Creatine is an essential supplement for many athletes and bodybuilders, as its use has been linked to improved performance and enhanced muscle growth. In addition, enhancing one’s aerobic or anaerobic capacity through creatine supplementation can improve performance outcomes over time during physical activity.

But how much creatine should you be taking each day? This article explores the effects of different doses on your daily fitness routine and guides when it is appropriate to increase or reduce your intake levels. So now, let’s get started.

What is Creatine?

Creatine is a natural by-product of muscle metabolism and an essential component of energy production. Creatine is a naturally occurring organic acid that may also be obtained by diet, particularly from consuming fish and red meat.

It helps the body to convert food into glycolysis, which energizes your daily activities. Furthermore, it is used to help synthesize proteins in relation to muscle growth and repair.

Because creatine may be synthesized in the body from various amino acids, it is not considered an essential nutrient. There are several ways to consume creatine pills, and they are not all made equal. There are many discussions on which kind has the maximum bioavailability or gets absorbed the most effectively.

How Much Creatine Do I Need? Why Do People Take Creatine Supplements?

Creatine is taken as a supplement for multiple reasons. The most popular is to improve exercise performance, increase overall muscle mass, and decrease body fat percentage.

1. Boost Athletic Performance

For people looking to improve their performance in the gym, creatine can be an excellent energy source. Studies have shown that creatine supplementation can help athletes perform more explosively and build greater muscle size.

Those looking to build muscle mass may find that creatine supplementation can help them reach their goals faster than if they only diet and exercise alone. [1]

2. Brain Health

Studies have shown that supplementing with creatine can raise brain creatine levels by as much as 10%, which may benefit cognitive function. These supplements boost cognitive performance by boosting the brain’s energy supply and protecting cells. [2]

It may assist increase short-term memory and intellect in healthy adults, and it might help lessen mental fatigue during mathematical computations compared to those taking a placebo.

In addition, creatine’s positive effects on health may extend beyond sports performance to other areas, such as age-related cognitive decline and dementia. [3]

How Much Creatine Should I Take Each Day?

Creatine monohydrate is the market’s cheapest and most effective type of creatine. In addition, the micronized form of creatine monohydrate is more convenient since it dissolves quickly in water.

How much creatine for daily intake varies depending on the individual’s fitness goals and body chemistry.

For most adults, the recommended daily dose is 3-5 grams per day. Also, there is a loading regimen for creatine monohydrate supplements. The recommended loading dose is 0.3 g/ kg/ day for 5–7 days, followed by a maintenance dose of at least 0.03 g/ kg/ day for another three weeks.

Creatine is generally taken with food or after a workout to maximize absorption. However, it is also important to remember that the body can only absorb so much creatine at once, so it is best to spread out your daily dose throughout the day.

How Much Creatine to Take? How to Take Creatine

Creatine monohydrate is the most popular form of creatine supplement available. It can be taken in pill, powder, or liquid forms.

Creatine Loading

Creatine loading is the conventional method of taking the supplement. When loading with creatine, you take 20–25 grams over four to five divided doses for about seven days.

The goal of loading is to increase the rate at which creatine is absorbed by muscle cells, allowing you to reap the supplement’s advantages more quickly. Unfortunately, creatine’s benefits can only be felt after loading for a few days, when muscle fibers absorb the supplement to saturation.

Creatine Maintenance Dose

The alternative is to skip the loading period and take the maintenance dosage of 3-5 grams daily.

Taking the maintenance dose gradually over a longer period may be more practical than the loading strategy, which necessitates taking four to five doses daily.

How Much Creatine to Take? Is 5 Grams of Creatine Daily Enough?

The dosage of 5 grams daily is generally considered safe and effective for most people. However, a higher dosage may be beneficial if you look for more significant results, such as improved performance in the gym or enhanced muscle mass. 

A higher dosage of 5-20 grams per day may benefit athletes and bodybuilders looking to build muscle mass. This dose can be taken as a single serving or divided up throughout the day in smaller doses.

How Much Creatine to Take? Can I Take 10 Grams of Creatine per Day?

It is best not to exceed 10 grams of creatine daily, as this could lead to adverse side effects. Those who follow the loading regimen may need to cycle off and on from taking the supplement. Cycling involves taking a break from creatine supplementation for some time (around one month) before starting again with a lower dose.

However, people who have a lot of muscle mass and engage in strenuous physical activity, or those who do not get results at a dose of 5 g/ day, may benefit from higher amounts (up to 10 g/ day). However, it should not be exceeded as taking too much creatine can adversely affect your body.

