Have you wondered what the most proven supplement is for increased muscle growth and exercise performance? The answer is a simple, inexpensive product called Creatine. Bodybuilders and athletes prefer one of two different forms that are available for this product. Because of this, I’m going to compare the benefits of Creatine HCL vs Monohydrate.
Creatine has always been one of my pre and post-workout favorites, but I didn’t realize that 10 different types are available. Out of the two most popular forms, I had been taking the Creatine Monohydrate. This form has been around the longest and is the least expensive. However, I’m willing to switch depending on this research.
Studies show that Creatine is one of the most effective products that you can buy to build muscle and ramp up your workouts. This article will discuss how Creatine works, the pros and cons of both HCL and Monohydrate forms, and which will work better in reaching your exercise goals.
Creatine is the most studied exercise supplement on the market. Many athletes and trainers believe that it is the most effective performance and muscle growth product available.
The benefits include faster muscle recovery, increased muscle gain, and improving high-intensity exercise performance. These claims are backed up by scientific studies.
What is in Creatine supplements? Creatine occurs naturally in your body, but can also be ingested by eating animal products. Raw red meat has the highest quantity of Creatine, but I don’t recommend it. Steak, chicken, tuna, and salmon have some of the highest concentrations.
To get maximum exercise endurance and muscle building effects, it is best to take additional Creatine supplementation.
Exercise is what triggers the Creatine in your body to synthesize into energy. This process converts it, increasing adenosine triphosphate or ATP in your muscle fibers. ATP is the major energy provider for almost every action that goes on in the body.
Creatine burns up and is used quickly during exercise, and faster than your body can produce it. Ingesting more of this will ensure that your body doesn’t run out and that you can continue with maximum intensity.
Benefits Of Creatine
- creates muscle volumization
- faster sprint ability
- improves brain performance
- adds more muscle mass
- reduces fatigue
- increases strength
- stronger muscle endurance
- better muscle recovery
- resistance to fatigue
- improves high-intensity exercise performance
Best Creatine for Muscle Growth
Here are a few of my top recommendations of both Creatine Monohydrate, Creatine HCL, and blends of both.
I tried to keep it under $20 since spending more than this on Creatine doesn’t necessarily get you a better product.
|Image||Name||Type of Creatine||Price||Buy|
|Kaged Muscle||Creatine HCL||$$||CURRENT PRICE|
|Evlution Nutrition||Creatine Monohydrate||$||CURRENT PRICE|
|Muscle Beach||Monohydrate/HCL Blend||$$||CURRENT PRICE|
|The Genius Brand||3 in 1 Creatine Blend||$$||CURRENT PRICE|
Creatine HCL vs Monohydrate
Both types of Creatine forms provide the benefits above, but everyone seems to have their “go-to” choice. They go about how they work in much the same way, but these advantages could be greater from person to person.
Creatine Monohydrate is more studied and has been around longer. Because HCL hasn’t been around as long, some testing is still inconclusive.
Because of the chemical makeup, I predict that both will prove to be just as effective. Some manufacturers combine both HCL and Monohydrate for a more well-rounded supplement.
The biggest benefit to Creatine HCL is the solubility. It is just different enough that it will dissolve in water much better. HCL is 40 times more soluble in water, therefore it is absorbed better when ingested. This means reduced water retention in the intestinal tract, and it can make a significant difference for some.
Speaking of water retention, it is extremely important to drink plenty of water when taking any form of Creatine. Keep yourself hydrated before, during and after exercise. This will help to keep water weight off and help to avoid bloating. Drinking water will also help with the uptake of Creatine in your body.
Even though Creatine Monohydrate is more popular, this form is most likely to bring small side effects. When taking Monohydrate, always be sure to mix it with water very well before drinking. Another option is to take it with your pre workout or post workout protein powder.
One last difference between Creatine Monohydrate and HCL is that HCL can also be purchased in a more convenient pill form since HCL absorbs more easily in your stomach.
⇒ If you have any other questions or comments regarding Creatine HCL vs Monohydrate, please leave them below and I will respond.
What Is Creatine HCL
Creatine hydrochloride is simply a hydrochloric acid group attached to a regular Creatine molecule. This small difference enhances both its stability and solubility. Hydrochloric Acid is additive in various foods and is a safe chemical compound.
While experimenting in a lab with several Creatine compounds, scientists accidentally created this form. The result was a more soluble and purer type of Creatine.
HCL Pros and Cons
In our discussion so far, Creatine HCL is the clear winner as far a solubility and its ability to mix with water. The reason that this is such a great benefit is that it allows your body to uptake a larger percentage of the powder.
This also makes it a more convenient option because of how easy it is to blend. The Monohydrate form sometimes needs at least room temperature water to dissolve or should be taken with your pre workout supplement.
Because of this solubility, HCL reduces the chance of any possible side effects that may be caused by undermixing. Not being mixed properly is what can result in bloating or stomach irritations. Although Creatine HCL is more expensive, it is more concentrated, resulting in a smaller serving size.
