IV Vitamin Therapy – What’s it all about?
Vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants are absolutely essential for normal functioning of the human body. They play a vital role in energy production, metabolism, detoxification, hormone synthesis and immune function. Yet, many people are deficient in these nutrients for a variety of reasons, often leading to many illnesses that are present in today’s modern society.
A healthy diet is important, but sometimes even if a person eats a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, they can still become deficient in nutrients. Some of the reasons for this are genetic defects, poor digestion and absorption through the GI tract, or chronic illness. Certain medications, high amounts of stress, irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, surgery removing parts of the stomach or intestines can acerbate the situation. Even intense athletes can become deficient from excess demands on the body.
Intravenous (IV) vitamin therapy provides direct infusion of these essential nutrients into the blood stream, bypassing the GI tract and allowing for 100 percent absorption into all of your cells. It allows your body to utilize the nutrients rapidly and efficiently to repair, regenerate and restore inherent healing mechanisms. IV vitamin therapy also allows much higher doses to enter the cells than would be possible through ingestion alone. For example, vitamin C or magnesium can cause digestive upset if given orally in high doses, and these negative effects can be avoided if given intravenously. In clinical research, Vitamin C in high doses has demonstrated both anti-viral and anti-cancer effects in humans, and magnesium is used regularly in clinical practice for the treatment of asthma, heart arrhythmias, and pre-term labor because of its muscle relaxing properties.
IV vitamin therapy has been used for over 50 years. If administered properly, by a trained health care provider, it is very safe with minimal to no side effects. It can provide relief for many ailments including asthma, fatigue, fibromyalgia, migraines, chronic allergies, sinus infections, viral illnesses, high blood pressure, and mood disorders. The most common side effects include a mild flushing sensation, a temporary taste of vitamins, or irritation of the vein that’s being infused.
Depending on the specific condition being treated or the nutrients used, treatment protocols normally call for a series of weekly or twice weekly infusions for four to six weeks. After that a patient can choose to continue periodic infusions if needed. IV infusion can also be used in healthy people to prevent disease, ward off a flu or cold virus, improve weight loss efforts, and increase energy and well-being, particularly during times of stress.
Jenifer L. Barry, M.D., is board certified in metabolic and nutritional medicine and offers a variety of IV vitamin therapies including some of the most commonly requested types, such as Myers cocktails, Vitamin C, and glutathione. She also offers nutritional testing to allow for custom IV treatments and supplements based on the patients’ exact deficiencies.