Vitamin K2 helps your bones to remain strong and your arteries clear of calcium deposits.
What is vitamin K2?
Vitamin K2 (menaquinone) is a fat-soluble vitamin that your body needs to build strong bones. It activates two key proteins. The first, osteocalcin, attracts calcium into bones and teeth, where it belongs. The second, matrix GLA protein (MGP), removes calcium from blood vessels and other soft tissues. K2 is produced by animals and bacteria. It works together with vitamins A and D.
My first Dexa Scan in 2004 showed osteopenia in both my spine and hip. Around that time, I came across information about Vitamin K2, and started taking a supplement with Vitamin K1 and two forms of Vitamin K2: MK-4 and MK-7. Over the next fifteen years, my bone density increased 58.5% in my spine, 6.7% in my hip.
Today, I include foods in my diet that are rich in Vitamin K2 – aged cheddar cheese, butter, ghee (clarified butter), and eggs. I also take a supplement with both MK-4 and MK-7.
Which foods are rich in vitamin K2?
Raw, organic, 100% grass-fed aged cheese, ghee (clarified butter), and butter are rich in K2. You can find these products in your local health food store or order online. Other rich sources of K2 come from pastured animals: egg yolks, duck fat, beef tallow, and pork lard.
I use A Campaign for Real Milk (www.realmilk.com) for sources of raw dairy. The Weston A Price Foundation has chapter leaders in many cities who can help you find nutrient dense foods. Local Chapters (www.westonaprice.org/find-local-chapter/)
How much Vitamin K2 should you consume?
In 2001, The Institute of Medicine set the adequate daily intake of Vitamin K (K1 and K2 combined) at 120 mcg for adult men, 90 mcg for adult women. At the time, not much was known about K2. Research since 2001 suggests that 100 mcg of K2 with some MK-4 is the minimum amount you should get per day.
Your dietary requirements are unique, Please consult your healthcare provider for advice on your particular needs.
Recipes rich in vitamin K2
Which vitamin K2 foods do you like?
Let me know your favorites in the comments below – I’d love to hear from you.
Results of VitaK Laboratories vitamin K2 tests in micrograms/ounce
|Organic egg yolks||10.74|
|Conventional egg yolks||9.17|
|Chicken liver (Farm)||3.11|
|Chicken liver (Conventional)||1.95|
|Little Milk Company aged raw cheese Mature||15.55|
|Little Milk Company aged raw cheese Vintage||13.80|
|Cabot Extra Sharp Aged cheddar||14.65|
|Nature’s Promise Organic sharp cheddar||10.37|
|Kraft Processed cheese slices||2.33|
|Pure Indian Ghee||12.39|
|Purity Farms Ghee||10.52|
|Nature’s Promise Butter||8.61|
|Land O Lakes Butter||8.35|
|Organic Valley Butter||7.90|
|Amish Raw Cultured Butter||7.17|
|Trickling Springs Butter||6.68|
|Kerry Gold Butter||6.20|
|FarmFriend Goat Butter||5.66|
|Amish Raw Butter||5.04|
|Duck Fat, Free range||33.26|
For more information:
Vitamin K Fact Sheet for Consumers
Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox: How a Little-known Vitamin Could Save Your Life by Kate Rheaume-bleue
VitaK Laboratories vitamin K2 test results Weston A Price Foundation
Vitamin K2 Content of Selected Foods Weston A Price Foundation
Elder SJ, Haytowitz DB, Howe J, Peterson JW, Booth SL.
Vitamin K Contents of Meat, Dairy, and Fast Food in the U.S. Diet. J Agric Food Chem. 2006; 54: 463-467. Schurgers LJ, Vermeer C.
Determination of Phylloquinone and Menaquinones in Food. Haemostasis. 2000; 30: 298-307.