Newsflash: our bodies need calcium to build and maintain bones.
You’ve probably already heard that vitamin D can help your body to absorb calcium and keep bones, teeth and muscles strong. However, did you know that vitamin K2 can supposedly work alongside vitamin D to optimise bone health?
Let’s investigate this further.
How Do Vitamins D3 and K2 Work Individually?
Both vitamins D3 and K2 are beneficial for your bones and body in general.
According to the Royal Osteoporosis Society, vitamin D helps the body to take in and use calcium, as well as maintain healthy levels of calcium in the blood. This is what gives your bones their hardness and strength.
What happens if you have low vitamin D levels? Well, this could increase your risk of broken bones and a condition called osteoporosis, which causes the bones to become brittle and fragile from loss of tissue.
A severe shortage of vitamin D can even result in rickets and osteomalacia, which is soft, weak bones.
Alongside vitamin D, studies have shown that vitamin K is effective in the prevention of bone loss and diseases like osteoporosis.
Why? Well, according to Healthline, it plays a central role in the metabolism of calcium by activating the calcium-binding actions of two proteins (Matrix GLA Protein and Osteocalcin).
Essentially, low amounts of vitamin K in your body can reduce bone mineral density and increase the risk of fracture.
How Effective Are Vitamin D3 and K2 for Bone Health?
Research suggests that the combination of vitamins D3 and K2 is more effective in preventing bone loss than one or the other. They are both fat-soluble vitamins that work together to regulate calcium metabolism.
Vitamin D promotes the production of the vitamin K-dependent protein Matrix GLA Protein (MGP). This is an important substance that can only function properly when vitamin K2 is present for carboxylation.
In simple terms, vitamin K2 activates a protein that helps calcium bind to our bones to do its job. Without vitamin K2, your body is unable to maximise the full benefits of vitamin D3.
The Importance of Supplementing with Vitamin D3 and K2
Vitamin D on its own is commonly taken as a supplement in the UK. After all, our primary source of vitamin D is sunshine, which Brits tend to experience a lack of (especially in the winter months).
Given that the NHS itself even recommends taking these supplements, this has become a generally-accepted way of increasing your vitamin D levels.
However, vitamin K2 is less commonly taken as a supplement, even though it also has many health benefits.
When it comes to aiding bone growth and density, genetic, cellular, molecular and human studies have shown that optimal concentrations of both vitamins D and K are instrumental.
We should try to eat a varied, healthy diet full of foods that promote healthy bones, such as vegetables and fermented dairy.
Having said that, joint supplementation can be a simple way to get your daily dose of goodness. In other words, for your bones to be as healthy and strong as they can possibly be, you need to supplement with vitamin K2 whenever you supplement with vitamin D3.
Joint supplementation can also support your:
- Cardiovascular health
- Immune system function
- Tissue health (prostate, breast and colon)
- Blood sugar balance
- Mental clarity and productivity
- Healthy mood
Additionally, vitamins D3 and K2 work alongside each other to keep calcium in the bones and out of soft tissues like the heart, kidneys and joints.
Supplemental calcium is effective in promoting bone mineral density and strength, thus preventing medical conditions like osteoporosis.
A growing amount of research suggests that combining vitamins D3 and K2 can support the body in terms of bone health, arterial health and a boosted immune system.