Many people – and older men in particular – are not getting enough vitamin K, says a new article by Consumer Reports that draws attention to the benefits of the vitamin.
There are two naturally occurring forms of vitamin K, a micronutrient that plays a key role in blood clotting. Vitamin K1 is found mainly in the leaves of various green plants. Vitamin K2, which is considered to be a more bioavailable form of the micronutrient, is found mainly in fermented foods such as sauerkraut or fermented soy. Provided the intestinal balance is healthy, bacteria in the human gut can also contribute to the body’s supply of vitamin K2.
Vitamin K2 works hand in hand with vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), the main natural source of vitamin D that the body can synthesize when skin is exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D3 promotes absorption of the mineral calcium. Vitamin K2 helps calcium to find its way to where it is needed in the body. Illustrating the results of this synergy, recent research has shown that increased levels of vitamin K are linked to fewer bone fractures in children. Studies have revealed a synergistic interplay between vitamins D and K for bone and cardiovascular health.
To read how vitamin K and other micronutrients can help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, see this article on our website.