Kids are back to school, summer vacation is over, and the flu season is upon us. With stress levels going up, the cold weather rolling in, our immune system starts to get overtaxed and declines in its ability to fight off colds. Our bodies are remarkable at keeping bugs at bay, but with the constant exposure to new strains being brought home, our immune system has a difficult time keeping up.
The best way to think of the immune system is like a builder. For the first few colds that come, it is able to build up walls from the resources it has ready and available to prevent getting sick. The more bugs that come its way, the more building it needs to do and the more resources it requires. Once all the resources have been used, the builder needs to not only build new resources but also continue building the wall. This is when bugs pass our defenses and those dreaded symptoms set in.
One thing we can do to help the builder is to supply building materials that are already packaged and ready to use allowing our immune system to focus solely on fighting the bugs. We can help out in a few different ways. The first is eating a healthy diet and maintaining a low stress level, the second is taking supplements that focus on boosting the immune system (such as Vit C), and the third is getting IV's which contain high doses of all the essential vitamins to quickly boost the reserves.
The big question comes down to which option is the best one. Food and supplements are great choices year round as they supply the body with a constant source of nutrients. IV's are the best option when you need a kick start of nutrients during times of stress, sickness, and depletion. The quick supply provides ready to use nutrients the body can grab and utilize right away to rebuild, protect, and regenerate. For those low in nutrients or who have an inability to absorb the appropriate amounts from food or supplements, IV's are useful to get the body back on track as the nutrients go directly to cells and do not have to be absorbed through the digestive track.
Common Vitamins Found In IV's
Vit C - Also known as ascorbic acid, this immune boosting vitamin is essential for so many functions in the body. It is used in the production of energy, helps synthesis collagen, and needed in the production of carnitine which is used to shuttle essential fats into cells.
B Vitamins - The general group of B Vitamins are needed as co-factors for many pathways in the body from energy production and elimination of toxins, all the way to nerve regeneration.
Selenium - This mineral enhances the immune function and has anti-viral effects, but also helps with ant oxidation by acting as a co-factor for glutathione peroxidase.
Zinc - A commonly used mineral found in cough drops, it helps to relieve sore throats, has anti-viral effects and plays a role in stabilizing cell membranes.
Magnesium - A well known mineral that is often used for sore or tired muscles, it is also essential for the production of ATP, the energy used by cells of the body. Without energy, our bodies wouldn't be able to fight off these common colds.
If you have questions about IV therapy or would like to discuss how it can fit into your treatment plan please book in with one of Helix’s naturopathic physicians. As always, this post is not designed to diagnose or treat you, but instead to give you something to think about. Please book a consult with a naturopathic physician prior to changing, starting, or stopping medications or protocols.