Creatine supplementation has been shown to offer a variety of benefits including increase strength, power and lean muscle mass. These are clearly valuable advantages for those engaged in weight training, sporting pursuits and any physical activity regimes. Beta Alanine has also been demonstrated by research to boost strength and power, increase lean muscle mass and improve endurance. It is for these reasons that both Creatine and Beta Alanine are considered important supplements to take when engaging with any diet and nutrition programme to increase performance and results. Interstingly, despite these supplements being potent training aids in their own right, their effectiveness has been demonstrably enhanced when studies combined the two together. This makes for a potent combination for anyone looking to enhance strength, endurance, power and lean muscle mass.
What is Beta Alanine?
Beta Alanine is an amino acid that is produced by the body and small amounts can be found within the average diet. Beta Alanine is taken up by muscle fibres and combined with another amino acid – Histidine – to form Carnosine. Carnosine has been shown to improve muscle growth, strength, power, endurance and, in some studies fat loss. Combining Beta Alanine with Creatine has been muted as a possible way to enhance performance and results.
What is Creatine?
Creatine is also found in small quantities in the average diet and produced naturally by the body. When Creatine reaches the muscles it is converted into Phosphocreatine, which is used to replenish the muscles energy reserves (ATP). Essentially, Creatine supplies energy to the muscles. Under stress the muscles energy levels deplete rapidly. Creatine supplementation enables harder, more effective training and better results. Creatine can also increase the size of the muscles through increasing the capacity for muscles to fill with water – known as Cell Volumisation. The action of the muscles soaking up extra water from the blood stream forces them to stretch, which helps force the muscles to grow.
Combining Creatine and Beta Alanine.
Studies of the effectiveness of both Creatine and Beta Alanine when taken in isolation are readily available. However the studies that have explored the effectiveness of combining these two supplements have uncovered some very promising results that indicate they attain better results when taken together than they do when taken in isolation. One study found that participants that combined Creatine and Beta Alanine improved body composition in terms of increased muscle mass and decreased body fat to a significantly higher level than those supplementing with Creatine alone and / or taking a placebo. The duration of this study was over 12 weeks and all groups undertook exactly the same exercise regime.
How Should I combine Creatine and Beta Alanine?
The benefits of supplementing with Beta Alanine increase over time, something, which is unusual as the body commonly, adapts to supplements and their effectiveness diminishes, hence the general need to cycle on and off supplements to ensure their potency. Research has demonstrated that consuming 4-6 grams of Beta Alanine increases Carnosine levels by over 50% within 4 weeks. Carnosine levels have been shown to increase further after an additional month of supplementation. Consequently, it is worth considering a supplement protocol that combines at least 4-6 grams of Beta-Alanine with 6-10 grams of Creatine for a period of 12 weeks and explore the results for yourself.
Creatine / Beta Alanine Stack Summary
- Combining Beta-Alanine and Creatine can increase the effectiveness of these supplements.
- Combine 4-6 grams of Beta Alanine with 6-10 grams of Creatine.
- Divide Beta Alanine into 2-4 doses as it has a time-sensitive effect.
- Take Beta Alanine before and after Workouts.
- Record Results over your 12-week cycle.