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By | November 2005
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Creatine monohydrate is causing great excitement in a world that has been centered on fitness and sports for quite some time. Creatine is defined as an amino acid produced in small quantities by the kidneys, liver, and pancreas of a normal human body. It is derived from elements of methionine, glycine, and arginine. It stores it in skeletal muscle cells throughout the body and then binds it to a phosphate molecule to make phosphocreatine, or PCr. PCr serves as an immediate source of energy for the body, which is important for explosive and short duration activities such as football or baseball. It protects against muscle fatigue and also increases strength and builds duration by as much as one third of the normal level (VF 1a.l). Altogether, creatine builds muscle and reduces recovery time after a tough workout. It gives the user a triple advantage: getting bigger, faster, and stronger in a shorter amount of time. Creatine has been proven effective numerous times but it still is not as generative as the use of steroids. On a scale of 0 to 100 to measuring performance-enhancing ability, creatine would be around a low end of 15 and steroids would be at 100. So the gains with creatine are small but are significant to make a difference (Bamberger 60).

Creatine, like all other supplements, has consequences too. One effect would be excessive weight gain. This can either be a positive or negative aspect, depending on the situation of the person (VF 2a). For example, if a 185-pound lineman needed to bulk up to 230 pounds, this would be a positive effect. But if a 171-pound wrestler needed to stay around 171 pounds, then this would be a negative consequence. For example, Chad Oliva gained 16 pounds during the first four weeks of taking creatine. He admitted that some of it might not have been all muscle (Bamberger 65). Water retention causes most of the excessive weight gain, which makes people who take creatine look puffy and have a fake look to...

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