Best Ways to Absorb Creatine

As one of the most studied supplements out there, creatine has already established its reputation among those who wish to obtain its amazing benefits.

To know more about creatine, you may read this article:When Should I Take Creatine

With all the good things about creatine, you may be wondering how you can maximize its effect or what are the best ways to absorb it. Keep reading to learn more.

Certain macronutrients appear to significantly augment muscle retention of creatine.1 Here are some tips on how to consume creatine for better absorption:

1. Mix it with your sugary drink.

Several studies suggest that the addition of nutrients that increase insulin levels and/or improve insulin sensitivity may help optimize the uptake of creatine.

Specifically, a study found that adding 93 grams of carbohydrate to 5 grams of creatine monohydrate increased total muscle creatine by 60% among the participants.2

With this, adding it to your fruit juice or smoothie is an effective way to enhance absorption of creatine.

A Word from a Dietitian
Make sure to choose juices made from whole fruits, for a healthier option. Avoid drinks that contain only simple sugars like sodas. Some great options include grape juice or cold-pressed juices like watermelon juice.

 

2. Take it with milk or yogurt.

Creatine, on the other hand, when consumed with a combination of carbohydrate and protein, has also been found to effectively promote muscle creatine retention.

In particular, the addition of 47 grams of carbohydrate and 50 grams of protein to 5 grams of creatine resulted in 25% higher upkeep of creatine as compared to those who received the placebo treatment.3

 A Word from a Dietitian

Milk and yogurt both contain a good carbohydrate-protein ratio. That is why taking them together with creatine may help with better absorption of the supplement. 

 

Final Words

What to add with your creatine supplement is actually a matter of personal preference. However, if you are looking for ways to maximize its absorption, taking it with food items rich in carbohydrates and/or protein can be beneficial. 

References:

  1. Buford, T. W., Kreider, R. B., Stout, J. R., Greenwood, M., Campbell, B., Spano, M., Ziegenfuss, T., Lopez, H., Landis, J., & Antonio, J. (2007). International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: creatine supplementation and exercise. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 4, 6. https://doi.org/10.1186/1550-2783-4-6.
  2. Green, A. L., Hultman, E., Macdonald, I. A., Sewell, D. A., & Greenhaff, P. L. (1996). Carbohydrate ingestion augments skeletal muscle creatine accumulation during creatine supplementation in humans. The American journal of physiology, 271(5 Pt 1), E821–E826. https://doi.org/10.1152/ajpendo.1996.271.5.E821
  3. Steenge, G. R., Simpson, E. J., & Greenhaff, P. L. (2000). Protein- and carbohydrate-induced augmentation of whole body creatine retention in humans. Journal of applied physiology (Bethesda, Md. : 1985), 89(3), 1165–1171. https://doi.org/10.1152/jappl.2000.89.3.1165.
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