Creatine: Older adults benefit more than young

Creatine supplementation has been repeatedly shown to increase high-intensity performance in young individuals. However, it remains to be seen whether it can be of benefit to older adults. To address this issue, both young and old adults were supplemented with 0.3 grams per kilogram body weight per day of creatine.

It was shown that older adults initially had a 13 percent lower muscle phosphocreatine content and a 28 percent lower rate of phosphocreatine resynthesis than the younger individuals. Following supplementation, the resting phosphocreatine increased 15 percent in the younger individuals while the older adults showed a 30 percent increase.

Creatine supplementation also restored phosphocreatine resynthesis to the same levels as the younger participants. During exercise, both the young and older subjects showed a 31 percent increase in time to exhaustion during exercise. These results demonstrate that older people not only experience increased exercise performance with creatine supplementation, but they actually benefit more. One of the problems that affect older people is a loss of muscle strength and an ability to do work. Creatine supplementation for older people may help restore muscle metabolism, increase strength and improve the quality of life.

Recommendation: Older athletes should add creatine to their supplement program to see greater gains in strength.

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