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Vitamin K2 and Blood Coagulation: Debunking A Myth

Vitamin K2 and Blood Coagulation – Debunking A Myth

Vitamin K was initially known for its essential role in blood coagulation, a healthy process to prevent excessive bleeding when needed. This raises the question: Does vitamin K increase blood thickness, and does it elevate the risk of thrombosis?

 

Vitamin K is essential for maintaining normal blood clotting abilities, ensuring our bodies can effectively stop bleeding when necessary. Contrary to some belief, research shows that Vitamin K2 doesn’t cause excessive blood clotting. Today, we are debunking the myth that vitamin K2 can lead to elevated levels of coagulation.

Understanding Vitamin K

Historically, K vitamins were thought to be a single vitamin, referred to as Vitamin K. However, K vitamins are a group of fat-soluble vitamins whose function is significant for human health.

 

The two most important forms are Vitamins K1 (found in leafy greens) and vitamin K2 (small levels found in fermented foods). Vitamin K1 is the principal source of dietary Vitamin K and is needed for proper blood coagulation. Meanwhile, Vitamin K2 is essential to build and maintain strong bones and to support a robust cardiovascular system. The difference between the two is the fact that vitamin K2 stays in the blood longer, is more bioactive, and has additional functions not seen in K1.

The Relationship Between Vitamin K2 and Blood Coagulation

Prothrombin, a vitamin K-dependent protein, plays a crucial role in the blood clotting process. It does not influence blood “thickness or thinness. Instead, it is involved in the complex cascade of blood coagulation, where vitamin K activates not only prothrombin but also other clotting factors necessary for proper blood coagulation when needed. In healthy individuals, these clotting factors function optimally without increasing thrombosis risk. Vitamin K deficiency, on the other hand, leads to reduced activity in these clotting proteins, resulting in longer, sometimes harmful, bleeding time.

 

Vitamin K2 has the same ability to activate the proteins in the liver responsible for blood clotting as vitamin K1. However, as coagulation is an important process in the human body, vitamin K1 is primarily taken up and utilized by the liver, with little left for other tissues.

Coumarin is The Only Contraindication

The only contraindication is the use of coumarin derivatives, like warfarin, as oral anticoagulants. These drugs are prescribed to patients with an increased risk of developing harmful blood clots, due to disease, or after surgery. These drugs are vitamin K antagonists, inhibiting important actions of vitamin K2 in the body. This means that patients on these types of anticoagulants are at risk of poorer bone and cardiovascular health. Patients receiving coumarin treatment should always consult their doctor before supplementing with vitamin K2. Fortunately, there is a new generation of oral anticoagulants that are not vitamin K- antagonists and can be combined with vitamin K2 without hesitation.

Antithrombotic drugs and vitamin K2 Supplementation

Historically, vitamin K antagonists were the only anticoagulants widely available for human use. Due to the risks associated with bleeding and the need for careful monitoring, there’s been a push to develop safer anticoagulant medications that don’t require as much oversight. This has led to the creation of new types of antithrombotic drugs, that work by targeting specific parts of the blood clotting process to prevent clots from forming.

 

These drugs can be divided between anticoagulants and anti-platelet drugs. Examples of drugs that have no interference with vitamin K2 are anticoagulants like Heparins and so-called Direct Oral Anticoagulants. Anti-platelet drugs like aspirin also have no interference with K2.

MenaQ7® is Proven Safe and Efficacious

Across the many clinical studies performed with MenaQ7®, there has been no observed risk of coagulation elevation. There has been no show of negative impact on thrombin and coagulation parameters remain stable over time. Researched groups include children, adults, and kidney patients. This is yet another argument to promote the foundational health benefits of MenaQ7® Vitamin K2, across all age groups, supporting healthy development and healthy aging.

 

Fortunately, with the development of new oral anticoagulant (OAC) drugs mentioned earlier, individuals in these patient groups can safely continue supplementing with MenaQ7® to promote healthier bone and cardiovascular systems.

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