Cropping up in clinics all over the country, IV vitamin drips are no longer the reserve of exhausted A-listers suffering from exhaustion. Provided they’re administered by a registered medical practitioner, in sterile conditions, there’s very little risk involved. But what does it feel like? And do you really need one? Dr Tatiana Lapa talks us through it.
What are they and why someone would choose to have them?
“Intravenous nutrient therapy bypasses several of the processes required to make vitamins and nutrients suitable for use by cells of the body. Supplements taken orally first have to be absorbed in the gut and then transformed into useable forms by the liver. These processes lead to losses and waste of vitamins and nutrients. Intravenous administration of vital micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants achieves a far higher concentration of useable nutrients, compared with taking oral supplements. High concentrations of nutrients in the blood results in greater absorption into cells, where the nutrients are used for growth, renewal and maintenance of healthy cells.”
What does a vitamin drip feel like during and afterwards?
“Having an IV drip feels a little different to giving blood. There is a small soft tube in a vein (usually the same one used to give blood) and people often feel a cool trickle as the drip starts. As the drip continues, people describe a feeling of ‘wellness’ and energy during the treatment. This feeling can be quite different when compared to giving blood, which can often feel quite draining (literally!). Most people feel great after the drip; some may feel a little light-headed. We recommend everyone relaxes with an LED face mask for 30 minutes after the treatment.”
Tell us about the different types of drip…
“IV drips can contain different ingredients and therefore different benefits. Our drips have a variety of ingredients including fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E and K), water-soluble vitamins (B1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 12, biotin, folate and vitamin C), essential minerals and iron (calcium, magnesium, selenium, zinc, potassium and iron), glutathione, amino acids, phosphatidylcholine and alpha lipoic acid. Drips can be pre-prepared cocktails which boost energy levels, immune function, fat burning, detoxification and general wellness; or drips can be prepared for individual needs.”
Within the medical industry, what is the general consensus on drips?
“IV drips are widely used in medicine to treat illness by delivering vital nutrients, fluids and medication quickly and efficiently into the bloodstream. The medical profession is beginning to come around to the idea of IV drips being used not just for treating illness, but also for optimising health.”
Should prospective drip users speak with a doctor or nutritionist first?
“Our drips are only offered by doctors who understand your diet and lifestyle, and tailor an IV drip protocol to your needs. IV drips are generally used to boost wellness rather than address clinical deficiencies such as iron-deficiency anaemia, so almost anyone could benefit from an IV drip. We always recommend a baseline blood test to check measurable levels of vitamins in the blood, ensure healthy kidney function and rule out inherited diseases such as G6PD.”
Are there any risks involved?
“There may be some temporary side effects such as light-headedness, hunger or tingling in the fingertips. These tend to be very mild and resolve within minutes of treatment. Fat-soluble vitamins tend to accumulate in the body, so frequent and unnecessary administration of fat-soluble vitamins can lead to excessive amounts in the body and this can cause problems. Water-soluble vitamins do not have this issue as anything that is in excess is removed by the kidneys. There are certain contraindications to treatment such as kidney failure, inherited metabolic disorders and cancer treatment. In these circumstances, the wrong types of drip can cause more harm than good, so it is important that IV drips are carried out by medical professionals.”
Is a one-off drip enough or do some clients come back regularly?
“We generally recommend a course of treatment. In some cases, a one-off drip may be appropriate, for example if boosting energy levels during a busy work schedule or helping fight off an infection.”
FIND THE BEST VITAMIN DRIP
Best For Hangovers: Modified Myer’s Cocktail
This is based on the original IV cocktail developed by Dr John Meyers in the 70s and is seen as the perfect mix of B vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. A great boost for general health and wellbeing as well as jet lag recovery. Infusion takes at least 30 minutes.
Best For Instant Energy: Advanced ATP Cocktail
If you’re running on empty or suffering from burnout, this is the one for you. You can expect to enjoy a boost in concentration as well as improved sleep. Infusion takes at least 45 minutes
Best For The Immune System: Immuno Booster
Like a reboot for your immune system, this one also helps with wound-healing and stress reduction. Infusion takes at least 45 minutes.
Best For Frequent Fliers: Performance Booster Plus
A combination of energising and immune system-boosting B vitamins and amino acids. This one is a great all-rounder, helping to detoxify the body and improve mental clarity. Infusion takes at least 45 minutes.
Best For Fitness Fanatics: Amino Muscle Plus
Sporty types might like to try this amino acid-packed cocktail, which works in conjunction with your fitness regime to help build muscles, increase energy levels and help the body recover from injury. Infusion takes at least 45 minutes.
Dr Tatiana Lapa is registered with the General Medical Council and Royal College of General Practitioners. Her clinic is in Marylebone. Visit DrTatiana.co.uk
DISCLAIMER: If you're planning to try IV drips or Vitamin shots, it's important to seek advice from a medical practitioner first to ensure their safety. Especially if you're pregnant or suffer with existing conditions.
DISCLAIMER: We endeavour to always credit the correct original source of every image we use. If you think a credit may be incorrect, please contact us at email@example.com.