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Newly Discovered Functions of Vitamin K

Vitamin K has long been known to be important for normal blood clotting. Now researchers are discovering that vitamin K has a vital role throughout the body, especially in bones and blood vessels. Vitamin K activates two proteins, osteocalcin which is important for bone health, and MGP, which is important in preventing hardening of blood vessels.

Current daily recommended intakes for vitamin K are set to only prevent abnormal blood clotting. Since the body must first prevent bleeding, most of the vitamin K we take in through our diet goes to the liver to produce clotting factors and prevent bleeding. Once those needs are taken care of, the extra vitamin K can be used to activate the proteins important for bone and blood vessel health.

There are different types of vitamin K. The main types are K1 and K2. Vitamin K1 comes mainly from leafy green vegetables. K2 can mostly be found in fermented cheeses and vegetables. Our diets in the US are mainly composed of vitamin K1. It is thought that the vitamin K2 is more important for bone health and preventing the hardening of blood vessels. A placebo-controlled study found that K2-MK-7 (a long acting form of vitamin K2) prevented age related bone decline in post-menopausal women. With the current recommended doses, it can be difficult to get enough vitamin K1 and K2 in our diets to support bone health. It may be helpful for you to take a supplement.

CarePro Advance Health offers a multivitamin called Nutrient 950 with Vitamin K by Pure Encapsulations that contains both K1 and K2. We also offer a Vitamin K2 supplement by Douglas Labs that contains 90mcg of vitamin K2(MK-7) that can be added to a supplement regimen without the multivitamin. Please feel free to contact us if you have questions.