Vitamin K2 benefits – avoiding calcification

You may have heard of vitamin K.  Perhaps you’ve even heard of vitamin K2.  But how many of you have heard of vitamin K2 MK-7?  Let me tell you about vitamin K2 benefits.  Be enlightened as to how this mostly unknown vitamin appears to be vital, especially in helping to regress arterial calcification.

Calcification heralds heart disease

vitamin K2 benefits

In artery and heart cells, if calcium levels are too high within a cell, the cell actually changes physically and will die.  Excess calcium makes for stiffness and hardening and if soft tissue hardens it is a real problem, the problem of calcification.  This calcification impedes proper functioning and heralds the advancement of heart disease.  The correct balance of calcium to magnesium will counteract this calcification.

Your first heart event could be your last

The problem with calcification is that it creeps up insidiously and increases year on year.  As the calcification burden intensifies, we probably won’t even know about it, until one day, out of the blue, a heart event occurs.  50% of the time, the first heart event in someone’s life is the death of them.

vitamin K2 benefitsIntroducing vitamin K2

The imbalance of calcium and magnesium, which causes calcification in soft tissues, is well known. Not well known is that those who do have calcifications can reduce the outcome of atherosclerosis with vitamin K2.  Those who consume good amounts of K2 have the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease. Also, calcification of the arteries can be reduced, lowering the chance of dying from these diseases.

K1 and K2 are different

K1 and K2 are both fat soluble vitamins necessary for blood clotting, but with vitamin K2 it has other functions.  It activates osteocalcin and matrix Gla-protein (MGP). These are very important enzymes that aid calcium out of the vascular system and ushers it into the bones.  Vitamin K1 has not shown to have the same anti calcific properties as K2. It is, however, used in a controversial vaccination which is given to newborns.

K1 given to newborns

Most of the newborns worldwide have an injection of vitamin K1 which prevents Vit K shothaemorrhaging.  Vitamin K is stored in the liver as apposed to being throughout the body.  This inhibits the mother’s vitamin K from crossing the placenta.  Consequently babies can be born with a vitamin K deficiency, which incurs a risk of haemorrhage.  Once babies start eating solid food, their livers will store vitamin K from food.  It is uncommon for babies to have a vitamin K deficiency bleed but it can be catastrophic should it happen.

Baby’s first injections?

Baby’s first injections causes much debate and controversy. At the moment, parents are given the choice to skip this first shot of K1 but the other vaccination of Hep-B is often given without consent from the parent. Hep-B is completely unnecessary in my mind and can cause devastating problems for the unfortunate few. But that’s another article…

MGP and osteocalcin work together
Compact bone
Compact bone

MGP (matrix gla protein, the Gla is short for glutamic acid), extracts calcium out of the arteries and directs it to the bone.   Osteocalcin which resides in the bone, then helps keep calcium in the bone where it belongs.  These two proteins MGP and osteocalcin are so important.   They are both vitamin K2 dependent and neither can function without it.

The vascular system

MGP, is found in the vascular system which includes all the body’s network of blood vessels, arteries, veins and capillaries.  You can imagine how important it is, as this network carries our blood to and from the heart.  You can also imagine how many diseases would be induced if this system broke down.  Atherosclerosis is hardening of the arteries which is shown up with a coronary calcium scan.

articles-atherosclerosis-1NIH description of atherosclerosis

As the NIH (National Heart Lung and Blood Institute) states – Atherosclerosis can affect any artery in the body, including arteries in the heart, brain, arms, legs, pelvis, and kidneys. As a result, different diseases may develop based on which arteries are affected.”

MGP inhibits calcification

Another important finding was that MGP is a very strong inhibitor of calcification. If you inactivate MGP, you end up with serious arterial calcifications. This is why vitamin K2 is so crucial for cardiovascular health. Evidence suggests vitamin K2 can even regress arterial calcification induced by vitamin K2 deficiency.