Even though taking 10 grams of creatine daily is not recommended, it is still important to monitor how much creatine you take and how the supplement affects your body. If you experience any side effects or adverse reactions, discontinue use immediately and consult with a doctor.

How Much Creatine to Take? Should You Take Creatine 1 or 2 Times a Day?

It is best to take creatine 1-2 times a day, depending on how much creatine you take. For those taking 3-5 grams per day, it is recommended that they split the dose and take 1.5 – 2.5 grams around two times a day with meals or after workouts.

For those taking more than 5 grams daily, the dose should be split into 2-4 doses and taken with meals or after workouts. Drinking plenty of water when taking creatine is also important, as it can cause dehydration.

How much creatine you should take every day depends on your fitness goals and body chemistry.

How Much Creatine to Take? Side Effects of Creatine

Although rare, there are some potential side effects associated with taking creatine. These include nausea, stomach discomfort, and an increase in body temperature. Other possible side effects include bloating, dehydration, and kidney damage if taken in excessive amounts.

If you are suffering from kidney disease, you should consult a doctor before supplementing with creatine, as high doses can be dangerous for those with impaired renal function.

How Much Creatine to Take? Is Creatine Safe?

Creatine is generally considered safe for most healthy adults when appropriate. However, it is always best to speak with a doctor before beginning any supplement regimen and discuss how much creatine you should take and how often.

Creatine has been researched extensively and is a healthy supplement. There is no evidence from studies conducted on a wide range of people that using creatine supplements at levels of 4-20 grams per day for ten months to 5 years is harmful to their health. [4]

However, there is a lack of long-term trials in persons with renal illness. Therefore, if you have kidney disease or take any drugs, talk to your doctor before starting a creatine supplementation program. Creatine is generally accepted as a healthy dietary supplement, although excessive use might lead to negative consequences.

Bottomline: How Much Creatine Should I Take Each Day?

Overall, creatine is a safe and effective supplement that can benefit athletes and bodybuilders looking to improve their performance.

How much creatine to take depends on the person’s individual needs. Taking proper doses can help increase muscle mass and strength and improve aerobic capacity. As with any supplement, however, it is important to consult with a doctor before starting use, particularly if you have any pre-existing medical conditions or are taking other medications.

Disclaimer: This article is only a guide. It does not substitute the advice given by your healthcare professional. Before making any health-related decision, consult your healthcare professional.

Editorial References And Fact-Checking

  • Wu SH, Chen KL, Hsu C, Chen HC, Chen JY, Yu SY, Shiu YJ. Creatine Supplementation for Muscle Growth: A Scoping Review of Randomized Clinical Trials from 2012 to 2021. Nutrients. 2022 Mar 16;14(6):1255. doi: 10.3390/nu14061255. PMID: 35334912; PMCID: PMC8949037.
  • Pan JW, Takahashi K. Cerebral energetic effects of creatine supplementation in humans. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2007 Apr;292(4):R1745-50. doi: 10.1152/ajpregu.00717.2006. Epub 2006 Dec 21. PMID: 17185404; PMCID: PMC3570026.
  • Watanabe A, Kato N, Kato T. Effects of creatine on mental fatigue and cerebral hemoglobin oxygenation. Neurosci Res. 2002 Apr;42(4):279-85. doi: 10.1016/s0168-0102(02)00007-x. PMID: 11985880.
  • Bender A, Samtleben W, Elstner M, Klopstock T. Long-term creatine supplementation is safe in aged patients with Parkinson disease. Nutr Res. 2008 Mar;28(3):172-8. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2008.01.001. PMID: 19083405.
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Shaira Urbano, Licensed Pharmacist

Shaira is a licensed pharmacist (Bachelor of Pharmacy) and an experienced content writer. She enjoys inspiring and informing her readers through research-backed, comprehensive health content. Shaira draws from her personal experience working with real-life patients in a hospital setting and is currently pursuing her passion in writing.

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  • Shaira is a licensed pharmacist (Bachelor of Pharmacy) and an experienced content writer. She enjoys inspiring and informing her readers through research-backed, comprehensive health content. Shaira draws from her personal experience working with real-life patients in a hospital setting and is currently pursuing her passion in writing.

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Shaira is a licensed pharmacist (Bachelor of Pharmacy) and an experienced content writer. She enjoys inspiring and informing her readers through research-backed, comprehensive health content. Shaira draws from her personal experience working with real-life patients in a hospital setting and is currently pursuing her passion in writing.