For years, many bodybuilders, athletes and weight trainers are using creatine supplements to be able to gain muscle mass. This is not really surprising as it has scientifically proven to boost muscle mass especially in skeletal muscles. Basically, these are the fundamental rules to take creatine. On the other hand, everyone will have a different reaction when taking such supplement and this is affected by your diet, genetics, exercise level and body mass.
But to make sure that you’re using it correctly, following are the general rules that must not be taken for granted.
Rule number 1. Read the label and take as per the recommended dosage – you must not take more than the suggested dosage especially if you are new to taking creatine. A common dosage for 100% pure creatine monohydrate is 1 teaspoon. Putting too much creatine could result to diarrhea and cramping. Aside from that, it can even put more stress on your kidney by working twice as hard in filtering the excess creatine you’ve ingested in your body.
Rule number 2. Mix creatine with 8oz. of water – if you don’t like the plain taste of water, you can mix your creatine supplement with a high fructose drink such as guava or mango. Fructose in the said juices will result to fast absorption which allows your body to metabolize quicker. Basic dosage for creatine is anywhere from 3mg. to 5mg a day.
Rule number 3. Make sure to dissolve the powder thoroughly – as you put the creatine in water or juice, see to it that it’s mixed well. Your body will find it more difficult to absorb creatine particles in the event that there are too many of it in your drink.
Rule number 4. Drink more water and avoid drinking alcohol – when you consume any form of creatine as supplement, staying hydrated is extremely important. Having said that, be sure that you increase your water intake and whenever possible, avoid alcohol. Drinking alcohol is going to make your muscles dehydrated, which lessens the benefits you can get from the supplement.
If ever you are getting stomach cramps or feel bloated while taking creatine monohydrate, then consider decreasing your dosage. There’s no loading phase when using creatine or in other words, you can take the recommended dosage even when you’re just starting out and feel the effects of it almost immediately.
Taking supplements similar to creatine when working out are totally normal but please do remember that you have to learn to take it in moderation and learn how to use it properly.