Creatine: Meaning, Health Benefits, and Side-Effects
Old or young, many people want to increase their athletic performance while also building muscles. You’ve likely heard of or tried creatine supplements. However, there’s also a possibility that you may have heard that muscle-building supplements are risky, like testicular cancer.
So the question is, is creatine supplementation safe, and does it work?
In this blog, we will discuss the potential health benefits and risks and if creatine might be the right option.
Meaning of Creatine
Creatine is one of the natural chemicals in the body. It comes with amino acids (glycine, arginine, and methionine). It is also one of the common supplements often found in powder form. The set of people it is most common in is the athletes or people who hope to improve exercise performance or build muscle mass.
Muscles store most of the creatine in the body. It is also in the testicles, kidneys, and brain. You can consume creatine with foods like seafood and red meat. However, your intake will be lower if you follow a vegetarian diet.
Does creatine have health benefits?
Creatine supplementation may provide benefits, including improved exercise performance and lean muscle mass.
Creatine supplementation may help in the following:
- Increase exercise capacity
- Improve exercise performance
- Improve exercise recovery periods
- Increase muscle strength and size
There may also be a few benefits to creatine supplements as you grow old, and the reason is the natural decrease of creatine with age. Supplementation with creatine may help you prevent sarcopenia or the loss of muscle strength and mass with age. Creatine supplementation also has potential health benefits in age-related conditions, including Type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
Side Effects of Creatine
Creatine supplementation may cause water retention and weight gain. Other side effects of creatine are mild and may include muscle cramps, diarrhea, and nausea. You may also hear people say creatine supplementation that may lead to erectile dysfunction (ED), acne, or hair loss. But there is no better evidence that it leads to these conditions.
Link Between Testicular and creatine cancer
There have been few concerts around using muscle-building supplements and their effects on the testicles, including the risk of testicular cancer. However, the risk appears to be high for people under 25 and those who used two or more muscle-building supplements.
The primary reason may be that contaminants or other ingredients in the supplement make it unsafe to use. Unfortunately, the FDA doesn’t regulate supplements, so it could be hard to know what you are intaking or the risks.
Is it safe to consume creatine?
If we say, in general, it is safe to consume creatine. Studies show that lower-dose and short-term supplementation in adults is relatively safe. It is not a steroid and does not cause acne, ED, or baldness. At recommended doses, you can consume creatine, and it will be safe for the kidneys. In addition, it does not appear to increase the risks of cancer.
However, one thing to keep in mind is that with any supplement, there may be unknown health risks. So it is always good to review what you are taking with your healthcare provider.
Creatine is one of the common supplements people use to improve athletic performance and build muscle. It can be helpful for several people, from people losing muscle with age to athletes. However, testicular cancer has a link to other muscle-building supplements, and it may be a risk with the intake of these supplements.
However, if you take any medication or supplement, talk with your healthcare provider before using creatine. You can download a Wiserx best pharmacy discount card to get creatine and supplements at discounts from your local pharmacy today!