Why Does Creatine Cause Anxiety?

Creatine can cause anxiety by increasing the activity of neurotransmitters in the brain, leading to overstimulation of the central nervous system. There is evidence that the popular supplement creatine, used by athletes and bodybuilders, may increase anxiety.

This occurs because creatine increases the activity of neurotransmitters in the brain, which can lead to an overstimulation of the central nervous system. 

While there is limited research on the direct link between creatine and anxiety, some studies suggest that individuals prone to anxiety may be more susceptible to its effects.

It is important to note that not everyone experiences anxiety due to taking creatine, and individual tolerance may vary.

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What is the Link Between Creatine And Anxiety?

Creatine, a popular supplement athletes and bodybuilders use, has been linked to anxiety. The effects of creatine on the body can cause anxiety in some individuals. It is believed that creatine may increase dopamine levels in the brain, which can lead to feelings of restlessness and unease.

Furthermore, creatine can also alter the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain, affecting mood and anxiety levels. While not everyone experiences anxiety when taking creatine, knowing the potential side effects is important. 

If you are concerned about anxiety or any other side effects, it is recommended that you consult with a healthcare professional before starting or continuing with creatine supplementation.

Understanding the link between creatine and anxiety can help individuals make informed decisions about their supplement use.

Five Reasons of Creatine Causes Anxiety

A common dietary supplement for athletes and people looking to improve their physical performance is creatine. While creatine itself is not known to cause anxiety directly, there are a few potential reasons why some people may experience anxiety or other psychological side effects when taking creatine:

Caffeine Interaction

Some creatine supplements contain caffeine or are taken alongside caffeinated beverages. Caffeine is a stimulant that can increase anxiety in some individuals, especially in high doses or when combined with other stimulants. If your creatine supplement contains caffeine, this could contribute to anxiety.


Creatine can cause your muscles to retain water, which may lead to increased thirst and the need to drink more water. Dehydration can contribute to feelings of anxiety or nervousness, so it’s essential to stay adequately hydrated when taking creatine.

Individual Sensitivity

People react differently to supplements, medications, and dietary changes. Some individuals may be more sensitive to changes in their body’s chemistry and may experience psychological effects like anxiety. Creatine may affect certain individuals in this way.

Placebo Effect

In some cases, the anxiety experienced by individuals taking creatine could be due to a placebo effect. If someone believes that creatine will cause anxiety or other side effects, their expectation alone can manifest these symptoms.

Underlying Factors

It’s crucial to consider that anxiety can be caused or exacerbated by various factors unrelated to creatine. Stress, sleep disturbances, preexisting anxiety disorders, and other personal or environmental factors can all contribute to feelings of anxiety.

Can creatine cause Mood Swings?

Some people have reported experiencing mood swings, irritability, or changes in mood when taking creatine supplements, but these effects are generally rare and mild. It’s important to note that the scientific literature on this topic is not extensive, and the reported mood changes are often anecdotal.

These mood changes could be related to individual variations in how the body responds to creatine or other factors such as preexisting mental health conditions, other supplements or medications being taken, or other lifestyle factors. However, most users do not experience significant mood disturbances when taking creatine.

If you are concerned about potential mood swings or other side effects while taking creatine, consulting with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian is a good idea. 

They can provide personalized guidance and monitor your progress to ensure that creatine supplementation is safe and appropriate for your needs and health status. 

Additionally, always follow the recommended dosages and guidelines provided on the product label or as advised by a healthcare professional when using creatine or any other dietary supplement.

Can creatine cause Brain Fog?

No strong scientific evidence suggests that creatine supplementation directly causes brain fog or cognitive impairments in healthy individuals when used within recommended dosage guidelines.

Some research suggests that creatine may have potential cognitive benefits. Creatine is stored in the muscles for quick energy production during high-intensity exercise. 

It also plays a role in cellular energy metabolism, including the brain. Some studies have explored the potential cognitive-enhancing effects of creatine supplementation, particularly in tasks requiring short-term memory, processing speed, and reduction of mental fatigue. 

While the results have been mixed, some evidence suggests that creatine supplementation may be beneficial for certain cognitive functions.

However, individual responses to supplements can vary, and some people may experience side effects when taking creatine. 

Common side effects of creatine supplementation include gastrointestinal issues (such as diarrhea or stomach cramps) and muscle cramps. 

Keeping hydrated, taking creatine with food, and adjusting the dosage or timing of intake can frequently manage these side effects.

Final Words

It is clear that there is a correlation between creatine usage and feelings of anxiety. Although creatine is known to enhance physical performance and muscle growth, individuals who are prone to anxiety may experience negative side effects. It has been suggested that this could be due to the increase in dopamine levels caused by creatine supplementation, which in turn can impact neurotransmitter balance and contribute to anxiety symptoms.

If you are considering taking creatine and have a history of anxiety or are prone to stress, it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any supplementation regime. They can provide personalized advice and guidance based on your specific needs and circumstances.

It is also worth considering alternative natural supplements or lifestyle changes that can support your fitness goals without exacerbating anxiety symptoms. Remember, everyone’s body and brain chemistry is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another.

Prioritizing mental health and seeking professional advice is crucial to finding the right balance between physical performance gains and managing anxiety effectively.

Read More: Can Anxiety Cause Excessive Sweating?

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