What you need to know about this crucial nutrient.
Vitamin K is gaining attention because it has a much greater effect on our health than previously thought. It isn’t a single substance, but a family of nutrients that plays a critical role in preventing disease, including osteoporosis and hardening of arteries that leads to heart attacks and strokes.
Traditionally, vitamin K has been viewed as essential for healthy blood clotting—we could bleed to death from a minor cut without it. In this sense, deficiency has not been viewed as a problem for healthy people, but this holds true for only one form of the vitamin: K 1 Vitamin K 2 is another story. In nature, it exists in 10 subtypes whose names— MK-4 through MK-13—designate different molecular structures within the K 2 family. All of their functions are not fully understood yet, and there is no established daily requirement for vitamin K 2, but the need is clear.
Why Vitamin K 2 Is Essential
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