12 Crucial Facts About Vitamin K

One of the least-known vitamins, itís not surprising that thereís a lot of mystique and mistakes surrounding vitamin K. Everywhere I turn, another person is sharing misinformation about this critical nutrient. To help set the record straight, here are some essential facts you need to know about vitamin K:

Food is the Best Source

Food is always the best form of any vitamin and vitamin K is no different. While there may be a need to supplement with this nutrient, food is still the best way to get it.

Vitamin K is Actually a Group of Vitamins

Not just a standalone vitamin, vitamin K is actually a group of fat-soluble vitamins that have similar chemical structures.

Vitamin K1 and K2 are Not the Same

While there are several different kinds of vitamin K, vitamin K1 and K2 are the most common. While they have predominantly the same name, these different forms of the vitamin have different functions and food sources.

Vitamin K1 is Mainly Found in Greens

Also known as phylloquinone, vitamin K1 is primarily found in leafy greens so if you arenít already loading up on greens, youíll want to get started to reap the rewards of vitamin K1.

Vitamin K2 is Not Just Found in Animal Products

Most bloggers continue to perpetuate the myth that vitamin K2 is only found in meat. While animal products tend to be sources of this nutrient, they are not the only sources. Vitamin K2 is also found in many fermented foods.

Your Body Can Manufacture Vitamin K

You may not realize that by boosting the health of your gut, you can boost your bodyís ability to manufacture vitamin K. The best way to boost your gut health is by eating more fermented foods like sauerkraut, miso, natto, yogurt, kimchi and fermented pickles. Learn how to†Make Your Own Probiotic-Rich Sauerkraut†at Care2 or in my book The Cultured Cook.

Vitamin K3 is Best Avoided

Vitamin K3, also known as menadione, is synthetic and is best avoided due to the potential for side-effects.

Vitamin K1 Makes Up the Bulk of Vitamin K

Between 75 and 90 percent of the vitamin K consumed by people is Vitamin K1, not the meat-sources of K2 which many well-meaning but misguided people recommend as a way to get more vitamin K.

Eat More of the Top 6 Sources†of Vitamin K

The best way to get more vitamin K is to eat more of the top 6 sources, including (with the amount of vitamin K found in 1 cup): kale (1062 mcg), collard greens (1059 mcg), spinach (889 mcg), turnip greens (529 mcg), broccoli (220), Brussels sprouts (218 mcg).

Vitamin K is Not Just for Blood-Clotting

While it is most known for its ability to ensure healthy clotting of blood, vitamin K can help improve heart and bone health.

Vitamin K is Best Absorbed When Eaten With Fat

Because Vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin, it is best eaten alongside some fat to boost absorption. So, add some olive oil to your cooked or salad greens, throw some avocado slices in your vitamin K-rich meal, or add some nuts and seeds with them.

Keep Your Vitamin K Intake Consistent

If you take warfarin or another blood thinner, or have a blood clotting disorder, it is wise to keep your vitamin K intake consistent to avoid any issues with your medication or condition.

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Dr. Michelle Schoffro Cook, PhD, DNM shares her food growing, cooking, preserving, and other food self-sufficiency adventures at FoodHouseProject.com. She is the publisher of the free e-newsletter Worldís Healthiest News and an international best-selling and 20-time published book author whose works include: The Cultured Cook: Delicious Fermented Foods with Probiotics to Knock Out Inflammation, Boost Gut Health, Lose Weight & Extend Your Life. Follow her work.


Jeanette Björk

Thanks for sharing, one usually doesn't hear or read so much about vitamin K, so the information was needed! :)

hELEN h15 days ago


Margie F
Margie FOURIE24 days ago

I use dandelion greens in my dog food.

Irene S
Irene S25 days ago

There is a third and artificial kind, K3 and it was added to dogs food because it can stand the high temperatures while processing. Alas, it is suspected to be poisonous. So at least in Sweden it was banned. Did not care too much because I make my own dog food with natural vitamin k.

Roxana Saez
Roxana Saez26 days ago


Lisa M
Lisa M26 days ago


Lisa M
Lisa M26 days ago


Leo Custer
Leo C26 days ago

Thank you for sharing!

Doris F
Doris F27 days ago

@C2...what happens with C2 ?????
All actions are break down ! hmmmpfff :-(

Toni W
Toni W27 days ago