The following is a brief and basic description of the vitamins, minerals, and amino acids that may be part of your IV drip.
Vitamin B-Complex is a water-soluble group of vitamins that include B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), B7 (biotin), B9 (folic acid) and B12 (the cobalamins). Water soluble vitamins cannot be stored in the body and must be replenished every day. The B complex plays many important roles in the body.
B1 (thiamine), a key ingredient in the vitamin B complex, is sometimes called an “anti-stress” vitamin as it helps to ensure a healthy nervous system and improve the body’s ability to withstand stressful conditions. B1 also enhances the cardiovascular functioning in the body. This vitamin is also needed to break down carbohydrates, fats and proteins from your diet to be converted into energy. B1 is critical for the growth, development and function of all the cells in the body. It was named B1 because it was the first B vitamin discovered. 1, 2
B2 (riboflavin) In addition to producing energy for the body, riboflavin works as an antioxidant, fighting damaging particles in the body known as free radicals that may contribute to the aging process, as well as a number of health conditions, such as heart disease and cancer. Riboflavin is also needed to help the body change vitamin B6 and folate into forms it can use. It is also important for growth and red blood cell production. B2 also helps to keep the eyes, nervous system and skin healthy. 3, 4
B3 assists the body in making various sex and stress-related hormones. B3 is important for maintaining a healthy metabolism and cardiovascular system. B3 helps with brain function, healthy skin, and has been shown to improve circulation and suppress inflammation. 5, 6
B5 plays many important roles in the body. It assists in converting food into energy, in the manufacturing of red blood cells, as well as the production of sex and stress-related hormones. B5 has been shown to be helpful in heart failure, in reducing high blood pressure, in balancing blood sugar and reducing bad cholesterol. 7 B5 has also been shown to be of value in preventing nerve damage and it related pain.
B6, along with the rest of the B Complex, plays an important role in many bodily functions. B6 helps the body make several neurotransmitters and helps in maintaining a healthy nervous system and normal brain development. The B vitamins and B6 help support adrenal function, liver function, eye health and proper blood flow. In addition, your body needs B6 to in order to absorb vitamin B12 and to make red blood cells and cells of the immune system. 8, 9
Biotin helps the body metabolize fats, carbohydrates, and amino acids. Many people take supplements containing biotin to help the health of their nails, skin and hair. 10, 11
Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps keep the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy and helps make DNA, the genetic material in all cells. Some people have trouble absorbing Vitamin B12 from food and dietary supplements. A Vitamin B12 deficiency can manifest as chronic fatigue, depression, anxiety, and chronic stress. Symptoms associated with B12 Deficiencies have also included pale or jaundiced skin, weakness or fatigue, sensations of pins and needles, disturbed vision, changes to mobility (balance and coordination, dizziness), mouth ulcers and mood changes. 12, 13
Calcium is necessary for many normal functions of your body, especially bone formation and maintenance. Calcium can also bind to other minerals (such as phosphate) and aid in their removal from the body. Calcium gluconate is used to prevent and to treat calcium deficiencies. 14
Carnitine is a substance that helps the body turn fat into energy. Usually, your body can make all the carnitine it needs. Some people, however, may not have enough carnitine because their bodies cannot make enough or cannot transport it into the tissues so that it can be used. Carnitine acts as an antioxidant. Antioxidants can neutralize free radicals and may reduce or help prevent some of the damage they cause. 15
Glutathione, known as the body’s “master antioxidant,” can improve the health of every cell in your body. Glutathione removes toxins in body, and prevents cellular damage caused by free radicals. 16
Magnesium is one of the six essential macro-minerals that comprise 99% of the body’s mineral content. Thousands of biochemical reactions depend upon magnesium every day. Magnesium helps build bones, enables nerves to function, and is essential to the production of energy from food. Magnesium has been shown to have therapeutic value in treating headaches, chronic pain, asthma and sleep disorders. 17
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant. Vitamin C is important for the growth and repair of tissues in all parts of your body. It helps the body make collagen, an important protein used to make skin, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, and blood vessels. Vitamin C is needed for healing wounds and for repairing and maintaining bones and teeth. Included among the many benefits of Vitamin C are protection against immune system deficiencies, cardiovascular disease, eye disease, and even aging skin. 18, 19
5 Multi-Trace Elements include zinc, copper, manganese, chromium, selenium:
Zinc is an essential trace element. A zinc deficiency can make you more susceptible to disease and illness. Zinc is present in all bodily tissues and is needed in small amounts every day in order to maintain health. Zinc helps with hormone production, wound healing, improves immunity, fights the common cold, facilitates digestion and fights free radical damage. Zinc may decrease the risk of age-related chronic diseases as well as helping to fight diseases like cancer or playing a role in reversing heart disease. 20, 21
