British Liver Trust
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Do preworkout supplements effect the liver?

Hi, I been using preworkout supplements for about 1 year now. Not every day but most days, if I'm honest. They contain 5g creatine, 300mg caffeine, and a few other ingredients. One i was taking had dmaa in it too. I also take a fair bit of protein powder. I don't drink and my diet is pretty good. I'm 43 just! And exercise everyday and not overweight. My sister in law died last november of liver disease and it's really put the frighteners on me!

6 Replies

I dont have any personal knowledge of these supplements, though I do know people with viral hepatitis who take protein supplements if they are having trouble with appetite/weight loss.

It seems the idea of these supplements is that you take them on training days? I presume that means you take them when your body is going to be under stress?

Are you a healthy person with no history of liver disease in your immediate family. I presume the dealth of your sister-in-law (sorry for your loss) has brought home how significant to our overall health the health of our liver is, and you want to make sure you are being kind to yours.


Hi Bolly, thanks for replying. Yes these supplements are for energy/strength on training days. I've decided to only use them 3 days a week for the big exercises. I am healthy with a good appetite and good overall energy levels. I have no health issues and no history of liver disease in my family. I've bought LiverMilk from Analbolic Designs which as several supposed liver cleansers ie: milk thistle,N-Acetyl Cysteine,Turmeric,Bupleurum Root extract,Dandelion Root 4:1, Artichoke Extract,Schizandra Fruit,White Peony. These look quite good. Maybe you've heard of them?


Hi again.

I've heard of milk thistle and dandelion being liver 'cleansers'. Also turmeric is the 'new' wonder spice for things like cancer and inflammatory conditions I think. No idea about the others. Are you taking them in capsule form or in an alcohol base?

Its positive to be concerned about your health, but I wonder if reviewing your diet would be as good as spending money on supplements (the power ones) and then more supplements to counteract your worries about the supplements! If you get my drift. I understand most power supplements have caffeine in them, which I doubt is good for you long term.

Are you training for competitions that you have got sucked into feeling you need pre-workout stuff before you use the gym?



Hi again Bolly, I'm taking them in capsule form, no alcohol. That'd kinda defeat the purpose lol. My diet has always been high in protein. High by RDA standards that is, but i've never had any health problems regarding this and being doing it since I was 17, just 43 now. Re the caffeine i've heard caffeine can help slow down cirrohsis of the liver. I have felt the benefit of using them before a hard workout but as mentioned i'm going to reduce them to just twice a week. No i'm not training for competitions. I was a skinny 6ft 2ins teenager when i started and i guess it's a way of life now. I couldn't imagine ever stopping. My body composition is great as a result plus my cholesterol level is low. But for me it's about being healthy and being strong naturally so i've never considered steroids thank god! :)


Hi whitesnake. I think you've argued yourself into continuing with the supplements! Sounds like you are careful what you do, so carry on - but just because you've been taking these extra supplements for 26 years without a problem on the outside, doesn't mean you know what they are doing to your insides. I presume you don't have any screening apart from the cholesterol so your overall health is based on how you feel rather than the science!

Yes there is some research suggests that coffee 'may' be good for people with liver disease, but as you don't have liver disease I'm not sure it justifies the caffeine. In this research its because of some anti-inflammatory properties but I assume you're using it as a stimulant. Also the coffee for liver disease has to be pure coffee beans, not instant coffee with milk and sugar etc etc.


Hi Bolly, i don't actually drink tea/coffee. Never liked them. Yes i appreciate i can't say for sure what exactly is going on on the inside. I've thought about getting a liver test done. Maybe i'm worrying about nothing. I guess part of it is because i heard there are no symptoms from liver problems until there is quite a bit of damage done. Kinda scary. Creatine is considered safe by some but not so by others although loads of people use it. Well i've decided to cut right back on my preworkouts to 2 days a week and so won't be having caffeine apart from that either so i guess it's not too bad. Might continue with the milk thistle product too! :)


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