Most people do not know how important vitamin K is to their body. The vitamin K not only controls blood clotting, but also activates bone formation and even protects against cancer.

Do you also protect your health with vitamin K?

Types of vitamin K

Vitamin K is, a group of fat soluble compounds, divided into several main groups. Two of them are vitamin K1 and K2.

Vitamin K1

Vitamin K1 (also called phylloquinone) is found in plant-based foods. Phylloquinone is the main form of vitamin K in everyone’s diet.

Vitamin K2

Vitamin K2, also called menachinone. This variant of vitamin K is found in animal foods and fermented soy products. Vitamin K2 is also produced by intestinal bacteria, in the colon.

Vitamin K3

Vitamin K 3 is also called menadione. High doses of vitamin K3 have been shown to cause allergic reactions, hemolytic anemia, and cytotoxicity in liver cells.

Properties of Vitamin K

As you may already know, social media plays an essential role in blood clotting, but it also has some other properties and characteristics, including the fact that it supports the health of our bones and helps in the prevention of calcification of the blood vessels. , have the potential to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Factors that reduce the level of vitamin K

Low levels of vitamin K in the body can increase the risk of bleeding or uncontrolled bleeding. Although vitamin K deficiencies are rare in adults, they are very common in newborns.

There are other factors that lower the level of vitamin K. Even if vitamin K deficiencies are rare, they could have an increased risk of deficiency:

  • have a disease that affects the absorption of Vitamin K in the digestive tract, such as Crohn’s disease or active celiac disease;
  • taking medications that interact with the absorption of Vitamin K;
  • suffers from a severe form of malnutrition;
  • consuming large amounts of alcohol

Interaction of Vitamin K with other medications

Vitamin K can interact with several commonly used medications, including those in the blood-thinning class, anti-seizure medications, antibiotics, cholesterol-lowering medications, and weight loss pills.

Ways to facilitate vitamin K absorption

Let’s not forget that vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin (which can be dissolved in fats or oils). This characteristic is very important, because entering your diet are necessary to facilitate the absorption of this vitamin. Therefore, in order for your body to effectively absorb vitamin K, you need to eat it in combination with some high-fat foods.

Vitamin K is fat-soluble, and consuming it along with fat can improve absorption. For example, you can add a little oil over your greens (like salads and leafy greens like spinach and kale) or take vitamin K supplements during a meal that contains fat.

Fortunately, many foods rich in vitamin K2 are also high in fat. Among them are cheese, yolks and meat.

Administration of vitamin k

If your body is deficient in vitamin K, your doctor may recommend certain nutritional supplements with this vitamin or explain which foods to include most often in your diet and which foods are rich in vitamin K.

Phylloquinone, known as vitamin K1, is found in plants.

When people consume vitamin K1 from plants, bacteria in the thick classroom convert it to another form, vitamin K2. It is absorbed in the thin classroom and then stored in the fatty tissue and liver.

Sources of vitamin K

Vitamin K1 is found in large amounts in leafy vegetables like Kale, Mangold, and spinach. Other sources include vegetable oils and some fruits. It is good to be informed and to know what are the best sources of vitamin K, to include in your diet if you want to avoid problems with blood clotting.

Plant foods that contain vitamin K

Here is a list of plant-based foods, which contain one of the forms of vitamin K: kale, vegetables from the cabbage family, spinach, broccoli, cabbage, asparagus, coleslaw, beans, soybeans, pickles , pumpkin, pine nuts, blueberries, green beans, plums, kiwi, soybean oil, avocado oil, snow peas, green cabbage, fresh parsley leaves, beet greens.

Animal-based foods that contain vitamin K

There are also some animal products that contain high percentages of vitamin K. They include: liver, beef, veal, pork, chicken, pasta from a goose liver, strong cheese, solid, soft or hard and soft cheeses, bacon, beef, minced chicken liver, pork, duck breast, kidney, beef, liver, chicken, egg yolk, blue mold cheese, whole milk, butter, cream, sour cream.

Dietary supplements with vitamin K

You should be able to take in all the vitamin K you need from your varied and balanced diet.

Manifestations of vitamin K deficiency

The human body needs vitamin K to produce proteins that come into play during the blood clotting process, however, the body has a deficiency of vitamin K, when the body does not have a sufficient amount of these proteins, and it is a part Prominent or characteristic of a vitamin K deficiency is the fact that the person is bleeding too much.

Lowers blood clotting

Without enough vitamin K, your blood would not be able to clot properly, and even a small wound or injury can cause unstoppable bleeding.

Internal or external bleeding

The main symptom of a vitamin K deficiency in the body is excessive bleeding or hemorrhage. Be aware, however, that bleeding can occur in other areas (and not necessarily at the site of a wound or cuts).