Copper is an essential trace mineral and is found in all bodily tissues. Copper plays a role in making red blood cells, maintaining nerve cells and the immune system. Copper helps to support healthy bones and blood vessels and contributes to iron absorption. Copper also helps the body to form collagen, and plays a role in energy production. 22
Manganese is an essential trace element and acts as a co-enzyme to assist metabolic activities in the human body. Manganese health benefits include support of cognitive function, lung, respiratory and bone health. It reduces PMS symptoms, inflammation, and may help with weight loss. Manganese may also help to prevent arthritis, prevent osteoporosis, help fight diabetes thru regulation of glucose metabolism, help with metabolism of fats and carbohydrates, and help with the metabolism of the thyroid gland and sex hormones. Manganese is also important for normal brain function and proper activity of our nervous system. 23, 24
Chromium is a trace mineral needed by the body in small amounts for normal bodily functioning, such as digesting food. Chromium helps to move glucose from the bloodstream into the cells to be used as energy and to turn fats, carbohydrates, and proteins into energy. Control of blood sugar and diabetes, heart health, weight management and brain health are all known benefits of chromium. Research has also shown that chromium can help protect DNA chromosomes from damage, thus chromium may be able to stop cell mutations that can lead to various chronic diseases. 25, 26
A vital mineral, Selenium plays a role in antioxidant activity that fights free radical damage and inflammation. It is a necessary component to make the active thyroid hormone T3 from T4. Selenium plays a role in many bodily functions, including cognitive function, fertility, and the immune system. This mineral helps to protect against disease and stress. 27, 28
Taurine is known as a conditionally essential amino acid; those with disease states or aging bodies often cannot produce an optimal amount of taurine. Life Extension refers to Taurine “as the most abundant amino acid you’ve never heard of; promoting cardiovascular health, insulin sensitivity, electrolyte balance, hearing function, and immune modulation.” Taurine has been shown to help fight obesity and is essential in controlling diabetes. Taurine is often an ingredient in supplements taken by athletes as it helps muscles to work harder. A deficiency in Taurine can lead to vision problems, as it is needed for proper retinal functioning. Deficiencies in taurine are also associated with hypertension, depression and anxiety, weight gain, and problems with endurance or recovery after workouts. 29, 30
Arginine. One of the biggest benefits of L-arginine is its ability to improve blood flow and circulation. L-arginine is converted into nitric oxide, which causes blood vessels to dilate. Leading cardiologist, Dr. Steven Sinatra, cites the benefits of arginine in cardiovascular and overall health, including lowering blood pressure; reducing blood stickiness in patients with high cholesterol; improving blood flow in those with significant coronary artery disease; reducing symptoms associated with claudication (pain, usually in the extremities due to a lack of blood flow); relieving congestive heart failure; improving stamina; stabilizing angina; improving the painful condition known as Raynaud's phenomenon (fingers become pale, occasionally turn blue in cold temperatures); and reversing impotence. 31, 32
L-Cystine is a basic building block of glutathione, which is known as “the body’s “master antioxidant.” N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC), is the form found in supplements and is valued for its ability to increase glutathione levels in the body, which is extremely important for lung function, brain function and liver detoxification. 33, 34
L-lysine is important in the creation of carnitine, which converts fatty acids into energy and also lowers cholesterol levels. L-lysine plays a role in calcium absorption and helps in the formation of collagen. L-lysine has been touted to help clear acne, combat facial lines and wrinkles, fight hair loss, improve bone health and may help to treat cold sores. 35, 36
According to research done by the Departments of Cell and Developmental Biology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, glycine can be used to help reduce symptoms in people suffering from conditions like ulcers, arthritis, leaky gut syndrome, diabetes, kidney and heart failure, neurobehavioral disorders, chronic fatigue, sleep disorders, and even certain cancers. This amino acid has proven to be important in the treatment of a variety of medical conditions, including anti-aging, as well as supporting overall well-being. 37, 38
MIC stands for the ingredients Methionine, Inositol and Choline. Methionine, is a lipotropic amino acid, helping the breakdown the fat during metabolism in the body. It helps reduce fat and lower cholesterol. Inositol plays a role in hair growth, helps reduce cholesterol levels, and prevents hardening of the arteries, as well as aids in the metabolism of fat and cholesterol. Choline is an essential nutrient that is often grouped with the B vitamins. Choline plays a vital role in lipid metabolism & aids in fighting against fat deposits. 39
*website references were accessed between April 2018-May 2018.
