Vitamin K - Menadione

Vitamin K – Menadione

Vitamin K

Vitamin K

Vitamin K was named from the Danish word – Koagulation. Vitamin K is fat soluble.

Vitamin K is the generic term for a family of compounds that exhibit the biological activity of phyto-menadione.

The form found in plant foods is termed phyto -meaning plant – menadione or phylloquinone (vitamin K1).

The forms synthesized by bacteria are menaquinones (vitamin K2).

The parent compound is known as menadione (vitamin K3); it is not a naturally-occurring form and is not used in humans.


Vitamins K1 and K2 can be produced in the bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract of healthy people and utilized in the body. Important in the production of the clotting agent prothrombin. A significant factor in vitality and longevity. Involved in energy producing activities of the tissues, particularly the nervous system. For normal liver function and needs bile to be utilized. Also important in the conversion of glucose into glucogen  (the form of sugar stored in the body and used as fuel).

Increased Risk of Deficiency


Celiacs disease

Liver disease

Heavy alcohol use

Medications: broad-spectrum antibiotics, Cholestyramine, Coumarin

Nutrient absorption difficulties in the intestines



Fat malabsorption

Newborn infants who are exclusively breast-fed

Signs and Symptoms of Deficiency

Improper blood clotting

Prolonged bleeding, small amounts of blood in the stool

Easy bruising

Premature aging

Lowered vitality

Impaired bone re-modelling and mineralization

Excessive diarrhoea


More than 500mcg of synthetic Vitamin K is not recommended

Mega doses of vitamin K can build up in the body and cause red blood cell breakdown and anaemia

Patients on the blood thinner Dicumarol should be aware that synthetic K could counteract the effectiveness of the drug. The drug inhibits the absorption of natural vitamin K.

Drugs that induce vitamin deficiency

3 basic mechanisms by which drugs induce vitamin deficiency

1/            impaired vitamin absorption

2/            impaired vitamin utilisation

3/            enhanced vitamin elimination

See the following examples:

a/ Cholestyramme

Mineral oil

Polysporm, neosporm, neomycin, mycolog, neo-cortel, cortisporin, lidosporin, mycifradin,

Kanamycin, tetracycline, chloramphenicol, polymyxin, sulphonamides, phazyme, cathartic agents

b/ Coumarins

Pro-banthime, probital


c/ Bronkotab,

Bronkolixer, chardonna

d/ Drugs with multiple mechanisms

eg: Alcohol


X-rays and radiation, frozen foods, aspirin, air pollution, mineral oil

Medical and therapeutic Uses

Helps in preventing internal bleeding and haemorrhages

Aid in reducing excessive menstrual flow

Promotes proper blood clotting

Used to prepare women for child birth

Used in treatment of coronary thrombosis

Prevent prolonged menstruation

Reduce 90% of pain in cancer patients

Good for bloodshot eyes, nose bleeds

Use vitamin K with vitamin C for cell wall integrity

Good Dietary Sources

Spinach, Fish liver oils, kelp, Broccoli, Green cabbage, Soyabeans and oil, Beef liver, Green Tea,Egg yolks, Alfalfa, Tomatoes, Yoghurt, Corn, Strawberries, Wheat bran, Wheat germ, Cauliflower, Carrots, Peas, Cow’s milk, Gotu Kola, Slippery Elm, Yarrow.

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Deborah Harper

Article by Debbie Harper

Debbie Harper is a self-published author and an accomplished blogger. She's the founder of and the author of the book “The Number #1 Rule for a Long and Healthy Life”. If you like this post, you can stay up to date with the latest information from by subscribing via RSS, or receive articles directly in your inbox. Then click here to download a free report on "The Number #1 Rule for a Long and Healthy Life".