Dietary Supplements Are Not All They’re Hyped Up To Be…
Well, both the increase in storage and the slight reduction in muscle fatigue can and have been measured, studied, and published. It’s just that the results aren’t all that impressive.
For example, one double-blind study of creatine supplementation in sprinters and jumpers enhanced performance in the jumping test by seven percent for the first fifteen seconds, twelve percent for the next fifteen seconds, and showed no difference after that in a forty-five-second jumping test. In other words, the results are nothing to jump up and down about.
So it turns out the claims about creatine just don’t hold water. But you might.
Creatine has not been reliably proven to increase muscle mass, but it sometimes increases muscle size by causing water retention, which in turn can cause cramps, dehydration and heat intolerance. And taking more than two grams of creatine daily could potentially cause damage to your kidneys.
Numerous other adverse creatine-associated events have been reported to the FDA over the many years the type of supplement has been popular, though the correlation between the health concerns and the supplements has not been definitively determined.
Oftentimes, it is actually impurities in supplements that are the result of either intention or poor manufacturing and oversight processes that cause some of the most harmful effects.
So how are you going to figure out if a product that you hear or read about is worth trying and safe? In this case, I can confidently tell you that creatine is more hype than help.
As far as other supplements go, ask a pharmacist, a nurse, a dietician or, of course, ask me. Just don’t “Google it.” There are reliable websites out there that you can trust. Personally, I find one, in particular, to be very helpful; https://quackwatch.org/ It’s free from advertising and therefore pretty objective.
In the meantime, here’s a simple tip: muscle building is not caused by taking supplements or even by eating extra protein, it’s a result of increased muscular work.
See you at the gym.
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