How Safe Is Creatine?

A lot of hype is made in the press of the damaging effects of creatine. The deaths of some American wrestlers were attributed to creatine supplementation, and renal dysfunction has also been blamed on creatine. Poortmans and Francaux have demonstrated that short-term and medium-term creatine supplementation does not appear to have any detrimental effect on the renal responses of health adults. However long-term it could be that creatine may have a detrimental effect.

How Safe Is Creatine?

A study by Mihic and colleagues looked at the effects of acute creatine monohydrate ingestion in both men and women and the effect on body composition. They found no evidence of significant alterations in blood pressure, plasma creatinine, estimated creatinine clearance or plasma creatine kinase activity. The supplementation resulted in an increase in fat free mass that was greater for men than for women. Their study demonstrated that creatine monohydrate is well tolerated in health men and women and did not alter indices of renal function or blood pressure. These findings are supported in other studies. However, there appears to be a gender specific response in fat supplementation may be of more benefit to men. This is not to say that it has no ergogenic benefit to women.

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