Vitamin K is a nutritional element that comes in different forms. There are good sources of vitamin K that come from plants, and there are also synthetically produced vitamin K.
When talking about Vitamin K, it is usually natural to bring up the topic of “blood clotting”. After all, the “K” of this vitamin stands for the German word “koagulation” (coagulation) which means clotting.
Generally, the most important duty of Vitamin K is to guard the human body from great bleeding by thickening the blood. Sufficient amount of Vitamin K in our system comes in handy in times of cuts, wounds or internal bleeding.
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A Fat-soluble Vitamin
In order for vitamin K to be absorbed by our body, we need dietary fat as it is a fat-soluble vitamin. Fat-enriched foods that are considered healthy are the ones that have monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat which are said to lower the level of bad cholesterol.
Monounsaturated fat can be found in vegetable oils such as olive, canola, and peanut oils). These components are said to be neutral and have cholesterol-lowering effect (provided that the overall fat intake is less than 60 grams per day). Research works have also proven that monounsaturated fat can lessen the risk of certain cancers.
Polyunsaturated fat is also originated from fish and plant oils like soybean, corn, sunflower, cottonseed and safflower. These fats lowers the level of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) or bad fats, and raises the level of HDL (high density lipoprotein) or good cholesterol which protects our body against heart diseases.
Good points of Vitamin K
- Vitamin K is an essential element that facilitates in the blood clotting activity that our body needs.
- It is vital in the construction of the liver protein that is in charge of the clotting action.
- Vitamin K also helps in producing the prothrombin (blood plasma protein amalgamated in the liver), which is the indispensable precursor to thrombin (an enzyme that transform fibrinogen to fibrin) – an extremely significant factor in blood clotting.
- Vitamin K also helps in bone development and repair. Some advanced process of research show that Vitamin K may reduce the incidence, regularity, or severity of osteoporosis and measured bone loss.
- As for the intestines, Vitamin K also lends a hand in transforming glucose to glycogen, which is the body’s most significant resource of stored energy. Glycogen is mainly accumulated in the liver and muscle cells of the body.
Vitamin K RDA
The Vitamin K Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for adult males is 80 micrograms (mcg) and for adult females 70 mcg. More intake of Vitamin K can increase the amount of bone-building proteins in the blood.
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Good Sources of Vitamin K?
- Cultured dairy products: yogurt and cheese can help the intestines to produce menaquinone, a natural form of Vitamin K.
- Green vegetables and soybean oil are good sources of phylloquinone which is ordinarily called Vitamin K1
- Broccoli, spinach, asparagus, coffee, beef liver, bacon and green tea
- Menadione is ordinarily called as Vitamin K3 which is a synthetic version of Vitamin K.
Vitamin K has not really gained the popularity that it deserves in the past years. Probably because it is thought to be incorporated already in the food groups that people normally take.
But contrary to this popular belief, Vitamin K should be emphasized enough and not just expect it to be in our usual meals. It is high time for Vitamin K to be in the spotlight along with the other famous supplements.
Let us all start taking in Vitamin K and be healthier than the usual.