We all know that vitamin D gets a lot of publicity! It supports immune function, plays a role in bone health, and even acts as a hormone that can influence insulin sensitivity. At The Hormone Zone our physicians make sure we evaluate serum vitamin D levels in all our patients. There is another vitamin we love that deserves some attention and that is Vitamin K!
Vitamin K is a key player in protecting us when we are wounded. It works by activating clotting factors to help us STOP bleeding. Typically, patients are told to be mindful of Vitamin K consumption when they are on blood thinners such as Warfarin. This is because warfarin interacts with the same clotting factors that Vitamin K is activating. Doctors will tell their patients on Warfarin to avoid eating foods like spinach, broccoli and kale because these super foods are high in Vitamin K. To our readers that maybe on a blood thinning regiment we would like you to be mindful of the directions that were given to you by your prescribing physician when reading this information.
Aside from being a key factor in blood clotting, Vitamin K is kick butt for your health. Vitamin K comes in several forms. K1 and K2 are naturally occurring and can be used for correcting deficiency. K1 is found in plants, especially foods like the leafy green veggies listed above. What is unique about K1 is that our gut bacteria has the ability to convert it to K2, the more active form. Vitamin K2 can be found in animal sources including dairy and eggs. When choosing a Vitamin K supplement, it is important to choosing supplements with K2 forms MK-4 and Mk7. Mk-4 has high absorbency while Mk-7 remains in the system longer.
Vitamin K and Cardiovascular Health: Heart health is compromised when inflammation, and damage occurs within the arterial walls. Small nicks or cuts occurring within the arterial wall are sealed with cholesterol and calcium. We call this “bandage” a plaque. Blood pressure increases and places a strain on the heart when arteries become narrow from plaque and cholesterol build up. Vitamin K is protective to arterial walls by reducing calcium build up.
Vitamin K and Bone Health: Several studies suggest that Vitamin K helps improve bone density. This occurs because it pays a role in activating OSTEOCALCIN the hormone responsible for building bone. Vitamin K2 supplementation in women with osteoporosis, post menopausal, and increased fracture risk see improved bone density with vitamin K supplementation of at least 120 μg/day .
Preventative care is important to us at The Hormone Zone. We are able to address nutrient deficiencies through supplementation, nutrient intravenous therapy and clinical nutrition . Contact us today to see if you could benefit for Vitamin K supplementation. (480) 338-8070