1. Natural Food Series https://www.naturalfoodseries.com/11-benefits-vitamin-b1-thiamine/
2. Very Well Fit (The Benefits of B Complex Vitamins) https://www.verywellfit.com/b-complex-vitamins-89411
3. Newsmax Health (https://www.newsmax.com/fastfeatures/vitamin-b2-health-benefits/2011/01/...)
4. Very Well Fit (The Benefits of B Complex Vitamins) https://www.verywellfit.com/b-complex-vitamins-89411
5. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy
6. Dr. Axe, Vitamin B3 / Niacin Side Effects, Benefits & Foods https://draxe.com/niacin-side-effects/
7. Dr. Axe Vitamin B5 / Pantothenic Acid Deficiency & How to Get Enough! https://draxe.com/vitamin-b5/
8. Dr. Axe Vitamin B6 Benefits, Deficiency & Sources https://draxe.com/vitamin-b6-benefits/
9. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy
10. Ibid., p. 9
11. Live Science |What is Biotin (Vitamin B7)? | https://www.livescience.com/51696-biotin-vitamin-b7.html
12. Healthline.com | 9 Signs and Symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency| https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/vitamin-b12-deficiency-symptoms)
13. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy
14. Ibid., p. 9
15. Ibid., p. 10
16. Ibid., p. 10
17. Ibid., p. 10
18. Ibid., p. 11
19. DrWeil.com |Vitamin C Benefits| https://www.drweil.com/vitamins-supplements-herbs/vitamins/vitamin-c-ben...
20. Medical News Today |What are the health benefits of zinc?| https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/263176.php
21. Dr. Axe |10 Powerful Zinc Benefits, Including Fighting Cancer| https://draxe.com/zinc-benefits/
22. Medical News Today. | Health benefits and risks of copper | https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/288165.php
23. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy
24. Organic Facts, | 13 Amazing Benefits of Manganese | https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/minerals/health-benefits-of...
25. WebMD, |Chromium - Topic Overview | https://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/tc/chromium-topic-overview#1
26. Dr. Axe., | What Is Chromium Beneficial For? Blood Sugar, High Cholesterol & More | https://draxe.com/what-is-chromium/
27. Medical News Today., | Selenium: What it does and how much you need | https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/287842.php
28. Dr. Axe., | Selenium Benefits, Signs of Deficiency & Foods | https://draxe.com/selenium-benefits/
29. Life Extension Magazine., The Forgotten Longevity Benefits of Taurine. http://www.lifeextension.com/magazine/2013/6/The-Forgotten-Longevity-Ben...
30. Mercola.com., Taurine: Facts About This Crucial Amino Acid. https://articles.mercola.com/vitamins-supplements/taurine.aspx
31. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy.
32. DrSinatra.com., The benefits of L-arginine. https://www.drsinatra.com/the-benefits-of-l-arginine
33. Dr.Axe., What Is L-cysteine? 7 L-cysteine Benefits + L-cysteine Foods. https://draxe.com/l-cysteine/
34. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy.
35. Ibid., p.13
36. AminoGenesis. 5 Surprising Health Benefits of L-Lysine httpswww.aminogenesis.com/5-Surprising-Health-Benefits-of-L-Lysine_b_188.html
37. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy.
38. Aminoacidstudies.org., What is Glycine? (www.aminoacidstudies.org/glycine)
39. Boulden, Kelly, MD. IV Hydration and Vitamin Therapy.