Vitamin K2 is a fat-soluble nutrient that occurs in two main forms, K1 and K2. Vitamin K2 is a family of components primarily obtained from animal-based sources such as meat, cheese, and eggs, and synthesised by gut bacteria. The main function of vitamin K is to facilitate the production of proteins involved in blood clotting and bone metabolism. Prothrombin is a vitamin K dependant protein that plays a vital role in the coagulation process, while osteocalcin requires vitamin K to produce healthy bone tissue. Vitamin K is distributed throughout the body, with significant concentrations in organs such as the liver, brain, heart, pancreas, and bones (1).
Vitamin K serves as a cofactor for y-glutamyl carboxylase, an enzyme that facilitates the carboxylation of glutamic acid to y-carboxyglutamic acid. This process enables proteins to bind calcium, a crucial step in blood clotting (coagulation). Calcium binding is also essential for bone health and strength (2).
The NHS suggests that Individuals require roughly 1 microgram of vitamin K per day for every kilogram of their body weight. Therefore, a person weighing 65kg would need a daily intake of 65 micrograms of vitamin K, while someone weighing 75kg would require 75 micrograms per day (3).
Vitamin K deficiency can occur in individuals taking medications that inhibit vitamin K metabolism, such as antibiotics, or in those with malabsorption disorders. New-born infants are also at risk due to the limited amount of blood clotting proteins at birth and the low levels of vitamin K found in breast milk. If left untreated, vitamin K deficiency can lead to bleeding, haemorrhaging, osteopenia, or osteoporosis (1).
If pregnant or breastfeeding, or on blood-thinning medications such as warfarin, please consult your healthcare practitioner before using this product.
Epigenetics vitamin K2 is produced in a convenient, vegan friendly capsule. Recommended daily dose is 1 serving per day taken with a meal, or as directed by a healthcare practitioner. This product is not intended to be used as an alternative to a varied diet.
||Amount per serving
* Percent Daily Reference Intakes (RI) are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
INGREDIENTS: Cold pressed and organic black cumin seed oil (Nigella sativa), Natural Vitamin K2 [MK-7], Antioxidant (Tocopherols [Natural mixed tocopherols oil]).
Suitable for vegans
The build-up of calcium in the arteries surrounding the heart is a major risk factor for heart disease. Strategies that can prevent calcium deposition in the arteries may help to prevent the onset of heart disease. Vitamin K has been suggested to be a potential preventative agent by preventing calcium deposition in the arteries. Observational studies have demonstrated that individuals with higher intake of vitamin K2 have a significantly lower risk of artery calcification and mortality from heart disease. For instance, in one study that spanned 7 to 10 years, individuals with the highest intake of vitamin K2 had a 52% lower risk of artery calcification and a 57% lower risk of death from heart disease. Similarly, in another study involving 16,057 women, a higher intake of vitamin K2 was associated with a significantly lower risk of heart disease (4).
Vitamin K2, which plays a crucial role in calcium metabolism, is essential for bone and tooth health. Vitamin K2 is involved in the activation of matrix GLA protein and osteocalcin, two proteins that are instrumental in the building and maintenance of bones. Numerous controlled studies have demonstrated the benefits of vitamin K2 for bone health. For example, in a 3-year study involving 244 postmenopausal women, those who took vitamin K2 supplements had slower age-related bone mineral density loss. Similarly, long term studies conducted in Japanese women have shown that vitamin K2 supplements can reduce the incidence of spinal fractures by 60%, hip fractures by 77%, and all non-spinal fractures by 81%. These findings support the use of vitamin K supplements for preventing and treating osteoporosis, which is currently recommended in Japan (4).
Vitamin K2 is considered the predominant form of vitamin K that is metabolised by the brain. Research studies demonstrated that vitamin K2 accounts for approximately 98% of total vitamin K in the brain, regardless of age. Evidence suggests that individuals with early-stage Alzheimer’s disease consume less vitamin K compared to cognitively intact individuals. The neuroprotective effects of vitamin K are proposed to be linked to sphingolipid metabolism. Vitamin K2 has been shown to have a positive correlation with sulfatides and sphingomyelin, which are vital components for brain health and function. Further studies are warranted to explore the underlying mechanisms and potential therapeutic applications of vitamin K in the context of brain health (2).
A clinical trial of 268 participants found that a higher intake of vitamin K2 was linked to 63% reduction in rates of advanced prostate cancer. In a study involving over 7,000 participants, an increase in dietary intake of vitamin K was associated with a twofold decrease in cancer mortality. Additionally, a review of 6 clinical trials and 930 patients indicated that vitamin K2 supplementation may improve overall survival and reduce liver cancer recurrence after surgery. However, these benefits were observed only after 2 and 3 years follow ups. Nonetheless, further well-designed, and larger clinical trials are required to examine the potential anticancer effects of vitamin K dietary intake and supplementation. Therefore, vitamin K2 supplements can not be currently recommended for cancer prevention or treatment but may be useful (2).
Vitamin K can interact with certain medications, and some drugs can negatively impact vitamin K levels. Anticoagulants, such as warfarin, phenprocoumon, acenocoumarol, and tioclomarol, can have a serious and potentially dangerous interaction with vitamin K. These medications inhibit vitamin K activity and can deplete vitamin K dependant clotting factors. Therefore, individuals taking anticoagulants need to maintain a consistent intake of vitamin K from food and supplements to avoid sudden changes in vitamin K levels that may increase or decrease the anticoagulant effect. Antibiotics can also affect vitamin K levels by destroying vitamin K producing bacteria in the gut, which may be more pronounced with cephalosporin antibiotics like cefoperazone, as they can inhibit vitamin K activity in the blood. Additionally, bile acid sequestrants and orlistat may interfere with vitamin K absorption and should be taken at least 2 hours before or after vitamin K supplements (5). It is important to consult with your healthcare practitioner if taking any medications.