Are you an athlete or fitness enthusiast constantly seeking that extra edge to elevate your performance? If so, you've probably considered combining creatine supplementation and sauna use to find the game-changer you've been searching for.

Creatine is a popular supplement known for boosting muscle gains and endurance, while saunas can improve cardiovascular health and aid in recovery.

You can potentially reach your fitness goals faster by harnessing the power of both. Below we'll delve into the science behind creatine and the sauna and provide practical tips on effectively combining them for maximum benefits.

Many people take creatine to improve muscle growth, but is it safe to take when using the sauna? The answer is yes, as long as you stay hydrated.

When you take creatine, it pulls water into your muscles, leading to water retention.

However, the change in concentration is insignificant and doesn't increase dehydration risk. In fact, research suggests that creatine can even prevent dehydration symptoms.

Studies also show that creatine supplementation doesn't have adverse effects during exercise.[1]

Taking creatine helps with water retention, leading to a larger appearance. Using the sauna increases your body's core temperature, which can create increased blood flow and circulation.

This increased blood flow may help transport creatine more efficiently to your muscle cells, potentially enhancing its effects.

So what about different types of saunas, like infrared or a steam room?

While there isn't much research on this topic, it's generally safe to assume that staying hydrated is still important, regardless of the type of sauna you use.

Infrared saunas use heat to penetrate deeper into your muscle tissue, potentially enhancing the benefits of creatine.

However, this also means it's even more crucial to stay hydrated. So while using a sauna while taking creatine is safe, it’s crucial to stay hydrated.

The sauna and creatine can dehydrate you when you don’t get enough fluids. Getting your fluids will help creatine drive fluid into your muscles, resulting in that sought-after “swole” appearance.

Person Adjusting Firewood In Sauna

Does Creatine Make You Sweat More?

Creatine itself doesn't lead to excess sweating. However, since creatine can enhance your strength and endurance, you might notice that you end up working out harder and for longer periods.

This increase in physical exertion may lead to increased sweating, but it's not a direct effect of creatine supplements.

Will the extra sweating flush out the creatine you took? No. Sweating only affects the amount of water your body holds, not the creatine itself.

So even if you notice yourself sweating more than usual during intense exercise, having less water doesn’t mean you’ll end up sweating out all the creatine you took.

Creatine is intended to be used during high-intensity training and will still have its benefits even if you're sweating a lot.

Should You Drink More Water While Taking Creatine And Using Sauna?

Hydration is crucial when it comes to maximizing the benefits of creatine and sauna use.

Taking creatine can alter your body's water balance, and using the sauna can increase sweating, leading to fluid loss. So to ensure you're getting the most out of both practices, it's important to get plenty of fluids.

A 2009 study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition has shown that adequate water intake was essential when supplementing with creatine.[2]

The study noted that high levels of creatine are likely to increase the requirement for water, and therefore, it is important to drink sufficient amounts of fluids while taking creatine.

When it comes to using the sauna, proper hydration is also important. You should always drink enough fluids to replace any losses incurred during the sauna session.

Not doing so can cause you to be dehydrated, which can result in headaches, dizziness, and other adverse effects, especially after exercise.

When combining creatine and using the sauna, drinking enough is the best way to ensure optimal results.

According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, taking creatine and using the sauna did not result in adverse effects as long as the participants stayed hydrated.[3]

The study concluded that an increased fluid intake could compensate for fluid loss from sweating.

Drinking plenty of fluids helps when taking creatine and using a sauna. Adequate hydration ensures that creatine can effectively direct water into your muscle cells, enhancing growth and strength.

Luckily, proper hydration while using the sauna after the gym can prevent dehydration and its associated adverse effects. Make sure to sip water before, during, and after being in the sauna and throughout the day when supplementing with creatine.

Adding A Scoop Of Gnarly Creatine Supplement Powder

Sauna And Creatine Commonly Asked Questions

Does heat destroy creatine?

Heat can potentially destroy creatine over time, especially if stored at high temperatures for an extended period. Creatine breakdown can occur at temperatures as low as 77°F over time, but the breakdown rate increases as temperatures rise.

How does creatine work?

Creatine works by increasing the amount of creatine stored in your muscles. This extra creatine can help your muscles produce more energy, specifically in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Increasing your ATP production allows you to work out harder and longer.

Does sauna use cause muscle loss?

Using the sauna will not cause muscle loss. In fact, it can actually help with muscle gains and complement workouts, not just serve as a relaxing post-workout activity.

What should you not do when taking creatine?

When taking creatine, you should not exceed the recommended dosage and avoid taking creatine with caffeine or other stimulants. In addition, avoid using creatine if you have any underlying medical conditions or are taking medications that may interact with it.

Can you go to a steam room while taking creatine?

You can go to a steam room while taking creatine. Be sure to have enough water while exercising and at least two glasses (16 oz.) of water before and after using a steam room.

Final Thoughts: Does Sauna Affect Creatine?

Taking creatine and using the sauna can be great for athletes and fitness enthusiasts looking to maximize their workouts.

Creatine can help improve strength and endurance, while saunas can aid in recovery and improve cardiovascular health.

Note that together, they can enhance these benefits and help individuals achieve their fitness goals. Just understand that staying hydrated is crucial when taking creatine and using the sauna.

References: 

  1. https://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/Fulltext/2001/07000/Physiological_responses_to_short_term_exercise_in.6.aspx
  2. https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1550-2783-4-6
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20126965/
Miloš Lepotic

Miloš Lepotic

Meet Miloš, a certified sports nutritionist and self-taught supplement expert whose pharmacological background and nearly a decade of gym experience make him the perfect guide for optimizing your health and athletic performance through supplement reviews and practical advice rooted in factual, science-backed information.