Health
Fact-checked

At TheHealthBoard, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.

Learn more...

Is There a Connection between Creatine and Cancer?

Exploring the link between creatine and cancer reveals a complex interplay of biological mechanisms. While some studies suggest potential risks, others highlight its protective effects. The key lies in understanding how creatine interacts with our cells. Are you ready to uncover the nuanced truths behind this widely debated topic? Join us as we navigate the science of creatine and its impact on health.
Emily Daw
Emily Daw

As of 2011, there was no clearly established scientific connection between creatine and cancer. Creatine, a naturally occurring amino acid that athletes sometimes take as a dietary supplement, has at various times been reported to cause cancer or to cure cancer. None of these claims have been sufficiently backed up by credible scientific research though.

Creatine is an amino acid involved in anaerobic or "power" exercise, such as weightlifting and other high-intensity, short-duration activities. Most of the creatine that a person needs is created naturally by the kidneys, with some being taken in by eating fish, wild game or lean red meat. Creatine supplements, usually in the form of a powder, are marketed to improve athletes' performance in some activities, but the effectiveness of these supplements varies widely from person to person.

Research has shown no connection between creatine and cancer.
Research has shown no connection between creatine and cancer.

A report published in the early 2000s indicated that creatine supplements might cause kidney cancer, but this report has been largely discredited. Research has not conclusively disproven any relationship between creatine and cancer risk, but there is also no significant reason to believe the two are linked. There are no documented cases of it leading to increased risk of cancer in either humans or animals. In fact, a few subsequent studies have shown that taking creatine might actually decrease a person's chances of getting cancer, but as of 2011 there was not yet enough evidence to substantiate this research.

Meat is a source of creatine.
Meat is a source of creatine.

In the mid-1900s, a creatine-derived treatment known as Krebiozen was marketed to treat cancer. It was never submitted for clinical trials in the US, however, because there was no evidence linking creatine and cancer cures. This remedy has also been discredited by the scientific community as a whole.

Since creatine has been shown to increase muscle mass in many athletes, it has been proposed as a treatment to stop cancer patients from losing muscle mass during chemotherapy treatment. This is not a direct link between creatine and cancer, however, since the creatine is being used to treat the side effects of the treatment, rather than the illness itself. As of 2011, more research is still needed in order to determine whether cancer patients could benefit from this use of creatine.

You might also Like

Discuss this Article

Post your comments
Login:
Forgot password?
Register:
    • Research has shown no connection between creatine and cancer.
      By: Clifford Farrugia
      Research has shown no connection between creatine and cancer.
    • Meat is a source of creatine.
      By: kazoka303030
      Meat is a source of creatine.
    • Creatine, popular among bodybuilders and weightlifters, plays a role in the body's production of adenosine triphosphate, which is necessary for muscle contraction.
      By: ArenaCreative
      Creatine, popular among bodybuilders and weightlifters, plays a role in the body's production of adenosine triphosphate, which is necessary for muscle contraction.
    • Some have proposed using creatine to help stop patients from losing muscle mass during chemotherapy treatments.
      By: Tyler Olson
      Some have proposed using creatine to help stop patients from losing muscle mass during chemotherapy treatments.
    • There are no documented cases of creatine leading to increased risk of cancer in humans or animals.
      By: kromleh
      There are no documented cases of creatine leading to increased risk of cancer in humans or animals.