Vitamin K Benefits
Vitamin K is one of two naturally occurring fat soluble vitamins, K1 and K2. This vitamin is needed to clot the blood, help build bone, deposit calcium to the correct part of our bodies and protect the heart. This vitamin is ingested through certain foods and synthesized by bacteria in our intestine.
Deficiency of this vitamin rarely occurs because vitamin K is obtained from a number of food sources in our normal diet. The highest source of this vitamin is found in green leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens, spinach and turnip greens. But many other foods have varying amounts of Vitamin K as well such as Beet greens, brussel sprouts, mustard and dandelion greens, raw parsley, asparagus, okra, celery and beef liver.
Some fruits that contain high sources of vitamin K are cantaloupes, bananas and blueberries. While this is not a complete list by any means, this should give you some indication how the normal diet can easily meet the required dosage to get the full advantages of the vitamin K benefits.
Whereas in many cases, unhealthy eating can rob one of the necessary vitamins they need, this vitamin is contained in so many sources unless one was to skip eating all together they would be hard pressed to miss out the required amount of this vitamin. In cases where vitamin K deficiencies do occur it is usually associated with medicines of one kind or another.
Anti coagulant medications will block the absorption of vitamin K as that is their purpose. That is why many doctors ask that your report excess bleeding when on anti coagulants. Aspirin is a mild form of anti coagulant and can cause a deficiency in Vitamin K if taken on a continual basis.
Other medications such as antibiotics can prevent vitamin K from being processed in your intestine by killing the necessary bacteria needed to do the job. Conditions such as yeast infections which can be caused by antibiotics may also be a sign of vitamin k deficiency.
There are several signs that may indicate that you are not getting the vitamin K benefits your body needs. These can include excessive bruising and bleeding from small cuts. Heavy menstrual bleeding or bleeding of the gums and prolonged clotting times.
Problems related to vitamin K deficiency can result in the clogging of the arteries, loss of bone density and birth defects.
It is almost impossible to overdose on Vitamin K from eating regular food sources. But eating foods high in this vitamin are recommended for post menstrual women to help them retain bone density because they can have side effects. The side effects include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Simply lowering the amount of the supplement or stopping it all together will quickly end these effects.
Most healthy individuals can get all their vitamin K benefits from the foods they normally consume. However, if you are concerned that you may be suffering from a deficiency of this vitamin then consult your medical professional.