Protect yourself

The K2 story is quite involved.  Don’t glaze over with boredom. Know that you could protect yourself from this problem by just taking a simple supplement of K2 MK-7.  You can also consume certain foods that will give you your daily microgram dose.  Gaining it from food is more of a problem, not least because some of the food is not to everyone’s taste!

vitamin K2 benefitsSomewhat unpalatable Natto

The foods that contain MK-7, are fermented foods such as a fermented soy known as natto.  Natto is produced using a specific strain of bacteria called Bacillus subtilis.  This stuff is an acquired taste to say the least and some find it obnoxious, that’s why so many go for the MK-7 supplement.

K2 also known as ‘menaquinone’

Vitamin K2 is also known as ‘menaquinone’ and K2 has a whole family of them. But we’re just interested in K2 MK-4 and  K2 MK-7.  MK-4 and MK-7 are the only K2s available as supplements and the concensus of opinion is that MK-7 is the better menaquinone to take.

What do the letters stand for?

menaquinoneThe M stands for menaquinone, the K stands for the vitamin K and the number is a description of how the molecule is made up.  As you can see from the diagram, it shows the different structures of K1, K2 MK-4 and K2 MK-7.  We can get MK-4 from green leafy veggies, some cheeses and egg yolks. MK-7 you can only obtain from fermented foods such as natto and miso.  MK-4 has a short half life which means you have to take it 3 or 4 times a day to get maximum benefit.  With the MK-7 though, the half life is much longer and a single dose per day is all that’s necessary. The amount needed by the body each day is very small, in micrograms.  Doses of as little as 45mcg per day have been suggested as being adequate.

vitamin K2 benefitsDr Leon Schurgers

Dr. Leon Schurgers is a senior scientist at Maastricht University. He began his research on vitamin K some 20 years ago.  Currently one of the leading researchers in the world on this vitamin,  he says:

“There is a very strong correlation between inactive MGP and microcalcifications. It’s very interesting to speculate that vitamin K deficiency is causative of microcalcification, which then sets on a whole cascade of processes leading to atherosclerosis.”

The Rotterdam Study

This study was started in 1990 when subjects were introduced over a 3 years period (1990-1993).  The analysis included 4807 people with dietary data and no evidence or history of myocardial infarction (heart attack) at baseline.  These people were followed until January 2000.  The study used 3 different levels of menaquinone (vitamin K2). Results found that there was a direct relation to the reduction in coronary heart disease (CHD) as well as all cause mortality.  Those consuming the upper levels of K2 (45mcg) had a 50% reduction in coronary calcification. They also had a 50% reduction of all cause mortality against those consuming the lower amount of K2.

Have a look at this short video about K2 from Dr Eric Berg.

And for those taking statins

Statins stimulate atherosclerosis and heart failure: pharmacological mechanisms by Dr. Harumi Okuyama from Japan. This is an article in the  Expert Review of Clinical Pharmacology, March 2015.  It starts by saying:  In contrast to the current belief that cholesterol reduction with statins decreases atherosclerosis, we present a perspective that statins may be causative in coronary artery calcification and can function as mitochondrial toxins that impair muscle function in the heart and blood vessels through the depletion of coenzyme Q10 and ‘heme A’, and thereby ATP generation. Statins inhibit the synthesis of vitamin K2, the cofactor for matrix Gla-protein activation, which in turn protects arteries from calcification.

Dr GoodmanDr Dennis Goodman

Dr Dennis Goodman is a cardiologist and currently a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine at New York Medical Associates in Manhattan.  Commenting on the above article, he stated that for him, if true, it was huge that statins actually deplete vitamin K2.  Therefore, everybody on a statin (26% of over 40s in USA in 2012), will be deplete in vitamin K2.  Taking a K2 supplement is a must to counteract this statin side effect.

