Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Creatine Ethyl Ester Questions from Readers

Our previous post about what supplements to take along with creatine ethyl ester got us thinking. We get questions from readers fairly regularly here, and we definitely want you all to have your questions about creatine and everything related to building muscle, working out, and your nutrition and diet needs answered.

So without further ado, we are announcing a new feature here: Reader Questions! For all of you that have questions, you can leave a comment on this post or you can email us (if you can find our contact info, HA!) your questions. We will do our best to answer EVERY question, at least with an email reply. Just do us a favor, and try not to ask questions that we have already answered repeatedly on the site.

Questions that are fairly common or are just exceptionally good questions will be answered on the blog. If you would like credit for asking the question, be sure to leave those details. Otherwise, we will automatically make those questions anonymous so we won't anger any of our readers.

We are looking forward to this new feature and are hoping it goes well. So go ahead and ask all those great creatine ethyl ester questions that you've beeen waiting to ask!

What to Take with Creatine Ethyl Ester

Here is a good question from one of our loyal readers, "Tarheel Tim" from New Bern, NC.

I have been taking creatine ethyl ester (BSN CellMass is the best brand, in my opinion) for about 2 and a half weeks now, and I am already seeing incredible results with no noticeable side effects! So first off, I wanted to say thanks to you for writing this blog because it was what finally convinced me to give CEE a thanks!

My question is this: what supplements would you recommend, if any, that I take along with creatine ethyl ester? Thanks in advance!

Well Tim, that is a great question. And you are definitely welcome for this site, that's what we put it here for! Now on to your question...

First things first: before anyone should even worry about any type of bodybuilding or muscle building supplements, you need to FIRST make sure that your diet is adequate. If you are trying to build muscle and get bigger and stronger, you need to make sure that you are getting enough protein. Shoot for about 1.5 grams of protein for every pound that you weigh. Get as much of this as you can from natural food sources, especially healthy foods like chicken breasts, shrimp, and tuna.

You also want to make sure that you are taking in enough calories to fuel muscle growth! This seems basic, but this is probably the single biggest mistake that most "hard gainers" are making. Even the best supplements can't help you pack on the pounds if you aren't getting enough fuel for your body. So get to eating!

With all that said, you will not want to suck down food indiscriminately. All calories are not equal, plus you want to keep healthy and live for a long time, right? So follow most of your basic health guidelines, being sure to get plenty of fruit, veggies, variety, and avoid too much saturated fat, sodium, etc.

You will also want to AVOID SUGARS, sweets (even artificially sweetened foods), and simple, refined carbs as much as possible. Simple carbs/sugars spike your blood sugar, switching your body into fat storage mode, rather than muscle building/fat burning mode. (This is simplified, but this is the gist of it.)

Creatine Ethy Ester, Glutamine, Protein: The Three Amigos of Muscle Building

So, finally, allow me to answer your question. What supplements should you consider taking along with your creatine supplement?

Number one on the list is a protein supplement. Whey protein is generally the best, and I would generally recommend a whey protein powder to make into a shake. Drink your protein shake immediately after working out to aid in recovery. This will probably be just as effective (if not more so) than an expensive post workout drink. Mix your protein powder with milk if at all possible to get the maximum benefit. Also, try to get as much protein as possible from food, but use your protein supplement to reach your daily protein goal.

Finally, another supplement to consider is L-glutamine. Some people will argue that you will get enough of this with your protein, but I feel that an extra supplement could provide some benefit. Glutamine is a non-essential amino acid that plays a major role in protein synthesis.

These three bodybuilding supplements, along with proper nutrition/diet and effective weight training, will give you the boost you are looking for. However, if you are unsure about the glutamine, you should still see most of the benefit by sticking with the whey protein supplements and the creatine ethyl ester.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Best Creatine: Quality Discount Creatine Supplements

Since the Creatine Ethyl Ester blog has been published, I constantly get emails from readers asking me for my recommendation on what is the best creatine supplement. Truthfully, I cannot definitevely say that supplement X is the most effective creatine supplement available, or that brand Y is the best creatine for your money. However, through my extensive experiences, and the extensive experiences of many people I work with, I can give some general recommendations.

Cheap Creatine Supplements

While many creatine supplements are grossly overpriced and not worth the money, that does not mean you should go out and immediately buy the cheapest creatine you can buy. Many of the cheapest creatine supplements are impure, poorly manufactured forms of creatine. It is particularly dangerous to purchase creatine, or any muscle building supplement, from a fly-by-night, little known manufacturer.

Be sure to check the manufacturer out with the Better Business Bureau, and you may also want to check out what the FDA has to say about how to avoid risks when buying dietary supplements.

If a manufacturer is not on the up and up, they could easily be making impure supplements, whether they are labeled as such or not. This means the creatine you buy may not only be less or ineffective, but it may also contain dangerous toxins and contaminants.

Discount Creatine Supplements That Work

Despite the above warnings, you can still find safe, effective creatine supplements at low prices. Just be sure that the supplements are from a known, reputable manufacturer.

Pure creatine monohydrate, especially in powder form, is generally inexpensive. In fact, any form of creatine monohydrate that you purchase should probably be relatively cheap. These creatine supplements, provided they are taken properly and are from a reputable company, should also prove to be effective and safe.

Quality Creatine Products

Still, if you are looking for a little "extra boost" for your buck, you may want to consider spending a little bit more money and getting a premium creatine product. You will want to be careful to avoid getting ripped off.

Avoid any liquid creatine supplement or creatine serum. These products are a waste of money, as most of the creatine in these liquids will have become unstable long before you ingest it. In fact, if you mix your own creatine powder with a liquid, be sure to drink it immediately. Creatine monohydrate breaks down in liquid and becomes less effective over time.

Some well regarded premium creatine formulas that I would recommend are: MuscleTech's Creakic Hardcore, MRI's CE2 Hi-def and CE2 Platinum, and BSN CellMass. All of these products provide quality creatine monohydrate or creatine ethyl ester in a formula that efficiently and effectively delivers the creatine to your muscles. If you have questions about a particular creatine supplement or product, feel free to comment or contact me to get my opinion on the best creatine supplements and products.