Vitamin K is a soluble vitamin, especially recognized for its role in blood clotting. People also know that they also have an important role in bone health and prevent cardiovascular disease.
Correctly said vitamin K means a group of fat-soluble vitamins. The body needs vitamin K to produce prothrombin, a coagulation factor that is important in blood clotting and bone metabolism.
There are three types of vitamin K:
- Vitamin K1 – is naturally found in herbs, green vegetables. It reaches the liver and contributes to blood clotting.
- Vitamin K2 – is produced by bacteria from the gastrointestinal tract and is deposited on the walls of blood vessels, bones and tissues.
- Vitamin V3 – is a synthetic form and is not recommended for children because it can cause allergies.
Vitamin K1 is found in plants, and when humans consume it, bacteria in the large intestine convert it into its storage form, vitamin K2. It is absorbed into the small intestine and stored in the liver.
In the absence of vitamin K, the body does not produce prothrombin, a coagulation factor that is necessary for the body to clot blood and bone metabolism.
Typically, vitamin K deficiency can affect babies and those with a problem of malabsorption due to, for example, short bowel syndrome, cystic fibrosis, celiac disease or ulcerative colitis.
Here are the benefits of Vitamin K:
- Ensures bone health. There seems to be a relationship between low intake of vitamin K and the presence of osteoporosis. A lot of studies show that vitamin K supports the maintenance of strong bones, improves bone density and reduces the risk of fractures.
- Cognitive health. Increased vitamin K blood levels were linked to improved episodic memory in older adults.
- Heart Health. Vitamin K can help maintain lower blood pressure by preventing mineralization, where minerals accumulate in the arteries. This allows the heart to pump free blood through the body.
- Vitamin K2 regulates the level of sugar in the blood. The second vitamin K-dependent protein, osteocalcin, can help the body use insulin. Activated proteins may increase insulin sensitivity, the main problem in type II diabetes. Moreover, vitamin K2 supplements improve insulin sensitivity and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.
- Vitamin K2 can prevent kidney stones. People with chronic kidney failure and those receiving dialysis are at risk of vitamin K deficiency. Studies show that one of the risk factors for kidney stones is excess vitamin D, but the real problem is that vitamin D creates a vitamin K2 .
- Can prevent prostate cancer. There are studies that claim that vitamin K2 can reduce the risk of prostate cancer by about 70%.
Adults can take between 45 mcg and 185 mcg per day. A large dose of people taking anticoagulants will be avoided. Healthy people can take 80 mcg of Vitamin K daily.
Foods rich in vitamin K are: dairy products, kefir, cabbage, spinach, broccoli, eggs, lamb, turkey meat, chicken liver.