Is creatine morally OK?

Hello, I think I’m going to talk about a subject that may be, hm, controversial. I’m going to have a soccer trial and was thinking of using creatine, which made me think about all of the issues about doping.

First, what is doping? Some might say using drugs or substances to enhance your performance, considering that these substances may be bad for your body.

Well, creatine doesn’t fit this criterion - studies have shown no bad effects in regular use.

So, maybe ilegal substances? Creatine also isn’t ilegal.

Creatine is a natural substance found, for example, in meat. So, having a creatine supplementation could be like eating meat, except 99% of it, haha.

Anyway, I think this is all unclear. Where’s the limit between doping or not? Most things that we eat are modified in way or another - where is the line crossed between something normal and something that is ‘concentrated’ enough to be doping?

I think that in the case of a individual person, it would be easier, but I’m talking about a trial - competition with other people. Creatine would give me advantage, but the question is would the advantage be unfair? It’s legal for anyone to use, but most people don’t.

I know I’ve made lots of questions, and I know that the Catholic Church is against doping, but I’m looking for a discussion about what is and what isn’t doping, so it’s not about a specific answer, I’d like to know about the limits, what is morally OK and what isn’t, etc.

Thank you very much.

Doping is cheating. So no.


I don’t know a lot about this topic, but I just wanted to subscribe to see what others say.

From what I DO know about it…I’m not sure. Is it a SIN to use creatine? Probably not. Is it a SIN to want to be the best at your sport. Maybe, if you are willing to do anything to get there.

Creatine seems to have mixed results for sports performance enhancement. It looks like there is a strong correlation to increased performance in weight training, but you might not get advantage.

Do your research. Take the right amount, and treat it like a vitamin supplement. But really think about why you’re doing it.


I agree with the first part - but the question is exactly that: is creatine doping?

Yeah, I’d treat it like a vitamin supplement. The increased performance in weight training would help me get stronger, which also helps in soccer. But if the conclusion I find is that it’s unfair or doping, I wouldn’t use it - it’s more important not to sin than to get better at soccer.

All doping is cheating.
No use of creatine is cheating (unless you find that explicitly banned by the organization for your sport’s/team’s governing body).
Therefore no use of creatine is doping.

You also can’t really get high on it, though surely you could possibly get sick from taking too much, which could be sinful.

You can buy creatine at Walmart.

I think it would fall under a nutritional supplements. It is not going to give you an unfair advantage over others.

Lots of amateur athletes use it. Stop worrying.

Creatine will do absolutely nothing to help your performance on the soccer field.

It is used as a supplement for weight training. It helps build muscle over the long term. It may help athletes who use explosive power, like a football lineman, or possibly a sprinter, and definitely a weightlifter.

You will gain weight with creatine and retain water. As a soccer player you know you need agility, quickness, and stamina. Extra body weight is not something you need. You do not need to do heavy squats and tackle.

Creatine is generally considered safe and is generally approved by athletic associations. In fact, at one point Australia’s governing sports nutrition body stated that to ban creatine might actually be considered malpractice because it is very helpful at rehabilitating injuries and is widely beneficial----for the right kinds of athletes.

To take Creatine is not “doping,” is not cheating. Unless your coaches specifically told you to stay away from it.

Moral of the story is: you really need to learn more about the benefits and harms of what stuff you might put in your body before worrying about the morality of it, because your question seems to indicate a lack of knowledge.

You may not want to use it for soccer. Creatine is a nutritional supplement that helps build muscle. Great for weightlifters, not so great for running.


I suggest you contact the National Catholic Bioethics Center:


A couple of things here
1). It is up to you to know the legality in the state you are in and in the league you are in.
2). This should be done under a doctor’s supervision. We cannot dispense medical advice here but there are considerations especially if you are in your youth.
3). Not all creatine suppliments are the same the higher priced ones are less likely to contain a banned substance in the mixture.
4). Call me old fashioned but if you can’t make the team without supplements, you probably should not be on the team anyway.

Thank you all for your replies. I think that I didnt explain it to properly - it would help me indirectly with soccer. Of course strenght is not the main thing in soccer, but it’s important. Some players end up having to gain some muscle mass and need to do some weightlifting, if they’re thin/weak, which is also my case. Anyway, I was going to get supervision, just thought that I should clear up the ethical/moral part before. And, getting away from creatine, where do you think it’s the line between doping and non doping? Just the legality or also something else?

INHO (or not-so-humble :)), it is both the legality & the health aspect. Many “supplements” - both legal & not - have negative health impacts. Just the other day I read an article on creatine & it doesn’t seem to have a downside for most people. But its good effect may not be enough to make a difference. It’s hard to know.

But someone mentioned adulterated supplements - do make sure you get it from a reputable source, even if it is pricier.

Not sure if you are high school or college age.

Your state should have a governing body for high school sports. Most colleges are governed by NCAA or NIAA. They should have pretty clear cut guidelines.

Don’t overthink this. Creatine is something a 14 yo can buy at WalMart. If it is not something that you have to get on the blackmarket or get a dr. to bend the rules for a prescription don’t worry about it.

legality AND safety issues would contribute to a moral discernment of enhancing ones performance.

I hadn’t thought of the age issue. If he is a teenager, even a normally safe supplement might not be a good idea.

I’m an exercise physiologist and two months away from being a physical therpapist. I’m a huge advocate of using creatine for the athletes I work with. I’ve even given presentations suggesting the use of creatine for some elderly individuals in need of increased functional strength. It’s not a sin. It WILL help you on the soccer field. I can give you all the answers you want if you have more questions.

I stand corrected. :o

Here is an article about the issue

One thing a lot of people don’t realize is the psychological ramifications this can have in competitive levels of sports at young ages. In sports I coach I would not recommend it. Especially around the high school age.

Interesting so it works for non athletes as well… :D:p

I was remotely invoked with a study comparing the 65-85 agre range and the benefits of creatine. Both groups participated in a strength training program. One groups supplemented with creatine and the other did. The expiremental group experienced a stasticantly significant improvement in strength compared to the control. As long as someone doesn’t have contraindications to creatine, they would probably benefit from its use combined with strength training. The greatest indicator of institutionalization risk(nursing home) is lower extremity power. Very interesting stuff.

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