Does Creatine Cause Cramping, Diarrhea, And Water Retention?

EndurElite Chief Endurance Officer Matt Mosman discusses some of the unwanted side effects of creatine supplementation and what you can do to avoid them.

The Unwanted Side Effects Of Creatine

Ever wonder if CREATINE can cause diarrhea, cramping, and water retention?

  • From previous videos, we know creatine supplementation can increase muscular endurance, strength, and power and overall is one of the most ergogenic and studied supplements.
  • However, there are some unwanted side effects of creatine BUT these can be avoided.
  • First up, creatine causes diarrhea.
  • This usually happens when you take too much creatine at once or during the more traditional loading phase where one takes 5 grams, 5 times a day.
  • To avoid this space out your creatine or just take 2.5 - 5 grams of creatine once daily.
  • Second, creatine causes cramping.
  • This usually only occurs when an individual is not drinking enough water on a daily basis.
  • So stay hydrated and drink that H2O.
  • Third, creatine causes water retention.
  • This is true because creatine is an osmotic substance...meaning when creatine enters the muscle cell it also brings water with it.
  • It’s not uncommon for individuals to gain 5-7 pounds of water weight when they first start taking creatine.
  • To avoid this stick with a lower dose as mentioned above (2.5 - 3 grams daily) to get the benefits of creatine without the unwanted side effects.