The Dangers of Creatine

dangers of creatine

What are the side effects of Creatine? 

Creatine is considered to be an essential chemical which is found in the human body, especially in muscles as well as in the brain. On the other hand, it is also found in various seafood and red meat. Moreover, creatine can successfully be created in the laboratory. Nonetheless, there are various kinds of dangers of creatine that you should know about for your convenience.

People join the gym to get in shape as well as gain some muscle. It takes a lot of hard-work, a strict diet as well as discipline to get the job done. Apart from exercising, getting enough carbohydrates, protein, and calories in your daily diet is also a very important aspect in this regard.

More often than not food does not prove to be enough to do the trick. That is why people always need something extra, something x-factor. The X-factor is various effective supplements. Creatine is known to be one of the most effective and useful supplements out there.

What is creatine?

Creatine is known to be such a chemical substance that is produced by the kidneys and liver and around 95% of it is stored in muscles. It is nothing but amino acid aka building block of the protein which is quite essential for the growth of the human body. If there is a deficiency of creatine in your body, then the doctor will recommend you to eat more meat and fish. Nevertheless, the dangers of creatine are there to create problems for you.

Creatine is utilized to improve exercise performance. On the other hand, it is also used to increase muscle mass in older adults and athletes. Proper science is used in supporting the utilization of the creatine to improve the athletic performance of young and healthy people, especially during various high-intensity activities such as running, sprinting, etc. Apart from this, this chemical can also be successfully used as a dietary supplement for improving muscle strength.

Humans started using creatine supplements for various reasons, especially in body building. The official use of creatine as a supplement has started in the year 1993. Ever since then it has been considered as the safe and legal answer to the steroids. At that time athletes and bodybuilders only wanted to explore the wonderful results and effects of the creatine without really being aware of the dangers of creatine.

Creatine is known to be such a compound that is naturally produced in your body. It is responsible for supplying sufficient energy to your muscles. On the other hand, if you take extra creatine in the form of supplements, then you are providing your muscle with a boost of energy thus enabling you to lift more or do more reps.

Creatine itself is not likely to make you grow but it effectively helps you to get bigger muscle indirectly. Creatine supplements provide you with sufficient energy to work-out more and then you get the extra muscle.

How does it work?

Creatine is effectively used as supplements for providing your body with comparatively more energy during the short bouts of the exercise. This is the reason creatine is known to work perfectly for weight lifters. Moreover, you are supposed to consult your doctor first as to how you should go about it to use this supplement regularly to avoid the dangers of creatine.

The human body is there to utilize an effective combination of 3 different energy systems to provide the body with the required energy. Each of these 3 systems is likely to play a significant role during the exercise period depending on the intensity and time of the exercise.

One such energy system is known to be the ATP-CP system. The basic function of this energy system is breaking down the creatine phosphate which has so far been stored in the body and eventually converts this to the energy which the human body is supposed to use. This specific energy system is considered to be quite dominant at the medium to very high-intensity exercise. Nevertheless, the dangers of creatine cannot be overlooked.

What are the side effects of Creatine?

Creatine is mostly likely to be useful and effective if used in the proper amount and as per the instructions of a physician. Nevertheless, like all good things this chemical substance also comes with some side effects that you are required to be well-aware. Once you know about the various side effects then you can decide whether or not you should go for this product as per your needs and requirements. Some of the dangers of creatine are described below.

