creatine and depression

This article shows studies on creatine and depression.

Creatine is to bodybuilders what cocaine is to securities analysts; white powder that is as common as snow and increases performance to levels you would be foolish to miss out on.

Creatine is an amino acid naturally found in your body, located in your brain and muscles.

Creatine is an energy source in the body. You can consume creatine from certain foods, meat specifically–like beef, fish, lamb–anything with a face you put into your face for nutrition.

For lifting, creatine has been around for a long time. Creatine became available for public use around the mid-nineties and became mainstream in the early two-thousands when fitness started becoming something the majority of people cared about, as opposed to the pure bodybuilding era of the ’80s and earlier; the Arnold era of bodybuilding.

arnold bodybuilding

In the Arnold era, the only supplements were hormones like testosterone, growth, and insulin. There weren’t any supplements available without severe side effects, like increases in estrogen from exogenous testosterone.

Even though steroids are more advanced today, they still come with downsides and need to be used with extreme caution. Using steroids without fundamental knowledge of hormones will thrash your body like being stuck in an elevator with a grizzly bear.

Modern supplements are a lot safer, though they don’t come with the same amount of strength gains as steroids. Some supplements, like creatine, have many upsides and very few downsides if any.

Creatine is one of the most researched supplements. Creatine is completely safe for almost everyone and has many benefits beyond those that will help athletic performance; just like ZMA.

benefits of Creatine

  • Improved brain performance
  • Improved muscular density
  • Helps muscles grow faster
  • Reduces fatigue
  • Improve athletic performance
  • Creatine reduces depression

Creatine has shown to help individuals struggling with depression, which you wouldn’t expect from a muscle building supplement.

Creatine and Depression

Creatine has shown in multiple studies to be a shield against depression in both rat and human populations.

A study conducted in South Korea back in 2012, showed that women who take oral creatine monohydrate along with an SSRI had greater results in combating major depression as opposed to a placebo control group who received no creatine. The study took place over eight weeks. [1]

In another study, male and female rats were given creatine in their food, then put through a swimming experiment to test if creatine had an effect against a control group of rats who received no creatine in the same swimming experiment. The study showed no increase in motor skills but did show a decrease in anxiety in some rats.[2]

Another study gave people with depression & bipolar depression 3-5 grams of creatine a day. The patients with depression benefited from the creatine supplementation across the four-week study, while the bipolar patients did not experience a positive benefit; they developed a temporary, mild case of mania. [3]

Creatine has even shown to improve symptoms of PTSD and Depression in humans and female rats with chronic administration, one study found.[4]

Recommended Creatine Supplements

It’s better and cheaper to use creatine powder as opposed to pills.

Creatine is cheap and basically all the same. Our favorite creatine is by optimum nutrition. Optimum nutrition has a good record of pure, untainted supplements which are also of a high quality.

If you want to use creatine in a pill form, our favorite is Kre-Alkalyn EFX. It’s creatine in powder form, PH corrected, which means part of the proprietary mix is balanced with baking soda.

When to take Creatine

Take 5 grams of creatine in the morning, followed by a full bottle of cold water. Since creatine is held in your muscles and brain, which are both mostly water, you need to drink enough water to saturate your body with creatine and water.

You should be drinking at least one gallon of water a day to reap multiple benefits of proper hydration, like clear, glowing skin.

Alternatively, you can take 5 grams of creatine before and after you train. But it may be better to take creatine in the morning and in the afternoon for consistency.

The benefits of creatine expand beyond training, like the effects of creatine on depression. It doesn’t make sense to take creatine for the sole purpose of training since many other benefits, like easing depression, exist.

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