Vitamin K plays a big role in blood function and health.
In fact, blood would not clot if it were not for vitamin K.
In addition, the vitamin plays a big role in bone health. It is stored by the body in fat tissue and liver tissue.
Vitamin K was first discovered in 1929 when a Danish scientist investigated the role of cholesterol by feeding chickens a diet with low cholesterol. The chickens developed hemorrhages as a result of the diet. The scientist discovered that adding a specific compound that had been extracted from the food prior to its introduction to the chickens reversed the hemorrhaging. This compound was given the name vitamin K.
A vitamin K deficiency can be caused by liver issues or decreased production in the intestines.
Malabsorption can also be caused by specific illnesses like celiac disease, cystic fibrosis or bile duct obstructions.
A deficiency can also be caused by improper dietary intake.
Signs of a vitamin K deficiency include bruising, oozing gums, excessive bleeding, heavy menstrual bleeding, gastrointestinal bleeding and bloody urine.
While no amount of vitamin K is known to cause side effects, the vitamin can interact with medications. It is known to react adversely with certain antibiotics and weight-loss drugs.
Age is the big factor in determining how much vitamin K is needed on a daily basis.