Here’s some health news about a natural remedy for those of you who want to boost your mental health: scientists have discovered that creatine could protect the brain. Creatine is a substance in your body the main job of which has to do with energy production. About 95% of your body’s creatine is stored in your muscles. For this reason, creatine is a favorite supplement for athletes and bodybuilders who use it to enhance their performance.
Researchers at the Department of Neurology and Neuroscience, Weill Cornell Medical, in New York, recently looked at the ability of creatine to protect the brain. The scientists were able to determine that creatine could protect against “excitotoxic lesions” produced by a harmful substance called “N-Methyl-D-aspartate.”
Excitotoxic lesions happen when a substance binds to a nerve cell receptor in the brain, stimulates this cell, and damages it or causes its death. The research team also found that creatine is neuroprotective against lesions produced by the toxins “malonate” and “3-nitropropionic acid” (3-NP).
In general, after performing a number of tests on mice, the researchers were able to demonstrate that creatine produced the following effects:
— Boosted the survival of brain cells
— Improved motor performance
— Caused a reduction in loss of motor neurons
— Led to a reduction in the symptoms of Huntington’s disease
After studying the neuroprotective effects of creatine, the researchers looked at the combined effects of coenzyme Q10 and creatine together. They found that there were additional neuroprotective effects when these two substances joined forces — especially when it came to reducing the size of brain lesions.
The research team concluded that creatine shows great promise in the treatment of a variety of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
You can find creatine in small amounts in red meat and fish. However, much of it is destroyed by cooking. It’s also made naturally in your body from amino acids found in animal protein. Insulin is needed for creatine to enter your muscles, so eating some carbohydrates with creatine foods may increase the amount of creatine available to your muscles.
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