Does Creatine Make You Bloated | Dietary Supplements


Well, creatine is very popular nowadays as a dietary supplement. Fitness enthusiasts and athletes for excellent muscle strength and performance majorly use it. Though it offers substantial safety value, some people experience bloating, especially in the starting stage, also called the loading phase.Understanding the potential factors contributing to creatine bloat can help get the complete details on “Do creatine make you bloated?” Let us dive into this article and first learn what creatine and creatine bloating is, how it feels, how to manage it, and more!

What Is Creatine And How It Works?

Creatine is a natural amino acid produced in the pancreas, liver, and kidneys. After its production, it gets stored in the brain and muscle tissues as creatine phosphate. On average, the pancreas, kidney, and liver produce 1 to 2 grams of creatine daily, generally stored in skeletal muscles. However, you can also get it from animal-derived foods such as fish, meat, and supplements. Its primary role is to supply energy to the muscles during intense physical activities. Also, research says it helps manage age-related deficiencies in skeletal muscles, bone, and brain.

How does it work? As creatine is stored in the form of creatine phosphate, it constantly replenishes Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP), an organic compound that carries energy in the body cells. During intense workouts or physical activities, ATP provides power to the muscles. As naturally stored creatine level is limited, their effects decrease as the duration of time spent performing exercises increases. Some people consume only plant-based foodstuffs and show lower creatine levels. Here, taking a creatine supplement can increase the creatine value in the body and provide more energy to fuel the ATP, thus improving your fitness and health. Research shows that consuming 20 g of creatine supplement daily for 5-7 days can increase muscle strength and performance by 5-15%. This makes it popular among gym enthusiasts and athletes.

Also Read:How to Get Unbloated in 5 Minutes?

Does Creatine Make You Bloated?

Many people wonder if creatine causes bloating. Well, not everyone but some users experience bloating after having creatine supplements. It usually happens a few days after the starting stage, also famous as the “loading phase.” The reason behind creatine bloat is that it does not dissolve well in the body when taken in high amounts. The stomach draws more water to get it appropriately dissolved, which causes bloating.

Creatine bloating is not an increase in body fat. It is a creatine weight gain, which is a sign that implies the supplement is showing some effects in your body. Once creatine bloating declines, your body weight comes to standard. You can stick to lower creatine intake at the starting stage to reduce the chances of discomfort due to bloating. Also, make sure you buy high-quality creatine supplements for promising results.

Let us proceed and discuss in detail what creatine bloating is and how it occurs.

What Is Creatine Bloating And How Does It Feel?

Creatine bloating is a phenomenon that highly refers to increased creatine water retention after taking creatine supplements. The muscles hold water and creatine in significant volume, leading to an increase in bloating and total body water, temporarily. Most probably, creatine bloating happens during the loading phase as we have discussed above. It occurs when users take a high amount of creatine, around 20-25 gms, consecutively for 5-7 days. Consuming this dose leads to a surprising increase in muscle mass and water retention, causing your stomach to bloat. After the loading phase, keeping an optimal muscle mass is essential, so you can lower the intake and use 3-5 grams as a maintenance dose.

Also Read:List Of Foods That Cause Water Retention

When it comes to how creatine bloating makes you feel, it is all about the uneasy fullness in the abdominal area. Many users complain about the puffy feeling and excess gas, which can cause discomfort. However, creatine bloating symptoms are generally mild. Creatine water retention can temporarily increase body weight, but it is not a real weight gain. It is just due to the boost in fluid retention, causing this scale-up. The weight becomes normal once the bloating decreases after a few weeks.

How To Beat Creatine Bloating?

