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Creatine Blog - Part 2

Simple Truths About Muscle Growth (part 1)

I have studied muscle development for most of my life - 30 of my 52 years - and after all this time there are just a few things I can say with certainty: First, exercise stimulates muscle growth; Second, proper nutrition will make your efforts in the gym pay the greatest dividends and; Third, our most important muscle-developing agents are the insulin-like growth factors type 1 (IGF-1s). You’ll see these three points pounded over and over again in my posts and other publications. In fact, I am staking my scientific career on these three truths and yet another… The fourth I will tell you about one day just as soon as the initial studies become published. Stay tuned.

The first point is simply common sense, the second is also obvious enough, the third point, however, may come as a surprise to most of you. In my reading of popular fitness literature I have rarely seen this extremely important developmental agent “directly” mentioned, which is disturbing given its profound importance in muscle and bone development. On the other hand, nearly everyone who has ever picked up a beauty or fitness magazine has heard of Growth Hormone (GH) and the transformations it can bring about. Here’s the catch, GH’s muscle building and bone fortifying potentials are actually mediated by IGF-1, which is the true muscle-and bone-building agent. Quite frankly, to make the greatest gains in muscle mass you must first understand how to correctly combine exercise and nutrition to directly stimulate IGF-1 production - without GH as an intermediary… GH will still be there later on (mostly at night) to do what it does best, dissolve fat.

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Posted in Elderly, Muscle Growth, Supplementing Strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Heavy Breathing Can Hurt You!

CAUTION: Breathing Can Be TOXIC!!

Oxygen is potentially toxic, a seemingly counterintuitive statement, since common knowledge tells us that we need oxygen to live. Specifically, without oxygen we would not be able to produce energy from basic nutrients and would die….

So, how can oxygen be toxic?

Oxygen is an Electron Sponge

Nothing is perfect. The exact same property that makes oxygen a benefit to the cell, makes it a danger to the cell, its ability to absorb electrons.
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Posted in Supplementing Strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 37 Comments

What is Creatinine and Why Should I Care? part 3

Last week I explained how high temperatures increase creatine degradation rate and how this might reduce the amount of creatine you are actually ingesting following its mixing in liquids. I now explain how heat also increases creatine’s solubility, effectively increasing the amount of creatine that goes into solution. How to offset these two apparently dichotomous effects in order to optimize creatine availability for maximal absorption is the topic of today’s post.

Creatine’s Insolubility Causes Problems

One of the most problematic aspects of dietary supplementation with creatine monohydrate powders are their poor solubility - this annoying feature gives rise to a range of inconveniences ranging from not being able to get your creatine into solution to persistent diarrhea.

Heating Increases the Amount of Creatine That Goes Into Solution

Although this may sound like a contradiction it is not. Recall from the last post that heat increases the disorder of our “creatine in a glass” system, which translates into more creatine molecules being randomly dispersed (dissolved) in our liquid. In fact, increasing the temperature increases the solubility of creatine in water significantly. In practical terms, going from 10 to 50 degrees Celsius increases the solubility of pure creatine monohydrate about three-fold. This is an important consideration, since creatine is rather insoluble; typically about 14 grams of pure creatine monohydrate can be dissolved in a liter of water at room temperature (25 degrees Celsius). Importantly, this values drops to around only 8 grams of creatine being able to be dissolved in one liter of water right out of the refrigerator (4 degrees Celsius). And, of course, creatinine production will also increase, although much less significantly than the increase in creatine solubility. Can you see where I am going with this? Read More »

Posted in Supplementing Strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , | 108 Comments

What is Creatinine and Why Should I Care? part 2

Hello Rob,

Nicely formulated question, but you got me right where it hurts, the lack of published scientific studies addressing creatine’s solubility and degradation in aqueous solutions. Below is what I have been able to piece together from the literature that I have been able to find. Other reports surely exists, I have simply not been able to pin them down.

Since one of your queries uses the term, thermodynamics, I use this approach to answer the question. Don’t worry. I’ll try and develop the answer in an intuitive manner, not like a university physical chemistry course.

Ok, buckle-up, here we go…

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Posted in Supplementing Strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

What is Creatinine and Why Should I Care? part 1

Dear Readers,

A version of this question appeared in my inbox a few days ago. I felt it important enough to merit its own post in this blog. Today, I’ll post the original question and in a few days I’ll upload my answer.

Sincerely,
Alfredo Franco
Nutritional Supplements Newsletters Publishing

Question

Following is a question regarding “Creatine Solubility” that I haven’t seen addressed within the contents of your website and the answer to which could prove to be of great value and interest not only to myself but to all your readers & visitors to this website. I have yet to receive a fair & comprehensive answer to my question from any other sources which is why I’m now turning to you for help.

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Posted in Supplementing Strategies | Tagged , , , , , , | 22 Comments