Animals fed a
standard diet plus warfarin, a
standard diet plus vitamin K1 at normal dose (5 micrograms per
gram of food), a standard diet plus high-dose vitamin K1 (100
micrograms per gram of food), or the standard diet plus
high-dose vitamin K2 (100 micrograms per gram of food). During the second six-week period, the calcifications side
effects in the warfarin-treated control group continued. The arterial
calcification also continued in the normal dose vitamin K1
group, indicating that vitamin K1 received from the diet in
normal amounts had no effect. By contrast, in both groups that
consumed high doses of vitamin K1 and K2 arterial calcium
content declined by about 50 percent. Additionally, arterial
distensibility (positive elasticity of the blood vessels) was restored
by the vitamin-K-rich diet. The high-vitamin-K diet not only
prevented calcification in the animals but also regressed
existing arterial calcification. Furthermore, by measuring
antibodies for MGP (Matrix Gla-protein, a potent inhibitor of
arterial calcification) researchers determined that local
vitamin-K deficiency was demonstrated at sites of
The researchers concluded, "This is the first study in rats
demonstrating that arterial calcification and the resulting
negative side effects of decreased arterial distensibility are reversible by high
vitamin K intake."
Vitamin K for Hearts ; Good Health
VITAMIN K2 may stop hardening of the arteries, according to new research.
Hardening, or calcification of the arteries is a key risk factor in heart disease and stroke, which are responsible for more than 110,000 deaths in the UK each year.
The new laboratory research at the University of Maastricht, in the Netherlands, found that arterial calcification was reduced by up to 50 per cent in animals that ate a diet rich in the supplement vitamin K2.
A second study in Holland, involving nearly 5,000 people, found that increased intake of the side effects free vitamin may have significantly reduced the risk of dying from heart disease.
Professor Cees Vermeer, of the University of Maastricht, says: 'Our trial showed that vitamin K2 supplementation was capable of supporting the reversal of arterial calcification.'
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