Creatine

You are looking for effective creatine supplements? Here you will find what you are looking for!

From the classic Creatine Monohydrate to Creatine Alkaline to the probably most potent creatine form Creatine AKG, you will find everything here that has been proven to improve your physical performance*!

* 3g creatine daily increases the physical performance during high-speed training in the context of short-term intensive physical activity.

The advantages at a glance:

Scientifically proven increase in performance*

Different dosage forms for individual needs

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All about creatine

General Information

What is creatine?Creatine is an endogenous substance that has been known for more than 150 years. For a long time, the organic acid, which can partly be produced in the body itself, received little attention in medicine. It was only through extensive basic research that the importance of creatine for numerous metabolic processes taking place in the body to provide energy became apparent. Creatine has been the subject of intensive research for more than 30 years.

Creatine is involved in numerous important physiological processes and is therefore indispensable for maintaining important functions in the human organism. Creatine is a molecule that is able to bind phosphorus atoms and release other molecules. This molecule is a so-called phosphagen.

The body of an adult human being (75 kilograms) contains about 120 to 150 grams of creatine, the majority (about 95 percent) of which is found in the skeletal muscles. The rest is found in the heart muscles, bones and brain.

Food sources of creatine
The human body can only provide creatine in small amounts (1-2 grams per day), but the daily requirement is on average around 2-5 grams. In addition to the body's own synthesis, creatine can be supplied to the body through food. The term creatine is derived from the Greek word "creas" (=meat), according to which creatine is mainly contained in animal products such as fresh red meat and fish. Foods containing creatine in particular include pork and beef as well as herring, salmon and tuna. Creatine is also found to a lesser extent in breast milk.

In order to cover the requirements, the body would have to be fed around 250 to 300 grams of fish or meat every day. Therefore, vegetarians and especially vegans may have a creatine deficit, unless they compensate it by taking supplements.

Effect of creatine in the body
In the human body, creatine is mainly produced or synthesized in the kidneys and liver. In addition, partial reactions of the body's own synthesis (biosynthesis) can take place in the pancreas and in the brain. Creatine is produced from the three amino acids methionine, glycine and arginine. Methionine is an essential (vital) amino acid that the body cannot produce itself, it must be supplied through food. Besides creatine, methionine is involved in the production of numerous other endogenous substances, e.g. the hormone adrenaline and the amino acid L-carnitine. Glycine, a structural protein, is the most frequently occurring amino acid of collagen, i.e. of skin and connective tissue. It is the most widespread protein in the human body. Arginine is a semi-essential amino acid which the human organism cannot produce or can only produce insufficiently in certain situations and phases. These include, for example, the growth phase and the time during pregnancy. Semi-essential amino acids cannot be produced sufficiently even in the case of injuries or during intensive physical activity. In these cases, they must be supplied to the body through food.

The first step of creatine synthesis takes place mainly in the kidney and partly in the pancreas. From there, the creatine precursor guanidino acetate is transported via the bloodstream to the liver where it is methylated to creatine by the enzyme GAMT (guanidino acetate N-methyltransferase). Subsequently, the creatine is again transported via the blood to the respective organs. With the help of a specific transporter ("carrier") it enters the cells where it is converted into phospho-creatine by means of ATP (adenosine tri-phosphate) or charged with energy. In this form, creatine is involved in numerous important physiological processes in the body, as explained in more detail below.

In order to understand the many possible effects of creatine, the physiological function of the enzyme that converts creatine in the cell should be explained. This enzyme is called creatine kinase (CK). On the one hand, the creatine kinase carries the ATP with the help of the energy-rich phospho-creatine. On the other hand, the creatine kinase contributes through the ATP to the charging of the creatine into the energy-rich phospho-creatine, also known as creatine phosphate. This reversible enzymatic reaction plays an essential role in the metabolism, which is responsible for the supply of energy in the muscle cells, the heart, the brain and the nerve and sensory cells.

ATP is a molecule and is one of the most important energy carriers of cells. For this reason ATP is called the "universal energy currency of the cell". The energy contained in fats, proteins and carbohydrates is made available to the cells in the form of ATP by cellular respiration taking place in the mitochondria. The ATP is transported into the cells where energy is needed, for example for muscle contraction or muscle building. In the cells, the ATP cleaves off a phosphate residue and is transformed into the low-energy ADP (adenosine diphosphate). This process releases energy which is then available to the cell.

