Study Links Dietary Vitamin K to Bone Health

March 30, 2011

Research published in the journal Bone links dietary intake of vitamin K to improvements in several bone health markers in the elderly.

Research published in the journal Bone links dietary intake of vitamin K to improvements in several bone health markers in the elderly.

Using food frequency questionnaires and the USDA database, researchers based in Spain assessed dietary vitamin K intake in 365 elderly subjects and related vitamin K intake to bone health markers like bone mineral density, porosity, and elasticity. Two years of follow-up was conducted on 200 of the subjects, during which changes in vitamin K intake were related to changes in these bone health markers.

“High dietary vitamin K intake was associated with superior bone properties,” wrote the study’s lead author. Average rates of bone mineral density, porosity, and elasticity all appeared to improve with vitamin K intake.

Moreover, subjects who increased their vitamin k intake during follow-up showed lower losses of bone mineral density compared to subjects who did not increase vitamin K intake.

Vitamin K1 is the primary source of vitamin K in Western diets. Vitamin K1 is a critical nutrient for transporting calcium from blood to bones, but it is also needed for blood functions; for this reason, the bone health needs are increasingly resting on vitamin K2, a form of vitamin K which may be more efficient for bone health.