Are You Deficient in Vitamin K?
Vitamin K is for Blood “Klotting” and Bone Health
According to Dr. Cees Vermeer, one of the world’s top researchers in the field of vitamin K, nearly everyone is deficient in vitamin K—just like most are deficient in vitamin D.
Most people get enough K from their diets to maintain adequate blood clotting, but NOT enough to offer protection against some health problems.
Vitamin K comes in two forms, and it is important to understand the differences between them before devising your nutritional plan of attack.
Found in green vegetables, K1 goes directly to your liver and helps you maintain a healthy blood clotting system. It is also K1 that keeps your own blood vessels from calcifying, and helps your bones retain calcium and develop the right crystalline structure.
Bacteria produce this type of vitamin K. It is present in high quantities in your gut, but unfortunately is not absorbed from there and passes out in your stool. K2 goes straight to vessel walls, bones, and tissues other than your liver.
You can obtain all the K2 you’ll need by eating 10-15 grams of natto daily, which is half an ounce.
The next best thing is a vitamin K2 supplement. Remember to take your vitamin K supplement with fat, since it is fat-soluble and won’t be absorbed without it.
Although the exact dosing is yet to be determined, Dr. Vermeer recommends between 45 mcg and 185 mcg daily for adults. Use caution with higher doses if you take anticoagulants. Even though the risk of increased blood clotting tendencies may be small, it is real.
In 2004, the Rotterdam Study, which was the first study demonstrating the beneficial effect of vitamin K2, showed that people who consume 45 mcg of K2 daily live seven years longer than people getting 12 mcg per day.
Vitamin K and vitamin D work together to increase MGP, or Matrix GLA Protein, which is the protein responsible for protecting your blood vessels from calcification. And the results of human clinical studies suggest that concurrent use of vitamin K2 and vitamin D may substantially reduce bone loss. We may be seeing just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to vitamin K and its many valuable functions in your health.