0

After the loading phase, one should be able to take a steady-state amount of 3-5 grams of creatine a day. The information available on supplements' packaging can be confusing (image below). When the labelling seems to refer to the mass of a capsule, are there any common conventions that are assumed for inferring the amount of creatine?

enter image description here

4
  • 2
    Note that this patented "buffered" creatine is no better than regular creatine monohydrate. It's just a whole lot more expensive for no benefit. doi.org/10.1186/1550-2783-9-43 Sep 20, 2021 at 1:16
  • Huh! I was just following the advice of someone who researches this online. Can you suggest alternatives? Sep 20, 2021 at 4:33
  • 4
    Just buy pure creatine monohydrate. It's cheap, simple, and proven. Anything claiming to be a better form of creatine is almost certainly a scam. Sep 20, 2021 at 5:26
  • Okay. Thanks for that Sep 20, 2021 at 6:39

1 Answer 1

2

There is a standard way to read supplement labels. The linked webpage is a useful visualization. There is an "active" section and an "other" or "non-active" section in a supplement. Usually the ingredients of interest are listed in the first section with their amount.

In this case, each serving of 2 capsules contains 1500 mg of the 'patented' creatine-blend. Therefore, each capsule contains 750 mg of creatine-blend. In some scenarios, the additional non-medicinal ingredients would be in excess of the amount listed (i.e. each capsule might actually weigh 800 mg = 750 mg creatine + 50 mg non-medicinal) but they can also be included. In your case, you can actually look at the patent filed for the creatine-blend and find that:

In capsule form, the capsule includes the following formulation:

Creatine Monohydrate, 1000 mg
Maltodextrin, 200 mg
Magnesium Stearate, 5 mg
Magnesium Glycerol Phosphate, 25 mg
Soda Ash, 5-1000 mg
Natural and/or Artificial Flavors, 20 mg

The method for making capsules is to place 1000 mg of creatine monohydrate in a mixing vessel. The pH is adjusted to be between 7 and 14 by adding soda ash. The maltodextrin, magnesium stearate (a flow agent) and natural and/or artificial flavors are added to desired taste and sweetness. The pH is again checked, and magnesium glycerol phosphate is added to adjust the pH to be between 7 and 14. The mixed powder is then processed by a conventional encapsulation machine which prepares capsules of the powder.

So, in this case you can see that each capsule serving contains 1 g of creatine monohydrate. IMO, this is uncommon to know the makeup of proprietary blends but this is a great example of how labels can be misleading.

I'd gamble that if you were to read the directions they instruct you to take 4 capsules per day to meet the 3 g maintenance phase requirement. However, we can now see that you'd only be getting 2 g of creatine monohydrate.

5
  • I can see the 1500mg, but how did you infer that it refers to creatine as opposed to all of the materials listed? It does say 4 capsules, but it would be reassuring to know the logic behind the certainty that 1500mg refers to creatine. Sep 19, 2021 at 23:58
  • Maybe it's implied by the thick lines, in contrast to the thin lines. The headings between a pair of thick lines refer to the line items that follow, up to the next pair of thick lines that straddle headings. If so, there is a lot of guesswork there. Sep 20, 2021 at 0:13
  • 2
    @user2153235 it says that each (2 capsule) serving contains 1500mg of their patented creatine (which is a mixture of some amount of magnesium in addition to the creatine), plus unspecified amounts of the "non-medical" ingredients. So the other materials listed do not count towards the 1500mg, but that 1500mg is also not pure creatine monohydrate. Sep 20, 2021 at 1:21
  • 1
    @user2153235 I edited my answer and looked into it a bit more for you. I was curious myself. Your answer is that usually you don't know, and this is why "proprietary blends" without listed ingredients are not worth your money.
    – C. Lange
    Sep 20, 2021 at 3:06
  • Wow. Your research-fu is strong. Thanks so much! Sep 20, 2021 at 3:13

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.