The Myers Cocktail has been getting some major traction these days, especially amongst the health community.
Don’t know what that is? Well great, you came to the right place! I’ll give you some quick background on it, and then get to the good stuff: sharing my Myers Cocktail experience with you (the good and the bad) in hopes of helping others decide if this treatment is right for them.
Full disclosure first because I believe in total transparency. My integrative doctor, Vinh Ngo, MD, of Smart Medicine San Francisco did provide this treatment free of charge if I agreed to share my experience here with you all. This is about a $160 value. My review will be nothing but honest and true, and I would never recommend something I myself wouldn’t use. OK? OK, moving on.
The Myers Cocktail, also known as a vitamin IV, was invented by John Myers, a physician from Baltimore, Maryland, and it’s essentially a mixture (aka cocktail) of nutrients and vitamins administered via an intravenous (IV) tube which helps you re-hydrate and absorb the nutrients immediately and optimally.
Typically, your doctor, or an individual certified to give the treatment, will administer saline, or IV fluids, for hydration and vitamins like vitamin B-complex, vitamin C and D, magnesium, all amino acids, glutathione, and calcium, with options to customize and add additional nutrients like taurine, biotin for strong and healthy hair and skin, and levocarnitine, which is an amino acid crucial for energy production.
Typically people get a vitamin IV when they have severe vitamin deficiencies, are feeling run down or sluggish, have the flu, or have chronic diseases like irritable bowel disease (IBD), asthma, fatigue, fibromyalgia and more. This is supposedly the best way to replenish your vitamin and antioxidant stores for a quick immunity boost because it is administered in high doses directly into your bloodstream for maximum absorption.
They’ve even been dubbed the best “hangover cure” around town and IV bars have popped up in major metro cities, especially those with a reputation for late night boozing, like Hangover Heaven in Las Vegas and The Hangover Club in NYC, which actually has an in-home service available. There’s The Drip Room in Phoenix and Scottsdale, Arizona, Drip Drop IV in Austin, Texas, and I.M Drip Bar which has a bunch of locations across the U.S. These can get to be pretty expensive, but potentially worth it?
But you don’t have to go to a fancy IV bar to get your mega dosage of vitamins, you can usually ask your doctor, or find an integrative or holistic practice in a city near you that is certified to administer one.
If your doctor doesn’t do this him or herself, I am sure they would at least be able to make a recommendation. For example, I had no idea my doctor did this, until I asked.
I did a simple Google search for “Vitamin IVs” in San Francisco and three locations popped up, but I can guarantee there are more than three places in the city to get these. So, my point is that you may have to ask/look around, but chances are, you won’t have to search very hard or far, especially if you live in/near a city or close to a major hospital network.
OK, now for the good stuff, and probably the intel you came to this post for 🙂
This was my first time getting a vitamin IV, and I did it through my integrative doctor at Smart Medicine SF. I was scheduled for a late Friday morning appointment.
I asked my doctor, Vinh Ngo (Dr. Ngo), ahead of time what I had to do to prepare, and he recommended having a little something to eat just in case I would be sensitive to the high dosage of vitamins on an empty stomach. Other than that, I showed up as myself, nothing fancy.
If you have a thing about needles, then you may not be so keen on this treatment, because yes, it involves having a needle shoved into a vein in your arm. There is also a little bit of blood, so if you get queasy at the sight of it, look away!
It was a small pin prick, however, he did have to wiggle the needle around a bit in my arm to get the blood to flow, which was a bit uncomfortable but not unbearable. I am not typically a queasy person and I don’t have a needle phobia.
As I mentioned above, while most of the IV comes standard, you can customize it based on your specific needs and desires. I had the standard IV fluids, magnesium, vitamin c, vitamin B-complex, vitamin D (because I do not get enough sun in San Francisco, amino acids, and calcium, with special add-ons of glutathione and levocarnitine.
I think you all have a pretty good idea of the benefits of vitamin C, calcium and vitamin D, but let me quickly spend some time talking about the following:
Glutathione: An antioxidant that is vital for aiding in the body’s detoxification process. It is one of the most abundant antioxidants in the central nervous system and also the most important one. It’s also naturally produced in the body…cool, right?
This little gem is essential for helping your body detoxify by eliminating free radicals, and by taking a high dosage of this, we can aid in the detoxification process for faster results. I had this administered separately from my IV bag, and captured a pretty cool time lapse of Dr. Ngo injecting me with it.
