If you have been following MyFitFuel Blog lately, then you may know that we have been extensively covering all the aspects of creatine supplementation. This is because we wish to educate and provide all the information so that you get better knowledge about supplements on which you spend your valuable money.
Previously, we covered all the queries regarding the loading phase of the creatine and today, we are gonna see one of the most highlighted topics on creatine supplementation – Does creatine help gain weight? If it’s a yes then how much weight does creatine add? On top of it, is creatine just water weight? Here are answers to all your questions related to creatine and weight gain.
To be very honest, creatine is a supplement that needs no introduction. Primarily used as an energy supplier, creatine has been widely used both before and after the workout. Although creatine forms a quintessential bodybuilding supplement, there are some of its aspects that not all of its users agree upon like – the weight gain induced by creatine.
Creatine for Weight Gain
It’s always good to learn the basics first-up. For instance, when we talk about creatine and weight gain, we need to first understand the human body composition. Briefly saying, your total body weight is partially contributed by weight of your body fat and partially by weight of the lean muscles.
Needless to say, the higher the share of the body fat, the more disadvantageous it is for you. While on the other hand, lean muscle mass is the one that should have a maximum contribution in your gross bodyweight. And that is what creatine exactly does; it increases your lean muscle mass or fat-free mass while diminishing the body-fat mass.
Related Article: Creatine for Muscle Gain: Does it Help or Not?
How does Creatine help to Gain Weight?
Creatine, being an energy supplier to the cells inside the muscles, also draws water along with it as it makes its entry into the muscles. And as you might have studied in your primary grades that water has its own weight. As creatine fills up your muscles, so does the water and hence the weight gain.
It is beneficial for your body in three ways – Firstly, it adds up water to your muscles due to which they look bigger and fuller. Secondly, the water retention caused by the creatine supplementation is in itself an anabolic effect. It helps your muscles to grow faster. And lastly, creatine supplementation bolsters your performance in the training sessions.
One aspect of consuming creatine that needs a special mention is its ability to amplify the production of ATP (read: energy molecules) by which you can train for a longer duration of time. And when you workout longer, you burn more calories which may help you lose more weight over the period of time.
Related Article: The Benefits of Creatine Monohydrate Powder
Creatine and Water Weight Gain
During the first few days of creatine intake, your body will certainly experience an increase of atleast 1 to 5 pounds of weight. And as you make your way further, towards the 15-20 weeks of creatine supplementation, the volume of water in the body may increase a bit. However, it won’t have your percent of total body water changed. Let me put it this way – the water retention by creatine and all the weight gained through it occurs largely in the initial days of its consumption and it has minimal effect on the muscle mass during the latter stages of creatine intake.
Creatine and Anabolic Effect
The fluid retention caused by creatine does a lot of other things than simply adding weight to your body. One such thing is promoting anabolism. During the initial loading phase of creatine, water retention causes cell volumization effect wherein muscles swell up as due to water being drawn into them. This cell volumization, in turn, triggers anabolic stimulation and eventually leads to better muscle protein synthesis. And with enhanced protein synthesis, your body adds up more lean muscle mass.
Creatine and Fat-Free Mass
A research by Richard Kreider of Texas A&M University showed that using creatine supplement for long duration drastically decreases fat ratio and increases in total body mass. The same analysis also demonstrated that creatine intake during high-intensity tasks promotes a significant increase in strength, fat-free mass and performance.
The results are, however, dependent upon the quantity, quality, and duration of creatine intake. For instance, you may get to see great results when you consume a creatine supplement that has been finely milled to 200 Mesh Grade size like MyFitFuel’s Creatine Monohydrate. The fine creatine particles will ensure quick absorption and thus reducing the overall time taken to achieve creatine saturation in the muscles.
How much Weight does Creatine add?
In most individuals, creatine usage adds up around 1 to 5 pounds of weight during the first couple of weeks. Later, as they load and saturate muscles completely with creatine, they can expect as much as 8 to 10 pounds of weight gain.
Related Article: How to include Creatine in your Diet Plan
Does Creatine add only Water Weight?
Some of you may be like – Alright keep everything aside and just tell me that whether or not creatine adds only water weight?
If truth be told, one of the biggest lies about creatine besides its harmful effect on the body is that creatine adds only water weight to the human body.
Of course, it’s true that creatine swells up the muscle cells and retains water in them, but it can’t be fully called as water weight. Let me tell you why – if you look closely, the weight retained due to water promotes fat-free mass and noteworthy increase in lean muscle mass. With this increase in the muscle mass, you can expect your performance to rise, and hence you can burn more calories than you used to do without taking creatine. Eventually, all the pros add up and what you have put on after creatine supplementation is the mass that is devoid of fat and full of lean muscles.
Like the article? Do share your views in the comment section below. Subscribe to MyFitFuel’s free newsletter to know more about creatine supplementation and other fitness tips.