You’ve likely heard about Kre-Alkalyn. But, is it any good? Does it work? How do you use it? We have all the facts right here!
Health and fitness enthusiasts all over the world have been talking about it for years. It’s the hot new supplement, Kre-Alkalyn. In the 1990s, creatine exploded into the fitness world. But, it has somewhat lost its popularity along with some of its loyal following. In basic terms, Kre-Alkalyn is another type of creatine. I’ve used this product in the past with varying success rates – possibly due to the choice of brand.
Similarly, and unfortunately, to my knowledge, some people have experienced some adverse side effects with both this newer product and the original form of creatine monohydrate.
What side effects?
Bloating, stomach pains and frequent trips to the bathroom seem to be the most common. Aside from that, users of the typical old school creatine also felt that they only got noticeable results after taking the supplement for several months.
In fact, the results are one of the main reasons why Kre-Alkalyn was brought to the mainstream and is seen as a fantastic alternative by athletes and gym goers. It’s thought that trainers would start to build quality muscle without the usual bloat and water retention experienced from the creatine monohydrate. With Kre-Alkalyn, it’s said that you can see the effects after using it for a few weeks since you don’t have to go through the loading phase like that of powdered creatine supplements.
Functional strength may also be improved by its use. The compound is being seen as a life enhancer as it may actually help to maintain muscle tissue as people age. Before I move onto the best and most commonly practiced ways to take Kre-Alkalyn and when, I’ll first explain a little more about the standard approach used with creatine monohydrate and some of the history.
What Is Creatine?
Creatine is a compound that is naturally made in our bodies to supply energy to our muscles. Chemically, it is called methylguanine acetic acid. It’s formed from the amino acids arginine, methionine, and glycine. It is made in the liver and may also be produced in the pancreas and kidneys. It’s transported in the blood and taken up by muscle cells, where it is converted to creatine phosphate. This reaction involves the enzyme creatine kinase, which helps bond creatine to a high-energy phosphate group.
The average person metabolizes about two grams of creatine each day. The body normally synthesizes that same amount, so you generally maintain a creatine balance. Once it is bound to a phosphate group, it’s permanently stored in a cell as phosphocreatine until it’s used to produce chemical energy called ATP. When this takes place, creatine can be released to instantly form creatinine, which is then removed from the blood via the kidneys and excreted in the urine.
Although top creatine supplementation can raise blood creatinine, it has never been shown in studies to be harmful to the kidneys. This has often been an accusation thrown at the supplement in the past.
The richest source of creatine or the best creatine is in food that is in animal muscle, for example, meats and fish. But, to increase athletic performance and boost lean body mass, creatine must be taken in concentrations that are not found in whole foods alone.
You would have to eat 10 pounds of raw steak each day for five days to load your body with creatine! Not the most fun way to spend your time!
The goal of a weight trainer or athlete is to use progressive resistance exercise to force the muscles to adapt and grow. This increased work load can be achieved in many ways: By increasing the force of contraction through increased resistance such as when lifting heavier weights, by increasing the duration of the time that the muscle is under tension and by increasing the frequency of exercise.
Creatine helps in three ways. It helps build lean body mass. This allows still greater force to be used. It also provides energy so the duration of exercise can be lengthened and the speed of recovery to exercise frequency can be increased.
How Much Is The Right Amount?
With the standard form of creatine, the following method has been tested over and over again to good effect! Use a creatine supplement with a high glycemic carbohydrate source to load your muscles. It’s been said that you should take 20 to 30 grams of creatine a day and then cut back to 5 to 15 grams a day for a maintenance dose.
If you’re like many people, or using it for the first time, you’ll notice a dramatic increase in size and strength. You’ll get better pumps in the gym. You’ll notice that your muscles are stronger and fuller. It is the closest thing to date to have the effect of an illegal anabolic steroid, but it is natural.
So, that’s the standard approach. It so much the standard that it is now considered by some to be the old school approach. Kre-Alkalyn, on the other hand, is the new nutritional supplement that’s used by many people who want to build muscle or who are interested in better athletic performance, without little side effects and/or bloat.
Like the standard creatine, the purpose of Kre-Alkalyn is to build muscle strength and endurance. It can be found in the form of a powdered supplement, which can be added to food or drink. It’s more common, however, to be taken in the form of a pill or capsule. Many athletes prefer this to powdered creatine because it’s said to have fewer side effects such as bloating and lack of muscle definition. It also has a higher pH level.
In a nutshell, athletes believe that Kre-Alkalyn aids in immune system function and in the building of muscle mass, as well as functional strength. Also, a large part of its appeal is that it maintains muscle tissue as people age.
