If you have been in the fitness world for a while, chances are you have heard of pre-workouts. However, many users have reported having diarrhea after taking these supplements. This has led to a question: can pre-workouts cause diarrhea?
These supplements usually contain ingredients like caffeine and B-vitamins, with some containing additives like creatine or beta-alanine. The goal is to provide you with an energy boost before a workout, especially if you feel fatigued from the day’s activities.
Today, workouts have become part of life for anyone desiring to get into fitness and athletic performance. However, it is never a walk in the park and requires a lot of energy and commitment. Without power, a fitness goal such as weight loss can be challenging to attain.
For this reason, a pre-workout supplement is a topic you cannot avoid. According to a study on the effect of acute pre-workout supplementation on power and strength performance, workout supplements are marketed to power workouts, boost energy, and enhance endurance levels.
The downside is that these fitness supplements sometimes have side effects. Continue reading to know whether pre-workout supplements can cause diarrhea.
What Are Pre-Workouts Supplements?
Pre-workout supplements are dietary formulas specially formulated to enhance athletic performance. Usually, these energy boosters are consumed before exercise and come in powder, liquid, or tablet form. Hence, consider mixing in water or any other preferred drinks to triple your workout power.
In addition, these exercise supplements contain ingredients such as amino acids, caffeine, creatine, vitamins, and other artificial sweeteners with different quantities depending on the brand.
Can Pre-Workouts Cause Diarrhea
Unfortunately, diarrhea is one of the side effects of taking pre-workout supplements, as per the YouTube Video below. These embarrassing side effects occur because of several reasons.
Improper use of supplements is one of the causes. It is wrong to take these strength training supplements on an empty stomach.
Moreover, a person with a sensitive stomach experiences diarrhea after taking these supplements because of the available ingredients that have a laxative effect on a stomach.
The artificial ingredients can cause many different side effects, including diarrhea. You should always research any pre-workout supplement you plan to take to see if it has any artificial ingredients in it.
If it does have artificial ingredients in it, you should not take the product because it could give you diarrhea and other adverse side effects.
To avoid these side effects, adding more water to the solution or drinking half of the recommended volume is the best solution. Nevertheless, if this does not work, it is wise to try another brand.
Benefits of Pre-Workout Supplements
As indicated above, the primary goal of these supplements is to enhance the quality of workouts. However, this is accomplished depending on the ingredients. Some of the specific benefits of these strength training supplements include:
Boost Your Energy Level
Working out after a poor night’s sleep or a long day at work is quite challenging. A person who goes to a fitness center while feeling tired cannot put in 100% effort due to low energy levels. To avoid this, pre-workout supplements are the fix. They contain caffeine content that helps fight off tiredness and boost energy levels.
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Enhance Athletic Performance
These fitness supplements help trainees train faster, harder, and longer than normal. With better performance, more body calories are burned while more muscle mass is gained. This way, reaching health and fitness goals become more effective.
Besides enhancing physical performance, pre-workouts make one feel sharper and more focused mentally. When focused, it becomes possible to make the most of any workout. Workout supplements are of great help and allow maximum concentration on the task at hand.
Speed Your Recovery Time
After a grueling workout, fatigue and muscle soreness can make one feel incredibly accomplished. However, these can slow down recovery time and delay getting back into the gym. The available ingredients in pre-workout supplements help sore muscles recover fast, which guarantees effective workouts in return.
6 Side Effects of Pre-Workout Supplements
Currently, pre-workout supplements have become increasingly popular. This is because of the energy boost these boosters give a workout user. Additionally, supplements help reduce the healing time and enhance athletic performance.
Besides having substantial physical benefits, workout supplements may have some side effects. Here are some of the possible side effects exercise supplements may pose on a user’s health.
High Blood Pressure
Most, if not all, stimulants boost the user’s heart rate, and this causes blood pressure to increase. Therefore, avoiding these products is the solution for anybody with health issues related to blood pressure. Otherwise, you can consult a doctor before taking them.
In addition, measuring the heart rate before and after the workout is essential, specifically if you have suffered from intermittent BP problems.
After taking fitness supplements, you become thirstier than usual. What can cause this are certain ingredients in these supplements that pull water and excrete it. Some of these ingredients help with weight loss.
Thus, once consumed in high doses, they might cause dehydration. Headaches are one of the signs of being dehydrated.
Drinking plenty of water even without thirst is a remedy for dehydration. Thus, before taking these performance-boosting products, hydration is necessary. Failure to keep hydrated seriously damages the overall performance.
When shopping for pre-workout supplements, it is advisable to look at their labels first. Reading through a brand’s details can help determine if it is the right product to buy. Fitness supplements with stimulants are not the best for a person who does night exercises.
One of the ingredients available in workout supplements is caffeine. When caffeine gets into the body, it boosts the body’s energy by activating epinephrine and norepinephrine. This interferes with sleep when taken at night.
Mainly, caffeine lasts in the body longer. Therefore, taking these supplements six hours before sleep time helps avoid interruptions.
Diarrhea comes with a lot of embarrassment. Some workouts supplements cause diarrhea because of several reasons. However, it mainly arises from two things in particular.
First, in these supplements, some specific ingredients cause a laxative effect on sensitive systems in the body. This might cause a running stomach.
Furthermore, these supplements contain high dosages of magnesium, sodium, bicarbonate, arginine, taurine, caffeine, and creatine. Nevertheless, the usage matters a lot.
