The Low-Cost Alternative For Hydrating IV Drips

If you've tuned in to almost any podcast in the last couple of years, you've probably half-listened as your favorite comedians, athletes, or actors engage in casual banter about the IV drip they luxuriated in over the weekend. Cut to the ad read segment, and your well-hydrated host is offering a promo code for Liquid IV – the hydration multiplier that almost everyone with an internet stream seems to be advertising. So what's the deal?

While the administration of intravenous medication has been common practice in American hospitals since the 1960s, according to IV Watch, in recent years an impressive marketing campaign has launched IV hydration therapy into a highly-coveted, mainstream health fad. Infusion Associates explains that IV hydration therapy uses an intravenous needle to push vitamin and electrolyte-enriched fluids directly into your bloodstream. It boasts benefits like increased hydration, detoxification, and a shorter recovery time for athletes and people who like to have a few drinks. However, the treatments are expensive, ranging from $125 to $300 a session, making them inaccessible for most (per Vital Force).

Lucky for us non-celebrities, some companies have been offering an affordable alternative that comes in a powder-filled pouch, and we're here to give you the scoop.

How hydration multipliers work

Athletes and actors aren't the only ones who get dehydrated. In fact, chronic dehydration affects a whopping three-quarters of Americans (per National Library of Medicine). And while you may be thinking, "Well, just drink some more water," David Nieman, a professor of public health at Appalachian State University explained to TIME that when plain old water isn't abetted by the proper nutrients, our bodies have a hard time absorbing it. That means a lot of water just passes through our system without actually hydrating us.

Hydration multipliers are powdered supplements that can be added to water to increase hydration using Cellular Transport Technology (CTT), per Texas Health. With the perfect configuration of glucose and sodium (which work together to boost absorption), hydration multipliers utilize co-transportation to deliver water to different parts of the body at a faster rate. They also contain potassium – an electrolyte necessary for maintaining the balance of fluid inside our cells (per Sports Illustrated). Hydration multipliers like Liquid IV replenish depleted electrolytes without the chemical additives and preservatives of neon-colored sports drinks, Aim 2 Flourish explains — and there's the added bonus that it won't cost you an arm and a leg. You might even try watching a podcast this week so you can secure a promo code!