Saturday, January 8, 2011

Creatine + Caffeine = No-Go? Still Nothing but a Myth

You probably have heard both that a) caffeine would negate the ergogenic effects of creatine loading and b) that the latter is nothing but one of those gym-myths which just won't disappear.

A recent study by scientists from the Department of Recreational Sports Management, Yu Da University, Miaoli, Taiwan (Lee. 2011) provides practical evidence that "the no caffeine when on creatine"-advice is garbage. The scientists investigated the effects of acute caffeine ingestion on intermittent high-intensity sprint performance after 5 days of creatine loading and found no detrimental effects of 0.6mg/kg caffeine on the creatine induced increase in exercise performance. What's more the ergogenic effect of caffeine added to that of creatine, so that ...
[...] the mean and peak power observed in the CRE + CAF were significantly higher than those found in the CON during Sprints 1 and 3; and the CRE + CAF showed significantly higher mean and peak power than that in the CRE + PLA during Sprints 1 and 2. [...] Heart rates, plasma lactate, and glucose increased significantly with CRE + CAF during most sprints.
On the other hand, one has to consider that this does not ultimately refute that "caffeine loading", or rather binging on caffeine day by day, may well exhaust your adrenal reserves in a way that after a few weeks of epinephrine overload, you are so drained that it becomes hard to drag yourself to the gym. In this situation all the creatine in the world probably won't help you.