Creatine has a controversial reputation, and is perceived negatively by many people. The fact is that those who believe creatine is a harmful substance, are probably uneducated about what creatine is, how it works, and the effects. Creatine is a natural component of skeletal muscle that our body naturally produces, and is ingested in food, especially animal produces and red meats. Creatine is involved in the body’s energy production system, and is responsible for very fast and very forceful muscular contractions. This energy system is called the creatine phosphate system, and is the primary energy source for short duration high intensity activities lasting up to approximately 15 seconds, such as a 100 meter sprint, or lifting a heavy weight. Many resistance training and power athletes will consume elevated amounts of creatine to increase the amounts stored in their muscles. Consequently these athletes will have more creatine available to use within a workout or competition. Creatine will cause water retention within the muscle and may reduce the fluid within the circulatory system, which is associated with greater stress on the kidneys. Drinking more water than normal will maintain the circulatory plasma volume and avoid additional stress to the kidneys. Individuals, who are not exposed to creatine often like vegetarians, will respond greatly to creatine supplementation. If you are considering a creatine supplement ask a personal trainer and make sure you do your homework to learn the proper usage protocol. Educate yourself before considering any form of supplements.
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