Creatine or Protein: Which is Better for Your Fitness and Body Goals?

Boost your workout by learning the differences between these two supplements.

Early morning workout after taking creatine or protein.

Two of the most popular workout supplements are creatine and protein. Many people confuse these two, as they both are based in amino acids and can help build strength capacity and muscle.

But which is better for your lifestyle and fitness goals?

What is creatine?

Creatine is a popular supplement that people take that helps them in reaching their weight lifting goals as it provides the energy needed to build muscle. It’s an organic compound that is already found in your body naturally, where its purpose is to help ATP (adenosine triphosphate) molecules break down to release energy.

Creatine is known for its ability to increase muscle strength. Creatine is a derivative of amino acids, and although it has very little power on its own, it can combine with phosphates in your body to produce a burst of energy.

More than 95% of your body’s natural creatine is stored in your skeletal muscles, waiting to be used. This makes creatine ideal for boosting short-term energy needed for weightlifting or high-intensity workouts.

What is protein?

Whey protein and casein are both proteins derived from dairy products, and since dairy can be broken down into high-quality protein, it’s an excellent source of supplemental protein.

After you work out, especially if you’ve done a high-resistance workout, protein is essential for rebuilding muscle. During a workout, your muscles break down slightly. Protein is essential for your body to create new cells and rebuild your muscles.

Related: How to Speed Up Your Recovery After a Tough Workout

Is creatine or protein better for workouts?

Your preference for creatine and protein will be based on your individual goals.

If you are striving for a strength goal, such as lifting a certain amount of weight, then creatine will give you the energy boost you are looking for. For long-term results, protein will be helpful in rebuilding muscle that will continue to increase your strength over time.

Which supplement you take, and how much of it you take, will vary depending on what you want from your nutrition and workout routines. Keep in mind that creatine and protein are not mutually exclusive, either. You can take both simultaneously.

Related: 5 Foods That Will Help You Build Muscle

One of the biggest differences is when to take these supplements. Protein is best taken right after a workout to help your body repair itself, but creatine can be taken anytime, as long as you’re taking it on a relatively consistent basis.

Both creatine and protein have different, but beneficial properties. Whether you choose to take creatine, protein, or both, you are on a solid track to improve your workout performance. Talk with your healthcare provider before starting any type of supplement.

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