Dr MercolaDr Joe Mercola

Dr Joe Mercola, talking with Dr Dennis Goodman remarked that “There are certain things that you need to take, like magnesium and vitamin K2, because they help to prevent the aging process.”  Dr Goodman replied “I think magnesium, vitamin D and vitamin K2 would be a wonderful combo.” (to counteract cardiovascular diseases).

Are you vitamin D deficient?

It is no good being replete with vitamin D3 unless you have adequate magnesium levels. Magnesium is necessary to activate the storage form of vitamin  D.  So, even if you may appear to be vitamin D deficient, upon repleting with magnesium, that apparent deficiency may disappear.  Please be careful with vitamin D.  Too much of it can have an adverse affect causing a buildup of Ca in the blood.

vitamin K2 benefitsMg/K2, a brilliant team

Out of all the supplements you can take to increase your health and/or protect you and your children’s health for the future, Magnesium would be my number 1 choice. I would add KMK-7 to help with regressing calcification.  As you can see from these 2 eminent doctors, they also put Mg at the top of their list of supplements.

Don’t take my word for it!

Don’t take my word for it, take theirs.  They are both experts in the field of integrative medicine and are knowledgeable on all fronts of allopathy and naturopathy.  Their advice is to take Mg and K2MK-7.  With vitamin D, take Mg first and see how much your D deficiency improves before taking a D3 supplement.

Lucky enough to enjoy sun most days?beach safety

Of course, if you live in sunny climes, you will not need to supplement at all with D3, as long as you bare your skin to the sun regularly. Don’t use sun creams! Use hats and long sleeved cotton shirts and long shorts to protect you after you’ve had your ‘skinful’. Just 15 minutes a day in midday sun should do the job. A little less if you are very fair skinned.

Why vitamin D3?

Research in 2011 found vitamin D3 to be superior in raising levels in the body compared with vitamin D2. Now new research has compounded this finding with one study showing that D3:

  • Converts 500 percent faster to its active form than D2.Ches Power
  • Is 87% better than D2 at raising and maintaining vitamin D levels.
  • Produces up to 3 times greater storage than D2.

 

Spread the word!

Summary
Vitamin K2 benefits
Article Name
Vitamin K2 benefits
Description
Heard of vitamin K? Perhaps you've heard of vitamin K2. But how many of you have heard of vitamin K2 MK-7? Let me tell you about vitamin K2 benefits.
Author
Publisher Name
https://magnesiumandhealth.com
Publisher Logo

22 thoughts on “Vitamin K2 benefits – avoiding calcification

  1. Hi, i wonder if you could give advice on TIA’s, and statins. My husband had a TIA approx 7 years ago, and since then has been taking Clopidogrel, and Atorvastatin 20mg. He was also on Effexor 75mg until a month ago, when after tapering for quite some time, actually stopped taking it. My question is: He would like to come off Statins, but as he has had a TIA he is not sure whether it is advisable. He has just started taking Magnesium, and D3, but wonder whether K2 mK7 would be helpful as well, and if so, what dosage should he take. Also, would it be an idea to reduce dose of Atorvastatin to 10mg pd, if taking Magnesium to help with cholesterol, which is at present at a reasonable level. Thank you

    1. Hi Wendy and thanks for your comments and questions. The obsession with cholesterol is quite dangerous IMHO. Research has shown that those who die of a heart event have no predisposition to high cholesterol levels than other sufferers of heart attacks or TIAs. In other words, your cholesterol level does not affect you detrimentally. In fact, low cholesterol is likely to be more problematic than high. Don’t forget the brain is 60% fat and cholesterol is very necessary to keep the brain in good fettle. Statins are a money spinner and doctors are encouraged by Pharma to prescribe them where possible. Cholesterol is your friend and is necessary for a healthy life. If you had no cholesterol you couldn’t survive.

