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In the realm of fitness and performance enhancement, the quest for an effective supplement has been ongoing for decades. One such supplement that has gained significant attention is creatine monohydrate. Widely used by athletes, bodybuilders, and fitness enthusiasts, creatine monohydrate has garnered a reputation as a potent aid in improving strength, power, and exercise performance. In this blog post, we will delve into the research behind creatine monohydrate, exploring its benefits, usage, and potential side effects.

Understanding Creatine Monohydrate

Creatine is a naturally occurring compound found in small amounts in various foods, such as red meat and seafood, and is also synthesized by the body in the liver, kidneys, and pancreas. Creatine monohydrate, the most common form of creatine supplement, is composed of creatine bound with a water molecule.

Enhancing Athletic Performance

Numerous studies have examined the impact of creatine monohydrate on athletic performance, particularly in activities that require short bursts of intense effort, such as weightlifting, sprinting, and jumping. The supplement’s primary mechanism of action involves increasing the body’s stores of phosphocreatine, a high-energy compound used for rapid ATP (adenosine triphosphate) production during intense exercise.

  1. Increased Strength and Power Output: Research consistently suggests that creatine supplementation leads to significant improvements in strength and power (Rawson & Volek, 2003). By replenishing and saturating the phosphocreatine stores in the muscles, creatine allows for a higher rate of ATP regeneration, enabling individuals to exert more force during explosive movements.
  2. Enhanced Exercise Capacity: Creatine monohydrate has shown the potential to enhance exercise capacity by delaying fatigue during intense workouts (Kreider, 2003). This is thought to be due to its role in replenishing ATP, the body’s primary energy source, and reducing the accumulation of lactic acid, a byproduct of anaerobic metabolism.
  3. Muscle Growth and Hypertrophy: Several studies have also indicated that creatine supplementation can promote muscle growth and hypertrophy when combined with resistance training (Buford et al., 2007). Creatine’s ability to increase cell volumization and stimulate protein synthesis may contribute to the observed improvements in muscle mass and overall body composition.

Safe Usage and Considerations

While creatine monohydrate is generally considered safe, it is essential to exercise caution and follow recommended guidelines.

  1. Recommended Dosage: The typical protocol involves an initial loading phase of 20 grams per day for 5–7 days, followed by a maintenance phase of 3–5 grams per day (Buford et al., 2007). It is crucial to consult with a healthcare professional or a qualified sports nutritionist to determine the most appropriate dosage based on individual needs.
  2. Adequate Hydration: To mitigate the risk of potential side effects, such as gastrointestinal distress or muscle cramping, it is important to maintain proper hydration while using creatine monohydrate. Drinking ample water throughout the day can help optimize its effectiveness and reduce the likelihood of adverse effects.
  3. Individual Variances: It is worth noting that while creatine monohydrate is generally well-tolerated, individual responses may vary (Candow et al., 2011). Some individuals may not experience significant benefits from creatine supplementation, while others may notice substantial improvements. Exploring personal tolerance and assessing its impact on performance is essential.


Creatine monohydrate has emerged as a scientifically supported supplement with the potential to enhance strength, power, exercise capacity, and muscle growth (Rawson & Volek, 2003; Kreider, 2003; Buford et al., 2007). Research consistently demonstrates its efficacy in activities that demand short bursts of intense effort. However, as with any supplement, it is crucial to approach creatine monohydrate usage responsibly and adhere to recommended guidelines to ensure safety and effectiveness.

While the loading phase is a common practice, it is not necessary for everyone. Taking a routine daily dose of creatine without the loading phase can still provide benefits over time (Buford et al., 2007). By gradually increasing creatine levels through consistent daily consumption, the desired effects can be achieved.

Mixing creatine with hot liquids like coffee may affect its solubility and stability. While there is no specific research article on the stability of creatine in hot liquids, it is known that creatine can degrade more rapidly in warm or hot environments. To preserve its integrity, it is generally recommended to mix creatine with cool or room temperature liquids such as water or juice.

In conclusion, creatine monohydrate is a scientifically supported supplement that can enhance athletic performance, muscle growth, and exercise capacity (Rawson & Volek, 2003; Kreider, 2003; Buford et al., 2007). Following recommended dosage guidelines and ensuring adequate hydration are crucial. While there is no concrete evidence on the effects of mixing creatine with hot liquids like coffee, it is advisable to consume them separately to optimize the absorption and effectiveness of creatine.

It is important to note that individual responses may vary, and consulting with your medical provider or a registered dietitian is always recommended for personalized advice and guidance on creatine supplementation.


Buford, T. W., Kreider, R. B., Stout, J. R., Greenwood, M., Campbell, B., Spano, M., … & Antonio, J. (2007). International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: creatine supplementation and exercise. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 4(1), 6.

Candow, D. G., Zello, G. A., Ling, B., & Farthing, J. P. (2011). Comparison of creatine supplementation before versus after supervised resistance training in healthy older adults. Research in Sports Medicine, 19(3), 157–167.

Kreider, R. B. (2003). Effects of creatine supplementation on performance and training adaptations. Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, 244(1–2), 89-94.

Rawson, E. S., & Volek, J. S. (2003). Effects of creatine supplementation and resistance training on muscle strength and weightlifting performance. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 17(4), 822-831.