Creatine and protein are the two most popular supplements on the market – you might even be taking both – but what about mixing creatine with protein?
This is a question you need the answers for if you want to build muscle and improve your physique. Today, we’re going to provide all the information you need to mix creatine with protein shakes in your diet.
- Creatine and Protein: Shared Goals and Mechanisms?
- Synergies: Why Mixing Creatine & Whey Boosts Recovery
- FAQs for Mixing Creatine and Whey
- Final Notes: Results from A Protein Creatine Combination
The main reason you’re going to take protein and Creatine is to repair and increase muscle mass.
The overlapping goals in this creatine and whey protein combination are key. These are where you need to look for finding the best results of mixing creatine with whey.
Leucine and Muscle Gains
Leucine is one of the most important amino acids and is the star of the “BCAA” supplement.
Leucine intake is one of the key reasons we need protein in our diets. It is an essential part of the muscle-building process.
The beauty of this is that an effective protein supplement, such as whey or a plant-blend, should provide around 6 grams of Leucine. This high concentration is effective to boost muscle gains and support recovery.
Creatine happens to be great for this process, too. It reduces the oxidation of Leucine, which supports muscle maintenance, and long-term supplementation improves muscle protein synthesis.
The overall effect is that combining protein and creatine supplementation prevents muscle-loss in the short term and boosts long-term muscle gains. Clearly, there’s a reason they form the foundation of any bodybuilding supplement stack.
The Point of Whey: Why Creatine Helps
It’s also important to look at why a lot of people use whey rather than casein for their protein shakes: it’s fast.
The point of a whey protein shake is to provide fast-absorbing proteins to the body when it needs them most. This has some mild benefits in the short-term.
Creatine helps improve the rehydration of cells and restoration of energy stores after exercise. This can be useful independently of whey, but combined they make a great post-workout recovery drink.
If you’re looking to rapidly boost your recovery and to feel better after a workout, mixing whey and creatine might be the edge you need.
Synergies: Why Mixing Creatine & Whey Boosts Recovery
There’s also evidence that suggests that drinking whey and creatine together has some positive effects.
Supplementing whey and creatine together has some obvious benefits in as little as 6 weeks. Increases in muscle tissue and exercise performance were significantly greater than placebo. Clearly, you don’t want to be the placebo group!
The studies still show that exercise performance and other factors are a huge deal. Taking whey and creatine together is going to give you the best chance to build muscle, but it’s no use without effective exercise.
FAQs for Mixing Creatine and Whey
Can I Put Creatine in My Protein Shake?
Yes – and you probably should.
This is a great way to take your creatine reliably and at roughly the same time every day.
Adding creatine to your protein shake is also going to support the synergies between the two, that we mentioned above.
When to Take Creatine and Whey Protein?
The best time to combine creatine and whey is post-exercise. A post-workout shake mixing protein and creatine prevents muscle breakdown, helps replenish energy stores, and kickstarts recovery.
The creatine helps to improve rehydration and restore energy balance, while protein starts recovery processes. You should also be getting some form of carbohydrate – like cyclic dextrose – to boost recovery.
How Should You Take Creatine and Whey Protein Together?
Fortunately, whey and creatine are both rather soluble. Creatine – especially the micronized form – absorbs easily in most liquids.
Whey can be a bit tougher to mix, so be sure to use a good ratio of liquid to powder. Creatine intake is best at around 3g, but you can take it with breakfast and post-workout to get most benefits.
Simply mix a scoop or two of whey with 3g of creatine in milk, water, or other liquids and drink.
If you’re using a creatine pill, you can also combine this with whey. This is a simple matter of taking the pill normally and washing it down with a protein shake, rather than water.
Final Notes: Results from A Protein Creatine Combination
Taking whey and creatine together won’t make a huge difference to your workouts or results. This combination provides some modest benefits but they’re relatively cheap and independently-effective.
Combining the two is just about giving yourself a small edge that could make all the difference when it matters.
Protein shakes and Creatine are both worthwhile. Combining them is a good habit if you’re forgetful, but it can also support maximal recovery after a tough, dehydrating workout.