Vitamin K named for the German word for clotting "koagulation" is responsible for enabling your blood to clot, ensuring you don't bleed out from a paper cut or small scratch. Vitamin K also teams up with calcium to strengthen your bones. Because vitamin K is fat soluble, be sure to consume this nutrient at the same time as a (healthy) fat because it will aid with its absorption. Some studies indicate that it helps in maintaining strong bones in the elderly. Vitamin K participates in the synthesis of bone proteins.
Without vitamin K the bones produce an abnormal protein that cannot bind to the minerals that normally form bones. This results in bone density. Researchers continue to discover proteins needing vitamin K’s assistance. Vitamin K deficiency bleeding is a rare disease that occurs in approximately 1 in 10,000 newborns. The disease can cause significant damage to the brain of the newborn, and in some cases can also lead to death. It has been said that there is some good news about vitamin K deficiency bleeding is completely preventable.
You can safeguard your baby from vitamin K deficiency bleeding by giving extra vitamin K to your child after birth. Newborns present a unique case of vitamin K nutrition because they are born with a sterile intestinal tract, and the vitamin K producing bacteria take weeks to establish themselves. To prevent any hemorrhagic disease in newborns usually a single dose of vitamin k is given. If for any reason the mother took medication for blood clotting, tuberculosis, or epilepsy during pregnancy, it is recommended that the baby be given Vitamin K through injection.
The reason is that such babies may not be able to properly absorb Vitamin K orally. Vitamin is not toxic when consumed orally, even in large amounts. However, menadione (a synthetic, water-soluble vitamin K precursor) can cause toxicity and should not be used to treat vitamin K deficiency. People taking this drug should eat vitamin K enriched foods to keep their intakes consistent from day to day. Significant food sources: Bacterial synthesis in the digestive tract, liver, leafy green vegetables, cabbage, and milk. Specific recommendations depend on age, gender, and other factors (such as pregnancy).
The best way to get the daily requirement of essential vitamins is to eat a balanced diet that contains a variety of foods from the food guide pyramid. The Food and Nutrition Board at the Institute of Medicine recommends the following dietary intake for vitamin K: Infants * 0 - 6 months: 2. 0 micrograms per day (mcg/day) * 7 - 12 months: 2. 5 mcg/day Children * 1 - 3 years: 30 mcg/day * 4 - 8 years: 55 mcg/day * 9 - 13 years: 60 mcg/day Adolescents and Adults * Males and females age 14 - 18: 75 mcg/day * Males and females age 19 and older: 90 mcg/day
If you take Warfarin (a blood thinner), one should know that vitamin K or foods containing vitamin K can affect how the drug works. To get more information one should ask their health care provider how much vitamin K or vitamin K-containing foods they should consume. Bibliography Hamrick I, Counts SH. Vitamin and mineral supplements. Wellness and Prevention. December 2008; 729-747. Rolfes, Sharon and Ellie Whitney Understanding Nutrition 11th Ed Belmont CA 2008 http://www. kosmix. com/topic/vitamin_k/overview/adam20#ixzz1KfWhlT00 http://www. osteoporosis-vitamins. com/vitamin-K-toxicity. html