Creatine powder in a scopper

In 2018 I’d updated The Creatine Graveyard to include creatine hydrochloride (HCL or CHCL) for reasons outlined in that article as to why various forms of creatine are on the list. Considering how long it’s been on the market, the (unsubstantiated) claims made by manufacturers and sellers of HCL, and how much of it has been sold, it’s amazing to me it’s taken this long for a basic comparative study to get done. The results are exactly as I’d expected and predicted: it’s no better then good old CM. I’d predicted that unlike some forms that are clearly inferior to CM, HCL would be comparable in its effects, so it’s not garbage or a scam per se, but is considerably more expensive per dose to CM.

Criticisms of this study would be the small group sizes and being a short lived study, but I don’t expect to see anything different should say aforementioned manufactures/sellers of HCL put their money where their mouth is as far as claims of the superiority of HCL to CM and fund a bigger better study. Positives of this study was they used two dosing protocols at least. A larger study needs to run longer and look at end points such as changes in body comp, strength and so forth.

Creatine powder in a scopper

As always, happy to offer my services to assist in getting such studies done…

Is creatine hydrochloride better than creatine monohydrate for the improvement of physical performance and hormonal changes in young trained men?



The production and sale of performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) with annual increase in number and diversity have now become a beneficial industry. At present, there is a kind of creatine supplement, called as creatine hydrochloride (CHCL), which is claimed to have a much higher absorption compared to creatine monohydrate (CRM) supplementation and does not require a loading period. However, this claim has not been fully examined yet. Therefore, the present study aimed to compare the effects of two types of creatine (CHCL and CRM) on physical activity, plasma levels of testosterone (T), and cortisol (Cor) in trained young men.

Equipment and methods

The statistical population of this study included 36 healthy subjects selected by purposive sampling method and with at least six months of resistance training. The subjects were randomly divided into four groups (Group 1: 20 g of CRM, Group 2: 3 g of CRM, Group 3: 3 g of CHCl per day for a week, and Group 4: placebo). The supplements were given to subjects by double-blind manner. Physical performance variables were evaluated on the morning of the first day and before the supplementation, and blood samples (5 cc) were taken in fasting conditions (8–10 hours) to measure the plasma levels of T and Cor. The blood samples were taken again after seven days for physical performance measurements.


The results showed that there were no significant differences between the effects of 3 and 20 g of CRM and 3 g of CHCL on the vigor, power, plasma levels of T and Cor, and T/C ratio. In other words, 3 g of CHCL did not result in improved performance and hormonal changes compared to 20 g of CRM.


According to the results, the multi-day period of supplementation with CHCL in comparison to CRM cannot have much effect on performance and improve the hormonal status of individuals in the short term.

  1. rodney Burke 4 years ago

    In my latest labs I have a Creatine level of 1.64 when the range is .6 – 1.4.Does that mean anything?

    • Author
      Will Brink 4 years ago

      Not creatine, but creatinine. I’d recommend searching the web for the importance of creatinine levels and there’s some mentions of it on this page on a search as it applies to creatine supplements.

  2. Jack Oswald 4 years ago

    I’m not surprised at the results of this study. I’ve used creatine for a long time and the most noticeable results in terms of strength, muscle fullness etc have been when using a high load (up to 20g spaced throughout the day) of creatine mono. I’ve tried other forms of creatine but the effects are barely noticeable. I like my mono mixed with a little sugar free cordial and water – goes down a lot easier than H20!

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