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Creatine Might Just Be Your New BFF Supplement for Perimenopause

By Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN

Perimenopause can be a challenging time for many women. To say the least. This phase can be quite the rollercoaster, with hormones dancing around like nobody’s business. We’re talking estrogen and progesterone doing the tango. These hormone fluctuations can lead to a variety of symptoms, including fatigue, mood swings, and loss of muscle mass. But fear not, because there might just be a secret weapon that can help alleviate some of these symptoms: creatine. Yes, you read that right—this popular supplement is not just for fitness-fanatics and bodybuilders. 

Creatine might just be your new bff during this transitional phase of life.

What is Perimenopause and How Can You Support Your Health During This Time?

Before we dive into how creatine can benefit perimenopausal women, let’s first understand what perimenopause is and why it can be a challenging time for many women.

Perimenopause is the transitional phase women go through before they enter menopause. It typically starts in a woman’s 40s, but can start as early as her 30s. During this time, a woman’s estrogen and progesterone levels fluctuate, leading to a variety of symptoms. These symptoms can include hot flashes, night sweats, mood swings, irregular periods, fatigue, brain fog, loss of muscle mass, and decreased bone density.

Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms experienced by perimenopausal women. Hormone fluctuations can disrupt sleep patterns and make it difficult to get a restful night’s sleep. This, in turn, can leave women feeling exhausted and lacking energy during the day. It’s  no wonder so many women walk around feeling “just not like myself.”

Fatigue can also contribute to brain fog that many women experience. Hormonal shifts can cause a range of cognitive symptoms from memory loss to losing your train of thought. Ever walk into a room and forget why? Or, run into someone you’ve met a bunch of times and just can’t remember their name? Brain fog is common during perimenopause and likely due not only to hormonal shifts but also to lack of sleep and stress.

Loss of muscle mass, known as sarcopenia, is another major concern during perimenopause. As estrogen levels decline, women may experience a decrease in muscle mass and strength, as well as an increase in body fat. This can have a negative impact on overall health and make it harder to maintain a healthy weight. 

It’s no secret that perimenopause can be a challenging time and it’s hard not to feel out of control. Which is why it’s so important to do everything you can to stack the deck in your favor to combat the effects of these hormonal shifts to improve how you feel during this transitional time and help optimize your health in the future. 

RELATED: Here’s How To Balance Your Hormones: A Protocol By Dr. Sarah Gottfried

Say Hello to Creatine – the New Gal in Town

Creatine is a natural compound found in the body that is involved in the production of energy. It’s a bit like your body’s very own battery pack, naturally found in your muscles and a key player in energy production. It is primarily stored in the muscles and used during high-intensity exercise. While creatine is well-known in the world of fitness and bodybuilding for its ability to enhance athletic performance and build muscle, its benefits extend far beyond that.

Creatine supplementation has been found to increase energy levels, improve cognitive function, and enhance muscle strength and power: 

  • Increased energy: Creatine plays an important role in the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), our body’s primary energy source or AKA your body’s energy MVP. By supplementing with creatine, we can increase the body’s creatine phosphate stores which helps regenerate ATP at a faster rate. This boost in cellular energy is a major benefit for perimenopausal women who may experience fatigue or decreased exercise endurance.
  • Cognitive function: Creatine also has your brain’s back. Creatine has been shown to have neuroprotective properties, meaning it can help protect the brain cells from damage and improve overall brain function. This can be beneficial for perimenopausal women who may be experiencing cognitive changes, such as brain fog or difficulty concentrating.
  • Prevent muscle loss: Creatine supplementation may help mitigate muscle loss in perimenopausal women by enhancing muscle strength and lean body mass. As estrogen levels decrease during perimenopause, potentially leading to muscle loss, creatine’s role in promoting muscle growth and energy production can be particularly beneficial. By incorporating creatine into their routine, perimenopausal women can help maintain muscle strength and achieve a healthier body composition. It’s worth mentioning that creatine alone won’t help much here, it is critical to incorporate a weight lifting routine. 

Perimenopause is a challenging time for many women due to hormonal fluctuations and the associated symptoms. Creatine supplementation may provide a much-needed boost during this transitional phase by helping increase energy levels, improving cognitive function, and helping to maintain muscle mass. So, if you’re a perimenopausal woman looking for a way to alleviate some of these symptoms—and just feel better—creatine might just be your new go-to.

Finding the Right Creatine Supplement for You

Once you find the right creatine supplement, it can become your loyal companion during perimenopause. Here are some few things  to consider when choosing the right creatine supplement for you:

  1. Type of Creatine: There are various forms of creatine available, including creatine monohydrate, creatine ethyl ester, and micronized creatine. Creatine monohydrate is the most researched and widely used form, known for its effectiveness and affordability. 
  2. Purity and Quality: Look for creatine supplements that undergo rigorous testing to ensure purity and quality. The supplement should be free from contaminants and manufactured according to good manufacturing practices (GMP). Third-party testing certifications, such as NSF International or Informed-Choice, can provide reassurance of the product’s quality.
  3. Dosage and Serving Size: Consider the recommended dosage and serving size of the creatine supplement. Some supplements may require higher doses or multiple servings throughout the day, while others may have a more convenient dosage. 3 to 5 grams per day is recommended. 
  4. Formulation and Delivery Method: Creatine supplements come in various forms, including powders, capsules, and liquids. Consider which form is most convenient and preferential for you. Powders are versatile and can be easily mixed into beverages or food, while capsules offer convenience for on-the-go use.

Consulting with a healthcare professional can also provide guidance tailored to your specific needs and medical history.

(Image: Shutterstock)



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