Vitamin K Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms, Food Sources, Toxicity and Upper Limits

Introduction to Vitamin K

Vitamin K is a fat soluble vitamin which acts as coagulant to support blood clotting. It can be absorbed by the intestinal tract through fat. It also helps in bone mineralisation and builds strong bones.

Benefits of Vitamin K

  • Essential for blood clotting
  • Helps support bone health
  • Enables osteocalcin to bind calcium to strengthen bones

  • Protects bone from weakening
  • Prevents calcification of blood vessels and heart valves

Vitamin K Deficiency Symptoms

Severe deficiency of vitamin K in healthy individuals, to affect blood clotting, is very rare. People with illnesses affecting absorption of fat in the intestinal tract may be at the risk of deficiency, which can be fulfilled using supplements.

Daily Vitamin K Requirements

  • Men 19 to 50 years – 120 μg
  • Women 19 to 50 years – 90 μg

Vitamin K Upper Limits

  • There is no upper limit set for vitamin K
  • Individuals taking anticoagulant medication like Wararin etc. need consistent intake of vitamin K as this medication decreases the activity of vitamin K

Vitamin K Toxicity

There are no known toxicity associated with Vitamin K.

Food Sources of Vitamin K

  • Coleslaw, 1 cup – 75 μg
  • Romaine lettuce, raw, 2 cups – 96 μg
  • Green cabbage, raw, 2 cups – 107 μg
  • Broccoli, cooked, 1 cup – 110 μg
  • Brussels sprouts, raw, 1 cup – 156 μg
  • Spinach, raw, 2 cups – 290 μg
  • Collards, raw, 2 cups – 368 μg
  • Kale, raw, 2 cups – 1095 μg
  • Olive oil, 1 tsp – 3 μg
  • Margarine, regular, 80% fat, 1 tsp – 4 μg
  • Canola oil, 1 tsp – 6 μg
  • Soybean oil, 1 tsp – 9 μg

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