In summary, it can be said that creatine plays an essential role in the energy transport through the creatine kinase. If a cell needs a lot of energy within a short period of time, ATP in this cell is kept constant as long as possible at the expense of the phospho-creatine system. The limited cell permeability (diffusion) of ATP from the sites of its synthesis, i.e. the mitochondria and glycolysis, to the sites of its consumption (e.g. muscle cells) is compensated by the energy transport function of phospho-creatine and creatine as energy carriers.


Benefits and uses of creatine in sports

When creatine enters the cell through the processes described above, it can be phosphorylated with an energy-rich phosphate by the most important enzyme of the entire creatine or phospho-creatine system (the creatine kinase) for the provision of energy and converted into creatine phosphate. Parallel to this process, ATP is converted to ADP. This reaction is reversible, i.e. the creatine kinase can also catalyse the reaction in reverse by dephosphorylating creatine phosphate and converting it into creatine. In this case ADP is converted into ATP. The direction in which the reaction takes place depends on the condition of the muscle - depending on whether the muscle is to do work or not.

Because of its explained role in the transport of energy in the cells, creatine is attributed an increasingly important role in sports. During a muscle contraction, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is consumed. In contrast to ATP, creatine or creatine phosphate can be stored in the muscle cell. Creatine is present in high concentration in the white and predominantly glycolytically working muscle fibres. Creatine is available within a very short period of time and can be used for the reversible conversion process from ADP to ATP described above. However, as the available amount of creatine in the muscle is very small, it can only be used for a few seconds during a short intensive physical exercise if the ATP consumption is very high. When the creatine is completely consumed, the muscle cell has to switch to anaerobic metabolism in order to obtain enough ATP to maintain physical performance.

In scientific studies it has been proven and established that a sufficient and optimally dosed supply of creatine containing products contributes to an increase in strength and speed during a short period of intense physical strain. Faster regeneration between short, intensive training sessions is also suspected, although in this case there is no completely reliable evidence. The following effect is officially recognized: The daily supply of 3 grams of pure creatine increases the physical performance during high-speed strength training during short-term intensive physical activity.

In practice creatine is often combined with maltodextrin, dextrose, glutamine, taurine, BCAAs ("Branched Chain Amino Acids") and chromium. In addition to these well-known complementary substrates, there are other combinable supplements such as alpha lipoic acid, beta ecdysterone, bitter melon extract, MHCP, 4-hydroxy-isoleucine and D-pinitol.

Among the listed complementary substrates the BCAAs have to be emphasized. These are branched-chain amino acids to which L-leucine, L-isoleucine and L-valine belong. L-valine is a component of almost every protein found in the human body. The amino acid L-leucine is believed to play a role in the formation of tissue structures as a component of certain supporting proteins. The essential amino acid L-leucine is also a component of proteins. Proteins have been shown to contribute to building and maintaining muscle mass.

Endurance and strength athletes in particular require an increased supply of branched-chain amino acids, as their intensive sporting activities result in increased energy consumption. After ingestion, BCAAs are the first amino acids to enter the bloodstream and are therefore quickly available to the muscle cells.


Use and side effects

Instructions for taking creatine
The optimal amount of intake depends on the respective body weight and the training load. In general, a daily intake of 3 to 5 grams can be recommended, although the body can also process up to 20 grams throughout the day.

The most effective times to take creatine are:

  • After training (in the post-workout shake with fast protein and highly glycemic carbohydrates)
  • Before raining (e.g. in a pre-workout supplement)
  • In the morning after waking up (in a shake with fast protein and carbohydrates)

Taking creatine in sometimes very high doses for several weeks, a so-called "creatine cure", must be sensibly planned, as otherwise most of the creatine is converted into creatinine. Creatinine is created by a non-enzymatic and irreversible reaction of small amounts of creatine and creatine phosphate. Since it cannot contribute to the energy supply, it is considered a "decomposition product" or "waste product" of the creatine metabolism. The human body produces about 1.5 grams of creatinine daily, which cannot be broken down any further and is therefore excreted via the kidneys. In general, people today tend to take creatine continuously (at least 3g daily) and consider classic creatine cures to be outdated.

Possible side effects of taking creatine
Larger amounts of creatinine can lead to an overload of the kidneys. Furthermore, an overdose can also cause muscle cramps, stomach problems and digestive problems.

Another side effect is a weight gain of 1-10 percent. In combination with a balanced diet and sufficient and intensive training, this weight gain is due to a larger muscle volume.