Creatine supplements have a mixed reputation among gym goers. Some believe creatine is effective in enhancing muscle gain and athletic performance, while others claim it causes bloating and fat gain.
The truth is that creatine is not a miracle powder—but it’s not a health hazard, either. Here are 14 of the best creatine supplements and what to look for when choosing one.
14 quality creatine supplements
1. Thorne Creatine
Each serving of Thorne creatine contains 5 grams of micronized creatine monohydrate, which is a more dissolvable form of creatine. This product is National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) Certified for Sport. This means that it has undergone third-party testing to make sure it is free of harmful contaminants and banned substances.
2. Bulk Supplements Creatine Monohydrate
This product is convenient, affordable, and has been third-party tested. It contains 5 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving and is formulated without any additives or added ingredients, such as gluten, sugar, soy, dairy, or yeast.
3. Nutricost Creatine Monohydrate
Nutricost Creatine contains just 5 grams of micronized creatine monohydrate and no added ingredients. It adheres to strict safety and quality standards set by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and has gone through third-party testing at an International Organization for Standardization-accredited lab. In addition to the unflavored version, it is available in flavors, such as fruit punch and blue raspberry.
4. Klean Athlete Creatine
Klean Athlete provides 5 grams of pure creatine monohydrate per scoop with no artificial flavors or added ingredients. It is NSF Certified for Sports and therefore meets strict quality standards.
5. Optimum Nutrition Micronized Creatine
This contains 100% pure creatine monohydrate in each 5-gram serving with no additives and extra ingredients. It is also available in the form of capsules, which contains approximately 2.5 grams of pure creatine per two capsules.
6. Gnarly Creatine
This vegan, unflavored supplement from Gnarly offers 5grams of pure creatine monohydrate per serving. It is NSF Certified for Sports with no added ingredients.
7. MuscleTech Platinum Creatine
This creatine supplement provides 5 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving. The company claims that this product can help you get the most out of your strength training sessions.
8. Beast Sports Creature Creatine
Beast Creature creatine is one of the most effective at helping you sustain maximum efficiency for longer periods of time. It is available in several flavors, including citrus, cherry limeade, pink lemonade, and beast punch.
9. RSP Nutrition Creatine Monohydrate
This product is made of premium micronized creatine, which is optimized for absorption with minimal water retention. It can be easily combined with other supplements such as protein powder without affecting its taste or texture.
10. Genius Creatine Power Matrix
This product contains 5 grams of creatine monohydrate per serving, along with beta-alanine, an amino acid that improves exercise performance and increases carnosine levels in the muscles.
11. Muscle Feast Creapure Creatine Monohydrate
This is a high-quality flavored product containing 5.4 grams of creatine in each serving. The supplement is made from creapure, which is a highly purified form of creatine monohydrate.
12. Naked Creatine
This creatine supplement is certified vegan and gluten-free with artificial colors, flavors, and sweeteners.
13. 1st Phorm Micronized Creatine Monohydrate
This micronized creatine product contains 5 grams of monohydrate creatine per serving and can be mixed in water, juice, or your favorite beverage.
14. Proven4 Sports Pre-Game Formula
Each serving of this pre-workout supplement contains 2 grams of creatine monohydrate, along with a blend of other ingredients, such as B vitamins, caffeine, and amino acids.
What is creatine?
Creatine is a natural compound produced by the body and found in red meat and seafood.
Creatine monohydrate (creatine molecule + a water molecule) is the most common type of creatine supplement. Other less common types (creatine + other compounds) are intended to increase absorption of magnesium, citric acid, malic acid, or hydrochloride.
What are creatine supplements used for?
When creatine is consumed, your body stores almost 95% of it in your muscles in the form of creatine phosphate. This is used to produce energy needed to perform quick, intense bursts of activity, such as a heavy bench press or squat.
Creatine can be obtained naturally by eating meat, but it would require consuming about half a pound of steak or salmon every day to get just one gram. That is why many people turn to creatine supplements, which can offer 2-5 times that amount per serving.
How to choose a creatine supplement
The most important thing to look for in a creatine supplement is one that contains creatine monohydrate (3-5 grams per serving), which is the best type of creatine available.
Moreover, a great supplement should not contain anything more than pure creatine monohydrate and should be free of fillers, additives, and artificial colors or flavors.
What are the potential risks of creatine supplements?
While most creatine supplements are considered safe, they are not all created equally.
Some people may experience side effects such as bloating and weight gain, with some reporting dehydration, muscle cramps, and even kidney damage.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Cleveland Clinic. Creatine and Creatine Supplements. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/17674-creatine-and-creatine-supplements
Masters M. The 6 Best Creatine Supplements for Explosive Strength. Men's Health. https://www.menshealth.com/nutrition/g40182295/best-creatine-supplements/
Smith C. The Best Creatine Supplements of 2022. Bodybuilding. https://www.bodybuilding.com/content/the-best-creatine-supplements.html
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