Top 7 benefits of vitamin K2 D3? Should they be taken together?

For many of us, maintaining strong bones and a healthy heart are top priorities. But did you know that achieving these goals might involve a powerful partnership between two lesser-known vitamins: D3 and K2?

Let's delve deeper into what each offers and how they work together to optimize your health.

Vitamin D3: The sunshine vitamin

Think of vitamin D3 as your body's conductor for calcium absorption. We naturally get D3 from sunlight exposure, but many factors like limited sun time, geographical location, and even sunscreen use can contribute to deficiency. 

This is a concern because D3 plays a vital role in bone health, regulating calcium levels, and supporting a healthy immune system.

Studies published in reputable journals like the National Institutes of Health (NIH) highlight the connection between sufficient vitamin D3 levels and bone mineral density. Adequate D3 intake can significantly reduce the risk of fractures, especially in older adults.

Vitamin k2: directing calcium to the right places

Vitamin K2 acts like a traffic cop for calcium in your body. While D3 increases calcium absorption, K2 ensures this calcium gets directed to your bones and teeth, where it's needed most. K2 also helps prevent calcium from accumulating in your arteries, potentially reducing the risk of cardiovascular issues.

Benefits of vitamin K2 and vitamin D3

Think of them as teammates, each playing a crucial role. Vitamin D3, often called the "sunshine vitamin", helps your intestines absorb calcium from your food. But that's just half the story. Here are top 7 benefits of vitamin K2D3, backed by studies:

1. Enhanced bone mineral density and strength

A cornerstone function of vitamin D3 is facilitating intestinal calcium absorption. However, for optimal bone health, proper calcium distribution is equally crucial. This is where vitamin K2 steps in. Vitamin D3 increases intestinal calcium absorption. Vitamin K2 activates proteins called osteocalcin and matrix GLA protein, which help deposit calcium into the bone matrix and prevent it from accumulating in arteries.

A 2022 meta-analysis published in Nutrients, encompassing over 6,400 postmenopausal women, demonstrated that K2 supplementation significantly improved bone mineral density (BMD) and strength. K2 activates proteins responsible for directing calcium into the bone matrix, preventing unwanted deposition in arteries.

2. Potential for reduced cardiovascular risk

Arterial calcification is a well-established risk factor for cardiovascular disease. A 2021 analysis published in the prestigious International Journal of Cardiology reviewed data from over 220,000 participants. The study suggests an association between higher intakes of vitamin K (including K1 and K2) and a reduced risk of coronary heart disease. By ensuring appropriate calcium placement, the K2 and D3 combination may contribute to a healthier cardiovascular system.

Vitamin K2 helps prevent calcium from accumulating in the arteries, which can contribute to hardening and blockages. By ensuring appropriate calcium placement, the K2 and D3 combination may contribute to a healthier cardiovascular system.

3. Supporting hemostasis

Vitamin K plays a vital role in blood clotting, preventing excessive bleeding. Vitamin K is required for the activation of various clotting factors in the blood, ensuring proper clot formation to prevent excessive bleeding. A 2013 review published in the Journal of Thrombosis and Hemostasis highlights the importance of vitamin K for optimal blood coagulation function.

4. Emerging links to cognitive function: Early research suggests a potential link between vitamin K2 and cognitive health. A study published in Frontiers in Neurology explores this intriguing connection, particularly regarding the potential role of K2 in age-related cognitive decline. While further investigation is warranted, these initial findings pave the way for exciting future research. You can find the study here: Vitamin K and Cognitive Function in Elderly Subjects: The Rotterdam Study

5. Maintaining oral health

Strong bones and healthy teeth are intricately linked. Vitamin D3, by promoting calcium absorption, contributes to maintaining robust tooth enamel, a crucial component of oral health.

6. Potential blood sugar regulation

While research is ongoing, some studies suggest a link between K2 and improved blood sugar control. A 2017 publication in the journal Nutrition explores this potential benefit, highlighting the need for further investigation in this promising area.

7. Promoting healthy aging

Mounting evidence suggests that K2 and D3 may contribute to healthy aging. By potentially improving bone health, cognitive function, and even cardiovascular health, these vitamins may play a role in promoting overall well-being as we age.

The benefits extend beyond bones though

Stronger immune system: Vitamin D3 is a key player in immune function, potentially reducing your risk of getting sick.

Reduced inflammation: Studies suggest both D3 and K2 may have anti-inflammatory properties.

Sounds too good to be true? The science backs it up!

A review of studies found that combining vitamin K2 and D3 resulted in significantly greater bone mineral density in women compared to taking vitamin D alone.

Another study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that vitamin K2 supplementation improved arterial stiffness in postmenopausal women.

