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Home :: Vitamin K

Vitamin K - Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms And Food Sources

What is Vitamin K ?

Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays an important role in blood clotting. Vitamin K are found in three forms of vitamin K: vitamin K1 (phyllo­quinone or phytonactone), which comes from plants; vitamin K2, a family of substances called menaquinones, which are made by intestinal bacteria; and vitamin K3 (menadione), which is a synthetic substance. Vitamin K is also essential for bone formation and repair; it is necessary for the synthesis of osteocalcin, the protein in bone tissue on which calcium crystallizes. Consequently, it may help prevent osteoporosis.

Benefits of Vitamin K

Vitamin K plays an important role in the intestines and aids in converting glucose into glycogen for storage in the liver, promoting healthy liver function. It may increase resistance to infection in children and help prevent cancers that target the inner linings of the organs. It aids in promoting longevity.

Recommended Dosage of Vitamin K

The minimum Recommended Dosage Allowance of Vitamin K are :-

  • Men - 80 micrograms per day .
  • Women - 70 micrograms per day.

Special Intake of Vitamin K

While a daily dose of 80 micrograms of vitamin K is recommended, the following individuals have increased needs for vitamin K :-

  • In the therapeutic use of Vitamin K , the dosage is usually increased considerably, but the toxicity level must be kept in mind.
  • Smokers. Cigarette, cigar, and pipe smoking deplete the body of vitamin K.

Deficiency Symptoms of Vitamin K

Symptoms of Vitamin K deficiency includes :-

  • Anemia
  • Internal bleeding.
  • Nosebleeds.
  • internal hemorrhaging.
  • Gum bleeding

Rich Food Sources of Vitamin K

Vitamin K is found in some foods, including asparagus blackstrap molasses, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, dark green leafy vegetables, egg yolks, leaf lettuce, liver, oatmeal, oats, rye, safflower oil, soybeans, wheat, and yogurt. Herbs that can supply vitamin K include alfalfa, green tea, kelp, nettle, oat straw, and shepherd's purse. However, the majority of the body's supply of this vitamin is synthesized by the "friendly" bacteria normally the intestines

Some more information on Vitamin K

Antibiotics increase the need for dietary or supplemental vitamin K. Because vitamin K is synthesized by bacteria in the intestines, taking antibiotics -which kill the bacteria interferes with this process. Antibiotics also interfere with the absorption of vitamin K


Do not take large doses of synthetic vitamin K during the last few weeks of pregnancy. It can result in a toxic reaction in the newborn. If you are taking anticoagulant (blood thinning) drugs, consult with your health care provider before taking any supplemental vitamin K, as it can interfere with the action of these medications. Megadoses of this vitamin can accumulate in the body and cause flushing and sweating.

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