The Effects of Low-Dose Creatine

A new study shows how little creatine you can take and still reap the athletic performance benefits. Check it out.

Creatine works, it’s safe, and it’s dirt cheap. And even though it’s already the most studied sports supplement in existence, more studies are conducted anyway. Here’s a new one that’s pretty interesting.

Researchers for this study wanted to figure out a few things, mainly:

  • Does a low dose (as little as 2 grams per day) lead to results?
  • Does that small dose work for athletes in a short amount of time?
  • Does it work without the typical creatine loading protocol?

The Study

Most athletes who use creatine follow the standard protocol: take around 20 grams of creatine a day (in divided doses) for 5-7 days. Then take 5 grams a day to keep it topped off.

But in this new study, researchers had 17 year old soccer players take 2-3 grams of creatine monohydrate per day, with no loading phase, for just 14 days. Another group of athletes from the same team took a placebo powder. Neither group knew if they were getting “the good stuff” or the fake stuff. Both groups were given a variety of fitness tests before and after the two week period.

The Results

The group that took creatine monohydrate displayed greater muscle power output, greater peak power output and total work – all without any adverse side effects.

What This Means to You

  • If you’re an athlete, take creatine. Why not? It’s safe and it enhances performance.
  • If you are dead-ass broke, as little 2-3 grams a day will give you benefits. Using Biotest Creatine as an example, that’ll cost you about 17 cents a day.
  • You don’t have to load creatine for it to be effective, but really, it doesn’t hurt if you want to.
  • If your 17 year old son or brother wants to take creatine, don’t freak out. It’s fine.




  1. Aquiles Yanez-Silva, et al. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 2017

How about 15 years olds?