What is creatine? Why do we need it?

Creatine is considered the ‘king’ of performance supplements. But apart from enhancing power and endurance during training, it also has a host of other health benefits. Let’s take a closer look.

What is creatine

Creatine or creatine monohydrate is nitrogen-based, organic acid that is produced by our liver. It is made out of three amino acids: L-arginine, glycine, and L-methionine. Creatine supplies energy to the body’s cells and once creatine has been transported by our blood, it supplies energy to all cells throughout our bodies, in particular muscle cells. It is particularly useful for muscles that have a high energy demand, such as the brain and skeletal muscle.

Dietary sources of creatine include meat, fish, and other animal products. While the body can manufacture creatine, muscle concentrations of this compound are typically lower in older and middle-aged adults. If you’re considering using a creatine supplement, make sure you source one that is can guarantee its quality, purity and safety. Check out http://secondtononenutrition.com for a range of premium creatine supplements.

Creatine sports supplements

Creatine is particularly useful in high intensity interval training as it significantly boosts energy levels. It does this through two key mechanisms. First, it can actually recycle the energy molecule ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) and second, it can also convert ADP (spent energy) back into ATP for increased energy output.

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What does this mean for you? Well, you can push yourself harder to lift one or two extra reps or add more weight. In fact, research suggests that by using creatine, you can increase the maximum power and performance in high-intensity training by up to 15 percent. All of this adds up to increases in lean muscles mass, muscle strength and endurance.

Supplementation with creatine monohydrate may also provide a buffer to the build up of lactic acid, thereby delaying the onset, duration and severity of muscle fatigue. If speed and quick starts are a big part of your sport, researchers in Italy have also discovered that jumpers and sprinters using creatine, improved the first 30 seconds of their performance by about 10%.

Creatine and testosterone

Unfortunately for men, once they reach their 30s, testosterone levels start to decline, leading to a decrease in energy, endurance, strength, mental sharpness, and libido. An American study in which participants took daily creatine supplements through the course of a 10 week resistance training program, significantly boosted their resting testosterone levels.

Creatine as a brain supplement

Australian researchers have found that creatine can also enhance neurological performance. More specifically, participants found they could process information more quickly, had improved recall (memory) and were generally clearer-thinking and more focused and productive. It has also believed that creatine could be used to treat a range of neuromuscular and neurodegenerative disorders including arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, congestive heart failure and even depression.

So there you have it, the low-down on how creatine can improve physical and mental health, as well as significantly improve the intensity and results of your training regime.

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