A lot of hangover cure “drip hydration bars” have flooded the Charlotte market lately, promising to decrease the pain of a prolonged night of drinking. Although I do enjoy a glass of wine from time to time, I am not a big drinker and didn’t pay much attention to all the hoopla. But that all changed when I learned about the benefits of IV hydration therapy as part of a personalized functional medicine approach for optimal health and longevity.
What is IV Hydration Therapy?
IV hydration Therapy is the delivery of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients directly into the bloodstream. You get an IV (like you would get in the hospital before surgery), and a nutrient “cocktail” drips into your veins.
So why would someone like me who lives an active, healthy lifestyle, including taking my recommended supplements, do any of this?
3 Reasons Why to do IV Hydration Therapy
1.To receive a nutrient power boost that bypasses the gut Although I strive to lead a healthy, active lifestyle, I haven’t always. I grew up in New Orleans. For much of my childhood, I subsisted on Popeye’s fried chicken, french fries, TV dinners (more fried chicken!), beignets and nary a fresh fruit or vegetable. It wasn’t until I became a parent that I learned about the power of food to heal (or hurt) our bodies. In fact, I’ve moved so far to the “healthy side” that my kids regularly make fun of me. How dare I put a veggie-laden piece of pizza on top of a salad and use a knife and fork to eat it!
For well over a decade, I’ve eaten a whole foods, plant-heavy based diet. But according to this recent mice study by University of California – Riverside, my past eating behaviors may still be impacting my gut. The study suggest that eating too much fat and sugar can alter your microbiome for life. Did I mention all the Twinkies and Hostess Cupcakes I ate too? Perhaps getting an additional nutrient boost that side-steps my gut by going directly into my bloodstream would do me some good.
2. Optimize brain health with NAD IV Hydration Therapy I worry about getting Alzheimer’s Disease, so I am doing all that I can to care for my brain now. The onset of Alzheimer’s may begin over a decade before symptoms appear, so early prevention is key. One of the IV cocktails we offer at Companion Health is Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD+). NAD+ is a coenzyme (an enzyme helper) that is essential for the normal functioning and survival of cells such as cerebral neurons. NAD + also helps with many other tasks such as cellular repair and energy metabolism.
Since aging is associated with a decline in tissue and cellular NAD+, there are several ongoing studies regarding the possible benefits in treating and preventing “aging” diseases like Alzheimer’s with NAD+. In full disclosure, scientists still have lots to learn about how NAD+ affects human health and aging. Getting NAD IV hydration therapy may or may not be effective. When my medical provider, Anya Wallace, and my husband Carlos (who researches the heck out of everything) okayed me getting NAD+ IV hydration therapy, I was all in.
3. Walk the Talk One of our core values at Companion Health is “heartfelt.” We are passionate about our mission to help people live healthier, more joyful lives. And we do the hard work we ask our clients to do, whether that’s meditating, exercising, or in this case, boosting our nutrient intake. We offer both traditional and functional medicine at our membership-based practice in order to deliver holistic care. We are doing the work—minding our food intake, sleep, and self-care. IV hydration therapy is yet another way to help us feel and perform our best.
My experience with IV Hydration Therapy
On Monday, March 22, 2021, I made myself the first guinea pig to receive IV hydration therapy. Anya determined my NAD+ therapy protocol, including initial dosing and the pace of the drip. She and our nurse Stevie determined which of my veins looked good before inserting my IV. Stevie wrapped a tourniquet around my arm, and asked me to pump my fist. Then into my vein went the IV needle! Getting an IV hurts slightly more than giving blood, but Stevie and Anya are so gentle that I wasn’t bothered. I will say this—if you have a hard time giving blood, IV hydration therapy may not be for you.
My IV went in on the first try, and the fun began. Anya and Stevie taped the IV needle and the attached tubing to my arm, so it wouldn’t move around. They hung my bag of NAD+ at the top of an IV pole and placed my bag of saline below it. Next up- connecting my IV tubing to the NAD+/saline tubing. And finally the big moment—opening the valves to start the flow of NAD+ into my vein. Anya started me on a low dose at a slow pace to see how I tolerated it. Some people can feel flushed or queasy while receiving NAD+. Fortunately, every time Anya checked on me, I was happy to report that I felt good. In fact, I sat at my desk and worked on my computer the entire 2 hours (it’s not a quick treatment!).
After the NAD+ bag was empty, Anya “flushed” my IV line before removing the IV needle. This part felt odd, like something cold was going into my arm. It didn’t hurt though. Anya gently removed the tape and needle and that was that!
So how did I feel afterwards?
Honestly—pretty much the same as before the adventure started. Anya said she expected as much since I don’t experience chronic fatigue or chronic pain. Plus, she didn’t give me a full dose of NAD+ to first see how I tolerated it.
So there you have it! I hope my brain neurons are doing a happy dance. I will get another dose of NAD+ soon and will report back afterwards. When I do, I’ll also describe my IV hydration experience getting a Meyer’s cocktail with glutathione push. So stay tuned for Part 2!
Nathalie Simmons Jorge is a UNC-Chapel Hill MBA, serial entrepreneur, and health coach with a passion for nutrition, home cooking, organic gardening, and balanced living. Nathalie enjoys helping clients define their goals and achieve success by implementing sustainable lifestyle changes that work best for them.
This is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute any practice of medicine or professional health care services of any type. The use of information on this blog is at the user’s own risk. The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, for diagnosis, or for treatment. Please seek the care of your health care professionals for any questions or concerns.