Vitamin K is a very essential fat-soluble nutrient for our body, as it helps the clotting of blood and prevent excessive bleeding. Vitamin K, which is not used as a dietary supplement unlike many other vitamins, is essentially a group of compounds like vitamins K1 and K2.
Why Vitamin K Is Important?
If our body has a low level of Vitamin K, it can lead to uncontrolled bleeding in case of an injury. Deficiency of Vitamin K is found more in newborns than adults. It can also be used to counteract the overdose of coumadin - a blood thinner or anti-coagulant.
Health Benefits Of Vitamin K:
The major benefits that vitamin K provides to our health are:
• It prevents calcification of arteries that can lead to heart attacks
• It boosts the protein quantity required to maintain calcium in the bone and prevents the risk of osteoporosis.
• It reduces the risk of various types of cancers like those in prostate, colon, stomach, etc.
Deficiency of Vitamin K is not common, but one may be at a high risk if he/she:
• Is suffering from an ailment that harms the absorption in the digestive tract
• Takes medicines that obstruct the absorption of vitamin K
• Lacks nourishment
• Engages in heavy drinking
What is the ideal dose of Vitamin K?
• Babies between birth and six months can be given 2 micrograms (mg) a day
• Babies between seven months to a year can be given 2.5 mg a day
• Boys and girls between 14 and 18 years require 75 mg a day
• Women above 19 need 90 mg a day
• Men above 19 require 120 mg a day
Though absorption of Vitamin K has not been associated with any side effect, but just like too much of everything is bad, overdose of Vitamin K can also lead to adverse effects.
Foods That Provide Vitamin K:
Vitamin K can be obtained from the following food items like,
• Vegetables such as spinach, broccoli and asparagus
• Beans and soyabeans
• Eggs and meat
• Brussel sprouts
Does Vitamin K Intake Cause Any Harm?
One should not take in Vitamin K supplements, unless it has been prescribed by the doctor. It is important to have a close watch on the eating habits to regulate the amount of Vitamin K that is needed to be consumed. It is also advised not to take Vitamin K supplements, without consulting a specialist.