Pre Workout Supplements Side Effects – 5 Harmful Disadvantages

Pre Workout Supplements Side Effects – 5 Harmful Disadvantages


Pre Workout Supplements Side Effects – To boost the energy levels and performance during the exercise, many people turn to pre-workout supplements.

These formulas typically consist of a blend of various flavored ingredients, each of which plays a specific role in enhancing performance. However, some people experience side effects after taking it.

Here are 5 pre workout supplements side effects, along with some tips on how to avoid them.

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1. It Can Cause Anxiety

Caffeine is one of the main ingredients in many pre-workout supplements. This stimulant has been shown to increase muscle strength and power during exercise, reducing fatigue. Theoretically, caffeine allows you to get more out of your workout.

However, caffeine does have some potential side effects, especially if you consume a lot of it. These include insomnia, nausea, palpitations, drowsiness, headache, restlessness, and restlessness or restlessness.

Also, many pre-workout supplements are high in caffeine, up to 500mg per serving. Servings generally range from 0.35 to 1 ounce (10 to 30 grams). For comparison, 1 cup (240 ml) of coffee contains only 95 mg.

How to reduce side effects?

Caffeine dosage is highly individual, with some people tolerating it better than others.

The best way to minimize side effects is to start with a small dose of a caffeine supplement before your workout, gradually increasing the dose to see what you can tolerate.

Remember, it’s best to avoid caffeine at least 6 hours before bed to avoid insomnia. Of course, you can also opt for a caffeine-free pre-workout supplement.


You’ll find caffeine in most pre-workout supplements, but this stimulant can cause jitters, anxiety, and an increased heart rate. If you experience side effects, try a lower dose to see how your body reacts.

2. Can Increase Water Retention

Another popular ingredient in many pre-workout supplements is creatine.

It has been shown to increase high-intensity exercise capacity and lean body mass gains with exercise. While creatine is often included in pre-workout supplements, it can also be taken on its own.

The main side effects associated with creatine are relatively mild, but include water retention, bloating, weight gain, and digestive problems.

How to reduce pre workout supplements side effects?

Despite these side effects, creatine has been shown to be very safe. You can reduce any adverse symptoms by providing the correct dosage.

Creatine is usually taken as a loading phase of 4 tablespoons (20 grams) per day for a minimum of 3 days, followed by a daily maintenance dose of 3 to 5 grams.

This method gives quick results but has the greatest potential to cause indigestion and bloating.

Alternatively, you can take a daily dose of 3-6 grams if you are willing to wait 3-4 weeks to see benefits. This option is best if you want to avoid side effects like bloating, especially for people with sensitive stomachs.

In particular, it can be difficult to avoid a moderate weight gain of 2 to 6 pounds (1 to 3 kg) when taking creatine. This is mainly due to increased water retention in the muscles.


The easiest way to avoid the mild side effects of creatine is to take a smaller daily dose instead of going through a loading phase.

3. May Cause Mild Reactions

Two additional ingredients in most pre workout supplements are beta-alanine and niacin (vitamin B3). Beta-alanine is an amino acid that reduces acidity in muscles during exercise, which can help you train longer.

At doses of 4 to 6 grams per day, it has been shown to improve physical performance and reduce fatigue during high-intensity exercise lasting 1 to 4 minutes.

However, this substance can cause paresthesia, a tingling sensation in the arms and legs. Although this is a harmless nervous system reaction, some people may experience discomfort.

Another ingredient that is somewhat lacking is niacin, which is included in many pre-workout supplements because of its reddening effect on the skin.

At high doses of 500 mg or more, it can cause blood flow to the surface of the skin, resulting in red spots.

Although niacin also plays an important role in energy metabolism, its intake may not provide additional benefits if you eat a balanced diet.

How to reduce pre workout supplements side effects?

The most effective method for reducing the tingling associated with beta-alanine is to divide the daily dose of 4 to 6 grams into 2 separate doses of 2-3 grams each. Alternatively, you can buy a sustained-release formula that avoids these side effects.

At the same time, by keeping the niacin dose below 500 mg, you can prevent niacin flush. You can also buy products without niacin. Make sure you check the ingredients on the label.


Beta-alanine and niacin are two common ingredients in pre-workout formulas that can cause tingling and redness in the skin, respectively.

You can avoid these side effects by splitting or reducing your dose, or by choosing products without these compounds.

4. May Cause Digestive Discomfort

Various ingredients in pre-workout formulas can cause indigestion. These include sodium bicarbonate, magnesium, creatine, and caffeine.

Baking soda can cause problems at 91 to 227 mg per pound of body weight (200 to 500 mg per kg). However, most pre-workout supplements don’t contain much.

On the other hand, magnesium can have a laxative effect, especially in the form of magnesium citrate. Therefore, taking too much can cause diarrhea.

Interestingly, using too little water when mixing pre-workout supplements can also interfere with your digestion. Liquids that are too thick can cause diarrhea.

How to reduce side effects?

Mixing pre-workout supplements with 240-350 ml of water can minimize side effects.

Because it’s hard to know which ingredients are causing digestive problems, you can try different pre-workout formulas until you find one you can tolerate.


Various ingredients in pre-workout supplements can cause digestive problems for some people. Mixing it with enough water can reduce this effect.

5. It Can Cause Headaches

Citrulline, which is added to some pre-workout supplements, is intended to increase blood flow to muscles during exercise, resulting in more muscle building. This amino acid works by increasing the levels of nitric oxide in the blood.

The recommended dose of citrulline malate, the common form of this substance, is 6 to 8 grams, although many pre-workout supplements offer smaller amounts and may not offer potential benefits.

Note that this increased blood flow affects the brain and muscles, causing headaches and migraines in some people. It is caused by changes in blood pressure in the small blood vessels of the brain.

How to reduce side effects?

The most effective way to reduce citrulline headaches is to reduce the dosage. If you still have headaches, look for a pre-workout supplement that doesn’t contain these ingredients.


Citrulline, a common pre workout supplements, can cause headaches by increasing blood flow to the body. Dose reduction may minimize these effects.

Should you take pre workout supplements?

You don’t need to take supplements to get the benefits of exercise.

However, if you’ve been exercising regularly for at least six months, a pre-workout supplement may help improve your physical performance.

If you want to test the formula, look for the seal of an independent quality assurance laboratory. Testing companies include, USP, and NSF International.

Also, it’s always a good idea to check the ingredient list for any reactions. You can also avoid brand-name mixes, as they hide the exact amount of each ingredient used.


Pre workout supplements can improve your physical performance if you follow a healthy exercise and diet regimen, but they are not necessary for good results.

The Bottom Line

Pre workout supplements or formulas are popular in the fitness community for their effect on energy levels and performance.

However, you may experience side effects such as headaches, skin problems, tingling, and an upset stomach.

You can minimize many of these side effects by lowering your dose or avoiding supplements with certain ingredients.

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