- Vitamin D3 and K2 supplements have gained popularity, especially because they work better together than when administered separately
- This article explores the benefits of this perfect pair that support bone, immune, cardiovascular health among others, as applicable here in Kenya
You’ve probably heard of vitamin D and vitamin K2 being mentioned together – it’s the perfect pair. Vitamins D3 and K2 each function more effectively in the presence of the other.
In fact, the combination is available as a singe supplement containing both. It can actually be harmful to the body if you take too much vitamin D without K2.
So what are these vitamins and how do they help the body?
Vitamins D and K are fat-soluble nutrients that play a central role in calcium metabolism.
Vitamin D is usually called the “sunshine vitamin” because the body makes its vitamin D from the sun. it’s usually abundant in fatty fish and fish oil.
Vitamin K is found in leafy greens as well as liver, cheese and egg yolk.
Roles of Vitamins D and K
Vitamin D maintains calcium levels in the blood. It does this by
- Enhancing calcium absorption from the digested food into the bloodstream (1)
- If your body doesn’t have enough calcium, vitamin D maintains calcium levels by drawing it from the bones (2). Besides bone health, calcium has several vital functions in the body (3)
Vitamin D also facilitates a normal immune system. Lack of vitamin D has been linked to cancer, among other diseases.
On the other hand, vitamin K regulates calcium in 2 ways:
- It promotes absorption of calcium into the bones and teeth, making them stronger (4)
- It prevents calcium accumulating in soft tissues such as blood vessels and kidneys (5). Blood vessel calcification has been implicated in chronic diseases such as kidney and heart diseases (6, 7) . Calcification of blood vessels can lead to high blood pressure
Vitamin K also helps regulate normal blood clotting.
What Leads To Vitamin D Deficiency?
- Too much time indoors – in today’s busy life, most people don’t get enough vitamin D
- Living where there’s too much pollution
- Having a darker skin
Symptoms of vitamin D include:
- Aches and pains, feeling tired, general sense of feeling unwell
- Bone and muscle pain or weakness
- Stress fractures especially in legs, hips and pelvis
A simple blood test can diagnose vitamin D deficiency. Taking vitamin D3 and K2 supplements helps maintain healthy levels of these crucial vitamins.
Benefits of Vitamin D
Vitamin D offers several benefits:
- Bone health – as we’ve seen above
- Helps fight disease – vitamin D helps reduce risk of multiple schlerosis (8), prevents against heart disease (9) and even helps fight flu (10)
- Supports brain and nervous system health
- Helps reduce depression (11, 12)
- Helps in weight management (13)
- Supports blood sugar management
- Supports lung function and cardiovascular health
- Influences gene expression involved in cancer development
- Vitamin D helps support healthy pregnancy (14) and healthy infants (15, 16)
Best Vitamin D3 And K2 Supplements
Vitamin K is available as K2 as menaquinone-7 (MK-7). Vitamin D is available as D3.
- Vitamin D helps maintain calcium levels in the blood by improving calcium absorption from the gut, in from bones if there’s calcium deficiency
- Vitamin K helps absorb calcium into the bones, making them stronger. It also helps reduce accumulation of calcium in blood vessels and other organs, which can lead to diseases like high blood pressure, heart and kidney disease, etc
- Consider taking vitamin D3 and K2 supplements to maintain overall health