Carnitine VS Creatine: Which Pre-Workout to Choose
June 17. 2022
Our lives often seem like a series of choices that have to be made. We make decisions around our everyday life, work, diet, etc. Some of those choices are easier than others, but we often seek online advice to make the most suitable decision. One of such choices includes the ongoing battle known to many gym-goers: carnitine vs. creatine.
Although obesity is still raging worldwide, we can now see a rise in people deciding to switch to a healthier lifestyle that includes a balanced diet and regular physical activity. During such a journey, many people start going to the gym and become interested in adding supplements to their workout routines. With a broad spectrum of workout supplements, it’s easy to confuse which ones are suitable for your personal goals. That’s why we’ve decided to solve the dilemma and help you understand whether carnitine vs. creatine will be more convenient for your weight goals.
What is carnitine?
Carnitine was first isolated from meat, which is where it gets its name from. We now know this chemical is present in nearly every cell in our bodies. It aids energy production by transporting long-chain fatty acids to mitochondria. Another essential role of carnitine is removing toxic compounds and waste from the mitochondria.
Since carnitine helps burn fat cells and transform them into energy, it’s often used by those trying to lose weight, enhance their exercise performance and improve their sense of overall well-being. There’s no recommended daily intake for this chemical since our bodies typically produce it in sufficient quantities. However, if you’re looking to reap the benefits mentioned above of carnitine, you may be interested in increasing your intake through food or workout supplements.
Natural sources of carnitine include meat, fish, poultry, and dairy products. Generally speaking – the redder the meat, the higher the carnitine content. Although it can be challenging for vegans and vegetarians to get carnitine from food sources, good non-animal sources include legumes, nuts, and grains. The most efficient way to supplement with carnitine is to take it in oral form in the morning or before your workout. It pairs well with caffeine since it’s stimulant-free. There’s also no need to cycle on and off carnitine since long-term usage doesn’t seem to cause any serious health concerns.
It burns fat. As mentioned previously, carnitine helps your body burn fat cells, decreasing overall body fat. Additionally, this chemical can reduce visceral fat, the type that surrounds your organs, and increases the risk of a fatty liver and other severe diseases.
It provides you with energy. You probably know how our body primarily fuels using glucose. Still, most of us wish our fat stores served that purpose, and carnitine can help you achieve that. Moreover, such energy is available to you both during and after a workout.
It boosts your immune system. Besides its excellent fat-burning properties, carnitine is also a fantastic antioxidant. Although it may not be evident how exactly this benefit aids your weight loss, it still does; the better you feel, the more likely you are to do the work required to lose weight, such as putting on your gym clothes and sticking to your diet.
It enhances recovery. When lactic acid builds up in your muscles, it causes pain and muscle fatigue after an intense workout session. By supplementing with carnitine, you’re helping your body clear out the lactate and prepare for your next workout.
It boosts metabolism. With increased energy, you’ll be able to perform better at high-intensity workouts. That will, in turn, boost your metabolism, further increasing the number of calories you burn, even during rest. If you find yourself wondering should I take fat burners on non workout days, we encourage you to do so. Not only will a fat burner such as carnitine provide you with more energy, but it will also suppress your appetite, which is excellent when trying to lose weight.
What is creatine?
Creatine is essentially an amino acid synthesized from arginine, glycine, and methionine (one of the essential ingredients in our lipo C injections). It’s mainly stored in your muscles, where it’s used for energy. Still, further supplementation through food and other sources is required if you want to enhance your gym performance and increase muscle mass.
Creatine is naturally present in your body, produced by your liver, kidneys, and pancreas, as well as your brain, but in a much lesser amount. The amount of this amino acid your body requires daily is around 2g to function correctly. Supplementing with natural food sources such as meat and fish is a healthy way to increase your daily intake and reach the recommended dose. Some suitable vegan sources of creatine include seeds, seaweed, and legumes. However, if you wish to boost your performance in the gym and bulk up, it’s best you start using creatine monohydrate. This supplement will help you push longer through high-intensity and resistance training.
It’s important to note that mixing carnitine monohydrate with pure water won’t provide its benefits; odds are, the creatine will be excreted from your body without enhancing your performance in the gym. Creatine absorption works best when you mix it with a beverage that has a high glycemic index, such as grape juice. You should also avoid mixing it with citrus juices.
It increases your muscle size. Creatine monohydrate increases your muscle mass by increasing water content in your muscles. It then triggers the production of growth hormones leading to the creation of new proteins, which ultimately causes your lean muscle mass to grow.
It boosts your strength and performance. This substance is used by many athletes and gym-goers who need a strength boost during short, high-intensity interval training, as well as resistance workouts. No matter your fitness level, you’re bound to feel its positive effect on your performance.
It prevents injury. Not only does creatine improve your performance during the workouts mentioned above, but it also helps your body recover from them sooner. It reduces the frequency of muscle cramping and injuries to your ligaments, nerves, and bones.
It enhances your brain health. Creatine aids brain function by increasing mitochondrial function and dopamine levels. It can also improve your performance during challenging cognitive tasks.
Carnitine vs Creatine
As you can probably conclude so far, carnitine burns fat cells to fuel muscle performance and is, therefore, more suitable for someone looking to lose weight but also increase muscle mass. On the other hand, creatine monohydrate will generate your energy at a faster rate (which is suitable for short-duration exercises that require more strength), but it will also increase your body mass.
Although carnitine and creatine have their differences, many people wonder whether they can use both supplements simultaneously. The answer is – yes. There’s no severe harm in combining these two supplements; there’s also no evidence of whether or not they interfere with each other. When it comes to increased energy – both supplements will do the job. But since carnitine is typically used when trying to lose weight and creatine when trying to bulk up, one supplement appears more suitable than the other, depending on your goals.
Benefits of pre-workout
Pre-workout supplements were somewhat reserved for serious athletes. Thankfully, this has changed over the last decade, and it’s now common for many gym-goers to consume pre-workouts to enhance their performance, whether their final goal is accelerated muscle growth or weight loss. The broad spectrum of these supplements makes it easy for anyone to find the right option. However, it may also create confusion among beginners who find themselves in front of choices such as carnitine vs. creatine. That’s why we advise you to consult a weight loss clinic in Chicago to determine which pre-workout supplement suits you the most, as well as find out more about the pros and cons of pre-workout. Generally speaking, some of the main pre-workout benefits include:
– more energy and alertness
– more oxygen for your muscles
– prevention of muscle breakdown
– the strength to push through your workouts for longer
As you can see, the carnitine vs. creatine battle has no universal winner; it all depends on your specific goals. For instance, if you’re on a weight loss regimen and trying to lose weight without losing muscle mass, carnitine can be your companion in completing both these goals simultaneously. If you’ve reached your weight goal but are now looking to increase muscle mass, it would be better to start supplementing with creatine. Either way, you should know your way around supplements in general before you start incorporating them into your diet and exercise routine.
Just because pre-workout supplements are pretty much available to anyone nowadays, it doesn’t mean carnitine nor creatine supplementation is suitable for everyone. Moreover, mixing different supplements without understanding what they do for you can cause certain side effects you’re probably trying to avoid. With that in mind, don’t hesitate to schedule a call with us; our professional and experienced medical assistance will help you determine what your body needs to work at its peak.
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