Thread: Creatine FAQ
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Old 11-03-2005, 12:47 PM
Darkhorse Darkhorse is offline
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Types of Creatine:

Creatine Monohydrate:
One of the original forms of creatine introduced in supplement form, monohydrate has been the type most widely researched and promoted.
Pro:
one of the lowest priced forms of creatine
available in a wide variety of supplements
Con:
unless it has been micronised, the chances of gastrointestinal problems will be higher due to the larger particles

Creatine Citrate:
This is one creatine molecule with the addition of one molecule of citric acid. The addition of citric acid is believed to help in energy metabolism.
Pro:
dissolves easily due to its solubility
Con:
only contains 2 grams of actual creatine per 5 gram serving
sour taste

Creatine Phosphate:
This became very popular due to the addition of the phosphate molecule. Before creatine can be utilised by the body it must first bond with a phosphate molecule. The belief was that by adding the phosphate molecule externally that the creatine phosphate would, when consumed, be utilised more quickly. However, this theory has never been proven.
Pro:
n/a
Con:
more expensive than monohydrate
very few products are currently available

Creatine Malate:
This is one molecule of creatine bound with one molecule of malic acid. Malic acid is commonly found in fruits and vegetables but it is also produced internally by the human body. It plays a part in deriving adenosine triphosphate (ATP - refer back up to 'what creatine does') from food.
Pro:
dissolves easily
less chance of gastrointestinal problems
Con:
supporting research is hard to find

Creatine Pyruvate:
Pyruvate is a by-product produced in the body during the normal metabolism of carbohydrates and proteins. It is also present in foods such as red apples, cheese, and wine. When glucose breaks down, it produces two molecules of pyruvate. If oxygen levels in the body are high, the pyruvate breaks down into carbon dioxide through a series of reactions as part of the Krebs Cycle (a series of chemical reactions within all living cells that utilise oxygen as part of cellular respiration). If oxygen levels in the body are not sufficient, then the pyruvate is broken down, anerobically, to form lactic acid. As lactic acid levels in the body increase, performance levels decrease. As mentioned earlier, creatine has lactic acid buffering properties and so is believed to extend this process and the user's ability to workout longer. Pyruvate also stimulates glucose extraction from the bloodstream and into muscle tissues.
Pro:
increased endurance
Con:
high intakes of pyruvate can trigger gastrointestinal problems such as gas, bloating, and diarrhoea

Creatine Tartrate:
This is one molecule of creatine bound to one molecule of tartaric acid. Tartaric Acid is found in wines and is used in foods to produce a sour taste or as an antioxidant. This is one of the newer forms of creatine currently available but very little is known about its future. Refer to the last point under 'Con:'.
Pro:
high stability rate
Con
very few products are currently available
tartaric acid inhibits the production of malic acid and is a muscle toxin which can cause paralysis or death at a dosage above 12 grams

Magnesium Creatine:
The presence of the magnesium is thought to protect the creatine from the acidic conditions of the stomach and thus enable more of the creatine to be absorbed and utilised. Magnesium is also utilised in the conversion of creatine phosphate into ATP. This bonded form of creatine has also been found to increase fluid uptake by muscle cells.
Pro:
preliminary research has supported all of the above claims
Con:
very expensive

Creatine Anhydrous:
This is creatine monohydrate with the water molecule removed.
Pro:
provides 4.70 grams of actual creatine per 5 gram serving
Con:
similar side effects as monohydrate

Creatine HMB
The bonding between the creatine and HMB (betahydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate) works in a similar manner as with magnesium in that it enables more of the creatine to survive the acidic conditions of the stomach and subsequently be absorbed and utilised. HMB on its own is associated with aiding muscle growth and recovery.
Pro:
enhanced absorption of available creatine
Con:
a more expensive form of creatine

Creatine Ethyl Ester HCL (hydrochloride):
In this case, creatine is bonded with an ester (ethyl alcohol). An ester is a compound formed from the reaction between an acid and an alcohol. Since creatine monohydrate is not very soluble in water, it has difficulty penetrating muscle cell membranes which are made up of lipids (fats). Also, once it comes in contact with any liquid, it gives up its' hydrogen atom which results in it being positively charged at one end and negatively charged at the other. As a result, creatine must rely on transporters to help it bridge this membrane. As it sits outside the cell membrane, it draws in more water (outside the cell), producing the bloating people associate with taking creatine monohydrate. It also begins to degrade and form creatinine. The addition of an ester means that the creatine does not have to rely on transporters to obtain access to muscle cells. Once inside the muscle cell, the ester is removed and the creatine begins to draw water into the cell.
Pro:
enhanced absorption rate
lower dosage rate
side effects associated with monohydrate are reduced
Con:
more expensive form of creatine

