Vitamin K2: Dr. Weston Price’s X-Factor Nutrient

globe with dolls representing native cultures

Anyone familiar with traditional diets is likely familiar with Dr. Weston Price’s X-Factor nutrient Vitamin K2.  Dr. Price traveled the globe searching for isolated people groups, examined their diets, and examined their health.  What he discovered was that these very healthy groups of people ate traditional diets loaded with fat soluble vitamins.

The vitamin content of the food was 40 times greater than the Standard American Diet (SAD).

However, there was one nutrient that hadn’t yet been identified.  Researchers conducting the analysis on the food samples decided to call this new compound the “X-factor”.

Today, we’ve determined the X-factor is vitamin K.  Research of this vitamin has been exploding!  And that is great news for all of us.

There are 2 forms of vitamin K — K1 and K2.

woman running, Vitamin K2 helps with cardiovascular health

Vitamin K2 is the center of research.  This nutrient is critical for good bone health (think osteoporosis prevention), it helps keep the arteries clear, and even slows the aging process.  For these reasons, this is a nutrient to celebrate.

K2 helps direct calcium in the body to the right places — in the bones.

An article in Time magazine states, “Studies show that in every age group, people with higher vascular calcium levels have a greater risk of heart attack than people of the same age with lower scores do.”

As we age, we often stop storing calcium in our bones and it ends up in our blood vessels where it shouldn’t be.  This is the beginning of heart disease.

At one point, it was thought that cholesterol levels were indicative of cardiovascular disease.  Then we started looking at C-reactive protein which is a substance in the liver associated with inflammation in the body. Doctors can use C-reactive proteins as a means to determine a person’s risk for stroke or heart disease via a blood test. Monitoring both cholesterol levels and C-reactive proteins are good ways to know just how healthy any person’s arteries are, but what we really want to know is how much calcium is in our arteries.

We know now that K2 can actually prevent calcium from developing in the arteries and can reduce the calcium already there.  That, my friends, is powerful!

As a potent anti-aging nutrient, Vitamin K2 works inside the mitochondria (rod-shaped parts of a cell that power its metabolism) supporting mitochondrial respiration or the conversion of oxygen to energy inside our cells.  The better the mitochondrial respiration the better a person is likely to feel.

People with fibromyalgia have sluggish mitochondria.  So, it’s likely that supplementing K2 into the diet will help reduce fibro pain.  It’s certainly worth a try.

Vitamin K2 helps with other conditions, too.  It reduces diabetes risk by 20% and decreases the risk of cancer.  It lowers the possibility of prostate cancer by an astounding 35%.  K2 even helps with dementia, joint health, skin health, dental health, nerve damage, and more.

Wonderful news to be sure, but there is some bad news.

Statistically speaking, Americans are mostly sub-clinically deficient in this nutrient, but there are ways to obtain it.

Food sources for Vitamin K2: 

fermented soy bean dish rich in Vitamin K2

Natto (pictured above over rice) – a fermented soy product from Japan, is rich source of K2.

Another good K2 source is liver.  I see you rolling your eyes and gagging, but don’t get skeptical yet!

Liver can be absolutely delightful. For a quick meal, pick up some liver pate at your local health food store and prepare to be amazed.  I recommend duck liver to start with.  It’s got a mild flavor you’ll enjoy and served with the right healthy flavors to compliment it, you’ll forget it’s even liver.

Yet like any food, I doubt you’ll want to eat liver–or Natto for that matter, every day.  So, supplementing is a excellent option.  Be sure to look for and buy Vitamin K2, not K1.  You’ll want to take 300 mcg each day in divided doses.  So, take 150 mcg in the morning and then again in the evening with food for better absorption.

Contrary to what some internet sources claim, cheese and other foods are not a great source of Vitamin K2–at least not for those of us in the US. According to Microbiologist and researcher Kiran Krishnan Most of the cheeses that have enough K-2 in them to be beneficial are pretty stinky (literally, they smell) and are not readily available in the United States.

Be sure to let me know how you’re feeling!

To your health!