How Much Extra Water Should You Take With Creatine?

On average individuals who take creatine should consume and extra litter of water a day. Creatine can lead to dehydration if the proper amount of water is not met. The average active individual should aim to consume 3-4 litters of water a day. This is not including the amount designated for use with creatine. 


Dehydration and the importance of water

There are many aspects that are very important to consider whenever you work out or exercise frequently.  These many aspects can be broken down into a few main and crucial points. These points would include things such as nutrition, training, and recovery. All three of these main points are as I said very critical and can be very complex in their own right. Today I will be focusing more on the aspect of nutrition. Nutrition is an interesting topic considering that nutrition is the gateway to proper recovery. See, whenever you work out or you exercise rigorously  your body is strained. Whether there are tiny muscle tears in the body or just a general exhaustion you need to replenish following your hard exercises. Whenever most people think of nutrition they typically just think of the food that that they should eat. Most people will think of protein drinks, grilled chicken and different veggies and fruit that they need to eat in order to stay in shape and recover. Oftentimes however many people will forget the importance of one common factor across all Exercise. 

This would be of course water. Being that water is the most important thing to life and living things in general it does make sense that water is just as important to humans and our exercising and recovery. Whenever you work out you tend to sweat. Sweat is a side effect of your body trying to cool itself from the exercise. Whenever you sweat your body becomes at least somewhat dehydrated, meaning that it needs more water to replenish what you lost. Put simply the harder you train the more you will most likely sweat. This does depend on person to person because some people tend to sweat more than others but in general the harder you train the more you will sweat. This meaning that the harder your train the more water you should consume. If you find yourself sweating a lot you should probably drink more water, or it can even be the reverse. If you find yourself not sweating at all that can mean that your body is already dehydrated and you need to start drinking more water. This was true for me whenever I noticed a while back that I wasn’t sweating very much at all in the gym. I did some research and realized that this could be a sign that I wasn’t drinking enough water because my body was trying to hold on to the water and not sweat. This turned out to be the case and after I started making it a daily habit to drink close to a gallon of water a day my body was sweating like before. 

Hearing this previous statement about sweat you might be wondering to yourself, okay so why is water so important in the body? If the only result of not drinking enough water is a lack of sweat then that doesn’t really sound like a problem at all. Well that’s what I’m exactly about to get into. Water is very important to the human body for many reasons. One of the reasons is that the human body needs water is to get rid of wastes in the body. Without water the body would not be able to flush its system and get rid of different things in the body. This is the reason that whenever you don’t drink enough water your urine will be much more yellow or a darker color. The more water you drink the more deluded your urine will be. Water is also crucial in keeping the muscles up and running. If you don’t drink enough water the muscles will often experience severe cramps. Whenever you have these cramps the muscles begin to seize up and make it very hard to move the muscle itself. Not only is this harmful to the movement of the human body but it is also extremely painful. 

Does Creatine Cause Dehydration?

So, now that I’ve addressed the importance of water in the body we can get to the real topic at hand, creatine and its effects on the water storage in the human body. To Simply explain it creatine is more or less a type of protein. Creatine in itself is a very rare type of protein in that it’s not found very heavily in normal places such as meat and beans however it is found there and naturally occurring just not in high quantities. However this may be true, creatine is still important to have in the muscles to maximize your strength output and muscle recovery. So, whenever you take creatine what happens more or less is your muscles get filled and saturated with creatine. These creatine stores in the muscle help immediately with the output of energy and exercise. An easy way to think about creatine stores in muscle is the same as glycogen storage in the muscle. This is that it is the first line of  “defense” against the immediate exercises. These stores of energy are the first to go whenever you start exercising. In the same way that glycogen in the human body is like a sponge that soaks up water, creatine does the same thing. 


Whenever water is stored in the muscle it is readily available to heal and aid in recovery of that muscle. As I mentioned before dehydration can be an extremely difficult thing to deal with as an athlete. Whenever you experience dehydration muscle cramps and many other issues will occur along with a decrease in muscle strength and recovery. This can be particularly true when people take creatine and don’t drink enough water. People who take creatine will need to also take alongside with it an extra amount of water since the body then requires more water to function and utilize those creatine stores. 


How much extra water do you really need?

Now that we have discussed the importance of water in proper hydration we can get to the real heart of the matter and the question today. This question is, how much water should you drink while taking creatine? As mentioned creatine will cause your body to need and consume more water than usual. The best way to go about making sure that you’re consuming enough water is to look out for different side effects that occur whenever you aren’t drinking enough water. As mentioned before this could be things such as darker or more yellow urine, muscle cramps, or in many cases increased tiredness or muscle soreness. The most telling of all these is the color of your urine. If you notice that your urine is too dark or too yellow that means that you should probably be consuming more water than you.

If you want to look closer at the numbers and the exact amount of water that you should take here it is- on average an active person should drink close to 3 liters of water a day as is recommended by doctors around the world. Now, if someone is also taking creatine in addition to being active they should intake an additional one liter of water. This means that someone that is active and is taking creatine should aim to drink roughly 4 L of water a day. One thing to keep in mind is that everybody’s body is different and that the amount of water needed can differ heavily depending on the person’s size and activity. if a person is larger they will need more water, and additionally, if the person is more active they will sweat more and then need to drink more water than someone who is not.


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