Because of these HCL benefits, it is quickly becoming a more popular form of Creatine.
On the “cons” side, the biggest one seems to be the price of more than three times the amount. This could possibly keep some people from trying it.
Any Creatine may cause some water retention to go along with the gained muscle mass. However, this is well worth the additional strength and muscle growth.
The only problems with Creatine happen when someone takes extremely high doses. This is unsafe with any supplement. If you have a history of kidney disease, diabetes, intestinal issues, consult with your doctor before taking Creatine.
What Is Creatine Monohydrate
Creatine Monohydrate is the most popular and the most studied form of Creatine. There is more scientific proof of the benefits on this type of Creatine than for any others.
The reason for this is because the naturally synthesized Creatine in our bodies most resembles Monohydrate. Mono-hydrate simply means that it is mixed with one molecule of water to one part Creatine when developing this.
Monohydrate Pros and Cons
Because this type of Creatine has been around longer and has been through more studies, it has been proven to have more established benefits. These studies and trials verify that Creatine Monohydrate helps with faster muscle growth and increased exercise performance.
When taken properly, Creatine Monohydrate rarely comes with any side effects. To avoid these, be sure to completely dissolve your powder before drinking. Your Creatine should also come from a reputable company.
Another reason that the Monohydrate form is so popular and widely used is the affordability. I just purchase an 80 serving container for around $25.00.
The Monohydrate side effects, if any will be minor stomach irritation. With proper supplementation and mixing, there shouldn’t be a problem. Once again, it is important to drink plenty of water before, during and after your workout.
Because it is not as soluble as the HCL form, it is recommended to follow the directions for a “loading” cycle when you first begin taking it. This entails doubling the dose for about 3 days when starting. After that, back to a single serving. This helps it saturate throughout your body.
Just as any Creatine, Monohydrate can cause some water weight to go with the additional muscle mass. Compelling scientific evidence shows that short or long time Creatine Monohydrate use doesn’t come with any detrimental effects.
How To Take Creatine Properly
On average people naturally have about 120 grams of Creatine in their body at all times. This can also depend on the amount of meat that you eat. Vegans can sometimes be low on Creatine because of their diet.
Exercise triggers the amount of Creatine that your body uses. It burns at an increasing rate. This is why when you lift heavy, your body can really use Creatine supplementation.
Take Creatine before exercise, after, or both. It works great by mixing it with your pre workout or your post protein powder. No matter how you take it, don’t forget to drink plenty of water to avoid water retention and to help absorption.
Creatine HCL is easier to mix and because of the higher concentration, a smaller serving is required. Most instructions say to take a 2 gram scoop. There is no loading phase with HCL because of its solubility. Take before or after exercise.
Creatine Monohydrate is a recommended 5 gram dose, and make sure it is dissolved properly in water. This form requires a loading phase. Most manufacturers will say to take 5 grams twice a day for 3 days. Be sure to read the individual label since some brands may differ. Drink plenty of water before, during, and after you take Creatine, especially with Monohydrate.
⇒ If you have any comments or questions on taking Creatine, please leave them below and I will respond.
Creatine is not FDA approved just like all exercise supplements. Because of numerous studies and the fact that your body manufactures this naturally, Creatine has been proven to be safe.
The industry is mainly unregulated in general, so be sure to purchase your Creatine from a reputable, well-known company.
Consult your doctor if you have and intestinal issues or pre-existing kidney conditions. There is no reason to take an occasional break from Creatine supplementation, but I recommend giving your body a rest from it once in a while.
If you stop taking Creatine at any time, your body will continue producing it at the same rate. Studies have shown that there aren’t any long term side effects from Creatine.
Creatine is one of the best products available to enhance exercise performance. Six Star Elite Creatine is one of the many excellent choices. Evidence of this is the 9.9 overall customer rating with 360 reviews. This is a blend of three different types of creatine.
Below is a screenshot of one of those reviews from a verified purchaser. You can click on the image to see more of these customer reviews.
Creatine HCL VS Monohydrate
In this article, I explained the difference between Creatine HCL and Monohydrate. These two forms of Creatine are very similar in many ways.
In conclusion, whichever one you decide to use, they both have incredible benefits such as increased exercise performance and faster muscle growth.
Creatine Monohydrate is the most popular, least expensive, and most studied form. It has more scientific data to back up its benefits than any other type of Creatine.
Creatine HCL is more soluble in water, more recently developed, and has not been studied as much. However, the research points to HCL being just as effective. HCL has a clear advantage over Monohydrate for its mixability. Because of this, there is less of a chance of stomach discomfort or bloating.
When taken correctly, there are rarely any side effects of Creatine. Any Creatine can cause some water weight to go with the increased muscle mass. Creatine can be taken pre or post workout. Just be sure to drink a lot of water when taking Creatine and to stay hydrated to prevent water retention.
⇒ If you have any comments or questions regarding Creatine Monohydrate vs HCL, please leave them below and I will respond.