      If your husband is worried about stopping the statins, get him to gradually reduce the dose. Did you know that Magnesium is a natural statin? Have a look at this article it will give you all the side effects of taking statins. Has the doctor been regularly checked your husband’s liver enzymes. Has the doctor advised a supplement of CoQ10 or Ubiquinol. Has the doctor advised a supplement of Selenium? I suspect none of the above. He certainly would not know about the role of Mg in cholesterol control. Another side effect of statins is Statin Myopathy, a completely iatrogenic condition that damages muscles. The condition is known as Rhabdomyolysis and an estimated 1 in 5 will suffer from it. Has your husband experienced muscle pain at all?

      Statins and other drugs, deplete Magnesium at a fast rate so he is probably deficient in this vital mineral as is the majority of the population. Check out this article if you want to do your own Magnesium; it’s cheaper than buying the good quality ones out there (ie ReMag – high quality but very expensive).

      Taking K2 at 90-100 mcg is ideal and D3 is a must, especially if your sun exposure is low. Magnesium is also necessary to activate your stored D3. You can get tested for D3 but I would suggest you take 4,000IU per day at least. If his D is very low, this can be increased. If you go for ‘request a test’ in the US, you will be given advice as to the dose you need to get your D up to optimum levels.

      To give you an idea of the Magnesium dose, I take 600mg of elemental Mg Chloride per day which I adjust depending on my stress levels, my activity levels and other foods I have consumed. By the way, please make sure his Calcium intake is not high. Keep Mg and Ca on an even keel to make both minerals work well as they are linked. Too much Ca gives a Mg deficiency by default and it’s nearly always the Mg that is low rather than the Ca which is fortified in our foods and in abundance in antacids and other such medications. We all seem to consume too much Calcium. There’s a good book worth reading called “Death by Calcium” quite an eye opener! Dr Carolyn Dean’s “The Magnesium Miracle” is also worth a look as well. Make sure you get the 2nd edition. Good health to you and your husband and please get back to me if you have any other questions.

      1. Hi Ches,firstly sorry for the delay in replying, problems with internet connections. I am very grateful to you for a full and detailed reply to my question, and I have taken on board about the Co-Q10, and selenium, and also the recommended dose of vitamin K2 as well. Thank you so much for your help and information, it is invaluable to me. Wendy

  2. My husband’s vitamin d levels are at 19…less than optimum. Our doctor recommends adding 2,000IU a day and retesting in three months. I’m thinking he should take more….Can you recommend the appropriate dosage of K2, and Magnesium that would accompany a dose of 2000 IU d3. He also takes a statin. Do not want him to take d3 without the K2 or Magnesium for fear of artery calcification. I’m getting overwhelmed trying to figure this all out! Thank you for any help you can give.

    1. Hi there Robin, I agree with you, your husband should be taking at least double that amount, if not more. Make sure he is taking D3 which is superior to D2. As for K2, those that did the research regarding this vitamin found that there was no toxic level so any reasonable amount could be taken. Even so, research found it to be very effective at 90μg (micrograms) which is the amount I take daily. Taking 150μg would be fine. As for Mg, make sure you take Mg Chloride which is highly bioavailable. Unlike Mg Oxide which will mostly go straight through you. This will explain all about Mg Chloride (MgCl2).

      I take 600mg of elemental MgCl2 per day, adjusting it depending on my stress levels (which deplete Mg rapidly) and/or what I’ve had to eat. Don’t forget, if Mg levels are low, D3 will not be properly activated. Mg is necessary to activate vitamin D. It may be that your husband has D in its storage form so make sure your Mg levels are replete. Even so, I still think that 4,000IU will be fine. Many advocate taking much larger amounts. I myself take at least 4,000IU daily.

      Now we come to statins. Please read this article thoroughly and remember, statins have some serious side effects. It may be of benefit for your husband to also take selenium. 200μg should be fine. Being on statins hopefully his doctor checks his liver function regularly.

