Vitamin K: Benefits and Function

Vitamin K (K1 and K2) - What does it do? Where do I get it? How much do I need daily? What are the symptoms of vitamin K deficiency?
Natto Vitamin K2 Food

Vitamin K

Vitamin K has important function for the development and maintenance of our bones and it’s form K2  MK7 in combination with Vitamin D3 may reduce calcification in arteries. It also plays a significant role in blood clotting.  We put together for you the most important facts about vitamin K:

Vitamin K Benefits and Function

The function of Vitamin K in our body is to produce a protein that plays an important role in blood clottingbone metabolism, and heart health

Vitamin K also helps facilitate energy production.  As well as many other vitamins, Vitamin K has antioxidant properties, which helps protects cellular membranes from damage due to excess free radicals

Vitamin K is split into 2 sub-forms Vitamin K1 and Vitamin K2

Vitamin K1 (phylloquinone) occurs naturally in dark leafy green vegetables and is the main dietary source of vitamin K. 

Vitamin K2 (menaquinone) is present in fermented food and some animal products. Gut bacteria also produce vitamin K2

Vitamin K1 is primarily involved in blood coagulation, but K2 has shown to have more benefits to the body. 

In combination with vitamin D3, vitamin K2 helps bring calcium to the bones where it is needed. 

A great example of medical benefits of vitamin K (K2) is that it can be effective in preventing and even reducing calcification in arteries and to reduce arterial stiffness

Vitamin K Dosage

How much Vitamin K do I need daily?

The recommended daily intake of vitamin K is 90 µg (micrograms) per day for women and 120 µg per day for men.

Too Much Vitamin K

Excessive amounts of vitamin K from food is not advised for people who take warfarin for anti-coagulation. 

Warfarin is a vitamin K antagonist, making your blood clot more slowly. Also, people who use dialysis for kidney disease need to monitor vitamin K intake closely.

Vitamin K Sources

Vitamin K Foods

Vitamin K1 is made by plants and is mainly in green leafy plants. 

Great dietary sources of vitamin K1 include kale, collard greens, fresh spinach, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, and dark green lettuce. 

Freezing foods may destroy vitamin K, but heating does not affect it.

Kale Vitamin K2

Vitamin K2 is mainly found in fermented food where it is produced by bacteria. It can also be found in organ meats and fatty dairy products. 

Natto a traditional Japanese dish of fermented soybeans has the highest known concentration of K2. Supplements for K2 MK7 are mostly made from this Japanese specialty.

Vitamin K2 MK7 Tablets / Supplement

There are many brands of vitamin K tablets on the market. If you are searching for vitamin K2, make sure you get the MK7 one as it is the most efficient form for calcium absorbtion.

Vitamin K Dosage

How much Vitamin K do I need daily?

The recommended daily intake of vitamin K is 90 µg (micrograms) per day for women and 120 µg per day for men.

 Too much Vitamin K?

Excessive amounts of vitamin K from food is not advised for people who take warfarin for anti-coagulation. Warfarin is a vitamin K antagonist, making your blood clot more slowly. Also, people who use dialysis for kidney disease need to monitor vitamin K intake closely

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Vitamin K Deficiency

What happens if I don’t get enough?

Most people get enough vitamin K from their nutrition. There are theories that claim that we might be persistently lacking K2 and therefore supplementation could be beneficial in particular for maintaining artery health.

People who have problems absorbing fat may have reduced amounts of vitamin K absorbed, and are so at higher risk of vitamin K deficiency.

In most countries, newborns are given vitamin K shot as breast milk is low in vitamin K and the newborn’s gut can still not produce vitamin K2 in the first days.

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