Creatine has more benefits than just increasing exercise performance.
It also helps to increase your androgens and mood to help you feel more Alpha.
Let’s dive in.
Hans here! I increased my testosterone to 1254ng/dl and have been maintaining high T naturally. I’ve turned myself into an Alpha Energy Male.
An Alpha Energy Male with high energy, fast recovery, high sex drive, and confidence.
This is why I research obsessively, experiment and write, and have been doing so for the past decade.
Hope you enjoy and join me on this journey.
Why do we want to be an alpha energy male?
Being an alpha energy male is synonymous with possessing both high testosterone levels and abundant energy. Consequently, the question arises: what exactly is the significance of having elevated testosterone and energy levels?
Because high T and energy make us feel incredible and powerups our motivation, drive, confidence, and sexual function.
A life without high T and energy isn’t a life worth living.
Creatine on total testosterone
Few people know this, but creatine can also increase testosterone (R).
A little-known secret of creatine is that it might also be able to increase testosterone.— Hans Amato (@HansAmato) July 12, 2023
Testosterone production is ATP dependent, and what does creatine do? Increase ATP! pic.twitter.com/ZfwOgmilLX
Creatine will not negate the need for vitamins and minerals needed for ATP production, so don’t just supplement creatine. But rather also eat a diet rich in vitamins and minerals and then add creatine on top of that.
Creatine on DHT
DHT is extremely important for mood, sexual function (libido, erections, semen production), insulin sensitivity, muscle strength, and more.
In the same 3-week study as the one above, the creatine group loaded with 25g creatine and 25g glucose for 7 days, whereas the placebo group used 50g glucose for 7 days.
For the remaining 2 weeks, the dose was reduced to 5g creatine and 25g glucose for the creatine group and 30g for the placebo group.
Creatine can increase DHT in a dose-dependent manner.— Hans Amato (@HansAmato) July 12, 2023
25g creatine increased DHT by 56%.
5g increases DHT by 40%. pic.twitter.com/nWeqYS6rr7
Glucose by itself can also increase DHT, but likely only to a certain point. Because supplementing glucose didn’t increase DHT in this study.
But in general, a higher carb diet will likely lead to higher DHT due to more insulin (stimulates 5-alpha reductase) and NADPH (cofactor for 5AR).
Creatine on dopamine and mood
Dopamine is involved in mood, focus, motivation, drive, memory, and more. Low dopamine leads to depression, poor memory and recall, ADHD, etc.
The brain is a highly energetic complex organ, consuming approximately 20% of total resting energy despite accounting for only about 2% of total body mass. Neurons require a constant supply of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) for many different processes.
Creatine is important for resynthesizing ATP, particularly during times of increased metabolic demand (e.g., sleep deprivation, mental health conditions, or neurological diseases).
Creatine increases creatine phosphate (PCr). PCr functions as a high-energy molecule capable of resynthesizing ATP significantly faster than oxidative phosphorylation and glycolytic processes.
Meaning, creatine can help to keep your brain in a high-energy state, especially during stressful times.
During (chronic) stress, energy, mood, focus, etc., decline. Creatine can help to prevent this.
Creatine on dopamine
Creatine increases dopamine levels by:
- Increasing ATP. ATP itself promotes dopamine and noradrenaline release in the brain (R, R). Thus basically, low ATP leads to low dopamine and poor mood.
- Protecting the brain against stress. Chronic stress leads to low dopamine.
- Being neuroprotective to dopaminergic neurons (R).
- It does so by improving mitochondrial function, decreasing reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and preventing excitotoxic damage from intracellular calcium (R).
- Improving the effectiveness of dopaminergic therapy (R).
On top of that, creatine has anti-depressant and pro-energizing effects by activating the adenosine and dopamine D1 and D2 receptors (R).
This is exactly why creatine is part of my dopamine dream team stack.
Creatine on serotonin
Serotonin plays a role in sleep-wake cycles, memory, mood, etc., but dysregulation of serotonin contributes to unfavorable personality traits such as social isolation, awkwardness, apathy, anhedonia, depression, anxiety, etc.