      Finally, don’t overdo the Calcium. Much of our food is fortified with Ca, despite most of us already having plenty. It is a fallacy that Ca is the be all and end all of minerals. In fact, too much Ca will deplete your Mg levels by default. They should be taken in as equal an amount as possible. Calcium over the counter antacids are one of the worst culprits with products such as Tums putting vast amount of Calcium into the body which will actually exacerbate calcification of soft tissue. Each of us is different and only your husband will know how much Mg he needs to take. But be assured that most of us don’t get enough and many are highly depleted in Mg.

      Most importantly, do your own research and be aware of the research that can be misleading. I have quite a lot of articles on my site and they are all thoroughly researched. Always question everything and listen to your bodies. Good luck and I am sure you husband’s health will improve with these supplements.

    2. Famed, though not always truthful in his declarations to the public he serves, Elder, thin Dr. Fauci does take best care of himself with daily ☀D3 @ 6,000IU. That would be from a well pre-loaded to repletion state above 40ng/ml [100nmol/L]! Lower blood levels do not prevent all Covid deaths.

      Age decreases UVB☀D skin metabolism and also GI/liver/kidney metabolism of oral D3 sources. Obesity lipids intensely store it, keeping it from the needed immune (and bone) actions until fat stores are topped off. 2-3X doses & pre-loading needed!

      K2 is also a fat soluble, not H²O soluble vitamin, but I haven’t heard yet that more might be needed, but if he has a high BMI, I would raise the dose.

      I am considering trying natto.

  3. Hello Ches, This comment is not meant to be posted on this article. I would like to make a suggestion for an article for your consideration: The article would be about what I consider the top three public enemies that have killed more people since the the first industrial revolution starting in the 18th century, than all the war’s and violent crime combined, from this same period to present time (worldwide).

    1. Sugar (in all forms, including substitutes)
    2. Industrial seed oils (aka Vegetable Oil)
    3. Refined grains (wheat, barley, rice, corn, oats, millet etc.)

    I learned a tremendous amount of information about whole body disease (functional medicine vs. specialized) and proper ancestral dieting (lifestyle) from Ivor Cummings; a chemical engineer turned spokesman for the Irish Heart Disease Awareness charity IHDA.ie
    Most of his lectures and podcasts can be found on his YouTube channel. He interviews top doctors, researchers and scientists in their field of expertise.

    1. Hi again Russell, You seem to be getting well versed on these subjects and I would suggest that you join the throng and start your own blog page. You have 3 problem ‘foods’ already, why not put your own thoughts forward. The more different people that spread the news the better. Our health is being seriously compromised by the pharmaceuticals, the food companies and the chemical industry. That’s apart from the governmental departments who support these groups, such as the FDA the CDC etc.. Have a look at this post about the birth of the medical industry. Most people have no clue how it all started with Carnegie & Rockefeller. This history is well documented but little known by the public and that includes most of our medics!

  4. Hi Ches, thanks for info on K2-MK7 I think this is the missing link, which will help with my Heart failure, by making the muscle pump stronger, clearing the arteries of toxins, which could be are depleting me of Q10. & maybe along with my Magnesium Chloride, and Vitamin D3. I will be able to get off the Meds I’m on, ie: diuretics which it would seem is my main problem, of mineral deficiency.
    I am so glad to have met you, & been enlightened with all this, hope to see you for coffee soon
    Davine x

    1. Hi there Davine and thanks for your valuable comments. I’m really gratified that you have taken everything on board to improve your own health, rather than relying totally on the medical profession. Indeed vitamin K2 could be the missing link for many people suffering with heart conditions and atherosclerosis. With the three important nutrients of Magnesium, Vitamin D3 and Vitamin K2, many sufferers of calcifications, would find their health improve dramatically. Heart disease and associated conditions are the biggest killers in the world. Much of this could be alleviated by properly nourishing our bodies with the vitamins and minerals that modern day living has depleted us of. You have made great strides in improving your own health naturally and that is down to you taking what you’ve learnt and putting it all into practice. Well done you. I have a great deal of respect for such a determined and strong woman. See you soon.

