What Is the Best Way To Take Creatine? 5 Ways

What Is the Best Way To Take Creatine? 5 Ways

Creatine has become a staple in the fitness and health world. It's no secret that this powerful supplement can support performance, strength, and muscle growth. But, the key to unlocking its full potential lies in knowing the best way to take it.

As creatine enthusiasts ourselves, we at CON-CRĒT understand the importance of proper creatine intake. It's not just gulping down a supplement — it involves strategic consumption that aligns with your fitness goals and overall health. In this article, we'll explore the various ways to take creatine and discuss their unique benefits.



How Does Creatine Work in the Body?

Creatine plays a pivotal role in the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). ATP is the primary energy source of our cells. Whenever you work out, your body will use its ATP stores to power your muscles. 

Once the ATP is used, it loses a phosphate molecule and then becomes ADP (adenosine diphosphate). Here is where creatine comes in: It helps to convert the ADP back into ATP and provides your muscles with another shot of energy. As a result, you may be able to exercise for longer before you feel fatigued and maximize your gains. 

What Are the Different Forms of Creatine Available?

When it comes to creatine supplements, there are many different options available and each one comes with its own characteristics. Here are some of the most commonly consumed types of creatine and what makes them unique:

  • Creatine monohydrate: This is the most studied form of creatine and has been the go-to choice for athletes and bodybuilders for many years. It's proven to be effective in supporting muscle strength and size, but it's also known for causing water retention and bloating due to its water-holding molecule.
  • Creatine ethyl ester: This form of creatine is created by attaching an ester to the creatine molecule, which is thought to increase its absorption rate. However, research suggests that it may not be as effective as creatine monohydrate in bolstering exercise performance.
  • Creatine malate: This is creatine bound with malic acid. The addition of malic acid is believed to enhance energy production, but more research is needed to confirm its efficacy compared to creatine monohydrate.
  • Buffered creatine: Also known as Kre-Alkalyn, this form of creatine is buffered to resist stomach acid, potentially improving its absorption. However, studies have not found it to be more effective than creatine monohydrate.
  • Creatine hydrochloride (HCl): This form of creatine is bound with hydrochloride, a salt, to enhance its solubility and absorption rate. In fact, Creatine HCl is 59 times more soluble than creatine monohydrate. Unlike the other options on this list, research has shown it’s effective at smaller doses and less likely to cause bloating and stomach discomfort than creatine monohydrate.



What Are the 5 Best Ways To Take Creatine?

Just as there are options for types of creatine, you also have options for how to take it. Let’s dive into some of the best ways that you can take creatine to maximize its effects:

1. Post-Workout

Taking creatine post-workout can be transformative. Research suggests that post-workout creatine intake can support muscle recovery. Your creatine stores are likely depleted after you engage in an intense workout. Taking creatine during this time can help replenish them and support muscle recovery and growth, ensuring that you get the most out of your workout. 

2. With a Meal

Pairing creatine with a meal can help to enhance its overall absorption. The presence of macronutrients in your digestive tract can help to stimulate insulin release. Insulin can help to drive the creatine from your supplement into your muscles more quickly than it would arrive without eating a meal. Taking your creatine supplement of choice with a meal that’s high in protein and/or carbs can help you access it sooner. 

3. In a Non-Acidic Drink

Many people choose to mix their powdered creatine supplements into water. However, there are many people who prefer to simply add it to their favorite beverage instead. It doesn’t make much of a difference as long as you’re mixing it into a non-acidic drink. 

The acid found in drinks like coffee, soda, or citrus-based fruit juices can break down the creatine and reduce its effectiveness. Water is the best option for mixing creatine powders, but you can also use milk, herbal teas, vegetable juices, or non-citrus fruit juices if you’d prefer. 

4. Pre-Workout

Pre-workout creatine provides nearly the same benefits as post-workout creatine. Many athletes prefer to take it beforehand as it ensures their creatine levels are capped off. They’ll know going into the gym that they’ll have all the energy they need to knock their high-intensity routine out of the park. If you decide to take creatine pre-workout, then make sure you take it about 20-30 minutes before you start exercising to give your body time to properly digest it. Of course, you can simply split your daily dose of creatine in half and take some before and some after to experience both benefits. 

5. As an Ingestible 

Most people picture a powder when they think of creatine supplements. However, there are many forms of ingestible creatine, including capsules and gummies. These options are much more convenient as they’re portable, easy to take, and don’t require any mixing, so you know you’re getting the right dosage every time. Plus, these forms of creatine will make it much easier to split your dosage if you want to take creatine before and after your workout. 

Are There Any Side Effects of Taking Creatine?

While creatine may provide a variety of benefits, it’s important to also be aware of the potential drawbacks. Creatine, just like any other supplement, can potentially cause some undesirable side effects. Especially when consumed excessively. 

For example, some people may experience stomach discomfort or water retention. The good news is that these effects can usually be reduced. Taking creatine with a meal or dividing the dosage into smaller doses can help reduce stomach discomfort. As for water retention, staying well-hydrated and drinking plenty of water with your supplement may help.

It’s also worth noting that not all forms of creation are equal. As we noted earlier, creatine monohydrate sports a water-holding molecule, making it more likely to cause water retention. On the other hand, Creatine HCl is paired with a salt molecule, which eliminates this effect. Also, Creatine HCl is seven times more concentrated than creatine monohydrate, meaning you need less of it to get the same effect.



At CON-CRĒT, we take pride in being the inventors and the leading supplier of Creatine HCl. We’ve done the research and determined that it’s the best form of creatine available. If you want to eliminate these side effects and maximize the positive effects, then we recommend that you stick to using Creatine HCl.

Choosing the Right Creatine Strategy for You

Creatine is quickly becoming one of the most popular supplements within the fitness community, and the wellness community as a whole. If you’re considering adding creatine to your workout regimen, then you’ll need to devise a personal strategy that meets your individual needs, goals, and lifestyle. 

The choice is yours when it comes to taking creatine, and you now know the best ways to do it. We encourage you to experiment with different methods and listen to your body. Try different timing strategies and delivery methods to see which ones work best for you. 

Keep in mind that CON-CRĒT is here to support you on every step. We believe that Creatine HCl is the superior form of creatine — so strongly that it’s the only type of creatine that we offer. By using our Creatine HCl supplements, you can maximize the benefits and eliminate the side effects. 

So, are you ready to take your wellness to the next level? Explore our range of Creatine HCl products today and experience the CON-CRĒT difference. Remember, your journey toward total wellness is a marathon, not a sprint. And we're here to run it with you.


Adenosine Triphosphate - StatPearls | NCBI Bookshelf

Creatine Supplementation Enhances Immunological Function of Neutrophils by Increasing Cellular Adenosine Triphosphate | PMC

Creatine Supplementation Enhances Muscle Force Recovery After Eccentrically-Induced Muscle Damage in Healthy Individuals | JISSN

Macronutrient Composition and Food Form Affect Glucose and Insulin Responses in Humans | PMC

The Effects of Pre Versus Post Workout Supplementation of Creatine Monohydrate on Body Composition and Strength | NCBI Bookshelf

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