Creatine + Caffeine ̶+̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶T̶e̶n̶u̶i̶f̶o̶l̶i̶a̶

It’s been just about 3 months since I quit Finasteride and the good days (less depression, anhedonia, lethargy, brain fog, and testosterone insensitivity etc.) are slowly becoming more frequent (from 0-1/week in the beginning to 2-3/week now).

Recently, I’ve been using creatine and caffeine to try and upregulate my 5α-Reductase activity and normalize my androgen receptor density/sensitivity. I’ve also been eating ketogenically and intermittent fasting.

Creatine experience:
first day using creatine (5g) and higher dose caffeine (240mg sugar free rockstar) in the late afternoon (~3-4pm) specifically had a really powerful effect in that it reversed all of my symptoms (cognitive but also indirectly libido).

The same combination on the second day also felt really good (dosed 5mg creatine once in the morning and once in the evening).

Sadly, on day three, all of my symptoms returned with a vengeance despite following the same protocol as day 2. Specifically my mood and motivation deteriorated. Fortunately, I remembered I had gotten really beneficial mood uplifting effects from Nootropics Depot’s Polygala Tenuifolia extract (increases norepinephrine serotonin and dopamine levels by reducing their transport back to the presynaptic neuron as well as possibly increasing BDNF and NGF which are negatively impacted by PFS) in the past. So, on day 4, I took ~30mg Polygala sublingually along with the day 2 protocol and eliminated the evening caffeine (only took the usual 200mg caffeine pill in the morning). This didn’t help much as I still crashed in the evening.

BUT THEN, on day 5, I took 60-100mg of polygala sublingually in the morning AND in the evening also without the caffeine and sure enough, my mood went through the roof and my symptoms remained vanquished just like on day one with the late afternoon caffeine and creatine alone. ̶I̶’̶m̶ ̶g̶o̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶k̶e̶e̶p̶ ̶t̶h̶i̶s̶ ̶p̶r̶o̶t̶o̶c̶o̶l̶ ̶u̶p̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶s̶e̶e̶ ̶h̶o̶w̶ ̶l̶o̶n̶g̶ ̶i̶t̶ ̶l̶a̶s̶t̶s̶,̶ ̶b̶u̶t̶ ̶s̶o̶ ̶f̶a̶r̶,̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶r̶a̶p̶i̶d̶ ̶a̶n̶t̶i̶d̶e̶p̶r̶e̶s̶s̶a̶n̶t̶,̶ ̶m̶o̶o̶d̶ ̶b̶o̶o̶s̶t̶i̶n̶g̶,̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶c̶o̶g̶n̶i̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ ̶e̶n̶h̶a̶n̶c̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶e̶f̶f̶e̶c̶t̶s̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶(̶w̶h̶i̶c̶h̶ ̶s̶u̶p̶p̶o̶s̶e̶d̶l̶y̶ ̶i̶n̶c̶r̶e̶a̶s̶e̶ ̶o̶v̶e̶r̶ ̶t̶i̶m̶e̶)̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶b̶e̶e̶n̶ ̶r̶e̶m̶a̶r̶k̶a̶b̶l̶e̶.̶ ̶T̶h̶e̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶a̶l̶o̶n̶e̶ ̶m̶i̶g̶h̶t̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶s̶u̶f̶f̶i̶c̶i̶e̶n̶t̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶e̶l̶i̶c̶i̶t̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶s̶e̶ ̶s̶a̶m̶e̶ ̶b̶e̶n̶e̶f̶i̶c̶i̶a̶l̶ ̶e̶f̶f̶e̶c̶t̶s̶,̶ ̶h̶o̶w̶e̶v̶e̶r̶ ̶I̶ ̶t̶h̶i̶n̶k̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶s̶y̶n̶e̶r̶g̶i̶z̶e̶s̶ ̶w̶e̶l̶l̶ ̶w̶i̶t̶h̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶c̶r̶e̶a̶t̶i̶n̶e̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶c̶a̶f̶f̶e̶i̶n̶e̶,̶ ̶p̶o̶t̶e̶n̶t̶i̶a̶l̶l̶y̶ ̶e̶n̶h̶a̶n̶c̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶i̶r̶ ̶e̶f̶f̶e̶c̶t̶s̶.̶

