As we all know by now, creatine is a chemical that can be found in your body, mainly inside your muscles. It is produced by your body and can be obtained from certain types of food like fish and meat.
Creatine is also produced in laboratories and used to enhance muscle mass while exercising. Some science researches supports the fact that creatine helps athletes perform better, whatever the physical activity. But is it safe to use? Let’s see together if Creatine is as safe as scientists tell us.
Does Creatine have side effects?
There are only two side effects known triggered by the use of creatine: muscle cramps and dehydration.
Additionally the only concern noted was by Dr. Laskowski from the Mayo Clinic that had expressed his worry of using creatine over a long time. Based on his research, your kidneys and liver might be put at risk if you use creatine for a long period of time. However, Creatine has been proved by many other researches to be safe to use as long as you respect the dosages recommended by the manufacturers.
Some users have also been complaining about the following side effects when taking creatine:
- Stomach cramps
- Muscle cramps
To avoid these effects, you should drink a lot of water when taking creatine. Indeed, creatine will pump a lot of water inside your muscles, making them look bigger and reducing the precious liquid available in the rest of your body.
Does Creatine have health implications?
The study done by Dr. G. Watson had been the concern of heat tolerance in dehydrated men while using creatine. As creatine monohydrate is used by numerous athletes from football to ice hockey, there had been concerns about the creatine use with increased muscle cramps, heat intolerance, and dehydration.
The purpose here was to find out if one week of Creatine Monohydrate supplementation would compromise the hydration type of athletes or if it would increase the symptoms of heat illness in men that are dehydrated while exercising in the heat.
With the project twelve active males aged 22 years were selected. They consumed 21.6 grams of creatine for seven days, and underwent 48 hours training for 10 days of washout between treatments, and then they crossed over to alternate the treatment in the creatine group. On the 7th day of each treatment, the athletes lost 2% body mass while exercising in the heat of 33.5°C. Then they completed 80 minutes of heat tolerance exercise tests. The research consisted of four by 20 minute sequences of 4 minutes, then alternating a 3 minute walk and 1 minute intensity run three times, and then walking for 4 minutes.
The results: No increase in symptoms or compromising of hydration status, or thermoregulation in lack of fluids could be noted with the men while training in the heat with the use of the short term Creatine Monohydrate supplementation.
The Food and Drug Administration does not regulate any herbs or supplements. They do not guarantee the purity, strengths, and safety of these products and the side effects will differ depending on the people using them. You should always consult a doctor before taking any supplement, specially if you have a medical condition like diabetes or heart problems.
Creatine is safe to use and has been proved to be safe many times over the last decade. It was also shown that creatine works. However, some people might still get minimal side effects such as the ones described in this article.