Taking Creatine Before Bed
Creatine: What is it?
Creatine is a molecule present in our body naturally; it is synthesized from various amino acids, which is why it is considered protein origin. It is generally used as a source of energy, and most of it is deposited in our muscles.
Our body can synthesize approximately 50% of creatine, and the rest is obtained through food as long as it depends on a balanced diet.
Creatine supplementation is currently known to benefit strength training athletes. However, we are not always clear about the appropriate times to ingest it. For that reason, it is necessary to have all the information about how to ingest this supplement properly.
How creatine works in the body
Before knowing what happens if I take creatine before sleeping, it is important to know how this substance works in the body. This is a nitrogenous acid obtained from the synthesis of certain amino acids by the effect of the pancreas, liver, and kidneys. It is generally considered a high-intensity energy source that goes through the following process:
- When you consume creatine, it is absorbed into the bloodstream, and 90% goes to the muscles and the rest to the brain or nerve cells.
- This is synthesized in creatine phosphate, an element that stimulates ATP production, a molecule that provides energy. The receptor muscle cells are supplied to be released when needed.
- When you do high-impact exercise, energy is burned in seconds. It is there, where creatine supplementation fulfills its function since it releases the stored reserve to produce more energy.
- In addition to the energy phase, creatine allows greater water absorption in muscle cells, increasing the muscles' volume. It also regulates the use of energy by giving better use of glycogen.
Due to its operation, creatine can be mixed with other substances, such as protein, to enhance its effects. The ideal is to follow the indications of the experts to take full advantage of its effects.
How and when to take creatine?
When we start taking creatine, we can do a loading period of it, where adults can consume up to 20 grams of creatine a day for a maximum of seven continuous days. It is advisable to consume 4 doses of 5 grams throughout the day.
After the first week of consumption, you must reduce the dose from 2 to 5 grams per day, since you would go to the maintenance phase for a maximum of 6 months. It is important not to use it beyond six months in a row, as studies have not concluded with certainty on creatine supplementation's efficacy in the long term.
Is Taking Creatine Before Bed Good
Is it harmful?
Absolutely nothing happens, and it is not harmful. There is not yet an agreement as to the correct time to consume this supplement. Keep in mind that creatine is not a stimulating substance, therefore, it would not affect the quality of rest. The most frequent consumption recommendations are:
- Many recommend consuming it on an empty stomach to avoid the degradation that occurs due to the influence of gastric juices.
- Others advise consumption before training to have the energy dose at the necessary moment.
- Certain professionals believe that during training, the release of energy is guaranteed gradually.
- However, the most common way is to consume it after training, when the muscles are receptive to the nutrients.
There is no scientific evidence that determines that the arguments raised are valid. Therefore, it can be consumed at any time of the day. The recommendation is to read the packaging and make sure that the chosen brand does not contain caffeine. This substance can impair sleep.
Nothing happens if you consume creatine before sleeping. It is estimated that it offers the same benefits of taking it at any time of the day. However, read the instructions on the packaging to avoid inconvenience.
It is important to check the ingredient list on the creatine packaging and verify that it does not contain caffeine since otherwise, it could keep you awake at night, and its effectiveness would decrease.
Therefore, it is recommended to take a supplement that contains 100% pure creatine monohydrate. Keep in mind that creatine can interact with medications such as NSAIDs and that before starting it, you should consult your doctor.