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Creatine

How does Creatine work?

Creatine is involved in making the energy muscles need to work.

Vegetarians and other people who have lower total creatine levels when they start taking creatine supplements seem to get more benefit than people who start with a higher level of creatine. Skeletal muscle will only hold a certain amount of creatine; adding more won't raise levels any more. This "saturation point" is usually reached within the first few days of taking a "loading dose."

Are there safety concerns?

Creatine is LIKELY SAFE when taken by mouth at doses up to 25 grams daily for up to 14 days. Lower doses up to 4-5 grams taken daily for up to 18 months are also LIKELY SAFE. Some early research also suggests that creatine is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken in doses up to 10 grams daily for up to 5 years.

Creatine can cause stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea, and muscle cramping.

Creatine causes muscles to draw water from the rest of your body. Be sure to drink extra water to make up for this. Also, if you are taking creatine, don't exercise in the heat. It might cause you to become dehydrated.

Many people who use creatine gain weight. This is because creatine causes the muscles to hold water, not because it actually builds muscle.

There is concern that creatine might cause irregular heartbeat in some people. But more information is needed to know if creatine can cause this problem.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking creatine if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Children: Creatine is POSSIBLY SAFE in children when taken by mouth appropriately. Creatine 3-5 grams daily for 2-6 months has been taken safely in children 5-18 years of age. Creatine 2 grams daily for 6 months has been taken safely in children 2-5 years of age. Additionally, creatine 0.1-0.4 grams/kg daily for up to 6 months has been taken safely in both infants and children.

Bipolar disorder: There have been cases of manic episodes in people with bipolar disorder who took creatine daily for 4 weeks. Creatine might make mania worse in people with bipolar disorder.

Kidney disease or diabetes: Do not use creatine if you have kidney disease or a disease such as diabetes that increases your chance of developing kidney disease. There is some concern that creatine might make kidney disease worse.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.



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