The benefits of creatine have been widely reported but there are still gaps in the information which has left many people asking whether creatine can increase muscle density.
You may already know that creatine helps your muscles retain water.
Creatine also aids your body in the production of ATP, or adenosine triphosphate.
However, many do not know all the ways creatine supplements can assist you during your workouts or the pros and cons of using them.
Can creatine increase muscle density?
The short answer to this question is yes. Creatine can help you increase muscle density. This is accomplished in several ways.
- ATP is the substance in your body that gives you energy, but it only provides enough for short bursts. Since creatine increases the level of ATP your body produces, it results in more energy. Added energy means you can exercise for a longer period of time, which helps give you the denser muscles you seek.
- Also, creatine helps your muscles process protein by keeping the muscles hydrated. This is a process called protein synthesis.
- When your muscles have all the tools and nutrients they need, this creates a most favorable environment for them to grow at their maximum potential. Fresh muscle mass can equal density.
- Since creatine accumulates in muscle tissue, it is an ideal enhancement for exercising. In other words, creatine goes where it can be of the greatest benefit to your body.
- There have also been studies which promote the advantages of combining creatine with whey protein supplements for building muscle density. The combination worked best for resistance training.
- Just a small amount of creatine, less than six grams, goes a long way. A supplement at this dosage can put the same level of creatine in your blood as if you ate about three pounds of red meat. Due to the abundance of fat and cholesterol in that much meat, a supplement would be the way to go.
You should also include carbohydrates in your plan for building muscle density. These should be eaten in moderation to prevent unwanted calories and unhealthy weight gain. Find out more information on creating balance in your diet at the USDA’s nutrition website.
As with any supplement, it is best to pace yourself and find a schedule that works for you. It is recommended that you don't take too much creatine and that you take regular breaks from taking the supplement.
What is the process for building muscle density?
Density of muscles is determined by how big your muscles are in relation to the fat content of your body. The right diet and exercise regimen can help. Even if your muscles do not get much larger, they will still become denser, which is thought to put you in better physical condition.
Some muscles are naturally denser than others, especially those you use most often such as in the arms and legs. One of the best ways to make your muscles look and feel harder is to reduce body fat, which will help to show the outline of the muscles. Additionally, muscle weighs more than fat so having denser muscles can increase this effect.
Another is to work out regularly with weights. Myofibrillar hypertrophy is considered to be the key process for denser muscles. This is simply a different way of saying that the muscles gain more fiber through an increase in tension.
As your muscles consist of fibers, in order to enhance the density, you must perform weight training that deal with all of them.
When muscles are tense over a period of time, you will notice that they also appear to be denser. In specific sports and professions, such as cycling or jobs which involve continuous heavy lifting, the participants seem to have denser muscles. Your body responds to this constant tension by becoming harder.
Lack of water in the muscles will also make them feel more dense than normal. However, this is considered unhealthy since your body requires a certain amount of hydration.
You should remember that it takes time to see real changes in your body, so be patient!
What are the benefits of muscle density?
With denser muscles comes more strength. If you are weight lifting or exercising for size alone, you may not necessarily see any real increase in strength. There are supplements that will make you look larger due to water retention in the muscles but what you should be looking for to gain muscle density is an increase in muscle fibers.
The type and amount of workouts you do and the number of repetitions are also important.