Bleeding can be internal or external, so there are other signs that may indicate such bleeding and deficiency, especially if the person:

  • blushes easily on the skin
  • you have small blood clots under the surface of your nails
  • bleeds or has hemorrhages on the surface of the mucous membranes, such as those that line the internal areas of the human body.

Decreased bone density

Scientists believe that vitamin K helps grow bones and maintain healthy bone density, but this relationship is being studied further. Still, in some cases, decreased bone density can be a manifestation of vitamin K deficiency in the body.

Some studies have even managed to find an association between low-vitamin K intake and the development of osteoporosis, a disease that results in brittle bones that can fracture easily.


In addition to bleeding, which can be both internal and external, another manifestation of vitamin K deficiency in the body is bruising, that is, when the person blushes easily.


Vitamin K, as you already know, plays an essential role in normal blood clotting. This is important to prevent massive bleeding with large blood loss, which can lead to anemia. Anemia is a condition that causes fatigue, weakness, and dizziness.

Iron deficiency anemia is the type of anemia that is related to vitamin K. In this form of anemia, the human body does not have enough erythrocytes (invisible blood cells, cells that contain hemoglobin, an iron-rich protein that carries oxygen ).

Causes of vitamin K deficiency

Although vitamin K deficiency is unusual and rare in adults, some people are at higher risk for this deficiency.

Incomplete or incorrect nutrition

Due to a wrong diet (or a diet that is lacking in vitamin K), you may not have enough of this vitamin in your body, and therefore the unpleasant symptoms of deficiency may appear. To combat the effects, try to eat more plant or animal products that are rich in vitamin K.

Long-term administration of certain medications

Some patients are at increased risk for vitamin K. These patients are those who have taken certain medications, such as coumarin anticoagulants (such as warfarin) or certain antibiotics, for a long time.

Long-term use of these classes of drugs can cause the body to make less vitamin K on its own, or it can affect the production of certain proteins involved in the blood clotting process.

Liver disease, Crohn’s disease, colitis

Of the following conditions, you may be at increased risk for vitamin K deficiency, experts say: Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, celiac disease (gluten intolerance), and other diseases that can interfere with the absorption of nutrients, liver disease, affecting the storage of vitamin K

Underdeveloped intestinal flora of the newborn

Babies and newborns are at increased risk for vitamin K deficiency, for several reasons. One of them is related to the intestinal flora that has not developed enough.

On the other hand, babies may have a higher risk of vitamin K deficiency if breast milk has a very low vitamin K content, if the newborn’s liver does not use the vitamin effectively, or if the newborn does not produce vitamin K2. on its own in the first days of life.

Correct administration of vitamin K

The richest sources of vitamin K1 are leafy vegetables, those with dark green leaves. For example, kale greens provide you with much of your recommended daily requirement for vitamin K.

In order to get most of the amount of vitamin K found in kale and other vegetables, keeping in mind that you have to pass it along with an oil or a type of fat, and that’s because the vitamin K is fat soluble and may be better absorbed when taken with a fat.

Recommended daily dose of vitamin K

On average, adult women need 90 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin K per day, and adult men need 120 mcg. Check, through a discussion with your doctor, if you are allowed to take vitamin K and also speak with a nutritionist doctor, in order to better understand the recommended daily dose of vitamin K in your case. Here are the RDA for vitamin K for certain categories:

  • children 0 to 6 months: 2 mcg / day
  • children 7 to 12 months: 2.5 mcg / day
  • children 1 to 3 years: 30 mcg / day
  • children 4-8 years: mcg / day
  • children 9 to 13 years: 60 mcg / day
  • adolescents 14 to 18 years: 75 mcg / day
  • women over 18 years: 90 mcg / day
  • men over 18 years: 120 mcg / day
  • pregnant or lactating women (19-50 years): 90 mcg / day
  • pregnant or lactating women (under 19 years): 75 mg / day

Vitamin K overdose

There were no adverse effects of vitamin K associated with the amounts found in food or supplements. Even so, this does not exclude the danger that can occur in the case of too high doses of vitamin K. The researchers did not establish a safe maximum dose. If the recommended daily dose of vitamin K is exceeded, we can speak of intoxication or hypervitaminosis K.

In case of overdose of vitamin K (more than 500 micrograms per day), some prudish reactions can occur, such as skin rashes, itching and redness. Liver problems can also occur, but they are quite rare.

There is a potential risk of toxicity from high doses of vitamin K, which can cause hemolysis (destruction of red blood cells) in newborns and worsen hyperbilirubinemia.

Consumption of non-thermally processed foods

Certain foods when steamed, baked, sauteed, etc.), covering much of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin K, so it has to be a magnet when eaten: mangold, raw (or beet), spinach raw, raw parsley.

Side effects of the administration of vitamin K

Unlike other fat-soluble vitamins, natural forms of vitamin K have no known symptoms of toxicity.

A synthetic form of vitamin K, known as menadione or vitamin K3, could have some adverse effects when consumed in large amounts.

