Bloating can make you uncomfortable and not desirable in exchange for big muscles. But bloating from water retention is very common and, in most cases, unavoidable. When you intake a lot of creatine at once, your body can’t have enough water to avoid pulling extra water from the surroundings.
So, is this problem permanent, or does creatine bloating go away?
Creatine bloating happens in the initial stages and goes away after four to seven days of intake without any treatment. It usually occurs when creatine isn’t absorbed properly, for which it draws in water from the stomach walls. Bloating causes dehydration and other stomach discomfort, which are the primary symptoms to remove to cure this problem.
Learn more about creatine bloating, its causes, signs, and ways to prevent and fix it.
Does Creatine Bloating Go Away?
Creatine bloating occurs mainly during the loading phase when you take a lot of creatine daily, around 20 to 25g. You will feel bloated when the body isn’t hydrated enough, for which the creatine will need to draw water from the surroundings.
Bloating is relatively harmless, but if it doesn’t go away after a week or two, you may skip the loading phase and drink lots of water. But for most consumers, bloating fades as the body adjusts to the dose.
Sometimes, too much protein and your health condition can also trigger bloating. It will go away depending on the condition and body weight. So, while on creatine, ensure you know how much water to drink with creatine.
In addition, you might not experience creatine bloating at all. It all depends on proper hydration to absorb creatine. The more you drink, the faster the bloating will go away. As soon as the body starts to lose the water stuck in the muscle cells, your swelling and the gassy feel will vanish.
Creatine Bloating Duration
Usually, it takes about a week to get rid of bloating from creatine. But it also depends on a number of factors. This includes your daily dose, amount of water you drink, activity time, diet, etc.
If you drink a lot of water after suffering from bloating, it will go away after a few hours. But if you are just starting with creatine loading, it will continue throughout the entire phase until you lower the dose.
How to Stop Bloating?
Now if you are suffering from bloating discomfort, you don’t need to run to your doctor. Firstly, determine how the bloating happened. Then, you can find the remedy accordingly. If dehydration is the issue, then drink water from time to time. As you urinate, your body can remove excess water.
If it doesn’t go away, then you can talk to your doctor to get a pill like Ibuprofen or a remedy.
Symptoms of Bloating
You can check for a few signs to understand whether you are bloated. If you recognize this early, you can save yourself from the discomfort faster. Some symptoms of bloating include,
Certain drugs, fiber-rich foods, and plenty of water will resolve these symptoms. But you must also avoid caffeine or similar products to stop these symptoms from happening and add more.
Prevention and Treatment
Creatine bloating might be common and almost inevitable, but you can try some tricks to prevent it from happening or becoming severe.
No Loading Phase
Bloating happens as your body gets dehydrated with a lot of creatine in the system. If you have gastrointestinal issues, skip the loading phase and start with 3 to 5g daily. Or you can lower the dose in the loading phase to 20g.
Regardless of the dose, adjust your water amount with your scoop. This will ensure that you have enough water for faster absorption. For every gram, you will need 100 ml of water. During the loading phase, drink 3 to 4 liters daily.
Food can also cause bloating, especially sugary and processed or oily foods. So, lower your sodium and carb intake while on creatine. Eat more protein and fat. Consult a nutritionist for a diet plan. Add potassium and magnesium supplements for better results.
High-quality Creatine Brands
Always choose creatine monohydrate and top-rated ones for your regime. In addition, check the ingredients to ensure it has 100% pure creatine. Avoid those that have no proven reports from consumers.
Pregnant women can have severe cases of bloating and other problems from creatine, so always consult a health expert before taking it. Also, check why moms should avoid creatine while breastfeeding.
Besides, avoid taking it if you are up for any performance, as bloating will hamper your activity. You might need hospitalizations for continuous monitoring, intravenous fluids, and electrolytes in severe bloating and health risks.
Bloating in Face
Does creatine make your face look fat? Well, bloating can make your face look a bit puffy.
When you are bloated, you feel discomfort in certain body parts, like the stomach. You will also notice it on your face as the muscles retain water. Sometimes, bloating in the face can also lead to breakouts.
So, to understand if you are bloated, check if your face or belly looks swollen.
Stomach Pain from Bloating
Abdominal pain is one of the primary side effects of creatine and the common symptom of bloating. Fortunately, it isn’t severe and is only reported to happen by around 7% of consumers. All you need to do is eliminate bloating, and the pain will be gone. When you are taking 20g of creatine per day, it can cause pain when it isn’t digested properly.
It can go away when you are done with the loading phase. You can also drink more water for comfort and only opt for the micronized version or monohydrate to avoid pain from happening at all.
How to Remove Water Weight?
Creatine has a hydration cell for which it can cause water retention. Interestingly, you can get rid of this discomfort from the water itself. When you are swollen with water, drink a lot more to remove the excess from urinating. You also need to lower carbs and sodium in your diet.
Most people are bothered about the weight they gain from water. But this is temporary and a sign that creatine is working.
The Bottom Line
When taking creatine, you will find that bloating is quite common among consumers. But the problem is temporary, like various other side effects of the loading phase. But you can easily minimize the symptoms or avoid them from happening at all with some simple tips.
Creatine requires a lot of water, so even if it’s difficult, you must drink sufficient water to digest it properly. You should also plan a healthy diet and activities to sync well with creatine intake.
Even if you can’t prevent bloating from happening, you can wait for it to go away or drink more and lower the dose to feel more comfortable.
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I am a health and wellness enthusiast working in a Pittsburgh-based wellness clinic. My primary role as a consultant is to tailor a balanced lifestyle for my patients, where positive steps and potent supplements play a synergistic role.