Creatine is one of our most talked about supplements. It’s no secret that it’s a popular supplement among gym bros because of the benefits it has for growing muscle. But one consequence of this is it may have a slight image problem, with people — women in particular — thinking it’s something you take only if you want to be super-jacked. This is not the case at all.
Myprotein senior product developer, Katie Brown, is back again for another episode of Nutritionist Explains. This time, she breaks down not only the general benefits of creatine, but specifically what creatine supplementation does for women. It isn’t solely for beating PBs, it can improve performance, help muscle growth and even boost overall health.
What is creatine?
Creatine is made up from three separate amino acids: arginine, histidine, and methionine. The body can produce creatine in the liver and pancreas from these three amino acids, or you can consume it in supplement form.
While meat and fish are natural dietary sources of creatine, an average diet that includes these foods provides negligible amounts.
How does creatine work?
It’s about to get a bit technical, so bear with us. In your body, creatine is combined with phosphate to form creatine phosphate. All right, maybe that bit wasn’t too complex.
ATP is the energy source driving almost every bodily function. It creates energy by hydrolysing phosphate. When it does this, ATP is converted to ADP, which is pretty much a useless byproduct.
But this ADP doesn’t have to go to waste. When creatine gets involved, it donates its phosphate grip back to ADP, which then converts it into the form we can use — you may remember this from earlier on — ATP.