Catherine Turner is totally infused as she tries out the latest trend - vitamin injections
How do you take your vitamins? Because now there are many choices, and last week, I found myself in a private doctor’s office near Harley Street being drip-fed my Bs and Cs. It’s ‘A’ lister territory: stories abound of various celebs getting their vitamin fixes intravenously, and it feels slightly illicit, especially as I’m not one to jump on fads.
I ended up here at The Infusion Clinic via Geeta Sidhu-Robb, founder of Nosh Detox, who has made it her business to find easy ways for us to bump up our essential nutrients via her delicious range of raw juices, snacks and clever vitamin packs. This ‘infusion clinic’ is her latest venture: “IV (intravenous) infusions are the ultimate boost because 100% of the nutrients go into the bloodstream, bypassing the digestive system.” It makes sense, and seems a good solution for me. My bathroom cabinet is cluttered with expensive supplements I’ve ‘forgotten’ to take.
Arriving at the clinic is like going to have a blood test - slightly unnerving for a needle phobe. Nurse Director, Faith Cole asks me to fill in a consultation form, and comes back to take my vital stats, including blood pressure and heart rate. “It’s important you are monitored throughout by a nurse or doctor who is experienced in this procedure.” (Reassuringly, Nurse Cole has been administering vitamin infusions for over ten years).
I get the go-ahead, and decide on the ‘Fitamin’ infusion, which along with high dose Vitamin C and the Bs, has minerals such as selenium, calcium, magnesium and zinc. I wait, sat in a comfy chair, sleeve rolled up in readiness while the drip is set up set beside me, then in seconds, the needle is in and I’m hooked up. I feel warm and fuzzy in my upper body as the liquid floods my system, then a strong metallic/vitamin-like taste develops in my mouth during the 20 minutes it takes for the complete dose to go in.
Afterwards, I experience an energy rush. I have a spring in my step in sharp contrast to the ‘running on empty’ mode I had after life changing events in 2012 and a winter of hibernating. By evening, I’m on a high, oozing a Berocca-like scent from every pore, still with that taste in my mouth. I go to sleep as normal, waking pre-dawn next day feeling wired. I take it as a good sign and squeeze in an extra-long meditation/yoga before the morning kicks in.
A few days on and I’m still boosted. It’s a great feeling, but not something I want to rely on. There’s the cost - it’s £80 for Viva Forever (a B vitamin shot in your butt cheek); Fitamin is £199, and £450 for top of the range Pic ‘n’ Fix, and Geeta recommends six weekly treatments to start off, followed by monthly top-ups.
Plus, it’s worth remembering we can’t store water-soluble vitamins like B and C in the body - we excrete excess, and require new supplies daily. Also, Vitamin D - which many of us are low on - can’t be given this way.
My thinking is to invest in a one-off Fitamin as a kick-start with the change of season, and maybe go for the B-shot in particularly stressed times. Above all, this has proved to me how vital vitamins are, and how good I feel on a ‘full tank’. I’m now making an extra effort to get my daily doses by mouth (being disciplined with my multi-vitamin pills, eating plenty of fresh organic fruit and veg, and adding superfood powders to my porridge and smoothies). As for having Nurse Cole on hand for regular infusions like the rich and famous - well, I’ve added it to my ‘dream team’ list alongside a personal yoga guru and wholefood chef...