In a recent study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, researchers found that people who eat a diet rich in vitamin K have up to a 34% lower risk of diseases in the heart or blood vessels.
These findings shed light on the potentially important effect that vitamin K has on the killer disease and reinforce the importance of a healthy diet in preventing it.
The study is from Edith Cowan University. One author is Dr. Nicola Bondonno.
There are two types of vitamin K found in foods we eat: vitamin K1 comes primarily from green leafy vegetables and vegetable oils while vitamin K2 is found in meat, eggs and fermented foods such as cheese.
In the study, the team examined data from more than 50,000 people taking part in the Danish Diet, Cancer, and Health study over a 23-year period.
They found that people with the highest intakes of vitamin K1 were 21 percent less likely to be hospitalized with heart disease related to atherosclerosis. For vitamin K2, the risk of being hospitalized was 14% lower.
This lower risk was seen for all types of heart disease related to atherosclerosis, particularly for peripheral artery disease at 34%.
ECU researcher and senior author on the study said the findings suggest that consuming more vitamin K may be important for protection against atherosclerosis and subsequent cardiovascular disease.
The team says current dietary guidelines for the consumption of vitamin K are generally only based on the amount of vitamin K1 a person should consume to ensure that their blood can coagulate.
However, there is growing evidence that intakes of vitamin K above the current guidelines can afford further protection against the development of other diseases, such as atherosclerosis.
They believe that vitamin K works by protecting against the calcium build-up in the major arteries of the body leading to vascular calcification.
The role of vitamin K in cardiovascular health and particularly in vascular calcification is an area of research offering promising hope for the future.
If you care about heart disease, please read studies about this simple blood test could help reduce heart disease deaths and findings of this hormone may reduce inflammation, irregular heartbeat.
For more information about heart disease and your health, please see recent studies about diabetes and heart failure are linked; treatment should be too and results showing that more intense blood pressure control may lower irregular heartbeat risk.
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