Creatine should be taken when the stomach is mostly empty so that it can be used by the body properly. But some people get sick when they take creatine on an empty stomach. This is especially true since creatine supplements are supposed to be taken several times a day. Some people have found that taking creatine with a small amount of food or water helps to counteract this side effect without affecting how well the supplement is absorbed. However, caffeine is usually thought to hurt the effectiveness of creatine.
Muscle & Body magazine says that the best times to take creatine are before and after you work out. For example, when you get to the gym, they say to eat 5 grammes of creatine, 20 grammes of whey protein isolate, and 40 grammes of fast-digesting carbs (sugar). This is meant to temporarily make muscles stronger so they can handle a harder workout.
People are told to take between 3 and 5 grammes of creatine with 40 to 50 grammes of whey (or a whey/soy blend), 60 to 100 grammes of fast-digesting carbs, and 500 to 1,000 milligrammes of fenugreek when they leave the gym or get home after a workout. When taken after a workout, creatine is supposed to protect the muscles and bring the level of this amino acid back to what it was before the workout.