  5. Oh what a fab article and I love all your articles because I understand exactly what you’re saying. One thing that I am certain of is that our bodies can’t survive without minerals. A lack of it or even an imbalance can cause devastating effects to our body. When I was working in the cosmetic industry, I used to tell my customers that if they put Vitamin K under their eyes, it’ll take away their black circles, and it magically did but the cosmetic companies won’t tell you that because they want to sell you an expensive product.

    1. Thanks for writing your comment Sharon and I’m gratified the posts are easy to understand.  The subject is somewhat difficult to explain sometimes without getting too heavy.

      You are so right, minerals are vital with some being more vital than others.  Magnesium for some reason, has been tasked in our bodies to cofactor up to 800 enzymes and still counting.  This overworked mineral has masses to do to keep us healthy and its depletion will wreak havoc.  

      What a good tip about vitamin K for use to get rid of dark circles. I didn’t know that and as I myself need help in that area, I will be trying it. Thanks for the info!

  6. Hi Ches. Love your article about Vitamin K2 MK-7. I actually know a lot about it even though it is a new vitamin. I think it was discovered 10 years ago or so.

    Anyway, I use it for building stronger bones. It prevents heart atack by scraping excess calcium frpm the arterie lining and puts it back in the blood stream and with some help from vitamin D, that calcium goes into the bones. You see, I do know a lot about it:).
    Whic is better MK-7 or MK-4? Thank you for your reply.

    1. Hi Nikola and thanks for your input. Its very gratifying to know that you have knowledge already of this powerful, but mostly unknown vitamin and are taking a supplement to keep your vascular system healthy and free of calcium deposits, well done!!

      As for your question of which to take MK-7 or MK-4, MK4 is a good supplement but the problem is it has a short half life of just a few hours which means you need to take it 3 or 4 time a day. MK-7 (menaquinone 7) has a longer half life of a few days so taking a small amount just once a day is all you need. The research I cited was done with 45mcg per day but some experts advocate upping this to at least 100mcg. Of course, this makes it more expensive. Remember vitamin K2 is non toxic at any dose! Keep learning Nikola and impart your knowledge to others! Ches

  7. This is an awesome website. I am very interested in natural medicine and working with vitamins and health. This is one of the best I have seen. I had no idea about K2 and you explain everything in an easy to understand way. I bookmarked the site for reading later after I looked at 3 pages and like the information on those too.
    I really like the support you give to back up what is being written. I will be back to read more.

    1. Thanks so much Shas for your kind comments and I hope the information will be of use to many readers. K2 is a vitamin we all need to know about as it could be a life saver. Researchers suspect that this vitamin can actually clear the buildup of calcium in the vascular system. If further research proves this fact, this could be an amazing discovery which will save many lives and reduce much misery.

      In any event, taking K2 – MK7, which is completely non toxic at any dose, would be a sensible move, especially with the junk food manufacturers are churning out! Ches

  8. This article is very valuable. The number of heart failures go up, so It’s very important to let people know Vitamin K2 is very important for them to regress and prevent calcification of arteries. I have never been fan of statins. High cholesterol can be cured in another way. Thank you a lot for this post.

    Mario

    1. Hi Mario and thanks for the positive comments. You’re so right about statins. Research has shown that it can actually do harm and definitely should not be prescribed for anyone who has never had a heart event. Cholesterol is not the problem it is deemed to be and can be balanced with adequate levels of magnesium (as long as calcium is not taken to excess as is often the case). Good health to you and yours. Ches

  9. I never heard about this before, hows important this information! I got a new knowledge from you about something in healthy category..some of people don’t care about anything that make us feel sick or anything’s bad on body, but you care so you made this article. Thats kind of you and very useful..good luck.

    1. Hi Vivi and thanks for your positive comments. I’m pleased you find the content of the website useful. Good health to you and yours. Ches

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *