Vitamin K plays a key role in helping the blood clot, preventing excessive bleeding.
Vitamin K deficiency is very rare. People with vitamin K deficiency are usually more likely to have bruises and bleeding. It only happens when the body can’t properly absorb the vitamin from the intestinal tract. Vitamin K deficiency can also happen after long-term treatment with antibiotics.
Vitamin K also works with the other nutrients, like the importance to bone health—calcium, vitamin D, and magnesium—to ensure that your skeleton stays strong, but each vitamin has its own function and contribution to the human body.
Vitamin K is possibly best known for its role in the blood clotting process. When people perceive the term “blood clot,” they might sometimes jump to the conclusion that a blood clot is bad. But it’s not always; there are many times when it is very important for our blood to clot. For example, blood clots are needed to prevent bleeding when our skin gets punctured.
But if you think it is bad, you are also right, since blood clotting can cause problems if it happens internally. Regardless of the specific situation, vitamin K is necessary for blood clots to form.
It is currently somewhat of an open question how important vitamin K is to the progression of clot formation and heart disease. Researchers have sometimes, but not consistently, been able to correlate low vitamin K intake with increased risk of heart disease.
Vitamin K is an interesting nutrient with its value to bone health and unlike some of the open-ended questions related to clotting, knowledge about the role of vitamin K nourishment in bone support is fairly unshakable. Individuals who are vitamin K deficient have repeatedly been shown to have a greater risk of fracture. In addition, for women who have passed through menopause and have started to experience unwanted bone loss, vitamin K has clearly been shown to help put a stop to future fractures.
Low levels of vitamin K intake are emerging as dietary risk factors for osteoporosis. Low levels of vitamin K have also been associated with increased risk of arthritis. Low activity of vitamin K-dependent proteins inside the joints has been suggested as a likely mechanism for this increased risk.
We do not need to eat in a certain pattern to protect our vitamin K nutrition, but we can enjoy the delicious taste of food that are rich in all of these important nutrients. The best way to get the daily requirement of vitamin K is by eating food sources. Vitamin K is found in the following foods:
- Green leafy vegetables, such as kale, spinach, turnip greens, collards, Swiss chard, mustard greens, parsley, romaine, and green leaf lettuce
- Vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage
- Fish, liver, meat, eggs, and cereals (contain smaller amounts)
- Vitamin K is also made by the bacteria that line the gastrointestinal tract.
Vitamin K as a supplement isn’t that well-known all throughout the market yet, though it is usually a co-ingredient to a lot more other vitamins. Both vitamin A and vitamin E can compete for absorption with vitamin K. There’s not enough evidence to know what the effects might be of taking high doses of vitamin K supplements each day.
Make sure to take your proper intake of the Vitamins we need for body!