Good news on the creatine front!
In October of 2010, I reported a study which found that creatine supplementation improved cognition in vegetarians and vegans (Creatine Improves Cognition in Vegetarians). A few months later, in December of 2010, I reported a study that found creatine supplementation in vegetarian and vegan women boosted their cognition to beyond that of omnivores who also supplemented (Creatine Improves Cognition to Beyond that of Omnivores).
Today I’m reporting on a 2013 study from Brazil that measured the brain creatine content of vegetarians and found it to be the same as for omnivores (1).
They compared the creatine content of the posterior cingulate cortex between vegetarians (6 women and 8 men) and omnivores. The posterior cingulate cortex was chosen because it is related to emotion formation and cognitive function (processing, learning and memory).
Although the vegetarians ate much less creatine than the omnivores (.03 vs. 1.34 g, respectively), they had similar brain creatine levels (6.0 vs. 5.9 IU, respectively). The authors say:
“It has been shown previously that oral [creatine] intake can have beneficial effects on cognitive function in vegetarians rather than in omnivorous individuals, suggesting that the former may show some deficit in brain [creatine] content. However, the present study refutes this hypothesis, reinforcing previous experimental data suggesting that brain [creatine] content relies primarily on local endogenous synthesis rather than on [creatine] dietary intake.”
I have updated the VeganHealth.org article Creatine.
1. Yazigi Solis MY, de Salles Painelli V, Artioli GG, Roschel H, Otaduy MC, Gualano B. Brain creatine depletion in vegetarians? A cross-sectional 1H-magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) study. Br J Nutr. 2013 Nov 29:1-3. | link