Vitamin K is a nutrient that the body needs to stay healthy. It’s important for blood clotting and healthy bones and also has other functions in the body. If you are taking a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin®), it’s very important to get about the same amount of vitamin K each day.
Vitamin K can be found in green leafy vegetables like spinach, kale, broccoli, and lettuce, vegetable oils, some fruits like blueberries and figs, meat, cheese, eggs, and soybeans.
Some people are prone to low levels of vitamin K. This includes newborns who did not receive a vitamin K injection at birth, people who have conditions such as cystic fibrosis, celiac disease, ulcerative colitis, and those who have undergone bariatric (weight loss) surgery.
Some symptoms that could indicate a low level of Vitamin K include bruising or bleeding problems because the blood will take longer to clot. Vitamin K deficiency might reduce bone strength and increase the risk of getting osteoporosis because the body needs vitamin K for healthy bones.
There are a number of benefits to adequate vitamin K intake and supplementation. This includes healthy bones/ bone strength, prevention of osteoporosis, helping with coronary heart disease, and proper blood properties such as clotting time and prevention of easy bruising.
There are some medications that will interact with vitamin K, so discussion with your doctor about vitamin K supplementation and your current medications may be helpful before beginning supplementation.
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