What Does Citric Acid Do In Pre Workout?

Medically reviewed by Dr Dimitar Marinov
What Does Citric Acid Do In Pre Workout?

Are you looking to boost your physical performance with a little bit of citrusy help? Citric acid has long been known as a healthy dietary supplement with several great benefits. But what exactly does it do in a pre-workout? Well, that’s what we’re here to find out!

What Is Citric Acid?

Citric acid is a weak organic acid that is naturally found in citrus fruits. It is odourless and colourless and is often used in several ways, namely, as a preservative, for that sour taste in soft drinks or foods, as a pH adjuster or as an anticoagulant by chelating calcium in the blood.

It’s the first molecule that forms during the citric acid cycle, also known as the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle or Krebs cycle. It forms part of the chemical reaction of transforming food into energy in the human body. Consuming citric acid in a pre-workout is a way to improve energy metabolism and overall athletic performance. Additional citric acid generally kick-starts the TCA cycle, which in turn should increase the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP).

What Are The Benefits Of Citric Acid In Pre-workout Supplements?

There are several benefits to having citric acid in pre-workout supplements. Here are a few:

Boost Energy Metabolism

A major benefit of citric acid in pre-workouts is its role in energy production. As we put our bodies under duress from intense exercise, we transition from aerobic respiration to anaerobic respiration, where our bodies no longer have sufficient oxygen to combine with glucose to create energy.

Because citric acid is a key component of the TCA cycle, having an excess of it boosts your body’s ability to produce ATP by recycling lactic acid. This is the main energy catalyst in your body when there is an absence of oxygen, and it allows your body to resist physical fatigue for longer.

It makes Supplements Easier to Mix

By adding citric acid to pre-workout supplements, you make it easier to mix with water or other liquids. Many manufacturers add citric acid powder to their pre-workouts to give them a consistent, smooth quality and flavour.

Helps avoid Kidney Stones

Citric acid often helps prevent or break down kidney stones. You’ll often find it in diuretic supplements. In the form of potassium citrate, citric acid is used to break down or prevent kidney stones by forming soluble citrate salts, which bind with calcium and slowly break down any formed stones.

For an adult, the recommended dosage of citric acid per day would be 3 to 6 teaspoons (15 to 30ml) diluted in a glass of water and drunk after meals or just before bedtime. Check the citric acid levels in your pre-workout supplements to follow the same dosage suggestions.

How Should You Take Citric Acid?

Citric acid tablets can be taken by oral administration and should always be taken during or after you have eaten, and if it’s in liquid form, it should be mixed with at least 120 ml of water or juice. This all depends on how strong you want the citrus fruit flavour to be.

When Should You Take Citric Acid?

It’s recommended that you take citric acid during or after meals to avoid discomfort in the stomach. Remember, citric acid is a weak organic acid, so it could raise the acidic levels in your stomach. In a pre-workout, you can take it as usual, 15-30 minutes before your workout to get the best results.

Where Can I Buy Pre-Workout Supplements With Citric Acid In?

There is a wide range of tasty pre-workout supplements that have citric acid in them, like RedCon1 Total War, Ghost Legend Preworkout and Faction Labs Disorder Pre-Workout. All of these can be bought right here at Power Supps.

What Are The Potential Side Effects Of Citric Acid Supplementation?

While citric acid is well-known for being a health additive to pre-workouts, there are some potential side effects that you’d be wise to consider. Here are a few of them:

  • Citric acid is a weak organic acid and can lead to skin irritation in people with sensitive skin
  • Drinks with a high concentration of citric acid can wear away the enamel of your teeth and make them turn yellow or become more sensitive
  • It can give you an upset stomach when taken without food, which could lead to nausea and vomiting

Final Thoughts On Citric Acid Do in Pre-workout Supplements

Drinking a pre-workout with citric acid in it is a great start to helping you achieve your fitness goals. Not only does it have a great flavour, but it also has benefits like improving muscular endurance and your overall well-being.

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