Well, honestly, there are now countless creatine powders and capsules on the market, not to mention the entire test & comparison pages on creatine.
I do not know about you but I find it difficult to make the right choice again and again.
So that did not happen to you, I just summarized everything important about creatine and my favorite products.
In this article you will learn the following:
- What are the 5 best creatine powders?
- When does creatine make sense?
- What should you look for in creatine powder?
By the way: I have summarized my 14 best tips for building muscle Training and even nutrition in the article on "14 Muscle Building Tips: The list for more muscle mass".
What is creatine – short and sweet
Very short: Creatine is an endogenous substance that you can also take as a supplement.
Figuratively speaking, creatine ensures that the batteries in your muscles charge faster.
My creatine product recommendation are:
Caution: Some people do not tolerate creatine, which can cause diarrhea, vomiting or headache.
In addition, creatine also ensures that your body can absorb water worse, so you should make sure to drink a lot.
How does creatine work?
Creatine works in your body in the form of creatine phosphate.
More on this: Creatine phosphate is the most important source of energy in your body besides adenosine triphosphate. It provides fast available energy and is needed for short and intense muscle loads, such as muscle building.
For optimal muscle and brain function, creatine is available to the organism as an energy buffer.
Creatine does its job especially with short but intensive training sessions.
The reason: In this case energy (ATP) is consumed quickly. Creatine phosphate is able to replenish energy quickly, so more reps can be done during a practice set. If this is possible, muscle and strength build-up are significantly supported.
The 5 Best Creatine Powders in the Test & Comparison
There are many creatine products. Therefore, it is important to look at the current product comparison again and again.
Only then can a good be distinguished from a bad product. Maybe all products are equally good? Let's take a look at the first 5 products in the list.
All products are tasteless powder that can be easily stirred into shakes, sauces, yoghurt and other foods. It is also gladly mixed with juices or cereals.
- 1st place: Olimp Creapure Monohydrate:
- It is chosen by many people in different comparisons to number one. It is available in 500g units available as a powder. The production takes place in Germany and promises the highest quality and purity.
- 2nd place: ESN Ultrapure Creatine:
- Also, this preparation presents itself with a very good result, but is apparently consumed by fewer people. It is suitable for both vegetarians and vegans. The products manufactured in Germany are obtained from non-animal raw materials. Fast absorption is guaranteed.
- 3rd place: Profuel foundation:
- Here we find a 300 g can. The creatine is not offered pure, but mixed with beta alanine.
- 4th place: myprotein creatine monohydrate:
- In this 500g can is pure creatine, without any additives. It has a very good price-performance ratio.
- 5th place: ESN Creapure Creatine Monohydrate:
- Another product from ESN. Micronized powder that is easy to take. It can be mixed with everything.
It should be noted in principle that all creatine products must be taken with sufficient water to be optimally utilized.
How and when should you take creatine?
For a performance-enhancing effect to be achieved, it makes sense to continuously take creatine in the form of a cure for at least four weeks.
My advice: If necessary, the duration of the treatment can be extended, or even permanently.
It is recommended to divide a daily dose of 20g into 4 receipts for quick success.
Creatine cure at a glance
- The loading phase about 1 week 20 g up to 25 g a day.
- The maintenance phase about 3 to 5 weeks 3 g to 5 g a day
- The break after the creatine cure at least 1 week to 4 weeks
In the so-called loading phase, it may be useful to take the creatine together with carbohydrates.
Important: Basically, the preparation is taken with plenty of water.
To create a maintenance dose, 5g are enough per day. It is spoken of a so-called loading phase.
These are the first seven days in which the drug is taken. In this phase, the effect of creatine optimizes to be preserved thereafter.
Creatine before or after exercise?
The best effect with creatine is achieved if the preparation is taken immediately after training.
It should be combined with carbohydrates and a protein-protein shake.
By the way: The supplement beta-alanine also helps to avoid fatigue and hyperacidity of the muscle. Ideally you take beta-alanine before training.
Of course, differently designed preparations are on the market, so that it is not easy for beginners to find the right one for the start.
My advice: A simple creatine monohydrate is perfectly sufficient to support the organism at this stage.
The much-recommended PH-buffered creatine products have, according to studies, no better mode of action can show.
The creatine ethyl ester can not really convince. On the other hand, tri-creatine malate also has a positive effect on fatigue and fatigue.
Why does creatine improve performance?
Studies have found that athletes who take creatine supplements could report greater muscle mass gain than those who did not take the creatine.
However, it must not be overlooked that this conditionally consists of water retention. If the creatine is discontinued, the additional water is excreted quickly.
But do not worry: The built up musculature is completely preserved. Those who took creatine and muscle training, could enjoy a lean mass of 2.2kg.
On the other hand, the participants without creatine intake can only have 0.6 kg of lean mass. If strength training with creatine is supported, the muscle fiber average falls two to three times as large.
In percent, the following values result in an 8-week intake:
- 8% strength increase during strength training
- 14% increase in weight-lifting performance
- 16% – 45% increase in bench press
Basically, it can be said that creatine achieves a particularly high effect in sports whose load time is less than 30 seconds.
This means that it is particularly suitable for strength training or sprint. This implies that endurance sports do not benefit from taking creatine. They do not derive their energy from the energy buffer that is affected by the creatine.
I do not feel any effect with creatine
Of course, there are always people who achieve little or no effect by taking creatine.
Why is that? There are groups of people who naturally have a very high creatine buffer.
It goes without saying that they are already adequately equipped with creatine.
Other gifts can not increase the effect further. In this context, it was found that vegetarians react very strongly to creatine. Why? Because this substance is mainly found in meat.
Does creatine also help with sports injuries?
It should not happen too often, but training damage can not be completely avoided. In these cases, it is good if creatine supplements are on hand.
The reason: Creatine helps the muscle to regenerate. It accelerates the healing of the fibers and thus leads to a quick recovery of full muscle power.
This is due to the increased production of muscle stem cells (satellite cells). In addition, more muscle-forming protein IGF-1 is formed, resulting in improved muscle growth. In order to use the effect of the satellite cells and the IGF-1, the supply of protein and amino acids in sufficient form is necessary.
By the way: Even older patients with muscle atrophy can benefit from the effects of creatine. Certainly they lack the muscle by appropriate training. Nevertheless, it can be seen that their muscle tone improves and they can use their muscles better again when they undergo a creatine regimen.
Creatine with caffeine admixture or without?
There are creatine supplements that already contain a caffeine admixture. However, it is believed that if such a mixture is used over the long term, the effect of creatine could be adversely affected by caffeine.
The reason: Creatine shortens the period of muscle relaxation during a workout. Caffeine, on the other hand, prolongs it. So whether it really worth using a creatine supplement with caffeine admixture, is questionable.
… and creatine even improves brain function!
In addition to the muscles, the brain is the organ that is richest in creatine.
Thus, creatine can be used to help people who suffer from lack of sleep for various reasons, to a positive sleep experience.
The short-term memory as well as the long-term memory, attention and the entire information processing are improved by creatine gifts.
Tips for dealing with creatine
As with all dietary supplements, creatine products have reasons not to take them. These include:
- Dysfunction of liver and kidney
- In case of doubt, consult the doctor in charge. This also applies if various medicines are already taken permanently because of health problems.
The use of supplements, which include the creatine supplements, does not exempt from a healthy lifestyle. A balanced diet, a well-balanced movement profile and regular visits to the doctor should be the top priority. That's why these products are called supplements. Because they can not feed the organism alone.
It does not work without water! When taking the products, please always take enough water so that the creatine in dissolved form gets into the stomach.