Thrombosis and Haemostasis, The International Journal for Vascular Biology and Medicine, has approved for publication in its May 2015 print issue a new study showing the positive impact of MenaQ7® Vitamin K2 as MK-7 (menaquinone-7) on cardiovascular health through its improvement of arterial flexibility.
The study titled “Menaquinone-7 Supplementation Improves Arterial Stiffness in Healthy Postmenopausal Women” is significant because it confirms what previous population-based studies have only been able to show an association, according to Cees Vermeer, renowned vitamin K2 scientist and Chief Innovation Officer at the R&D Group VitaK of the Maastricht University Holding (the Netherlands), who led the study’s research team.
“This is the first study showing that long-term use of vitamin K2 in the form of MK-7 beneficially affects cardiovascular health,” says Vermeer. “Previous population-based studies have shown an association between vitamin K2 intake and cardiovascular risk, but this is the first intervention trial focused on Vitamin K2 supplementation with cardiovascular endpoints.”
Researchers at the R&D Group VitaK of the Maastricht University Holding in the Netherlands monitored 244 healthy post-menopausal women for three years using pulse wave velocity and ultrasound techniques. The participants, aged 55-65 years, were randomly assigned to take 180 mcg of MenaQ7® daily for three years, or placebo capsules. Results confirmed that MenaQ7® Vitamin K2 not only inhibited age-related stiffening of the artery walls, but also made an unprecedented statistically significant improvement of vascular elasticity.
“Our data demonstrated that a nutritional dose of vitamin K2 in fact improves cardiovascular outcomes,” Vermeer continues.
This same cohort was examined for another study proving MenaQ7’s bone benefits that published in Osteoporosis International in 2013.
“Both studies are significant because they are long-term – three years of participation and then examination of the results,” said Hogne Vik, ex-NattoPharma CEO. “Observing changes in heart health, and bone health for that matter, take time. Our patience and perserverence has paid off with a study accepted by a highly prestigious medical journal that proves what we have known all along: that MenaQ7 Vitamin K2 truly delivers benefits for hearts and bones.”
Vitamin K2 benefits bone and heart health
“This cardiovascular study is significant because it shows that vitamin K2 not only benefits our bone health, but is also important to heart health,” said Dennis Goodman, MD, board-certified cardiologist and Director of Integrative Medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York. “Vitamin K2 ensures calcium binds to the bone mineral matrix and stays out of the arteries. This is important because if calcium accumulates in the arteries, it may cause blockages that can lead to serious cardiovascular events, such as heart disease and strokes.”
Dr. Goodman, who is completing a new book explaining the important role that vitamin K2 plays in achieving both bone and heart health, says flexibility of the arteries also has a direct connection to a person’s longevity. Calcification in the arteries has been shown to add 10 years to a person’s biological age, according to a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine (Rosenhek, et al., 2000). Another study published in the scientific journal Atherosclerosis (Shaw et al., vol. 188, 206) shows your biological age could decrease or increase by 10 years based on the level of age-related arterial calcification.
“This study, which is actually showing an improvement in endothelial function, has the potential to dramatically impact the way we view prevention when it comes to cardiovascular health,” Goodman adds. “Further clinical studies will be important to confirm these exciting findings.”
1 Knapen MH et al, Braam LAJL, Drummen NE, Bekers O, Hoeks APG, Vermeer C. Menaquinone-7 supplementation improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women: double-blind randomised clinical trial. Thrombosis and Haemostasis. 2015 113 5: 1135-1144.
2 Knapen MH, Drummen NE, Smit E,, Vermeer C, Theuwissen E. Three-year low-dose menaquinone-7 supplementation helps decrease bone loss in healthy postmenopausal women. Osteoporos Int. 2013 Sep;24(9):2499-507.