Vitamin K2 associated with a reduced level of calcified plaque in the arteries

September 17, 2008

     Increased intake of vitamin K2 may reduce the build up of calcium plaques in your arteries. Calcium hardens the cholesterol on arterial walls into a hardened encrusted plaster and this leads to dangerous hardening of the blood vessels leading to coronary heart disease; Americas leading cause of death. A higher intake of K2, but not K1, was associated with a 20 per cent reduction in calcification of the arteries, according to findings published online ahead of print in the journal Atherosclerosis (however, do not throw the baby out with the bath water; Vitamin K1 is very important for building bone).
     The study included 564 post-menopausal women. Sixty-two percent of these women had coronary calcification; hardened dangerous plaques in their arteries. Having higher levels of Menaquinone (Vitamin K 2) decreased the amount of calcified plaque in the women’s arteries by 20% and Vitamin K1 lacked this particular effect according to statistical analysis.
     According to lead author Joline Beulens from the University Medical Centre, Utrecht
 “This study shows that high intake of Menaquinone [K2], but probably not Phylloquinone [K1], is associated with reduced coronary calcification. Adequate intakes of Menaquinone could therefore be important for the prevention of cardiovascular disease.” The study is published online ahead of print in the journal Atherosclerosis.