How Vitamin K Works

Vitamin K: It's found in certain vegetables, in beef and chicken livers, even in ourselves. Yes, we have the ability to make vitamin K -- and we do, creating about 1/3 of what we need -- via bacteria in our intestines. In this article, we'll discuss what vitamin K is, why it is important, where you can find it and more. Here is a brief overview of what we'll cover.
  • What Is Vitamin K?

    First recognized by a Danish scientist in 1929, Vitamin K is a huge help to the body. It not only assists blood with clotting, Vitamin K also helps build bone strength by helping to make a protein called osteocalcin that binds calcium, which indicates that vitamin K may play a role in preventing osteoporosis. Learn more about this important vitamin on this page.
  • Foods That Contain Vitamin K

    Some vitamin K is produced naturally in the body with the help of bacteria; however, it's our responsibility to include vitamin K in our diet, as well. A number of foods contain vitamin K, including green, leafy vegetables such as spinach, broccoli and lettuce, and beef, chicken and pork liver. Green tea is a wonderful source of vitamin K. In this section, learn which foods are the best vitamin K sources.
  • Vitamin K Deficiency

    Despite eating a healthy diet, sometimes vitamin K deficiency can occur. Liver or gall bladder disease, or any disease of the intestinal tract that interferes with absorption of fats, can cause a deficiency.  So can long-term antibiotic high-blood cholesterol medication. Newborn babies are born without the bacteria needed to create vitamin K. Find out what factors can contribute to vitamin K deficiency.
  • Vitamin K Supplements

    As with newborn babies, or certain liver, gall bladder or intestinal tract disease patients, vitamin K supplementation is sometimes needed. But how much, and who needs it? In this section, we take a look at why babies receive vitamin K right after birth and who else will need to be on the look out for vitamin K deficiency. Too much vitamin K is toxic, so being informed is key.

Other vitamins can help maintain and regulate health. Some vitamins you might want to learn more about include:
  • Vitamin A is the vitamin found in carrots that improves eyesight. Learn more about this key vitamin in How Vitamin A Works.
  • Vitamin B3, also called niacin, assists other substances in the conversion of protein, carbohydrate and fat into energy. Learn more in How Vitamin B3 Works.
  • How Vitamin C Works will show you how this vitamin can strengthen your immune system.
  • Discovered only about 60 years ago, Biotin assists in several metabolic reactions. Learn more about it in How Biotin Works.
  • Vitamin B12 has a a chemical structure much more complex than that of any other vitamin. Learn about this vitamin How Vitamin B12 Works.
  • To learn about the many vitamins in our diet, how much you should be eating, and where to find them, go to our general Vitamins page.
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This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. Neither the Editors of Consumer Guide (R), Publications International, Ltd., the author nor publisher take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this information. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader must seek the advice of their physician or other health care provider.