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Does Creatine Break A Fast? Can You Take It?

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While creatine is one of the most beneficial sports supplements available, if you’ve started intermittent fasting, you might be wondering, “Does creatine break a fast?” In this article, we’ll be doing a deep dive into the rules surrounding intermittent fasting, and what constitutes a fast being broken. 

In short, creatine is very low in calories and as a result will not typically be seen as something that will break your fast. Let’s take a closer look at creatine and intermittent fasting below!

Does creatine break a fast? Fasts are only broken when you consume calories and spike your insulin levels. Creatine is virtually calorie-free, therefore, you shouldn’t feel the need to avoid taking creatine during a fast.

does creatine break a fast

Intermittent Fasting and Time-Restricted Eating (General Info)

If you’re unfamiliar with intermittent fasting or time-restricted eating, it’s a style of diet that restricts the window of time when you consume food. It’s commonly done by giving yourself a limited window of time to eat each day, for example, from 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM. 

It’s become an increasingly popular style of diet for those looking to lose weight. It can be an effective way to limit the total amount of calories you consume each day, thus helping you maintain a consistent caloric deficit. 

one scoop of creatine

Note that while intermittent fasting is popular, it’s not suitable for everybody – especially if you have any pre-existing medical conditions. Consider talking with a doctor before trying intermittent fasting yourself. 

Does Creatine Break the Fast?

While creatine has a ton of benefits from performance to recovery, is it alright to be taking creatine while fasting? 

Below we’ll be taking a closer look at the use of creatine during a fasting period. Overall, while some people following very strict rules may want to avoid this supplement during a fast, most people will not consider creatine as something that breaks a fast.  

What Breaks the Fasting Period?

Technically speaking, consuming any amount of calories will break your fast. However, many people practicing intermittent fasting instead consider a fast to be broken only by foods that spike your insulin levels. So, with this being said, can you take creatine while fasting?

preparing protein

1. Creatine and Calories

Creatine does technically contain a very small amount of calories at ~4 calories/gram, so a single serving of creatine is largely negligible. However, if you believe consuming any calories whatsoever counts as breaking a fast, then you may want to limit creatine intake to your feeding window. 

2. Creatine and Insulin Response

When it comes to fasting, creatine’s effect on insulin levels is arguably more important than its minute calorie content. Creatine intake has not been shown to affect insulin response, which is why most people won’t consider this supplement as something that will break a fast. 

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How to take Creatine During IF/TRE

If you’re intermittent fasting, there are a few things that you should consider when using creatine, namely what kind of creatine you’re taking as well as when you’re taking it throughout the day. Let’s get into it!

1. Creatine Form 

First, you should be using a form of creatine that doesn’t contain any ingredients that will spike your insulin levels. While not very common, there may be flavored creatine supplements out there that contain ingredients like maltodextrin that will break your fast. 

Although it probably goes without saying, make sure you’re also taking creatine with water instead of any sugary beverages like juice. 

preparing collagen drink in shaker

Regardless of if you’re fasting, keep in mind that we recommend creatine monohydrate over any alternate forms of creatine like HCl, Nitrate, and more. This is because monohydrate is the most well-researched, and cost-effective form of creatine available. 

2. Timing and Consistency

Keep in mind that creatine will only have effects with cumulative use, so it’s important to take it every day. The generally recommended dose is 3-5g/day

As mentioned, creatine will not break a fast, so you don’t need to limit intake to your feeding window. Also, there’s no strong evidence to suggest that timing creatine intake around exercise is necessary for optimal results either. So, feel free to take creatine whenever it’s most convenient for you! However, creatine absorption is increased alongside carbohydrates, so it may be best to take alongside a meal, especially when first starting out. 

Creatine We Recommend – Kaged Creatine Monohydrate

Kaged Creatine Monohydrate

kaged creatine
  • Supplement Type: Creatine
  • Best For: Building Muscles, Increasing Strength, Muscular Endurance, High-Intensity Performance, Recovery
  • Suitable for Vegans: Yes
  • Added Sugar: 0g
  • Price per Serving: ~$0.35
  • Servings per Package: 100
  • Recommended by Athletes: Andrea SomerColt NicholsKris Gethin

If you’re looking to take creatine during fasting periods, we recommend trying Kaged’s Creatine Monohydrate supplement. 

The only ingredient in this supplement is micronized creatine monohydrate. It contains no flavoring or sweeteners that could potentially break a fast, making it as simple and as fast-friendly as possible. 

kaged creatine monohydrate view

This supplement is also certified from Informed Sport ensuring that it’s free of any banned substances or potentially harmful contaminants. This is a great certification to look for if you’re a competitive athlete, or you’re concerned about the overall quality of your supplements. 

Finally, this supplement will only cost you ~$0.35 per 5g serving. On top of being a great choice for anybody fasting, Kaged’s creatine is a budget-friendly choice as well!

FAQ

Does Creatine Spike Insulin?

No, creatine will not affect insulin response, which is why it is perfectly fine to take on a fast. Just be sure you’re taking it mixed with water and not with something that will spike your insulin such as juice.  

Does Creatine Cut Fast?

Creatine does not affect insulin levels, so by most definitions, it will not break a fast. However, creatine does contain a minute amount of calories, so if you’re very strict with fasting, you may still want to avoid it. Still, most people do not consider creatine as something that breaks a fast.

Conclusion

Creatine and intermittent fasting don’t have to be mutually exclusive! This supplement will improve your exercise performance, and recovery, all without breaking a fast, making it a great option for anybody who’s intermittent fasting. 

If you’re interested in using creatine on a fast, we recommend Kaged Creatine Monohydrate for an effective, budget-friendly option. 

Have you been intermittent fasting for a while, or are you looking to try it for the first time? Is this your first time taking creatine too? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below. 

Also read:

References:

  1. Manpreet Mundi, M.D., “What is intermittent fasting? Does it have health benefits?” Mayo Clinic, Nutrition and Healthy Eating https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/intermittent-fasting/faq-20441303#:~:text=Intermittent%20fasting%20means%20that%20you,5%3A2%20fasting. (Accessed March 4, 2024).
  2. Kieron B Rooney, “Creatine supplementation affects glucose homeostasis but not insulin secretion in humans” Ann Nutr Metab.;47(1):11-5 (2003).
  3. Richard B. Kreider, et. al, “Bioavailability, Efficacy, Safety, and Regulatory Status of Creatine and Related Compounds: A Critical Review” Nutrients 2022, 14(5), 1035 (2022).
  4. Richard B Kreider, et. al, “ International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: safety and efficacy of creatine supplementation in exercise, sport, and medicine” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition volume 14, Article number: 18 (2017).
  5. Felipe Ribeiro, et. al “Timing of Creatine Supplementation around Exercise: A Real Concern?” Nutrients. Aug; 13(8): 2844. (2021).
  6. Photos made by Torokhtiy Media Team.

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Camila Parente Santos

Author: Camila Parente Santos
Sports Nutritionist

Experience: 7 years

Camila has worked as a Nutritionist for 7 years. In addition to being a nutritionist, she is an amateur weightlifting athlete for 2 years. Camila has experience at Flamengo’s football base and in a food supplement company and currently provides services at a clinic. At the moment she is coursing a postgraduate study in Sports Nutrition.

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