As you get the answer to your question, Does creatine make you bloated? if you are wondering how to avoid bloating. Though you can opt for several approaches, it will not work for everyone. If your bloating stays for many days, consulting a doctor will be ideal as they will help find the appropriate reason. Have a look at how to beat your bloating:

1. Choose The Right Dosage Amount

The dose is the biggest factor that has a significant role in the loading phase. In this initial stage, a high dose of creatine is consumed rather than a maintenance dose, which keeps the muscles flooded with the creatine. Typically, you need around 20 grams of creatine daily for 5 to 6 days to increase muscle saturation. After this phase, you can drop the dosage to the maintenance phase, about 3-5 grams daily. However, you can skip the loading phase and decide on the maintenance phase for 28 days using creatine monohydrate, which can also help achieve the same results.

Also Read:15 Foods That Can Cause Bloating

2. Pick The Right Creatine Supplement

Several types of creatine are available in the market. Among them, the most commonly used one is creatine monohydrate. Other varieties of creatine with different compositions include creatine malate, creatine HCL, creatine citrate, and many more options. Many users suggest taking Kre-Alkalyn or buffered creatine monohydrate. A buffered creatine supplement is a blend of creatine and an alkalizing agent like magnesium glycerol phosphate, soda ash, or bicarbonate. These alkalizers help increase the pH levels of the creatine supplement and make them more essential. As a result, this reduces bloating, cramps, and any side effects related to traditional creatine supplements.

3. Opt For Good Lifestyle Choices

Good lifestyle choices can significantly show results by preventing the occurrence of creatine bloating. So, add a low-sodium diet to your everyday eating routine. A low-sodium diet means less salt, which is central to water retention. A food with less salt can help reduce creatine water retention, thus relieving the bloating. Moreover, you also need to drink plenty of water. This is because creatine bloating causes water retention in muscles and leads to dehydration, as there’s not enough water left for the rest of the body. So, consuming creatine supplements is recommended to have about 8 glasses of water in a day. A balanced hydration will help prevent uncontrollable muscle cramps like leg cramps. Nevertheless, when you decide to consume creatine supplements, make sure it is a high-end brand that delivers high-quality products that are effective and safe.

What Are The Potential Benefits Of Creatine?

Creatine benefits in several ways, helping fitness enthusiasts and athletes boost their muscle strength and performance. In this section, we have explained many benefits in detail:

1. Increases Muscle Mass and Strength

Typically, creatine stimulates the muscle proteins that help grow and strengthen the muscle fibers, increasing muscle mass and strength. When you perform resistance training exercises for muscle growth, creatine provides energy to the muscles through ATP. As the body does not store ATP in much amount, this supplement improves ATP levels and allows you to continue to exercise. In addition, creatine may boost satellite cell signaling, effectively supporting muscle growth and repair. Muscle protein synthesis occurs actively after a workout. So, research says that taking creatine supplements within 60 minutes of exercise helps increase the creatine levels in the target tissue.

2. Improves Exercise Performance

Creatine supplementation can improve the exercise performance of many fitness enthusiasts and athletes by increasing their muscle strength and endurance power. It is beneficial in high-intensity exercises, including sprinting and weight-lifting physical activities. One study shows increased muscle strength for leg press, bench press, and squat exercises after taking creatine for a workout. This significantly leads to improved progress in exercise performance. Another report has shown creatine’s natural ability to improve sprinting performance, which is a crucial part of multiple sports.

3. Enhances Brain Function

Though a significant portion of creatine is found in skeletal muscles, a small amount gets stored in the brain. According to one research, creatine supplementation supports brain health by improving cognitive function and mental fatigue, mainly when brain creatine levels are low. The reasons for low brain creatines are acute stressors(such as sleep deprivation or exercises) or chronic health conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, aging, depression, or mild traumatic brain injury. By taking creatine supplements, you can efficiently improve the functioning of your brain.

Conclusion

Well, creatine is the most popular supplement nowadays that can help you improve your muscle strength and performance. It can cause creatine bloating when taken in high doses during the loading phase. But, bloating can be avoidable by skipping the loading phase and only going for a maintenance dose. Keep in mind that many brands are available in the market; prefer to choose the high-end ones that deliver the most effective and safest supplement for your fitness and health.



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