Secondly, taking supplements with little water causes diarrhea. This happens because the body begins pulling water from cells and returning to process the supplements. Nevertheless, once water is drawn through the intestinal walls, osmosis causes it to flood the open space of the intestines. This is what causes diarrhea.
Adding plenty of water to the solution can help avoid diarrhea.
Tingly or prickly sensation all over the body is another side effect of workout supplements. However, this might vary among users. Furthermore, this can depend on the sensitivity of the ingredients in the products.
Some ingredients responsible for tingling sensations include beta-alanine, niacin, or vitamin B3. Nevertheless, tingling can disappear after a short time. Taking lower doses of beta-alanine and Vitamin B3 is the right way to avoid the tingling sensations.
This side effect is caused by dehydration. Usually, the human brain is surrounded by a sack full of fluid. When dehydration occurs, the fluid around the brain decreases and causes the brain to bump into the skull. This is what tends to cause a headache.
Pre-workout supplements with citrulline malate, arginine, or beta-alanine promote vasodilation.
The best way to avoid headaches is to prevent fitness supplements with vasodilators. Otherwise, you can lower the dosage or serving size used initially.
Additionally, it is advisable to drink a lot of water before and after taking these supplements.
Here is a detailed video to help you understand these side effects easily.
How to Prevent Pre-Workout Side Effects
Pre-workout supplements are meant to have benefits to the users. Nevertheless, at times, they may react negatively to the body. That does not mean they should not be taken. However, you can stop taking them if the side effects are severe.
Remember, one side effect on one person might not occur to someone else. Continue reading to determine how to prevent the above pre-workout based on what effect you may experience.
High Blood Pressure
One of the effects of stimulants is increasing the rate at which the heart beats, which causes high blood pressure. Avoiding stimulating substances might be the solution to a person with blood pressure issues.
Before and after working out, it is necessary to check your blood pressure. If the results indicate the blood pressure has significantly elevated, consider choosing caffeine-free supplements.
Also, if you experience back pain after a workout, check out this article.
When exercising, you tend to feel a lot thirstier than usual. This is because of the combination of the ingredients in the supplement. Some substances are designed to help the user tap glycogen reserves that are energy resources binding directly to water.
The best way to avoid dehydration is not waiting to feel thirsty. Drinking plenty of water always prevents dehydration and boosts one’s performance. Before and after the workouts, taking time to drink water is highly recommendable.
The impact caffeine has on people can be different. One of the well-known effects of caffeine is interfering with sleep. Taking caffeine a few minutes before sleeping is not recommendable.
Unless planning not to sleep, the best time to take the pre-workout is not later than 7 pm. However, taking caffeine-free supplements is ideal for a person who can only do workouts at night.
Adding more water is a perfect way to avoid diarrhea. On most of these supplements’ labels, manufacturers have indicated mixing around 8 ounces of water.
Typically, this is not enough. When diluted with less water, these supplements form a paste in the gut that causes diarrhea. The best way to avoid diarrhea is by mixing the powder with a lot of water.
Also, drink plenty of water after taking the supplement.
Some people are very sensitive to ingredients like vitamin B3 and beta-alanine. These directly affect the nervous system. When this takes place, tingling begins to take place throughout the body. However, this tingling only lasts a short while. Besides, it is harmless.
Luckily, there are several ways you can avoid the tingling sensation. To prevent these adverse effects, you can change the consumption time.
Fitness experts recommend taking workout supplements early in the morning. Sticking to this can help avoid all unpleasant feelings.
As indicated above, human bodies have to stay hydrated. Otherwise, one major sign that the body is dehydrated is a headache. Water is a crucial element even to the brain.
Typically, it circulates around the brain and creates a protective layer. Dehydration hence causes the brain to bump into the skull, and this is what causes headaches.
Some supplements contain ingredients that promote vasodilation. These substances include beta-alanine, citrulline malate, and arginine. Once vasodilation occurs, blood vessels throughout the body expand, including the head vessels. When this happens, headache is caused.
Staying away from the pre-workouts containing vasodilators can only be a perfect way to avoid getting headaches. Otherwise, it is advisable to lower the volume used.
Frequently Asked Questions
Pre-workouts can give you diarrhea. Pre-workouts are loaded with stimulants, carbohydrates and most of the time; they are full of artificial ingredients. The artificial ingredients can cause many adverse reactions to your body.
Taking too many pre-workout supplements is not advisable. It leaves one feeling unwell and jittery. This is because too many stimulants like caffeine increase heart rate, interfere with mental focus, and cause stomach discomfort.
Timing is much essential when taking pre-workouts that contain caffeine. Ending caffeine crashes is possible only when taken too early. Once taken too late, one cannot feel the effects until later in the training session.
When used in a way that the manufacturer does not recommend, the ingredients in pre-workout supplements can be dangerous and cause toxicity. Swallowing many workout tablets or drinking too much powder results in choking and breathing issues.
Most of the ingredients in pre-workout have a half-life of 4-6 hours. This means it lasts and remains in the body for about 4 hours. Nevertheless, you can feel the effects for one hour or two.
Doing exercises does not have to be accompanied by a pre-workout supplement. Nevertheless, it is a fact that they help boost athletic performances.
However, fitness boosters are not all about benefits. These are several side effects these supplements give after drinking them. As indicated, they can cause insomnia, high blood pressure, headache, dehydration, diarrhea, and sensation tingling.
This in itself gives the answer that pre-workouts can cause diarrhea.