  • Gastrointestinal Distress:
  1. As per the various studies, reports, and researches, the use of creatine does not normally cause GI disease in every individual but few individuals may suffer from these problems depending on different factors and things.
  2. It is known from various reports and studies that GI disease can arise from using creatine supplementation but it is comparatively less likely to happen. It is around 5-7% of total users of creatine substance are supposed to experience GI diseases such as stomach-aches. Nevertheless, you are likely to suffer from it only if you use this substance in a large amount and on empty stomach. On the other hand, prolonged usage can also create this problem in people.
  3. There are various remedies that you are supposed to use to get rid of these GI problems caused by creatine. You are supposed to use micronized forms of the creatine in a small amount. This way you would not suffer from any kind of GI disease at all. The premise of the micronization is nothing but the particle size reduction for increasing the solubility of substance, thus reducing GI distress. On the other hand, it is also there to allow for a comparatively faster mix and quicker absorption.
  • Compartment Syndrome:
  1. There might be a significant increase in the pressure following high doses of the creatine, the recommended use of creatine is never supposed to cause compartment syndrome. But again exception is always there.
  2. Compartment syndrome is known to be such a condition that refers to the excessive pressure in the muscle compartment. The risk of compartment syndrome is greater when consuming creatine due to fluid retention in muscle tissue and cell. But this syndrome is known to be the direct result of trauma or injury which is there to lead to the inadequate blood flow to the issue.
  3. There have been various reports as per which creatine supplementations have caused compartment syndrome in different college football players. On the other hand, as per some other reports some body builders in America have also suffered from this syndrome due to the use of creatine.
  4. It can be concluded that the body builders are supposed to be vulnerable to the compartment syndrome due to the overuse of this supplement for various reasons. Some of the body builders use creatine in 25 grams each day which is 5 times more than the recommended dose. This kind of high dose of creatine can easily induce this syndrome in people. But if one uses it in the proper amount as per the advice of his doctor or physician then he is never likely to suffer from such problems at all.
  • Rhabdomyolysis:
  1. There is no direct evidence or proof that the use of creatine is likely to cause this disease. But as per the different reports and studies, many people have experienced this problem due to the use of creatine in some way or other.
  2. As per many, this is considered to be a myth. Ever since an article was published in the New York Times claiming that creatine is responsible for inducing Rhabdomyolysis in school and college football players, people started taking it for a fact. This disease is all about a severe breakdown of the skeletal muscle due to some injury which represents the elevated creatine kinase levels as well as anterior compartment syndrome. The condition is likely to result from excessive workout and exercise in hot humid climates.
  3. As per the various reports, athletes, sportsmen or body builders who exercise for a prolonged period are more likely to suffer from this disease to the overuse of creatine for the obvious reasons.
  4. There are various remedies that you are required to go for to alleviate this problem. First of all, you need to drink lots of water to remove the excessive creatine from your body in the best way possible. On the other hand, there are different kinds of medications that you are also supposed to take to avoid this problem. Nevertheless, you are not required to do anything on your own, rather go for a doctor or physical for valuable suggestions.
  • Kidney and Liver Damage:
  1. It is known to be one of the most known side effects and the dangers of creatine. Nevertheless, this side effect is largely overstated and misinterpreted for some reason or another. The thing is the high concentration of creatine in the urine is known to be the indicator of various kidney problems. You have to remember that it is an indicator but not a cause. Various studies and researched have been made on this but they did not show creatine to be toxic to the kidney.
  2. Before you start using creatine you are required to do some medical check-up to know the creatine level in your body. Moreover, people with different liver and kidney conditions are to properly evaluate the creatine risks beforehand. Your kidneys are supposed to work harder to remove the excess creatine from your body for obvious reasons. Drinking lots of water could be beneficial in this regard to help you remove extra creatine. Otherwise, kidney stones are a potential risk in this as one of the dangers of creatine.
  • Nausea and Diarrhoea:
  1. There are some minor side effects of using creatine seen that are not considered to be too fatal in any sense of the word. Diarrhea and nausea are known to be those side effects.
  2. These problems are there to result from creatine not getting completely dissolved in the stomach. Nevertheless, there are various remedies that you are supposed to follow to alleviate the problems such as adjusting the dosage of creatine as well as switching to the micronized powder.
  • Muscle Pulls:
  1. One of the dangers of creatine could arise in the form of muscle pulls. A significant increase in the muscle pull is likely to be seen due to the use of creatine in some individuals.
  2. There is no clear explanation of this but it can be said doing too much training or exercising based on the unrealistic expectation of supplement’s ability could be the reason behind this.
  • Muscle Cramps:
  1. Muscle Cramp is known to be the other side effect associated with the use of creatine. It is known to be caused in different parts of the body due to a lack of sufficient fluids. The creatine effects are there to include drawing water into muscle cells and thus need more fluid intake specifically during the loading phase.
  2. If you do not provide your body with the required extra fluid, then it may lead to muscle cramping. This is why you are always supposed to use creatine in the proper amount. Also, use a sufficient amount of fluid to maintain a healthy balance.
  • Dehydration and Heat Intolerance:
  1. There are some side effects of using creatine that has reported by a few people several times. Some of those side effects are dehydration and heat tolerance. But no studies have been made to prove that creatine causes these two problems in the human body.
  2. All this chemical does is it draws the water into muscle cells making them quite plausible to create such above described side effects. Again, drinking lots of water could be a sound solution to this problem.
  • Weight Gain:
  1. Weight gain is also known to be one of the minor side effects of creatine. Nevertheless, it could be considered as a blessing or a positive point for the people who want to gain some weight.
  2. People who are trying to stay fit and healthy consider this weight gaining as a side effect of creatine for the obvious reason. Various effective measures can be taken to alleviate this problem.
  • Suppression of the body’s ability to synthesize Creatine:
  1. Apart from various side effects of creatine, one major thing of using this chemical for a prolonged period is that it is there to suppress your body’s ability to properly synthesize creatine. This, in turn, would enable you to keep using the chemical for an indefinite time.
  2. The human body does not find it difficult to synthesize this chemical is used in lower amounts. But problems are supposed to be seen if used for a prolonged period.

