Yet another potential benefit of creatine may be improving the effects of SSRIs. There’s many potential health benefits of creatine  – for both brain and body – people are unaware of and can read up on via  an article I wrote in Life Extension Magazine HERE and here on  BrinkZone from  vids, articles, free report.
Now, it’s possible, it only works on women and or, only works with this particular SSRI and or only works with MDD. However, knowing that creatine improves brain metabolism in general and has other neuro-protective effects (see recent article linked for more information on that), it’s very unlikely it’s limited to women and or this particular SSRI in my opinion, but one should keep those possible limitation i mind until data shows otherwise. Good science dictates I make sure you’re at least aware of that possible limitation until additional studies done.
I have said this before, and I’ll say it again: Creatine (as monohydrate!) is one of the few supplements I would take and recommended if I didn’t exercise at all.
BTW:  The dose of creatine was 3 g/day for the first week and 5 g/day for another 7 weeks.
A Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Trial of Oral Creatine Monohydrate Augmentation for Enhanced Response to a Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor in Women With Major Depressive Disorder
In Kyoon Lyoo, M.D., Ph.D.; et al
Am J Psychiatry 2012;169:937-945.
Abstract
Objective Antidepressants targeting monoaminergic neurotransmitter systems, despite their immediate effects at the synaptic level, usually require several weeks of administration to achieve clinical efficacy. The authors propose a strategy of adding creatine monohydrate (creatine) to a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) in the treatment of patients with major depressive disorder. Such augmentation may lead to a more rapid onset of antidepressant effects and a greater treatment response, potentially by restoring brain bioenergetics at the cellular level.
Method Fifty-two women with major depressive disorder were enrolled in an 8-week double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial and randomly assigned to receive escitalopram in addition to either creatine (5 g/day, N=25) or placebo (N=27). Efficacy was primarily assessed by changes in the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D) score.
Results In comparison to the placebo augmentation group, patients receiving creatine augmentation showed significantly greater improvements in HAM-D score, as early as week 2 of treatment. This differential improvement favoring creatine was maintained at weeks 4 and 8. There were no differences between treatment groups in the proportion of patients who discontinued treatment prematurely (creatine: N=8, 32.0%; placebo: N=5, 18.5%) or in the overall frequency of all reported adverse events (creatine: 36 events; placebo: 45 events).
Conclusions The current study suggests that creatine augmentation of SSRI treatment may be a promising therapeutic approach that exhibits more rapid and efficacious responses in women with major depressive disorder.
Source/Full Paper HERE

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19 Comments
  1. Doug 5 years ago

    antidepressant’s have not been proven to work statically. So this is just BS

    • Author
      Will Brink 5 years ago

      And that’s an overly generalized and ignorant statement to make on your part Doug.

    • Joel 5 years ago

      Oh Doug. I think you have to look at where you are getting your information and make sure you consider a wide variety of sources my friend. Also I believe you meant statistically rather than “statically” in which case I have to agree with Will.

  2. dB 5 years ago

    Will
    Did you ever see if this had an effect on yourself? I am pretty sure you have said before that St Johns wort did a whole of nothing for you but I was curious if creatine had any effect in helping your own mood? Not to accuse you and say that you may be a depressed person but maybe you went off creatine for a couple weeks and maybe you noticed a change in your mental state/feelings.
    dennis

    • Author
      Will Brink 5 years ago

      Honestly I have been taking creatine so long I couldn’t tell you if helped me with mood and such. I don’t have major depressive disorder (MDD) s far as I know, but I have had people, especially older adults, tell me they noticed general improvements in mood and cognition with creatine, which makes perfect sense to me when you see all the studies showing what it does for the brain, some of which is covered in my creatine report.

      • Julie 4 years ago

        Creatine certainly is helping my mood. A lot more than any antidepressant ever has. I also do
        not feel as tired as I usually feel. Great stuff and soo….cheap.

  3. George 5 years ago

    Hi Will my Blood Pressure is 132/70 is it safe to take Creatine?

    • NJ JOE 4 years ago

      Wow, you’re borderline hypertensive, if in fact that’s your normal PB. Problem with PB as you know, it varies sometimes widely throughout the day. If you asked your GP, he/she would probably say no, just to err on the conservative side. The question you need ask yourself, is how do I get that BP down. Most say 120/80 is normal, but the goal really should be ~ 110/70. Some are sensitive to sodium, some not. Certainly caffeine & energy drinks will affect BP. Have you tried some electrolyte supps? I know of a man who was mildly hypertensive, and used magnesium & potassium successfully to bring his BP into normal range, and it stayed there.
      http://www.lef.org/Magazine/2010/3/Reduce-Blood-Pressure-Naturally/Page-02

  4. Samantha Rice 5 years ago

    I will take notes from your comments above and try to include the suggested substances in my diet. Like many people of our time, I have suffered from this condition too. I agree that it is also helpful if you are active. The findings of the research above clearly show creatine’s key role in curing depression.

  5. Karina Barbara 4 years ago

    As a person who take both I think there is something to it. In fact I suspected it. I am looking forward to more studies on this. Either way, I like my creatine.

  6. Bill Krauza 4 years ago

    Will, my 17 year old son is an avid weightlifter who insists on taking creatine to build muscle. What is your opinion on the safety of this regimen?
    Thanks,
    Bill Krauza
    P.S. – His daily dose is 5 g, product is called Platinum creating, vendor MuscleTech

    • Joseph 4 years ago

      Hey Will,
      I’ve been a member of the Brink Zone for a number of years now and I greatly appreciate all the solid info.
      I’m just curious if there is a best time of day to take Creatine.
      Thanks,
      Joseph

      • Author
        Will Brink 4 years ago

        I cover that one in my creatine vid series here on the site BTW. It does not appear to matter when it’s taken, although one small study suggested might me minor different if taken post workout.

  7. Harley Howard 4 years ago

    Great articles as always.I have a question. I have a rotator cuff tear and it requires surgery. The surgery at best will be sometime in November. Are there any supplements like Creatine and Glutamine, or any other supplements you recomment to help with the repair or maintenance of the muscle until then?
    Thanks
    Harley

    • Author
      Will Brink 4 years ago

      Both can’t hurt and might help maintain LBM while not working out. Good quality nutrition, rest, and supps such as whey, good multi, and such will help make sure healing is not slowed and covers any additional requirements you may have post op.

      • Harley Howard 4 years ago

        Thanks, big time and for taking time to help!
        Harley

  8. Nick Stokes 3 years ago

    Nicely written Nick. Results of the study of potential application of creatine in treatment of depression are very good, at least for women.
    Since you are an expert for the field of depression, I would like to invite you to read and share your opinion about article on depression that was recently written by my company. Do you mind to email you the link?

    • Author
      Will Brink 3 years ago

      I’m not an expert on the topic of depression.

      • Nick Stokes 3 years ago

        I see, Will. OK, would you mind if I email you the link despite that?
        Warm wishes,
        Nick

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