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J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2012 Apr;52(2):165-9.

Creatine ingestion effects on oxidative stress in a steady-state test at 75% VO(2max).

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  • 1Department of Bio-Medical Sciences, University of Catania, Catania, Italy.



The present study was carried out with the aim to analyze the role of creatine on oxidative stress during exercise, i.e. whether creatine is a pro-oxidative or an antioxidant substance.


In a randomized double-blind study involving 30 adult males, we examined plasma lactate, oxidative stress markers (malondialdehyde, MDA) and glutathione redox ratio (GSSG·GSH-1), antioxidative systems (vitamins A, E, C), and ergospirometric responses (respiratory quotient and relative oxygen uptake) before and after 30 min steady-state tests 75% VO2max (placebo and creatine).


Ergospirometric tests, hematocrit values, blood lactate as well as vitamins A, E and C concentrations did not show significant differences between creatine and placebo testing. Conversely, oxidative stress markers MDA and GSSG·GSH-1 increased during placebo trials much more than in creatine trials.


This is the first report documenting that a creatine loading, i.e., a 0.3 g/kg/die of creatine ingestion for 5 consecutive days, could reduce the oxidative stress, whereas its consumption may not have a clear metabolic advantage in certain aerobic activities.

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