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Vitamin K Benefits and Signs of Deficiency

Benefits and Functions of Vitamin K :

One of vitamin K's primary functions is helping to regulate the normal clotting of blood.

It is important for the formation of healthy bones via the synthesis of osteocalcin, which is believed to promote healthy bone formation. Low blood concentrations of vitamin K have been connected with decreased bone mineral density and a higher risk of hip fractures. Vitamin K supplements can help increase bone mass in post-menopausal women.

Relatedly, vitamin K may function to help prevent osteoporosis, although the exact process isn't completely understood. Two vitamin K dependent proteins are located in bones.

Vitamin K helps to prevent the calcification of soft body tissues, including the arteries. Calcification of body tissues is negative affect related to aging.

It may function to help regulate blood sugar levels. The pancreas, which produces insulin, contains elevated concentrations of vitamin K..

It also plays a role in the regulation of tissue mineralization and the proliferation of cells.

Vitamin K may also function as an antioxidant.

 

Signs of Vitamin K Deficiency:

Vitamin K deficiency is quite rare and generally happens only when there is problem with the absorbption of vitamin K via the intestinal tract, rather than a result of getting insufficient quantities in the diet. It generally only occurs in people who have diseases that disrupt the absorption of fat, such as cystic fibrosis, celiac disease, or cholestasis. Vitamin K deficiency can sometimes happen after taking oral antibiotics for a prolonged period. Extended ingestion of antibiotics can result in lower levels since they kill some of the bacteria in the intestines that produce vitamin K.

Newborns have a higher risk ofvitamin K deficiency because their digestive tracts do not contain any of the bacteria that produces vitamin K.

Symptoms of vitamin K deficiency can include thinning of the blood, a diminished ability to clot blood, bruising easily, epistaxis, bleeding in the digestive tract, menorrhagia, and hematuria.

Vitamin K Toxicity, Overdose:

There has been no observed toxicity connected with ingesting high doses of any of the forms of vitamin K, however eleveated intake isn't recommended for people who are taking anticoagulant medications such as Warfarin (coumadin).

More Information:

Vitamin K Overview

Vitamin K Daily Requirement, Dietary Sources

 

 

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