Intravenous Vitamin Therapy
When I was an ER doctor, my colleagues and I all knew of the beneficial effects of intravenous fluids and intravenous medications, because of how they work fast to save lives. Intravenous nutrients are very powerful because they facilitate the excretion of toxins and can rejuvenate organs such as the liver and the brain. Intravenous vitamin therapy, or IVT, has been used for decades by a small, yet growing, number of nutritionally-oriented physicians, including me. It involves using IVs to administer certain vitamins, minerals, and amino acids, directly into the bloodstream.
This approach offers a number of advantages compared to oral nutritional supplementation. First, IVT allows for nutrients to quickly reach the body’s cells without having to first pass through the digestive tract and liver to be metabolized. Moreover, IVT enables physicians to administer high doses of nutrients safely and effectively without the typical side effects, such as stomach cramping or loose bowels, that can be caused when high doses of nutrients are taken orally. This is especially true of nutrients like vitamin C and magnesium.
In addition, the highest doses of nutrients that can be safely administered intravenously would be impossible to consume orally. And even if that were not the case, because of how the digestive process breaks down oral supplements, a good percentage of them is often excreted by the body without being utilized by cells, tissues, and organs, unlike what happens with IVT.
Another important benefit that IVT provides is its ability to administer more effective therapeutic doses of nutrients. This is important because research has established that, for certain nutrients, high blood or tissue concentrations must be achieved in order for them to be most active and effective. Vitamin C is a good example of this.
Numerous studies show that high concentrations of vitamin C in the bloodstream and intracellular fluids are necessary before it can achieve its beneficial effects. Large doses of vitamin C administered via IVT can stimulate the immune system, help the liver work better, and strengthen and improve the functioning of the adrenal glands, as well as other organs that are not functioning efficiently. Using intravenous vitamin C, I can dramatically help many patients. Some of my patients, for example, are receiving chemotherapy for cancer at three- to four-week intervals. In between these chemotherapy sessions, they receive 25,000 mg of intravenous vitamin C from me on a weekly basis, in order to reduce toxicity from the chemotherapy. This protocol in no way interferes with the action of chemotherapy and can improve its effectiveness.
Besides vitamin C, the nutrients most commonly administered via IVT include phosphatidylcholine (for its liver and brain effects), glutathione (for its ability to detoxify), trace minerals, and alpha-lipoic acid (ALA). A very popular IV is a combination of vitamin C, various B vitamins, calcium, and magnesium known as the Myers Cocktail, which is named after John Myers, MD, the physician who invented it in the 1970s, and which has proven to be an effective treatment for a range of conditions including acute and chronic asthma, cold and flu, chronic fatigue (CFS), Epstein-Barr virus, fibromyalgia, headache and migraine, and for managing the withdrawal symptoms of drug addiction.
Intravenous vitamin C and glutathione can be very helpful to help your body get rid of the effects of general anesthesia. This can be done one week after surgery and followed with an additional IV one week later. If you are in need of surgery, ask your integrative doctor to make sure that he uses IVT in his practice.
All IVT treatments are first custom-tailored to each patient’s specific needs and can be administered either quickly, as an IV “push” (over 10-15 minutes), or as a standard IVT treatment, which usually lasts between 30 to 90 minutes while the patient sits comfortably, and is able to listen to music, read a book, or simply relax. IVT has been an essential component of my overall treatment protocol for many of my patients, and both they and I can personally attest to its effectiveness.