Does Creatine Work?

The short answer is Yes. Creatine supplementation has been proven in studies to improve muscle mass, explosive power and strength in most individuals.

Note: Creatine Phosphate, also known as phosphocreatine is the name of the stored form of creatine in the body. There are different forms of creatine available, creatine monohydrate being the best studied and most popular supplement. Creatine is a waste product which results from the processing of creatine phosphate in the body. Another product of the processing of creatine phosphate is Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) which is used for energy. ATP is the good stuff that you are looking for more of.

The slightly longer answer is what follows…Let’s first clarify exactly what creatine does. Keeping it simple, creatine phosphate is used in the process of providing energy to the muscles. It’s naturally found in the body, but people can have different natural levels of it available.

Eating meat is one natural way to achieve higher levels of creatine in the body. Supplementation is another way to achieve higher levels of creatine in the muscles and therefore higher available energy stores. But, there are two catches…

  1. Creatine is only needed for high intensity exercises such as weight lifting, football and short sprints. Anything with short, explosive bouts of activity. Long distance, endurance athletes are not going to benefit from extra creatine availability.
  2. As I said previously, creatine is found naturally in the body and some people have more of it than others. As a result, supplementation works better for some people than others, depending on what levels they had to start with. The best idea is for you to test it out and see if it works for you or not. If it does, great. If not, think yourself lucky that you already have enough of it naturally in your body. It’s also a good idea to keep the amount of meat and sea fish that you eat high to get as much creatine from natural sources.