Creatine is the most effective supplement used by gym enthusiasts around the world. Which creatine variety is therefore the best? What form to choose for yourself? Regardless of the form you choose, remember that this is one of the essentials of every practitioner.
Manufacturers offer many forms of creatine, ranging from the most popular – monohydrate, to various types of keratin. Although there are a lot of varieties of this supplement, remember that every creatine has the same task to fulfill – increasing the amount of energy in the muscles. If you want to know all the properties of creatine and the exact principle of action, read the topic of Creatine – answers to frequently asked questions.
What are the different forms of creatine different from each other?
As I mentioned earlier, each creatine has the same task to fulfill – increase the amount of ATP energy in the muscles. So what exactly do the different varieties differ from each other? The company, price, additions included in the composition and the size of creatine molecules. The cheapest – monohydrates, contain pure monohydrate in the composition (the size of these molecules depends on its price and producer). The cheapest, however, does not mean the worst.
This variety is the longest-standing form on the market, and it does not need to be explained to anyone. Anyone who used supplementation with standard creatine monohydrate along with a proper diet can boast of a greater or lesser increase in strength and muscle mass. All other forms of creatine are intended to increase the absorption of its molecules. Depending on the form, they can be slightly better or even worse. Additives in the form of nitric oxide precursors (found in pre- and post-workout) are designed to improve the results of creatine supplementation.
The most known forms of creatine
Creatine Monohydrate – Undoubtedly, it is the most well-known and the most widely used creatine variety that can be found on the market. His purchase is supported by the fact that it is the most beneficial supplement looking at the cost-benefit ratio. One of the first occurring monohydrates contained large particles that could cause intestinal problems. Most of the modern monohydrates are micronized, which makes the particles smaller. Proper use should not be associated with intestinal side effects. In theory, it is recommended to take 5-10 grams daily along with simple carbohydrates.
Creatine Malate – A fairly popular form of creatine, which in theory does not cause such water retention as monohydrate. It is a compound made of creatine and malic acid. Thanks to this combination, this supplement becomes more soluble in water, which reduces the risk of stomach discomfort. In addition, malic acid contributes to a more effective effect on the ATP renewal cycle in muscle cells.
Creatine ethyl ester (CEE) – It is a relatively new form of creatine, but it is very popular (especially in the United States). The creatine ester is added to the standard form of creatine, which in theory should contribute to faster absorption in muscle cells. However, there are many studies that deny it. In addition to this standard monohydrate, this variety is much worse. After ingestion, creatine esters are easily converted into a form of creatinine – a by-product during the phosphorylation process of creatine.
Creatine creatine pre-workout – It is a combination of several forms of creatine along with other compounds that aim to improve training. Depending on the manufacturer, there are several different varieties of creatine. However, the most commonly found are monohydrate, malate and often found in well-known brands – magnesium chelate creatine. In addition, there are various, less known forms of creatine. With this solution you can be sure that always one of these varieties will work better on you. In addition, in addition to several forms of creatine, the creatine pre-workout creatine is supplemented with nitric oxide supplements, such as arginine, beta alanine, citruline, etc., which greatly affect your strength. This combination gives very good results.
Creatine post-workout levels – These creatine levels beyond the standard dose of several forms of creatine and additions of nitric oxide also contain a supplement in the form of carbohydrates, BCAA and glutamine. This solution ensures full regeneration and delivery of all necessary nutritional values after training. This combination is very effective after training, but the portion of this supplement will be much more expensive than the standard form of creatine.
Less known forms of creatine
Creatine creatine (Kre Alkalyn). The form that supposedly should be buffered at an alkaline pH, so that it is better absorbed from the monohydrate. Soda can be used as a buffer. However, there are studies that prove the same or even lower efficiency of this variety than the standard monohydrate.
Creatine citrate. Thanks to the citric acid contained in the composition, it has a much higher solubility in monohydrate fluids. Citric acid plays an important role in providing energy to muscle cells – which in theory should provide greater efficiency.
Creatine pyruvate. Pyruvate, unlike other varieties, causes less water retention in the cells, which helps in obtaining more strength without increasing weight. Supports faster ATP regeneration, as well as citrate and malate.
Magnesium chelate creatine. A more advanced form of creatine. Magnesium chelate increases the amount of creatine in muscle cells and accelerates the regeneration of ATP energy in the muscles.
Creatine anhydrous. It is a standard monohydrate, however, without a water molecule. It is characterized by a greater amount of creatine by about 6% compared to single-hydro creatine.
Creatine phosphate. One of the first varieties of creatine. Initially, it was thought that the use of phosphorus molecule binding and creatine molecules would contribute to better results. Such combinations naturally occur in muscle cells. As it turned out later, this combination gives worse results than standard creatine monohydrate.
Which creatine to choose?
There is no unambiguous answer to this question. Each creatine has the same task, so in theory each can be good. Certainly the price / benefit ratio of supplementation speaks for the purchase of standard creatine monohydrate. If the price does not play a role – a very good solution are creatine stacks, containing several types of creatine and often also other additives that are to improve the quality of training and contribute to the improvement of strength results.