Who should not take vitamin D3 K2?

Vitamin D3 and vitamin K2 are essential nutrients for bone health, immune function, and overall well-being. However, as with any potent therapeutic agent, supplementation may not be suitable for everyone. Here are potential contraindications and considerations for D3/K2 use:

Individuals Taking Blood Thinners: Vitamin K plays a critical role in blood clotting. High-dose supplementation of D3 and K2 can potentially antagonize the effects of warfarin (Coumadin) and other blood thinners, increasing the risk of thromboembolic events. 

A 2009 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) demonstrated an association between high vitamin K intake and reduced warfarin efficacy. Always consult a healthcare professional before initiating D3/K2 supplementation if you are on blood-thinning medications.

Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease: Healthy kidneys are vital for regulating calcium homeostasis. In individuals with compromised kidney function, high-dose vitamin D supplementation can lead to hypercalcemia, a condition characterized by elevated blood calcium levels.

Hypercalcemia can manifest with nausea, kidney stones, and even paradoxical bone issues. The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) recommends consulting a healthcare provider before taking vitamin D supplements if you have chronic kidney disease.

Pregnant and Lactating Women: While vitamin D is crucial during pregnancy, exceeding the recommended daily intake can be detrimental. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommends an upper limit of 4,000 IU/day for pregnant women. It is imperative to consult a physician before taking any supplements during pregnancy or breastfeeding.

Individuals with Pre-Existing Medical Conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as sarcoidosis (an inflammatory granulomatous disease), can be affected by vitamin D metabolism. It is essential to discuss D3/K2 supplementation with your doctor if you have any pre-existing health concerns.

The solution?

A personalized approach is vital, and consulting a healthcare professional before initiating supplementation is crucial, especially for individuals on medications or with pre-existing health conditions.

Your doctor can assess your individual needs, review your medical history and current medications, and recommend appropriate dosages based on blood test results.

Should you take vitamin D3 K2 in the morning or at night?

There isn't a definitive answer of morning versus night, but we can explore the factors to find what works best for you.

Why it matters?

Vitamin D3 is fat-soluble, meaning it needs fat for proper absorption. K2 works best when D3 levels are sufficient. So, taking them together with a meal that contains healthy fats can be beneficial.

Nonetheless, morning or night?

Morning: Aligns with your body's natural vitamin D synthesis from sunlight (assuming you get some sun exposure). Taking it with breakfast ensures a source of fat for absorption.

Night: May be convenient if you tend to skip breakfast. Just ensure you have a meal or evening snack with some healthy fats for absorption.

The key takeaway: Consistency is king! Taking your vitamins regularly is more important than the exact time.

Here's what might influence your choice:

Sleep: Some anecdotal reports suggest vitamin D might affect sleep. If you have trouble sleeping after taking it in the morning, try switching to nighttime.

Routine: If you already have a morning or evening supplement routine, incorporating D3 and K2 there can help you remember to take them consistently.

Is vitamin K2 necessary for vitamin D3 absorption? Should they be taken together?

We all know vitamin D3 is crucial for bone health, but what about vitamin K2? If you’re wondering whether vitamin  K2 is necessary for D3 absorption, the answer is: not directly, but they work together like a dream team to build and maintain strong bones.

Think of it this way: D3 acts like sunshine, helping your intestines absorb calcium from your food. This calcium increase in your bloodstream is fantastic, but it needs a specific direction. That's where K2 comes in as the scaffolding. K2 activates proteins that guide calcium to where it's most needed – your bones and teeth!

While D3 doesn't necessarily need K2 for absorption, some research suggests they might be more effective together. Here's why taking both might be a good idea:

Potential for Imbalance: High D3 levels with low K2 could theoretically lead calcium to deposit in unwanted places like arteries instead of bones.

Synergy for Bone Health: Studies have shown that combining D3 and K2 might improve bone mineral density and reduce fracture risk more effectively than D3 alone.

Looking to supplement your intake of vitamins K2 and D3? 

Nutratology's Vitamin K2 D3 offers a convenient one-a-day capsule formulated with MK-7 for optimal results. It provides high potency of both vitamins to support bone health, strong teeth, and improved calcium absorption. Made in Canada and registered with Health Canada, this product ensures quality and peace of mind. Visit our website to learn more!

The bottom line

Vitamin D3 and K2 are a powerful duo for bone health. D3 enhances your body's ability to absorb calcium, while K2 directs that calcium towards your bones and teeth.

This tag-team approach may be more effective for bone density and reducing fracture risk than taking either supplement alone. If you're considering D3 and K2 for bone health, talk to your doctor to determine the right dosage and ensure it aligns with your overall health plan.

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