Creatine Alpha-Ketoglutarate (AKG):
As mentioned above for creatine ethyl ester, creatine relies on transporters to help it bridge the cell membranes of muscle tissues. When an insufficient number of transporters are available, the creatine will sit outside the muscle where it will not be utilised. AKG acts as a transport molecule and thus enables more creatine to enter muscle cells and be utilised at a quicker rate. You will also see AKG used with other supplements to act in a similar manner.
Pro:
enhanced absorption rate
Con:
more expensive form of creatine

Micronized Creatine:
This is a finer powdered version of creatine monohydrate.
Pro:
less chances of gastrointestinal problems
is available in more and more products
Con:
more expensive than monohydrate

Effervescent Creatine:
This will either be a creatine monohydrate or creatine citrate with the addition of bicarbonate (sodium or potassium) and citric acid. It is the bicarbonate and citric acid which produces the reaction when water is added. The creatine is dissolved and suspended as a result of the reaction. Creatine citrate is more soluble in water than monohydrate and therefore would be the better choice of the two if using this type of a delivery system. However, the actual creatine content of citrate based creatines is low (2.0 grams per 5.0 gram serving).
Pro:
dissolves more readily
Con:
sugar content in some products can be high
actual creatine content may be low
manufacturing process and packaging of the finished product must adhere to strict guidelines
few products are currently available

Creatine Titrate:
This is very similar to effervescent creatine but without the fizzy effect.
Pro:
greater solubility by changing the pH value when added to water
Con:
few products are currently available

Liquid Creatine:
Quote:
Muscle Marketing USA fined $70,000 for false claim:Wednesday, 14 July 2004, 5:41 pm Press Release: Commerce Commission Muscle Marketing USA fined $70,000 for false claims about sports performance product Muscle Marketing USA Limited has been fined $70,000 in the Auckland District Court today for breaching the Fair Trading Act in relation to its sports performance enhancing product ATP Advantage Creatine Serum. In sentencing, Judge Everitt said that Muscle Marketing's claims about its product were so far from actual reality that it was a very bad case of a misleading statement. "The company was highly culpable. On a scale of 1-10 it was 8." The Commerce Commission investigated claims that Muscle Marketing USA was making false representations in promotional material and labelling regarding the quantity of creatine in its ATP Advantage Creatine Serum product and the benefits that people would get from using it. Creatine is a nutrient that is synthesised from food by our bodies. It provides the energy muscles need to move and is often used by athletes to improve their sports performance. Fair Trading Director Deborah Battell said that in the Commission's view, Muscle Marketing USA falsely represented that 5ml of its serum yielded the equivalent of 2500mg of creatine. "Tests conducted on the serum showed that 5mls of the product contained only around 11.5mg of creatine. This means that on the basis of Muscle Marketing USA's recommended daily dose of 5mls a day, athletes would not be able to obtain the benefits as represented. "A 150ml bottle of the serum retails for $119.95. This is a significant outlay, particularly when people are paying this price based on misleading representations" Ms Battell said. "It's another example of a product where consumers are utterly reliant on claims being made by the company because they have no realistic means of checking the actual composition or effectiveness of the product," said Ms Battell. In sentencing, Judge Everitt commented that people will always have pride in their appearance and are vulnerable to this kind of marketing. The Act is designed to create fair trading and to protect the public from "snake oil people and the like", he said.
Pro:
n/a
Con:
despite advances made in trying to suspend creatine in a liquid, it is still considered an unstable form

Creatine in a formed product source:
Creatine, of various types, is used to make a variety of convenient products ranging from nutritional bars, tablets and capsules, to chewable gums.
Pro:
very convenient form
Con:
actual creatine content may be low
actual creatine which is absorbed may be low
there is the possibility of not maintaining proper hydration when using creatine in this form
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Last edited by Frontline; 04-25-2006 at 07:50 PM.
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