As a very nice bonus, there are many nutrients in Kre-Alkalyn. Vitamins present include vitamins A, B, C, D, E and K. Of course, creatine, protein, and manganese are also present. Because compounds can vary depending on where you get the supplement, you should review the specific nutrient content of the supplement you’re interested in buying.
In general, although ingredients vary depending on compound and supplier, common ingredients in Kre-Alkalyn include fish oil, caffeine, olive leaf (to increase energy), ginger root, arginine ethyl ester (an arginine compound consisting of amino acids that are the building blocks of protein), deer antler velvet (a compound designed to improve muscle recovery after exercise and athletic strength and endurance) and apple cider vinegar. As always, amounts or dosages may vary. Artificial flavors may also be included.
These ingredients are ground up to form the pure Kre-Alkalyn supplement, which can come in either powder or capsule form.
Like all supplements, it’s best to do a thorough research on Kre-Alkalyn before taking it.
What’s The Best Way To Take Kre-Alkalyn?
The proper dosage of Kre-Alkalyn varies depending on the concentration, quality, and type of mix.
How much is right for each of the options? Read on.
In capsule form, the beginning dose is usually only 1 to 2 capsules daily because it can be powerful and potent. In powdered form, 3g is generally recommended as the best dosage. The dosage will generally be written on the package when you buy the product. You should begin with a smaller dose and gradually increase, as your body gets comfortable and used to it. If you are ever concerned, before taking any dosage you should always talk to your doctor.
With the powdered form of the product, it’s slightly more complex. There are a few steps to consider. At the beginning, there is no loading phase. With that said, you should consider taking at least 1.5 grams every day whether you workout or not. There is a cycle when taking Kre-Alkalyn (powdered form), which lasts for about 14 to 16 weeks. You should use it for 12 weeks and then rest for at least 4 weeks before starting the cycle again.
Within the 12 weeks of using the powdered form, you should only take one serving if you don’t train or workout. If you are training intensely on that day, you should take two servings of Kre-Alkalyn. Take the first serving before the workout and the other one after the session.
Do not use Kre-Alkalyn continuously!
As with any supplement, make sure that you take time off (4 weeks or so is a good idea), before you start with the new cycle of the supplement again.
Make sure that you do not take more than 3 grams of the product (powdered form) every day. It is advised that you complement your intake with amino acid supplements for even greater effect. Athletes who are more than 200 pounds can eventually increase their dosage for greater effect.
So, to sum up, for the powdered form as a dietary supplement, mix a 1/2 scoop in 4 oz. of water or your favorite beverage 30 minutes before exercise and a 1/2 scoop post workout.
For capsules, take 1 capsule 30 minutes prior to workout and 1 capsule right after workout. For liquid, take 7.5 ml (about 1/2 Tbsp) 30 minutes before workout. No loading is needed with the liquid form.
What Does The Science Say About Kre-Alkalyn?
There are a lot of potential benefits to be had with this.
But, as always, the big question is does it actually work?
And, are there side effects?
Well, a study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition reported no difference in efficacy or safety for buffered creatine as compared to creatine monohydrate.
Creatine supplementation is allowed by most sports regulating bodies because its use doesn’t appear to be harmful in any way. But, it does not appear to improve performance in aerobic or endurance events. Although, as I mentioned, it’s not proven to be harmful, extremely high doses of creatine may be detrimental to the kidneys. Also, people taking creatine may gain unnecessary weight due to water retention in the skeletal muscles.
The compound has not been clinically tested, so there is no clear data on the side effects. Supplement review sites online report that users do not appear to have any apparent negative side effects. Also, anecdotal evidence from supplement review sites suggests that there are fewer negative side effects associated with Kre-Alkalyn than with creatine.
There Are Many Questions About Kre-Alkalyn
There are other commonly asked questions and concerns. You’ve likely seen them.
The short answer would be no. It’s thought to be safe.
Kidney-wise, if you have hypoparathyroidism and use calcium medication daily, it’s not advisable to use Kre-Alkalyn. Keep that in mind. Kre-alkalyn and other creatine risks can adversely affect kidney function if you have any condition. The supplement has also been said to increase the risk for kidney stones.
Another common question is does Kre-Alkalyn cause cancer?
Well, there have been no reports on this to date. There will likely be studies to determine that at some point.
I reviewed the product briefly and found no theoretical reason why anybody should be worried on that front. But, until studies are conducted, we won’t know for sure.
Creatine and Kre-Alkalyn, in particular, are great bodybuilding supplements, especially if you want to gain mass. The idea that it’s only water weight is simplistic. If you want to increase your training intensity, gain lean mass or are simply looking for that extra edge, Kre-Alkalyn is certainly worth giving a try!
By Keith Cormican, RD