Creatine has been shown to lower plasma free-tryptophan (Trp) and free-Trp:tyrosine ratio (R). Free tryptophan is the rate-limited factor in serotonin synthesis, so creatine can increase the dopamine to serotonin ratio. This will help you feel more energized and euphoric.
Creatine also has anti-depressant effects by activating the serotonin 5-HT1A receptor (R). This is the auto-receptor, which means that activation of this receptor lowers serotonin production. Zinc also acts on this receptor and potentiates the effectiveness of anti-depressants.
Creatine for improving brain function
Creatine supplementation has been shown able to improve cognition, communication, self-care, personality, and behavior, and reductions in headaches, dizziness, and fatigue in children with mild TBI (R). Mild TBI isn’t that uncommon. It can easily happen in football, boxing, soccer (hitting the ball with your head) or via other accidents.
During stress, the structure of your brain changes. This contributes to depression. Various anti-depressants can help to reverse this. Interestingly, creatine can do the same and it’s a much safer option if you ask me (R).
Creatine can also help with anxiety. One study has suggested that creatine levels are lower in the white matter of patients with GAD (general anxiety disorder) that was related to early trauma (R). Creatine supplementation has also been shown to increase taurine levels, which also has anti-depressant and anxiety benefits.
Creatine also causes modest improvements in sleep and depression and PTSD symptomology (R).
Creatine supplementation for brain purposes
Brain creatine doesn’t increase to the same extent as muscle creatine, due to limited uptake into the brain. Thus much higher doses are required to make a noticeable difference (i.e., 20 g/day for 4 weeks).
Guanidinoacetic acid (GAA), the creatine precursor, is better at increasing brain creatine than creatine itself, so perhaps you can use smaller doses, like 2.5g GAA and 5g creatine daily for the same effects.— Hans Amato (@HansAmato) July 13, 2023
Creatine on sleep
Testosterone spikes during restful sleep and sleep have been postulated to promote brain energy restoration. Sleep loss causes cognitive deterioration.
Sleep loss leads to an increase in adenosine, which causes overall fatigue during the day. Creatine supplementation helps to prevent this (R). Creatine is specifically helpful for tasks that place a heavy stress on the prefrontal cortex during sleep deprivation (R).
Creatine might be able to improve sleep quality due to increasing taurine and ornithine levels in the body.
Myths about creatine
CreGAAtine is better
Some people out there claim that CreGAAtine (a 50/50 mix of GAA and creatine monohydrate) is superior to creatine monohydrate alone, which isn’t true. I’ve written about it here:
Creatine causes hair loss
Due to the fact that creatine increases DHT, some people are concerned that it can contribute to hair loss.
I’ve written about how DHT doesn’t cause hair loss. Hair loss is caused by a multitude of reasons, such as inflammation, loss of blood flow, hormonal dysregulation in general and nutritional deficiencies.
Creatine lowers inflammation, improves vascular function (due to less oxidative stress) and helps to improve hormones.
Creatine causes water retention
A common misconception is that people think creatine causes water retention giving your muscles a balloon-like appearance.
Not gaining extra water weight is especially important in sports disciplines where body mass is an important category.
The reasoning for this is that approximately two sodium molecules and one chloride molecule are necessary for creatine transport. Meaning, as you pull creatine into the muscle, you’ll also pull sodium in. Sodium attracts water, which will give you a poofy look. However, the sodium and creatine are pulled into the muscle, not under the skin. So this will actually make you look pumped, and not poofy.
But this whole water retention myth is not backed up by science.
Some studies have found that in the short term (3 days), creatine supplementation increases water retention, primarily attributed to increases in intracellular volume.
However, longer-term studies (4+ weeks) showed that creatine didn’t alter total body water (intra or extracellular) relative to muscle mass (R).
If you’re a big meater, you’d likely benefit less from creatine as you’re consuming a lot already. However, most people don’t consume massive amounts of meat daily and can benefit from additional creatine supplementation.
>1000ng/dl Testosterone: My Step-by-Step Guide on How I Do It Naturally!