If you are into fitness and bodybuilding, then you must have already heard about the term Creatine. If not, then first you need to understand what is Creatine? Creatine is a natural compound generated in our body from amino acids and is the primary source of protein. It can also be consumed externally through animal proteins like beef and fish.
Apart from these natural sources, It is also sold as a dietary supplement and has recently become one of the highest-selling bodybuilding supplements in the world. Despite such high demand due to Creatine benefits, it is not 100% safe to consume as there are some creatine side effects, we will look into the pros and cons further.
As a result of rigorous researches into its safety and effectiveness, there are few pros and cons of Creatine as a weight-lifting or bodybuilding supplement. Let’s now skim through the
various pro and cons if you are consuming Creatine as a supplement answer the question What does creatine do?
- Enhances muscle size and muscle mass
Creatine is consumed along with the resistance training, the results that you gain are significantly better in terms of the muscle size growth against the results if you avoid it. This benefit has been backed by numerous scientific studies as well.
- Overall Strength and endurance
Body strength and endurance are super vital while performing weight-lifting. They come into play when you are pushing your muscular ability to perform resistance training. Research has shown that people consuming Creatine tend to possess a higher level of stamina and strength than those who didn’t consume it.
- Swift Muscle repair and recovery
Muscle injury is a common problem faced by bodybuilders. The longer it takes to repair those injured muscles, the longer you will be away from the gym, and well, no one wants that. Creatine comes to the rescue yet again as it has been scientifically proved that it assists in faster muscle recovery so you can resume your exercise regime as soon as possible.
- Assists in bulking
It helps majorly in gaining weight as it enhances water or liquid consumption in the muscles. This particular feature may be a welcome one for bodybuilders, but some athletes may see this as one of its side effects due to obvious reasons.
- Prevents muscle loss due to age
Creatine has been proved to slow down the process of Sarcopenia. Sarcopenia could be explained as the loss of muscles mainly associated with aging. It’s normal to lose some muscle mass as you age. However, Sarcopenia describes severe muscle loss that strays from the normal level. So, for aging bodybuilders out there, Creatine is your go-to supplement.
- Resistance to fatigue
Creatine has been known to reduce the overall effects of fatigue. Fatigue could be felt due to a normal resistance workout or any other tiring activity. Athletes, in general, are always looking for ways to reduce or say minimize the effects of fatigue and Creatine is one of the major products that they prefer as it is approved by nearly all the sports authorities.
These may be the key benefits of Creatine, but the same are certainly not the only ones. There are other benefits of Creatine as well, and they include:
- Protection of the brain against neurogenerative diseases
- It helps maintain healthy levels of blood sugar
- Supports and enhances brain function
- Assists in fighting depression
- Boosts mental performance
While these benefits may be compelling enough to go to the store and buy Creatine right now, there are particular concerns about using Creatine that may help you reconsider your recent decision. These cons of consuming it are essential to be aware of as well. Let’s now go through them real quick.
CREATINE SIDE EFFECTS
- Not recommended for kidney patients
Despite of all the benefits that arrive from having Creatine in your body, excessive Creatine may lead you to become prone to various diseases. The human kidneys function to excrete excess Creatine from your body, but if you have some kind of kidney disorder or your kidneys are weak, the Creatine level would naturally increase above the average level. So, if you are subject to weak kidneys, then Creatine supplements are not the answer to your needs.
- Contributes to the development of testicular cancer
Creatine as a supplement may contribute to the risk of developing testicular cancer as many such supplements contain artificial hormones to boost results. Many low-quality Creatine supplements may also include items that are not mentioned on the label. One should be aware of the quality of Creatine being consumed. FDA has also frowned upon this particular Creatine side effect.
As mentioned earlier, Creatine assists in restoring water in the muscles, but the same may lead to a lack of water components in other functional parts of the body. This may be beneficial for your muscles but act as a side effect for the body as a whole. So, if you are consuming it remember to drink water more occasionally throughout your day.
- Easily accessible for teens
Creatine is not suitable for kids under 18 to gain an athletic advantage or to achieve quick results. It is proven that consuming Creatine or any other supplements for that matter at such an early age may lead to health hazards over the long term. To be specific, it can damage the liver and also impact organs and their ability to handle toxins. This means that if a child (who will naturally still be developing) begins to use it, it may lead to dysfunction and impact the organs’ function in the future.
- May cause Bloating
The most common problem accompanied by taking it as a supplement is due to bloating. This problem of bloating most often occurs after the first few consumptions. Furthermore, this problem is not that big of a red flag as it can be avoided by timing your dosages appropriately throughout your day.
Other Side effects include:
- Risk of consuming impure chemicals
- Dizziness during workouts
- Irregular Heartbeats
Now that you are entirely mindful of the various Creatine pros and cons and What does creatine do? and how does it is up to you to decide whether it is a healthy option to use it as a supplement. We, however, would recommend you to always refer your doctor before you start ingesting it as the creatine side effects are pretty worrying too.
So, what are your thoughts about this supplement? Are you including it in your regime? If not, Why? Do let us know in the comments section below.