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With Summer eventually approaching so brings a time for workouts and added energy. A difficult task for many as the cold months has depleted much vigour. Taking creatine supplements however could help increase energy and improve strength, durability and recovery.
Creatine is a nitrogenous organic acid that helps supply energy to cells throughout the body, particularly muscle cells.
It occurs naturally in red meat and fish, it is made by the body, and it can also be obtained from supplements.
Evidence suggests it might help prevent ageing skin, treat muscle disease and even help with multiple sclerosis (MS) to exercise
Experts state creatine may also help to enhance cognitive ability, and more.
What is creatine?
Creatine is formed of three amino acids: L-arginine, glycine, and L-methionine, said Medical News Today.
The health site continued: “It makes up about 1 percent of the total volume of human blood.
“Around 95 percent of creatine in the human body is stored in skeletal muscle, and 5 percent is in the brain.
“Between 1.5 and 2 percent of the body’s creatine store is converted for use each day by the liver, the kidneys, and the pancreas.
“It is transported through the blood and used by parts of the body that have high energy demands, such as skeletal muscle and the brain.”
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In a study published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, creatine supplementation to enhance muscular performance during high-intensity resistance exercise was investigated.
The study noted: “Fourteen active men were randomly assigned in a double-blind fashion to either a creatine group or a placebo group.
“Both groups performed a bench press exercise protocol and a jump squat exercise on three different occasions separated by six days.”
The results showed creatine supplementation resulted in a significant improvement in peak power output during all five sets of jump squats and a significant improvement in repetitions during all five sets of bench presses.
After creatine supplementation, post exercise lactate concentrations were significantly higher after the bench press but not the jump squat.
A significant increase in body mass of 1.4 kg was observed after creatine ingestion.
Creatine supplements helped the body by improving:
- Ballistic power
- Sprint ability
- Muscle endurance
- Resistance to fatigue
- Muscle mass
- Brain performance
How it works
During exercise, ATP is broken down to produce energy.
The rate of ATP resynthesis limits a person’s ability to continually perform at maximum intensity, as you use ATP faster than you reproduce it.
Creatine supplements increases phosphocreatine storage, allowing you to produce more ATP energy to fuel your muscles during high-intensity exercise.
What’s more, creatine supplements can increase the water content of your muscles.
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