What is Creatine?

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What is Creatine?

Creatine is an interesting molecule that is synthesized in the liver from three amino acids- arginine, methionine, and glycine.  95%-98% of creatine is stored in the major skeletal muscles of the body while lesser amounts are found in the heart, brain and testes.  Once creatine enters the muscle, it is phosphorylated to form creatine phosphate, which is a high-energy substrate that assists in the contraction of muscle fibers.  

During exercise, creatine is used by the body to maintain adequate levels of energy-rich ATP.  ATP (adenine triphosphate) is your body's premier source of energy for many metabolic processes.  Athletes who seek to achieve optimal performance during high intensity exercise will often load creatine as a nutritional supplement to spark their ATP levels.  

Many types of exercise, such as weight lifting, sprinting and HIIT training, can challenge ATP stores.  Thus, taking additional creatine as a supplement can help promote physical performance and also delay exercise fatigue by boosting skeletal muscle's ATP reserves.  When muscles use ATP for energy, a chemical process takes place where the ATP is broken down into two simple chemicals, ADP (adenosine diphosphate) and phosphate.  As ATP is converted to ADP, energy is released that gives muscles their ability to contract and perform well.  

Did you ever exercise so hard that you felt a muscle "burn"? During intense training, when lactic acid levels can rise higher in muscles you may feel a burning sensation in your muscles.  Research shows that creatine can help buffer lactic acid that builds up in muscles during exercise.  To help control the buildup of lactic acid, creatine helps to absorb and bind hydrogen ions that have been released into the muscles.

Creatine also promotes the body's anabolic phase for increased protein synthesis which supports lean body mass and muscle strength.  Taking creatine supplements before and after workouts may help support muscle energy levels because it enables the ATP energy cycle to continue for longer periods of time.  

We recommend Premier Creatine for supplementation because it is a natural source of creatine and has the added benefit of no added chemical binders, fillers or non-nutritive substances so often found in workout supplements. 

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