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Frequently Asked Questions


What is IV nutritional therapy?

Intravenous (IV) nutritional therapy provides custom hydration and replenishes nutrients in the body. This treatment is in the form of a compounded IV bag; it is directly inserted into your veins and circulatory system. What this means is that the nutritional compound does not need to be filtered through your digestive system, liver and kidneys. It is administered into your bloodstream instantly. When combined with a wellness program, IV therapy may contribute to hydration, detoxification, relieving fatigue and pain, and more. To learn what we offer in IV therapy drips, click here.

Who is nutritional IV therapy for?

Nutritional IV therapy may be appropriate for these people:

  • Those with compromised digestive systems;
  • Those with an aversion to oral supplements;
  • Those seeking to restore hydration and strengthen the immune system;
  • Those seeking to detoxify the liver and kidneys;
  • Those hoping to increase energy levels;
  • Those who require relief from lethargy, inflammation, pain, sports injuries.
  • Those seeking adjunctive support in their health care.
  • Individuals who need high nutrient doses may opt for IV drip therapy. Studies have shown that we require specific concentrations of nutrients in the blood or tissues for nutrients to work on a pharmacological level. Vitamin C is one example; as per studies, we need high vitamin C concentrations within our intracellular fluids in order to reap nutritional benefits. These high doses of vitamin C cannot be attained through oral supplements because only a fraction of the actual nutrient is absorbed into the bloodstream. IV therapy, though, provides nutrients into your bloodstream, allowing you to attain pharmacologically effective nutrients for your body.

    What is the difference between IV therapy and oral supplements?

    Oral supplements must be swallowed and passed through the digestive system and liver. With IV therapy, you are having nutrients inserted into the circulatory system, and you do not have to wait for the nutrients to be filtered through the body.

    I want to try IV therapy for the first time. Can I drop by your clinic and get it now?

    You must become a patient of Toronto Functional Medicine Centre first. In order to become a patient, you must have a co-joint consultation with our naturopathic doctor, and our IV Therapy providers nurse practitioner and/or medical doctor. It is also necessary to undergo blood testing prior to your first IV drip. Blood tests will help our health practitioners, to determine if there are any contraindications to IV therapy and which nutrients may be added to your custom compounded IV therapy. (Note: some IV therapy drips may not be suitable if you are diagnosed with heart disease, high blood pressure or kidney disease.)

    What blood tests do I need to take prior to my first IV therapy drip?

    Our health care providers will request for these blood tests to be conducted prior to your IV treatments: CBC (Complete Blood Count) and differential; kidney function panel; lipid panel; liver function panel. If you plan on receiving a high-dose vitamin C drip, it is mandatory to undergo a G6PD (glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase) test. (Take note: Individuals diagnosed with G6PD deficiencies are not able to have a high dose IV vitamin C that is above 15 grams.)

    How long will my IV therapy appointment take?

    This really depends on the type of IV drip formulation being administered. Most IV treatments may range from 60 to 90 minutes. Patients who are being administered NAD+ or high-dose vitamin C drips should expect their appointments to range from 2 to 8 hours.

    How should I prepare for my IV therapy appointment?

    o encourage your appointment to run smoothly, we kindly request that you hydrate as much as possible, eat a snack, and move around for some physical activity before your appointment. Park your car a few blocks from our clinic. Take a brisk walk from your car to the clinic to help increase your blood flow and engorge your veins prior to your appointment.

    Why do I need to hydrate before my appointment if IV therapy will rehydrate me anyway?

    Think of it this way: when you’re already low on fluids, your veins will appear smaller. Your veins need to be visible (the more obvious, the better) for your IV therapy appointment, which may contribute to the efficiency of your visit.

    Why do I need to eat before my IV drip?

    If you have an empty stomach before your appointment, you may experience some dizziness. Your IV drip may contain vitamins and minerals that contribute to lowering blood sugar and blood pressure levels, so that’s why we recommend eating a snack beforehand.

    Why should I do some physical activity before my nutritional IV appointment?

    Yes, you should continue taking them. All of your current medications will be discussed during your in-person consultation with our health care providers , prior to your first IV drip. This initial appointment is mandatory as it ascertains that there are no negative interactions between your current medication and IV therapy.

    If possible though, we highly recommend refraining from antihistamines and decongestants before each of your IV drip appointments; these medications may constrict your blood vessels, making it difficult to find a vein for your IV therapy treatment. But if you need to take antihistamines and decongestants beforehand, make sure you let our IV providers know about it.

    Why should I do some physical activity before my nutritional IV appointment?

    When you’re seated for your appointment, try this mini deep-breathing relaxation exercise:

  • Put your hand (palm down) underneath your navel. It is here that you can feel your belly rise and lower as you breathe.
  • Slowly take a breath in and hold still for three counts. Breathe out and hold still for three counts. For 60 seconds, keep breathing in deeply. Pause for three counts after you inhale and exhale every time.
  • Or try this: take gentle deep breaths and say this to yourself when you inhale: “I am.” Then when you exhale, say to yourself, “at peace.” Do this a couple more times to help you relax.
  • If you have any questions, feel free to ask us or call us at (416) 968-6961.

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