduction in protein breakdown
- Creatine stores can help improve cell signalling to help repair and build your muscles (aka GAINS)
- Studies have found there is a rise in 1GF-1 hormone after taking creatine – this is an anabolic hormone (ref)
There have been heaps of studies on the effects of creatine. All of which point towards it being one of the absolute go to supplements for people wanting to make some serious gains.
You know what’s great about it too, it’s not even expensive! One of the cheapest, most researched supplements for making gains. I’ll take that.
Is creatine a steroid?
Anabolic steroids are a drug which target tissues to help them grow. However, they have some negative side effects, the following is taken from the NHS website:
- reduced sperm count
- shrunken testicles
- erectile dysfunction
- breast development
- increased risk of prostate cancer
- severe acne
- stomach pain
In women, anabolic steroids can cause:
- facial hair growth and body hair
- loss of breasts
- swelling of the clitoris
- a deepened voice
- an increased sex drive
- problems with periods
- hair loss
- severe acne
Creatine is not a steroid. It naturally causes a rise in anabolic hormones to help with muscle gains.
So, what is the best creatine on the market?
Here are 3 fantastic powders from brands we know and trust that make the list of best creatine.
Optimum Nutrition Creatine – 88 servings | 317g
Project Nutrition Creatine | 1000mg per capsule | 240 tabs
Olimp Nutrition | 250g | 83 servings
When do you take creatine?
Creatine is said to aid your short term performance. For this reason, we suggest that you shot your creatine or mix it into your drink about 30 minutes before your session. Some pre workouts actually contain creatine, so check this before you buy extra supps, that you might not need.