Side Effects of Pre Workout Supplements – Can It Hurt You

Are there side effects of pre workout supplements

Today, working out has become a part of people’s daily routine. However, many people have a very tiring schedule and don’t have the energy to work out. That is why lots of people start taking pre-workout supplements to boost their energy while exercising.

But are there side effects of pre-workout supplements?

Yes, the side effects include jitteriness, insomnia, nausea, increased heart rate, drowsiness, headaches, and anxiety.  This is because most pre-workout supplements have a high amount of caffeine.  In some cases, it can be up to 500 mg.side effects of pre workout supplements states that men should not take over 400 mg per day, and women should have less than 300 mg. Anything over that amount will negatively affect your system.

A large number of people report they have experienced terrible side effects after taking pre-workout supplements. According to experts, the intake of pre-workout supplements is absolutely unnecessary and even potentially dangerous in some cases.

Why do Pre Workout Supplements have Side Effects?

The manufacturers of such supplements might claim they are safe and not leading to any side effects, but you must keep in mind they are not entirely risk-free. In case you have decided to include pre-workout supplements to your regimen, you should make sure you have considered all of their potential downsides.

Supplements normally contain sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners, which can cause discomfort and intestinal distress. Quantities vary depending on the particular brand, and if you want to avoid any side effects, it is essential to read the labels carefully.

In some countries, pre-workout supplements are not closely or regulated at all. Moreover, you may notice product labels are missing or not accurate. To ensure you will not endanger your health, you should buy only tested products, and most importantly, you must be able to recognize the side effects of pre-workout supplements and try to avoid them.

Let’s look through the most common side effects of taking pre-workout supplements:

Nervousness or Jitters

As mentioned before, this is caused by the amount of caffeine that most pre-workout drinks have in them.

According to the Journal of Psychopharmacology, jittery is just the tip of the iceberg with too much caffeine.  It will also cause crashes that make you exhausted and impacts your overall mood if you repeatably have too much caffeine.

Increased Heart Rate and Other Heart Issues

This side effect is also caused by the amount of caffeine and the impact of repeat use.  Experts say that even as little as 125 mg of caffeine can impact your heart rate.  Some of these pre-workout supplements have 4 times that in one serving.

Headachespre workout supplements

Citrulline is often added to pre-workout supplements, and it increases the blood flow to the muscles while you are exercising. Also, it results in the enhancement of your muscle building.

However, this increased blood flow affects not only your muscles but your brain as well. That is why some people experience migraines and headaches. You should buy supplements containing lower amounts of citrulline.

Upset Stomach

Several ingredients like magnesium, caffeine, creatine, sodium bicarbonate can cause you an upset stomach.

If you consume large amounts of magnesium, it might have certain laxative effects and lead to diarrhea. The interesting thing here is that you should use more water when you mix pre-workout supplements with water. Otherwise, you might experience an upset stomach and often diarrhea.

Blotting or Water Retention

The most common cause of water retention is the presence of creatine in the supplements.

Creatine has been proven to increase your capacity for highly intensive exercises. Some people take creatine on its own others prefer supplements containing creatine.

It leads to mild side effects such as digestive issues, bloating, weight gain, or water retention.

Alternatives to Caffeine Filled Pre Workout Supplements

Caffeine Free Pre Workout Supplements – This one seems counter intuitive, but caffeine causes most of the side effects that I stated above.  There are a lot of great stimulant-free or low caffeine pre-workout supplements.  

Get Better Sleep – Most people don’t have the energy since they aren’t getting enough sleep or getting low-quality sleep.  There are a lot of simple hacks that will help you improve your sleep.

how to get rid of pre workout side effects

Better Diet – Another large cause of low energy is a bad diet.  Track your diet for a week, and it will help you get a better idea of any potential issues.  Then check with a certified nutritionist to establish a diet that will improve your energy and overall mood!


Pre Workout Supplements have a lot of side effects.  For both your long term and short term health, it is better to avoid them and try the alternatives we provided.  Also, always consult a doctor before starting any new diets or supplements.

Here is a video that may help.


I'm Lee, the guy behind Protein for Beginners. I've been into fitness and using supplements over the last 20+ years and have become obsessed with finding the best!

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