What is vitamin k good for – We all know that vitamins are an essential part of healthy nutrition. We are often told to load up on fruits and vegetables from a very early age for this reason.
While the general importance of vitamins is often mentioned, the specific nature of these nutrients and what they do once they’re in our system is hardly spoken of.
Only a hand full of vitamins such as Vitamin C and maybe vitamin A have their activity and roles as common knowledge.
This lack of understanding is even more pronounced when it comes to knowing the effects of chronic deficiencies in any of these vitamins.
Vitamin K Deficiency
Like any other vitamin, the effects of deficiency of vitamin K can be dangerous and even life-threatening if left unchecked for long enough.
One major symptom and resulting condition from the deficiency of vitamin K is a high tendency towards bruising and bleeding as well as an inability for blood to clot in a normal way when bleeding occurs.
That’s because vitamin K is a major component in the clotting activity of your blood as you’ll see later in the article.
Another symptom of vitamin K deficiency is weaker bones and the accelerated onset of osteoporosis.
With all that said, we aren't here to talk about the disadvantages of not getting enough vitamin K, but rather its advantages when you get enough of the fat-soluble nutrients.
But before we do that, you might want to learn exactly where it comes from first and what is vitamin k good for.
Vitamin K Sources
Vitamin K is quite abundant in healthy, wholefood sources.
It might come as a surprise that it’s often considered deficient in the modern diet.
That's because we often opt for processed foods instead of whole sources.
The other reason is that even when whole foods are included in the diet, they are often cooked to the point of destroying many of the healthy nutrients.
Vitamin K is best obtained from leafy green vegetables, especially cruciferous vegetables (brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage, and broccoli…).
You can also get a good dose of it from animal sources such as meat, liver, and fish in smaller amounts.
With that said, let’s look at what the actual benefits are.
4Health Benefits of Vitamin K
Necessary for Blood Clotting
As mentioned, what is vitamin k good for vitamin K is vital for the health of your blood, and specifically in its ability to clot effectively when the need arises.
That’s why a deficiency in the nutrient shows up as an inability to clot blood and a propensity towards uncontrolled bleeding.
In extreme cases, one’s stool can appear dark due to intestinal bleeding.
Bruising becomes much more prevalent as well, but the real danger is internal bleeding which can’t be visibly noticed.
Necessary in Protein Synthesis
The role of vitamin K in healthy blood clotting is based on the synthesis of proteins that are required in the clotting process.
These, however, aren’t the only proteins vitamin K is responsible for.
Many cell signaling and cell receptor proteins also rely on vitamin K for their function and production.
Other proteins that are vitamin K reliant are those that play a role in the development and health of bone tissue…
Good For Bone Health
Vitamin K is important for bone health.
There is a special protein, osteocalcin, that is dependant on vitamin K in order to catalyze the binding of calcium for bone growth and repair.
Without the availability of vitamin K, the early onset of conditions such as osteoporosis as well as the inefficient healing of damaged bone tissue can result.
Circulatory System Health
Vitamin K benefits the cardiovascular system in another important way.
Aside from bolstering the health of your blood, especially where clothing is concerned, vitamin K is an essential circulatory system cleanser.
It does this by demineralizing your blood vessels, preventing calcification which could lead to obstructions and lack of dynamic function.
Conditions such as atherosclerosis can result from excess mineralization of blood vessels, increasing the risk of diseases such as stroke, heart attack, and chronic hypertension.
This health benefit is not limited to just your cardiovascular tissue.
It also extends to most soft tissue in your body, preventing calcification which can easily disrupt the normal, healthy function.
While fairly abundant in the food sources we have at our disposal, vitamin K needs to be mindfully considered so that we get enough and we get the right quality.
You also need to bear in mind that vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin, so include it as a part of a diet containing healthy fats in order to truly gain its benefits.
Remember to try and get your daily dose from natural sources, but supplementation is always an option.
If you have any questions or suggestions, don’t hesitate to drop us a line in the comments section below and we’ll get right back to you.
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