Magnesium: What I like to refer to as the happy sleep mineral, which is found not only in our bodies but also other animals, the earth, sea and even foods like dark chocolate, avocados, nuts/seeds, bananas, and leafy greens like spinach. Magnesium can help you fall asleep and have a deeper sleep than normal, and it’s also great for boosting energy during workouts, reducing PMS symptoms, fighting depression, lowering blood pressure and help with inflammation. If your body is low on magnesium then you may feel fatigue, mental confusion, irritability, anxiety, and even experience nerve problems, muscle contractions, muscle cramps, loss of appetite and insomnia.
Carnitine: This was one that I didn’t know a lot about before talking to my doc about it, but apparently it’s an amino acid found in almost all cells in our body. There are a few different forms: L-carnitine, acetyl-L-carnitine, and propionyl-L-carnitine. This amino acid is crucial for energy production in the body, and although we product it naturally, sometimes we don’t make enough and we need to take supplements. You can also find it in foods, mostly red meat, dairy and some fish like cod. Because of its energy boosting qualities, some professionally athletes take carnitine supplements to help with their overall performance.
The whole process took about 20-30 minutes, including setup (aka getting the IV put into my arm). One of the weird things about the treatment is that you immediately can taste the B vitamins in your mouth as they enter into your system. It was a very strange, yet not unpleasant feeling. I also started to feel hyper alert, like I had drank a gallon of coffee (but without the jitters). If anyone reading this is following a ketogenic diet and uses exogenous ketones to help them get into ketosis, you may be familiar with the general feeling of alertness. This was just like that but times 50… in a good way.
I also started to feel flush and a bit hot, which my doctor said was likely a result of the magnesium, which tends to loosen up/relax the body. Apparently some women experience orgasms when getting a vitamin IV because of the tension leaving the body. It’s not that common, but it does happen. Dr. Ngo keeps it real, which is a thumbs up in my book. (No, I did not experience that myself). My mouth was also a bit dry and I was very thirsty, but other than that and those symptoms I just listed above, I hardly noticed anything happening.
Then, when the Carnitine hit my system, it’s like I switched into superhero mode. If somebody gave me weights, I swear I could’ve pumped iron like Arnold schwarzenegger or swing from Salesforce Tower like Spider Man. Definitely get what the “energy boosting” qualities are all about.
Pretty damn close! I felt VERY energized and highly alert, but also calm and not anxious or jittery like I might normally feel. I had high spirits, looked replenished and my skin was perhaps “glowing” a bit more than normal.
I did also go to the bathroom quite a bit that day (number 2), which is great for me as I normally have constipation problems because of SIBO, IBS and leaky gut. It definitely made my pee smell funky, too, but just general vitamin smells. If you take a multi-vitamin you might be used to that already.
The feeling mostly lasted throughout the rest of the day, but by the next morning, I was back to feeling like myself, although perhaps less groggy and “rundown” than I was feeling prior to the treatment.
Yes, and yes, but with some caveats. Is this the end all/be all hangover cure? I can’t comment on that use-case because I was not drunk or hungover when I went in for my treatment. You’ll have to test that out for yourself.
But do I think it’s worth it for boosting immunity and energy levels? Yes! I think I am naturally more prone to vitamin deficiencies because of all of my gut issues, so I definitely was feeling run down before getting the vitamin IV.
The biggest barrier for me is price. Now, this one was free of charge (thanks Dr. Ngo!), but you’ll spend anywhere in the mid-to-high $100 range for one of these IV drips, which ain’t no drop in the bucket. This is something I would most likely do if I was in fact sick with the flu or perhaps once a year for a “reset,” similar to how I approach those expensive juice cleanses.
It’s something I wouldn’t seek out regularly because I ain’t made of money, but I do think my health and wellbeing are worth the investment and while the “hangover” cure may be somewhat of a marketing ploy, the research on the benefits of vitamin IVs is out there, well-documented, and in favor of them. In fact, I had been seeing and reading a lot about the Myers Cocktail online and within the Instagram health community I follow for quite some time.
If you are still on the fence, I encourage you to keep researching, or talk to your doctor, or an integrative or holistic doctor that has experience treating patients with vitamin IVs and take your time making the decision.
Thanks for letting me share my experience with you. I hope you found this article helpful. If you have a vitamin IV experience, would love to hear your story in comments, or you can email me, or send me a direct message on Instagram (fitfoodistsf). Or simply reach out if you have more questions about my vitamin IV review, outside of what I shared here. Always happy to help.
Regardless of if this is the right choice for you or not, remember to love your body, fuel it, exercise it, and don’t forget to take your vitamins… in whatever form you like 🙂