Creatine has been declared as the king of all supplements when it comes to volumizing your muscle mass. But with so many different kinds of Creatine supplements in the market, how can you decide which one is the best for you? Every day, new research will reveal that one form is better than another, but even then, different companies make different products with Creatine, and they all promise you great results. So how can you make the right choice? Let us find out!
First discovered in 1832 to be a component of our skeletal muscle, the athletic community embraced Creatine supplement in the early 90’s. So one can safely say that Creatine has been one of the oldest supplements used by bodybuilders, athletics and even those who simply lead an active lifestyle and want to increase their muscle mass. Creatine not only increases the size of your muscles, it also improves endurance, increases energy levels and assists with muscle development and muscle repair.
Because Creatine is so popular, many nutritional supplements will add Creatine as one of the ingredients. But is that enough for a hard gainer, or someone who wants to dramatically increase muscle mass fast? Find out, as we discuss the several forms of Creatine and also reveal which products are the best from each category.
Popular Forms Of Creatine Available In The Market:
There are several forms of Creatine available in the market. Each has a different extraction process, effectiveness and plays a different role in your body building efforts.
The two most popular and widely sold forms of Creatine are:
- Creatine Monohydrate
- Creatine Ethyl Ester
Many researchers have battled and debated about which is the more effective form of Creatine. Since Creatine Monohydrate was the first form of Creatine processed and sold as supplements, there are a lot more studies backing its safety, effectiveness and benefits as compared to Creatine ethyl ester supplements. In order to decide which out of these two suits you best, it is advised you try them both and see which one has better results. Keep in mind that you should try the supplement for at least a month before giving a verdict on its effectiveness.
Other popular forms of Creatine sold in the market are:
- Creatine Phosphate
- Creatine Citrate
- Creatine Malate
- Effervescent Creatine
Which Creatine Product Is The Best Buy?
Now that we know the different Creatine products sold in the market, let us now look at the different forms in which these are sold. You will find Creatine supplements are powders, capsules, liquids and blends. Let us discuss these one at a time, understand their role and benefits and also talk about the best products available in each category.
- Creatine Powders – These are the most popular form of Creatine supplements. They are sold as a supplement shake that can be added to a protein shake for a boost of energy. Available in many flavours, these are also the most common form of Creatine supplement you find which makes them easy to buy and use. Good examples are: ON Creatine Powder, MetRx Hardcore Creatine Powder, Ultimate Nutrition Creatine Monohydrate and Endura Creatine.
- Creatine Capsules – Over the last few years, Creatine capsules have gained popularity as they are easy to take at any time and don’t require any preparation. While some products are pure Creatine pills, others are mixed with anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals to make the product more versatile and useful for everyone, not just those looking to maximize muscle mass. Good examples are: MetRx Creatine 4200 Caps, Vitamin Shopee 100% Pure Creatine and ON ZMA.
- Liquid Creatine – A new supplement in the markets, liquid Creatine has still not become very popular. It is sold as a ‘more easily digested’ form of Creatine, but has still not been added to many supplements that are blends yet. Good examples are: Dymatize Microionized Creatine, FSI Creatine Edge and FSI Creatine Clear.
- Creatine Blends – These are more useful for an average gym goer, since it is a combination of not just different kinds of Creatine products, but also comes with added amino acids, carbohydrates and vitamins & minerals. The right choice for all those who don’t really want to pack on huge muscles but stay fit and in shape, these amplify potency and increase athletic performance on a whole as they are a complete supplement in themselves. Good examples are: Nature’s Best Perfect Creatine, Controlled Labs Green Magnitude, ON Platinum Hydro Builder and Ultimate Nutrition Post Combat.
Things To Remember When You Pick Creatine Powders And Creatine Capsules:
If you choose to buy Creatine supplements in the form of pills and powders, there are a few things you need to remember.
- First of all, make sure you are buying enough. You need to follow a Creatine cycle for 1 to 2 months, by taking 5grams of Creatine powder both before workout and after workout. Roughly, you will need about 300 grams of Creatine powder.
- Many people like to do Creatine loading for a week before they begin this cycle. During this week, they ingest 25 grams of Creatine powder in total, taking smaller quantities several times a day – say 5 grams 5 times a day. After this point, they begin with the regular Creatine cycle that requires them to take 5 grams of Creatine powder with pre-workout shake and 5 grams with post workout shake. In this case, you will need 405 grams of Creatine in the first month itself.
- If you choose Creatine pills or capsules, do suffieicnet researches beforehand as different companies have different standards. Most Creatine capsules have 2 to 3 grams of Creatine/capsule. Remember, you need 10 grams of Creatine per day without loading, so you will need to chart out your capsule requirement accordingly.
- If you buy 2 gram capsules, you need to take 2 before workout and 3 after workout. You can also do this the other way round.
- If you buy 2.5 gram capsules, you need to take 2 before workout and 2 after workout
- If you want to do Creatine loading using capsules, you need to tweak the number accordingly.
Especially with capsules, you need to do the math carefully when you place an order for Creatine supplements. You should ideally buy enough for the whole month together, so that you don’t miss any dose simply because you don’t have the Creatine capsule or powder at hand and have delayed in placing an order.
Things To Remember When You Pick Creatine Blends:
- You will find that many pre-workout and post-workout shakes have Creatine as one of the active ingredients. These Creatine blend products are very useful, but you need to determine how much Creatine you get from them and in which form. Remember, these Creatine blends will not actually specify the exact quantity of Creatine in them, so they cannot be used if you plan on Creatine loading.
- Many Creatine blends come in enticing flavours. If you choose these, you can certainly mix them with your whey protein shake for post workout recovery. Make sure you either choose same flavours or two flavours that go well together. Another way is to choose a flavoured Creatine blend and mix it with a bland whey protein powder for a smooth shake that saves your time without ruining the taste. It can be cumbersome to ingest 2 different shakes close to one another, should you chose 2 very different flavours in Creatine blend and post workout whey protein shakes.
- Remember, if Creatine is added to your pre-workout or post-workout shake, it doesn’t really mean that you are getting the right quantities of Creatine for an effective Creatine cycle. Unless you are happy with just the amplified energy and greater stamina results of pre-workout supplement and the enhanced repair and increased glycogen replenishing effects of post workout supplement, you might want to do the Creatine cycle separately.