Creatine Monohydrate vs Creatine HCL: Which is better for you?
Creatine is a one of the most popular, well researched and extensively used supplement. Its available in various forms with creatine monohydrate being the most visible as it continues to be a good bet bet for reaping all the benefits one expects from a performance-enhancing supplement. The other popular version, Creatine hydrochloride as the name suggests is prepared by attaching a hydrochloride (HCL) group to enhance its stability.
While most supplements efficacy depends on the users objectives, current fitness levels, workout regimen and nutritional discipline etc there is constant debate on which variant is better, what is the best dosage and time to have it, how to stack it and so on so forth. So creatine monohydrate being no exception often gets compared to other forms of the product with Creatine HCL being the most compared one.
Creatine Monohydrate in spite of its long list of benefits has been criticised for its solubility in fluids and uptake by the body. This slow intestinal absorption can potentially lead to stomach upset as the creatine will now attract more water retention not only in intestines but also in the subcutaneous space and makes you bloated. While water retention is again an area of discussion and the hardcore fans do not believe so but the general trend is monohydrate does increase intracellular and extracellular water retention and causes bloating. The undissolved creatine monohydrate is also believed to give stomach issues like abdominal cramps and diarrhea even in micronized form.
On the other side creatine HCL works very well as the addition of HCL molecule reduces the pH value and the increased acidity not only helps it dissolve easier in the glass but also in the intestines thereby increasing uptake per serving and minimising chances of stomach and muscle issues. Research studies have proved that the HCL version is absorbed 60