Creatine Alternative

Creatine supplements are all good and well since it helps you to get bigger muscle and you get in your intended shape. Nevertheless, using these supplements has its own set of drawbacks or side effects.

Some of the creatine supplements are there to cause various stomach issues, particular for the first time users of these products. Most of the creatine supplements generally contain various chemical compounds and that is why it demonstrates different harmful effects on the users.

Many users try to avoid supplements because of their harmful chemical compounds. If you want to get rid of the side effects of creatine supplements, then you are required to resort to a creatine alternative for permanent solutions.

There is some effective creatine alternative is there that you are supposed to resort to for your convenience. Some of the alternatives are described below.

Natural sources of the creatine:

If you want to avoid various creatine supplements for its side effects but want to yet consume creatine then going for the natural resources is the best option for you. In case you are interested in consuming creatine through various natural resources, then you are supposed to go for the Wild game as a creatine alternative.

It is because wild game contains comparatively more creatine than the other food. Foods like rabbit, duck, elk, and venison are considered to be amazing sources of the creatine.

All these foods are supposed to be perfectly used to boost your energy in muscle. On the other hand, there is another food which contains sufficient natural creatine, fresh fish. First of all, fish is full of healthy fat and protein.

And it also contains a sufficient amount of creatine. Moreover, fish is comparatively more cost-effective than the wild game.

Various Creatine Alternative Supplements

Nowadays there are different kinds of muscle building supplements available that have similar positive effects like creatine. These supplements are effective to be used as the creatine alternative. All these supplements are used for the same purpose, i.e. for building muscle in the best way possible. Some of the most effective and useful creatine alternative supplements are described below.

  • Beta-Analin:

Beta-Analin is much like creatine which also happens to be naturally produced in your body. Different building blocks of the protein are known to be an amino acid. Beta-alanine is one of such amino acids. It is likely to work by properly raising levels of the carnosine in muscles. Carnosine is nothing but some type of acid that generally affects muscle fatigue. If you have a high carnosine level in muscle, then the muscle fatigue in a slow manner and thus can effectively achieve higher output volume.

This is the reason that Beta-alanine is there to be used as a common creatine alternative supplement that is likely to effectively elevate your physical workouts. A lot of body-builders and weight-lifters use this supplement for various reasons. Most of them are quite pleased and satisfied with the results of this product. It has plenty of other benefits too.

They happen to be comparatively more focused during their workouts. It helps to focus because it has several attributes like caffeine. You have all the reasons in the world to go for this supplement as the creatine alternative for the obvious reasons. On the other hand, the good thing about using this supplement is that it hardly shows any side effects or negative effects on the users, unlike other similar supplements.

  • BCAA’s:

You must have heard of the term ‘BCCAs’, but probably never gave it a thought to explore this thing. You are supposed to know that supplementing with BCAAs is there to provide a significant boost in your muscle growth.

BCAAs are nothing but some kind of branched-chain amino acid. Amino acids are considered as building blocks of the protein. Few amino acids are there stored in the liver and the body decides as to what to do with these amino acids.

The branched-chain amino acids are expedited to the muscle to aid in rebuilding as well as growing. The branched amino acids are not stored in the liver like other amino acids. Rather they are supposed to directly reach the muscle without waiting around.

BCAA supplements are known to be pretty tasty. On the other hand, it has several benefits that will be useful for your muscles.


Moreover, when your body can’t synthesize this chemical then it starts depositing in your body. This way the amounts of creatine get increased and create various problems for the obvious reasons. This is why you are never supposed to use this product for a prolonged period.

On the other hand, you should not also use it in a lot of amounts. Therefore, always consult your physician or doctor before you start using creatine regularly.

It is important to do proper research about the different creatine alternative supplements. Apart from the above-described supplements, there are other supplements also available in the market. You are supposed to find such a supplement that will cater to your needs and requirements. On the other hand, you are also required to consider the price factor to start with.

Some supplements are moderately priced whereas some could be quite expensive compared to your budget. Hence, do your research to know different aspects of creatine alternative supplements.