Creatine

Creatine is a naturally occurring organic acid. Long used as a supplement for body building, recent studies have shown that creatine provides nootropic benefits as well.

creatine

Benefits:

  • Improves working memory [8][10][11]
  • Increases fluid intelligence [8][10][11]
  • Prevents cognitive decline and aids cognitive function in the elderly [9]
  • Improves muscle gain and strength [3][4][5][6][12]
  • Enables muscles to retain strength and size after exercise has ceased [7]
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What Is Creatine?

Creatine is a naturally occurring organic acid. It is used by vertebrates to help supply cells with energy. Specifically, it is synthesized in the human body from L-arginine, glycine, and L-methionine. From there it is transported through blood to different muscles in the body. It can be consumed naturally through high-protein diets. Body-builders and other athletes seeking to gain muscle mass commonly use creatine supplements to help themselves gain muscle mass.

Even though creatine is very well known for its body building benefits, it also has some very beneficial nootropic benefits that often go unnoticed. Recent studies have shown that creatine has a beneficial effect on one’s IQ and memory.

Creatine Dosage Information

Studies have shown that doses ranging from 5 – 20 grams per day are completely safe and will not cause any side effects.  [13] When people take creatine for muscle building there is generally a “loading phase”. This consists of a high dose from equal to .3 grams for every kilogram of body weight you have for 5 days.

After the “loading phase”, a “maintenance” phase of 2-5 grams per day for up to one month.

Finally, there is a “washout” phase. This consists of a much lower dose of 500mg – 1 gram per day for a month.

For people who are using creatine for nootropic benefits along with body building benefits I would suggest you don’t worry about any of these phases. Instead, it is recommended that you take a 750mg dose 2-3 times per day.

It is also important to note that there are two forms of creatine, monophosphate and ethyl ester. The monophosphate form is more reliable and more often used.

How Does Creatine Work?

  • Creatine plays a very important role in energy homeostasis that takes place in the brain. It allows the brain to produce greater amounts of Adinosine Triphosphate. This gives the brain more fuel, making it work more efficiently and at a faster pace. [8]
  • Creatine increases the muscles’ reserves of phosphocreatine (PCr). This allows muscles to resynthesize ATP at a faster rate giving them more energy. [12]

Safety and Side Effects of Creatine

Multiple studies have shown that creatine is perfectly safe for short-term and long-term use. [1][2][3] Creatine is not an abusive steroid. There are no reported side effects to taking creatine.

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Creatine FAQ

Below are some of the most commonly asked questions about Creatine. If you have a question that’s not on this list, send it to us at questions@whatarenootropics.com and we will answer it for you.

Should I Use Creatine?

Does Creatine Have Synergy With Other Nootropics?

What Are Some Notable Studies on Creatine?

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Cited Studies

1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12701816 – creatine is safe for long term use

2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12500988 – creatine is safe for long term use

3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15212742?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DiscoveryPanel.Pubmed_Discovery_RA&linkpos=4&log$ =relatedreviews&logdbfrom=pubmed – enhances muscle size while being safe

4.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14636102?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DiscoveryPanel.Pubmed_Discovery_RA&linkpos=4&log$ =relatedreviews&logdbfrom=pubmed

5.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12131259?ordinalpos=1&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DiscoveryPanel.Pubmed_Discovery_RA&linkpos=2&log$ =relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed – muscle strength

6.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19033611?ordinalpos=8&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

7.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19130643?ordinalpos=2&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

8.  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1691485/?tool=pmcentrez –improves brain performance

9.  http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/psych/anec/2007/00000014/00000005/art00005

10.  http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200402/brawn-the-brain – amount used equals 4 pounds of meat per day

11.  http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/3145223.stm

12.  Spillane, M; Schoch, R; Cooke, M; Harvey, T; Greenwood, M; Kreider, R; Willoughby, DS. “The effects of creatine ethyl ester supplementation combined with heavy resistance training on body composition, muscle performance, and serum and muscle creatine levels”. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 6: 6. doi:10.1186/1550-2783-6-6. PMC 2649889. PMID 19228401. http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?tool=pmcentrez&artid=2649889.

13.  Bizzarini E, De Angelis L (December 2004). “Is the use of oral creatine supplementation safe?”. The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 44 (4): 411–6. PMID 15758854.

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