Current Protocol:
5-10g creatine
200mg caffeine pill
̶6̶0̶-̶1̶0̶0̶m̶g̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶T̶e̶n̶u̶i̶f̶o̶l̶i̶a̶ ̶(̶N̶o̶o̶t̶r̶o̶p̶i̶c̶s̶ ̶d̶e̶p̶o̶t̶)̶ ̶S̶U̶B̶L̶I̶N̶G̶U̶A̶L̶L̶Y̶

Late afternoon (3-4pm):
5-10g creatine
̶6̶0̶-̶1̶0̶0̶m̶g̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶T̶e̶n̶u̶i̶f̶o̶l̶i̶a̶ ̶(̶N̶o̶o̶t̶r̶o̶p̶i̶c̶s̶ ̶d̶e̶p̶o̶t̶)̶ ̶S̶U̶B̶L̶I̶N̶G̶U̶A̶L̶L̶Y̶
(optional more caffeine 100-200mg or 2-4mg nicotine lozenge)

̶T̶o̶ ̶a̶c̶c̶e̶l̶e̶r̶a̶t̶e̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶r̶e̶a̶l̶i̶z̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶a̶n̶y̶ ̶p̶o̶t̶e̶n̶t̶i̶a̶l̶ ̶b̶e̶n̶e̶f̶i̶t̶s̶,̶ ̶y̶o̶u̶ ̶c̶o̶u̶l̶d̶ ̶t̶r̶y̶ ̶t̶a̶k̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶s̶a̶m̶e̶ ̶s̶u̶b̶l̶i̶n̶g̶u̶a̶l̶ ̶d̶o̶s̶e̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶P̶o̶l̶y̶g̶a̶l̶a̶ ̶(̶6̶0̶-̶1̶0̶0̶m̶g̶)̶ ̶3̶ ̶t̶i̶m̶e̶s̶ ̶a̶ ̶d̶a̶y̶ ̶(̶m̶o̶r̶n̶i̶n̶g̶,̶ ̶n̶o̶o̶n̶,̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶e̶v̶e̶n̶i̶n̶g̶)̶ ̶i̶n̶s̶t̶e̶a̶d̶ ̶o̶f̶ ̶2̶.̶

As I’m finally beginning to recover from PFS, I’m beginning to realize how much it truly turned me into an anxious zombie with destroyed ambition and self worth.

Also, fuck the polygala, it didn’t help and just gave me heart palpitations while the serotonin increase was counterproductive to hormonal restoration. 5-10g creatine in the evenings particularly is where it’s at for me, but if you have side effects like I did, including increased blood pressure/heart rate, definitely take it with food and if needed, use a diuretic (like caffeine or dandelion) to counteract the water retention/dehydration issues. Creatine and Tribulus really helped over time with a few cycles and synergized well with stimulants like caffeine (200-400mg) and nicotine lozenges for me (2-4mg) allowing them to work again. When my DHT/testosterone/neurosteroids are off, I don’t respond to stimulants or almost anything that usually boosts my mental performance; instead, they just increase my stress levels, making me anxious and giving me sweaty palms etc.

Finally, avoiding high doses of any common natural 5ARis like chocolate, green tea, MCTs, Omega 3s, other poly unsaturated fats, Ginkgo, Milk thistle, etc. has been a game changer for me. Good luck to anyone using creatine for their symptoms and anyone struggling with PFS in general. There is hope!

Solid PFS guide from more plates more dates

10% Tongkat ali extract took the improvement from tribulus and creatine to a different level, holy shit, I feel better than I ever did pre-fin.

I’ve also noticed improvements from the addition of Huperzine, and 10:1 cordyceps powder, intermittent as opposed to longer term fasting, reducing calories per meal, minimizing omega 6 gluten and casein, eating all cals before 5pm, and intensive cycling every other day (up hills repeatedly, periodically elevating HR and breathing depth). The improvements have been building over 3 weeks and continue to sustain.

True test will be how much I can eliminate and still feel this good.

Why is some of this expunged?

mentioned in the first comment


Final thing I’ll say is to minimize SHBG, adding in carbs again at least intermittently may be a good idea. It seemed to help me. Eating plenty of healthy high nutrient density calories with carbohydrates seems to maximize my testosterone levels and sensitivity. Fasting excessively and eating ketogenically too strictly can definitely be counterproductive in some individuals.

hormone levels before and now back on finasteride (that’s right, I started Finasteride again at 0.25mg and don’t notice any sides unless I up the dose to 1mg):