Consumption and Metabolism of Vitamin K
Current research is expanding what is known about vitamin K, a vital nutrient in helping the body respond to injuries. This slide show, adapted from chapter 6 of the CRC Press’ eBook, “Vitamin K in Health and Disease,” will examine the bioavailability, storage and metabolism of vitamin K.
Bioavailability From Foods
The bioavailability of vitamin K from food sources is not well known. Some studies suggest certain green foods are poor sources of the vitamin, while others suggest that consuming broccoli or romaine lettuce is no different than absorbing the pure vitamin. What is known, however, is that whatever amount is consumed from food sources has the same effect on the body as supplemental vitamin K.
Transport and Uptake of Vitamin K
Vitamin K is predominately carried by triglyceride-rich lipoprotein fraction, however the total impact of plasma vitamin on vitamin K is not clearly understood because certain variables, such as rate of absorption and uptake by tissues, are still unclear.
Where Vitamin K Is Found
There are four predominant forms of vitamin K in the body, with the majority found in the liver, muscle and heart tissues. Dietary vitamin K usually targets the liver, but still only represents about 10 percent of the vitamin K pool.
Tissue Metabolism of Vitamin K
There are various ways tissues can absorb and metabolize vitamin K, but it is known that very little MK-4 is produced in the gut.
Status of Current Research
Current research has not provided a consensus on the bioavailability of vitamin K from foods, however the absorption or plasma transport and the major metabolic pathways leading to the degradation of the vitamin are both clearly identified.
More on Vitamin K
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