Naturopathic Intravenous Therapy - a healthy cocktail party! – Dr Wendy Davis ND

Naturopathic Intravenous Therapy - a healthy cocktail party!

IV Therapy is the administration of nutrients and hydration directly into the bloodstream for immediate absorption and use by the body. IVIT Certified Naturopathic Doctors are licensed to provide IV Therapy, also known as intravenous therapy, in Canada.

I have been using this therapy since I started my practice as IV Therapy is the fastest way to deliver nutrients throughout the body, because it bypasses the digestive system and goes directly into the bloodstream and thus organs, resulting in a 90-100% absorption rate (as opposed to only 20-50% possible orally).

For years I have offered this therapy in a one-on-one appointment, but the increased popularity of these treatments have necessitated that I bring back a group setting, which I used extensively in Ontario with amazing response.  In this I have 2-4 patients in the IV room at the same time receiving their IV’s.  Patients love this as they get to interact with others and it makes the process much more enjoyable.

I will be starting group IV therapy sessions in August, but individual sessions can be booked if needed.

For those of you not familiar with IV therapy, here is a bit of a run down for you. 

A Brief History of IV Therapy

Although the media portrays IV Therapy as the latest health craze popular among stressed urban professionals, athletes and Hollywood celebrities, the practice has existed for centuries.IV Therapy is nothing new in the medical community, nor is it a crazy fad. Medical professionals first attempted injecting medications into veins in the 1600s, but due to poor hygiene, the practice was abandoned.

During World War I, IV Therapy became a lifesaving treatment, but it wasn’t until the 1960s, when Dr John Myers developed a world-famous cocktail of vitamins and minerals, that the intravenous vitamin therapy we know today began to be used.  Many of the IV’s that I give are a combination of vitamins and minerals called Myers cocktails. 

What Are IV Therapies Used For?

IV therapy is used for several purposes including:

  • Cancer treatment or prevention
  • Athletic performance recovery
  • Immunity support
  • Cold and flu relief
  • Inflammation
  • Digestion issues
  • Exhaustion

Who Would Benefit From IV Therapy?

Originally, intravenous nutrients were used mainly in hospitals for patients who were dehydrated, nutrient-deficient or unable to take medications orally.

Today this therapy has many varied and diverse uses.

Many hormonal imbalances such as adrenal insufficiency, low thyroid and peri/menopause can benefit from IV treatments. 

Patients who are stressed and generally feeling run down find that a monthly IV boost does wonders

Those with busy lives who may not be able to eat well, picky eaters that are nutrient deficient, people that suffer from inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s or Colitis or even Celiac disease notice huge improvements in their health with IV treatments.

People that are in close contact with a number of people every day, such as teachers, flight attendants, and those in retail sales can often benefit from IV therapy to reduce the incidence of colds and flus.

Cancer, in its many forms, responds really well to high dose Vitamin C given via IV therapy.

What Is The Process of IV Therapy?

Prior to the treatment, all clients have their medical history evaluated. If needed, blood tests are completed to rule out liver and kidney conditions that may impact the nutrient metabolism and to make sure the right nutrients are infused into the body.

The rate and quantity of intravenous fluid given depends on each client’s medical condition, weight and age and is made up individually for each patient.

The process of IV therapy involves placing a needle/catheter into the arm or elsewhere on the upper limb, and the slight discomfort is only felt when the skin is first punctured.

Once the catheter is in place, the procedure will take between 30-90 minutes depending on the type of the treatment. 

What is in an IV Drip?

The contents of an IV drip will vary depending on the treatment goals but will include:

  • Saline or sterile water solution: A sterile solution of water and salt that is used to provide hydration and maintain electrolyte balance in the body.  Sterile water is used when the osmolarity of the nutrients needs to be lowered to ensure a comfortable procedure.
  • Nutrients: IV drips contain a variety of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that are required for the body to function properly.

What Vitamin Cocktails Are Used in IV Therapy?

Commonly seen ingredients in an IV vitamin therapy are Vitamin C, the B vitamins, magnesium, calcium, selenium and zinc.

IV vitamin drips may also contain amino acids and antioxidants, such as glutathione.

Vitamin infusions can contain a single vitamin — such as Vitamin C — or a cocktail of vitamins and minerals.

The most common IV vitamin cocktail drips are:

What Are The Most Common IV Vitamin Cocktail Drips?

  • Myers Cocktail – This drip consists of calcium, magnesium, B vitamins, zinc, selenium and vitamin C, and treats a wide range of medical conditions, including improving immunity and energy levels.

  • Hydration IV drip – IV hydration therapy benefits those recovering from a loss of fluids through vomiting, diarrhea or hangover, but also athletes wanting to maximize their performance.

  • High dose Vitamin C – This IV contains 50g of Vitamin C, which at this dose is able to help reduce circulating cancer cells.

  • Detoxification Support – A drip that combines essential fluids, vitamins and minerals that have been found to lower your toxic load. Toxins are stored in fat cells, which makes it harder for you to lose weight.

  • Immunity Support – A cocktail that includes powerful antioxidants, such as glutathione  which helps to protect you from flu and other viruses.

What Are The Benefits of IV Therapy?

One of the main benefits of IV Therapy is fast, high dose nutrient delivery for more effective results without gastrointestinal side effects, absorption issues or loss of potency since the process allows the nutrients to go right into your bloodstream, bypassing the digestive system and ensuring increased efficacy.

The benefits will differ depending on the condition treated, the protocol used, the general health of the patient, and how many treatments are done. 

Some reported benefits include:

  • Stronger immunity 
  • Enhanced mood
  • Decreased sports recovery time
  • Increased energy
  • Improved concentration and mental focus
  • Increased calmness and relaxation
  • Balanced blood sugar
  • Improved sleep patterns
  • Reduced jet lag
  • Improved hangover
  • Reduced migraines
  • Boosted fertility and hormonal imbalance
  • Improved complexion and overall skin health
  • Reduced signs of aging

How Long Does The IV Therapy Effects Last?

Typically, the effects become fully noticeable after the 12 – 24 hours after infusion, although many report feeling better right after treatment.

The effects last for 8 days to 3 weeks depending on the condition, cocktail and type of IV Therapy.