Vitamins in Your Veins
Jun 01, 2020 09:00AM
By Julie Peterson
The first intravenous therapy (IV) vitamin drips were developed and administered by Dr. John Myers in the 1970s. Today, IV vitamin infusions are available to the public, while more targeted solutions are prescribed by some doctors.
The research Myers did, led to the Myers’ Cocktail, which is still in use today. It includes commonly needed vitamins and minerals, such as magnesium, calcium, B vitamins and Vitamin C, and is given to achieve concentrations of nutrients that are not obtainable with oral administration. The purpose of a vitamin infusion via IV is to deliver fluids directly into a vein and allow a variety of nutrients and antioxidants to be absorbed quickly and directly into the bloodstream.
“A vitamin infusion is 100 percent delivery in the bloodstream. It goes where it’s needed, and then whatever is not needed is eliminated. In a healthy body an infusion lasts about 7 to 10 days,” says Donna Sobredo who owns Vitalifts in Melbourne with her husband Dr. Sergio Sobredo MD.
Some sort of supplementation is good for most people, as it’s difficult to get everything the body needs through the diet because of poor food quality. But oral supplements don’t always deliver an adequate amount of particular vitamins that are actually bio-available due to absorption issues, digestive problems or low-quality products.
“It’s a method that produces higher levels of the vitamins and minerals in your body than if you got them from food or supplements,” says Dr. Alita Sikora at Sikora Integrative Medicine in Vero Beach. “Higher levels of the vitamins and minerals in your bloodstream lead to greater uptake into cells, which will use the nutrients to maintain health and fight illness.”
Vitamin C, for example, has been shown to turn on the immune system, specifically the white blood cells. But taking high doses of Vitamin C orally can cause digestive distress. High-dose Vitamin C via IV infusion is better absorbed and doesn’t need to go through the digestive tract to have an effect.
Athletes, people with autoimmune disorders, those in cancer treatment and pregnant women commonly seek out a variety of different vitamin infusions to boost hydration, assist with healing or just to feel better. It’s a complementary action people can take to assist the body during differing physical conditions and works well in combination with conventional treatments.
“The majority of people who seek us out have underlying conditions that they know can be helped by vitamin infusions,” says Lorin Carpenter, co-owner of Radiantly Health Vitamin Infusion Drip Lounge (RHVI) in Indialantic.
You do not need a prescription for skin enhancing, fat burning, hydrating or any of the other IVs on the menu at the RHVI drip lounge. “Anyone can come in and pick one of those IVs based on what their concerns are,” says Carpenter. However, she notes that since they are part of Radiantly Healthy MD with Rebecca Hunton, MD, the lounge does see some of Hunton’s patients who have prescriptions for specialized infusions.
Hunton conducts blood tests that look at her patient’s micronutrient levels and then can prescribe individualized treatment for those who may have low or borderline low vitamins and minerals. Patient specific IVs can also include chelation of heavy metals or arterial plaque reduction. These require a prescription because it’s important to do them under a doctor’s supervision who understands the patients baseline health issues.
The Myers Cocktail or targeted individualized treatments may provide relief for conditions such as migraines, fatigue, fibromyalgia, muscle spasms, colds, chronic sinusitis, seasonal allergies, depression/anxiety and other issues. Some people use IV therapy to boost immunity, relieve pain, recover from hangovers and decrease inflammation. There are also combinations such as Vitamin C and glutathione that offer the anti-aging benefits of lightening the skin, reducing hyperpigmentation (age spots) and providing a healthy glow.
“The Myers is the most popular IV that we do. After that, I would say any of our hydration IVs,” says Carpenter.
Wellness physicians are saying the body needs Vitamins A, B, C, D and zinc. Those are the ones that best help build the immune system and keep it strong. “Since this viral outbreak, we have put together an infusion specifically for [the immune system],” says Sobredo.
Many people are still staying safe at home but venturing out for a vitamin infusion is fairly low-risk. The businesses have always conducted sterilization procedures and are now working to space out clients and keep physical distancing and masks in place. For those who still don’t want to leave home, Sobredo says, “We also have mobile service where one nurse will come out and do up to three people at home.”
As a complement to a healthy diet and oral supplements, IV vitamin infusion is coming into the mainstream of popularity for people in all walks of life who want to look and feel better and have more vitality.
Learn more about IV Therapy in our video series “Be Well. Stay Connected.” at myNaturalAwakenings.com/IVTherapyVideos. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more videos at YouTube.com/myNaturalAwakenings.
Donna Sobredo, Vitalifts owner in Melbourne, shares how IV therapy can provide an energy boost, anti-aging benefits, and more. Find out how the body processes infusions vs supplements. Read More »