Benefits associated with taking/consuming creatine may include:
- Helping with protein synthesis, which increased growth of lean muscle mass (creatine also increases body weight due to muscles filling with more water). Some research found that one week of taking creatine supplements increased body mass by about 0.9–2.2 kilograms (2.0–4.6 pounds).
- Improved strength and power output. Creatine storage capacity in our muscles is limited, but it increases as muscle mass increases. Creatine supplementation has the ability to regenerate ATP stores faster during intense physical activity, helping sustain effort and prevent fatigue.
- May help improve muscle recovery and recovery from exercise, such as maximizing results from strength training.
- Seems to help maximize performance during high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Studies have found that creatine improved work performed during sets of maximal effort muscle contractions, single-effort sprint performance and during repetitive sprint performance.
- Neuroprotective properties (creatine may help protect the brain).
- Cognitive enhancement, such as improved alertness, concentration and attention.
- May help reduce severity of depression symptoms (according to animal studies and small pilot studies in humans).
- Cardioprotective properties, as creatine may help protect the heart and blood vessels. It has also been shown to support increased endurance and anaerobic cardiovascular capacity.
- May potentially reduce fatigue.
- May potentially help improve bone density when combined with resistance training.
Due to the benefits that creatine may offer, it’s not hard to see why there’s a connection between creatine and bodybuilding. If you’re looking to gain muscle, you might be wondering if creatine or whey protein is better (or another type of protein powder)? Both have been shown to have similar benefits in terms of supporting muscle growth, however whey protein is not always easy for many people to digest if they have a sensitivity to dairy. Creatine also seems to have some unique benefits, such as improving heart health and bone density. If you do choose whey protein or creatine, I recommend consuming organic whey protein from grass-fed cows