Allergic reactions

Although the situations are rare, some people may have allergic reactions to menaquinone (vitamin K2). An allergic reaction to menaquinone can cause a rash, severe itching, swelling of the face, neck, and shortness of breath and irregular heartbeat.

Stomach ache

The most common side effect of vitamin K2 supplementation is involved in disorders at the gastrointestinal level, because the digestive system is unable to digest the way vitamin K supplements should be, high doses of oral vitamin supplements K can cause: upset stomach, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramps, persistent, and weakness.

The role of vitamin K in the body

Vitamin K is an essential fat-soluble vitamin, which plays an important role in maintaining healthy bones and the heart. It is one of the main vitamins involved in bone mineralization and blood clotting. In addition, it helps maintain brain function, maintain optimal metabolism, and may declare against cancer.

The role of vitamin K in blood clotting

Vitamin K is what clots your blood and what prevents your body from bleeding excessively and your skin from flushing easily (prevents bruising). The blood clotting process is very complex, especially since it takes at least 12 proteins to function efficiently before the process is complete.

Four of these proteins are clotting factors that vitamin K needs for its work. Therefore, vitamin K is essential in this process. Since vitamin K helps facilitate blood impunulation, it plays an important role in faster healing of bruises (bruises), and also heals cuts and sores. wounds.

The role of vitamin K in the transport of calcium in the blood
Vitamin K has been shown to help prevent calcification of the arteries, one of the main causes of myocardial infarction. It works by transporting calcium out of the arteries and not allowing calcium to form the dangerous midnight of atheromatous plaque, solid midnight in the arteries.

A study published in the “Integrative Medicine: A Physician’s Journal” notes that vitamin K helps prevent the strengthening of the arteries, as it can keep calcium away from the walls of the arteries and other tissues of the body, where it can be the cause of the problem.

The role of vitamin K in maintaining normal liver function

Specialists say that vitamin K1, which is naturally found especially in some dark green vegetables / salads, goes directly to your liver and helps maintain optimal blood impunulation.

Social media has proven to be a powerful cancer-fighting agent and is an effective ally in reducing the risk of cancer of the prostate, colon, stomach, and oral cavity.

One study even showed that high doses of vitamin K helped liver cancer patients stabilize and even improve their liver function. So it is important x another role of vitamin K, that is, that it helps maintain optimal liver function.

The role of vitamin K in increasing longevity

Over the years, research has been published indicating that optimal vitamin K intake plays an important role in our longevity. A 2014 study confirmed that ample intake of vitamin K can actually help people live longer.

In a group of more than 7,000 people at high risk for cardiovascular disease, those with the highest intake of vitamin K were 36% less likely to die from any cause, compared to those with the lowest intake of vitamin K

Prevention of osteoporosis

Vitamin K is an ally that improves bone density. Vitamin K increases the amount of a specific protein necessary to maintain calcium in the bones, thus reducing the risk of osteoporosis.

Some studies done on vitamin K have shown that high consumption of vitamin K can stop the loss of bone density in patients with osteoporosis.

In addition, our bodies need vitamin K to use calcium, which is necessary to build healthy bones. There is even strong evidence that vitamin K can improve bone health and reduce the risk of bone peculiarities, especially in postmenopausal women who are at high risk for osteoporosis.

Greater resistance to infection

Vitamin K has been shown to be protective in many ways. For example, it helps prevent oxidative stress within the brain. Another function also includes the fact that it comes to support your immune system, helping to fight infection.

The vitamin K , experts say, it is a powerful vitamin and beneficial for the immune system, which helps the process impunulación, helps the blood to propel and prevents the loss of large amounts of blood during injury or during accidents.

Scientists have found that vitamin K2 is well absorbed in the form of supplements, so it is worthwhile to turn to this ally and give your body an optimal amount of vitamin K2. Let’s not forget, vitamin K2, among other things, stimulates the function of the immune system, reduces the risk of cardiovascular diseases, reduces the risk of cancer, supports bone health.

Reduction of the risk of cardiovascular diseases

Vitamin K2, experts say, protects the heart. Let’s not forget that vitamin K2 helps prevent hardening of the arteries, which is a common factor in cardiovascular diseases such as coronary artery disease and heart failure.

Increased effects of cancer treatment

Vitamin K, according to experts, helps prevent cancer. Several studies have shown that vitamins K1 and K2 are effective against cancer. In 2008, a group of German researchers found that vitamin K2 provides substantial protection against prostate cancer. According to specialists, men who took the highest amounts of vitamin K2 had the most benefits in reducing prostate cancer.

A study published in 2003 in the “International Journal of Oncology” found that treating lung cancer patients with vitamin K2 reduced the growth of cancer cells, and previous studies have shown the benefits of this vitamin in treating leukemia .

Ellie Lauderdale

My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .

I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.

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