NS 115 term paper - Is Creatine Supplementation Effective?...

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Is Creatine Supplementation Effective? Creatine use among athletes- whether high school, collegiate, or professional- is becoming an increasingly popular way of enhancing athletic performance. The question, however, is- does creatine actually enhance athletic performance? Creatine is a naturally occurring organic acid in the body that supplies energy to muscle cells for short bursts of energy by the creatine phosphate replenishment of ATP. Creatine supplementation can be beneficial to an athlete because many athletes rely on these “fast-twitch” muscle cells for success in the desired event. For a short sprinting track athlete, these short bursts of energy are vital, because for such a short race, every tenth of a second is crucial. For a weight lifter, having effective bursts of energy make for a solid workout. Only recently has creatine been used as a supplement. With the start of the 20th century came the start of the creatine supplementation popularity. Since creatine supplementation has been an issue for such a short time, the long-term effects of it are hard to investigate. However, the main issue with creatine supplementation is: does it work? With the large number of athletes that consume creatine daily, the question of it’s effectiveness is very
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important, because why should athletes put a substance into their body that isn’t necessary? Why do athletes use creatine? Some athletes believe that it helps build muscle mass, and improves performance and delays muscle fatigue during short duration, high-intensity workouts, such as sprinting and weightlifting. Many health stores, such as the General Nutrition Center (GNC), promote creatine as a way to improve athletic performance. There is major hype for creatine, because of its prevalence in high school and collegiate locker rooms. Many athletes are becoming avid users, without paying any attention to health side-effects, or effectiveness. Becque et al. (2000) conducted a study to determine the effects of creatine supplementation on muscle strength and body composition. The purpose of this investigation was to examine the effects of six weeks of oral creatine supplementation during a periodized program of arm flexor strength training for a one repetition maximum(1RM), upper arm muscle area, and body composition. Twenty-three male volunteers with at least 1 yr of weight training experience were assigned in a double-blind fashion to two groups (Cr, N =10; Placebo, N =13). The creatine-using subjects ingested 5 grams of creatine monohydrate in a flavored, sucrose drink four times a day for 5 days in a single blind method. After 5 days,
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supplementation was reduced to two grams per day for the rest of the six weeks. The placebo-using subjects ingested a flavored, sucrose drink. Both drinks were 500
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NS 115 term paper - Is Creatine Supplementation Effective?...

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