Homy Gyms 101

Can You Mix Protein Powder and Creatine

In the world of nutrition and sports supplementation, protein powders and creatine remain two of the most talked-about topics.

However, understanding them in their full depth and knowing whether it's beneficial to combine them can be quite a challenge.

Published: June 24, 2023.

athlete 1

Quick Answer: Yes, one can mix fast-digesting whey protein powder and creatine monohydrate powder in a dry shaker. After adding water and shaking for 5-10 seconds, it is essential to consume the shake immediately, or creatine monohydrate will convert into useless creatinine. And now, a little bit longer answer...

Intro to Protein Powder Types

Protein powders, a common part of modern dietary routines, come in several types, each of which possesses its unique attributes and benefits.

Whey Protein Powder

Whey protein powder is derived from milk during the cheese-making process. It is a complete protein source, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. This popular type of protein powder is noted for its rapid absorption rate, making it an excellent choice for post-workout recovery.

Whey protein also boasts high levels of branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), particularly leucine, which stimulates muscle protein synthesis.

Casein Protein Powder

Casein protein powder, another dairy-derived product, is digested more slowly than whey. This slow release of amino acids makes casein an optimal choice for a steady supply of protein over extended periods, such as before bed.

This sustained release can help maintain muscle mass and promote recovery during sleep.

Egg Protein Powder

Egg protein powder, made from egg whites, is another excellent source of complete protein. Its high bioavailability makes it easily absorbed by the body, and it's also rich in essential vitamins and minerals. Egg protein is a good alternative for those who are lactose intolerant and can't consume dairy-based protein powders.

Plant Protein Powder

Plant protein powders, sourced from foods like peas, hemp, rice, and soy, are excellent options for vegetarians, vegans, or those with certain dietary restrictions. While some plant proteins aren't complete, many plant-based protein powders mix different sources to ensure all essential amino acids are included.

Other Protein Powder Types

There are also other types of protein powders on the market, including beef protein isolates and mixed plant protein powders, each offering unique benefits. The choice of protein powder can be influenced by factors such as dietary needs, digestion rates, and individual health goals.

Types of Creatine

Creatine, a naturally occurring compound found in muscle cells, is widely used as a supplement to enhance athletic performance and build lean body mass. There are various forms of creatine supplements, each with distinct features.

creatine monohydrate

Creatine monohydrate, the most researched form, is renowned for its efficacy and safety.

Creatine Ethyl Ester (CEE) and Creatine hydrochloride (HCL) are other forms that are believed to have better solubility and absorption rates.

Buffered creatine, also known as Kre-Alkalyn, is designed to bypass the stomach's acids for better absorption and efficacy.

There's also Micronized creatine, which has smaller particles than standard creatine monohydrate and is said to be easier on the stomach.

How Creatine Monohydrate Turns Into Creatinine

Creatine monohydrate, when ingested, is converted by the body into creatine phosphate and stored in the muscles. This stored creatine phosphate can be used to quickly regenerate ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which provides the energy for muscle contractions during high-intensity, short-duration exercises like weightlifting or sprinting.

However, not all creatine is absorbed by the body.

Some amount of creatine spontaneously converts into creatinine, a waste product.

This non-enzymatic conversion happens in the presence of water (both in a shaker bottle and body), and it's an irreversible reaction.

Once converted, creatinine does not offer any benefits and is expelled from the body via the kidneys through urination.

It's worth noting that this conversion to creatinine is not unique just to supplemented creatine - it occurs naturally with the creatine that's already present in the human body.

The amount of creatinine the human body produces is generally proportional to the body's muscle mass and is often used in clinical tests as an indicator of kidney function.

While it is natural and harmless, the conversion of creatine to creatinine is often viewed as wasteful, as it reduces the amount of ingested creatine that is available for energy production. This is why some supplement manufacturers are experimenting with alternative forms of creatine designed to be more stable and less prone to conversion into creatinine.

However, as of now, creatine monohydrate remains the most researched and commonly used form of the supplement.

Mixing Whey Protein And Creatine Monohydrate: Pros and Cons

fit girl

When it comes to enhancing performance and muscle recovery, the combination of whey protein and creatine monohydrate has been a topic of interest for fitness enthusiasts and athletes.

On the positive side, both whey protein and creatine monohydrate offer complementary benefits. Whey protein provides a fast-absorbing source of protein, aiding in muscle recovery and growth, while creatine helps enhance strength, power, and performance.

Mixing them may help maximize muscle protein synthesis and replenish creatine stores more quickly, especially post-workout.

On the downside, the major concern about mixing these two supplements stems from the idea that they might compete for absorption in the body, which could potentially decrease their effectiveness. However, most research suggests that this is unlikely and that both supplements can be effectively absorbed when taken together, especially when mixed with fast-absorbing carbs.

Few Final Words

Protein powders and creatine are both valuable supplements that can play pivotal roles in muscle growth, recovery, and athletic performance.

The combination of whey protein and creatine monohydrate can potentially offer enhanced benefits, though individual responses may vary. It's important to remember that supplements should be used in conjunction with a balanced diet and regular exercise.

If you're considering mixing protein powder and creatine, it's always best to consult with a healthcare provider (among other tests, check your blood creatinine levels before you start to take creatine) and/or a nutritionist to ensure that it aligns with your individual health needs and fitness goals.

You May Also Like:

Note: Amazon affiliate link opens in the new window, feel free to check them for the most up-to-date offers and prices.

Go to Top