Understanding vitamin D with vitamin K supplements

Vitamin D with vitamin K supplements

It may be the end of May as I write this article, but it’s still really important to focus on Vitamin D3 as a supplement, particularly if, like me, you live in the Northern Hemisphere.

We have so little exposure to sunshine and the sun is too low in the sky throughout the Winter for UVB rays, so the ability to absorb sun through the skin (which must have direct contact with skin without suntan lotion) is extremely limited.

Very briefly, we need to pay attention to our vitamin D status as we do not obtain sufficient from our (fat soluble) food sources, and we must rely on sun exposure for maintaining optimum levels. It plays an essential role in our immunity including autoimmune conditions too, for maintaining strong bones and for brain health, just to name a few. 

Understanding vitamin D with vitamin K supplements

But have you noticed that more and more Vitamin D3 supplements also contain Vitamin K2? You may wonder why and whether you should include it? Well, let me explain….

I strongly recommend an annual vitamin D test (there are many tests on the market, but https://www.vitamindtest.org is cheap and reliable) to determine your base level. The test results may only suggest you have an “adequate” level, but I promote optimum nutrition – to optimise your health – and an optimum level of D3 is considered to be 100-150 nmol/L. (Please note higher levels than this could be potentially dangerous, as I will explain below.)

I typically recommend a D3 supplement of 1000iu daily all year round, but you may require a higher strength IF you have tested your D3 level and found it to be sub-optimum.  You may require a D3 supplement of 4000iu for example and this is where adding K2 to the D3 supplement is advised.

It’s all to do with calcium metabolism….

Understanding vitamin D with vitamin K supplements

Vitamin D3 encourages the uptake of calcium (from your food) from your gut and into the bloodstream. So the higher the dosage of vitamin D, the higher the uptake of calcium.

Isn’t this a good thing, I hear you ask?

Once calcium is in the blood, it has to try and reach your bones, and it cannot do this alone.  It requires co-factors. Vitamin K2 is one of those co-factors. It helps to create the formation of new bone, and it also helps to prevent calcium being deposited in arteries where it can calcify and playing a role in cardiovascular disease.  It is less well known that calcium can be problematic and involved in cardiovascular disease.

So if you are taking a higher strength vitamin D supplement, it will encourage a higher uptake of calcium from the gut and into the bloodstream, so it is important that calcium is regulated in the bloodstream so that it is not deposited there.

Understanding vitamin D with vitamin K supplements

Therefore, I usually recommend when you are taking upwards of, 2000iu of vitamin D3 then choose one with vitamin K2. These supplements are carefully formulated to balance the correct ratio of D3 to K2. The maximum D3 I usually recommend is 4000iu but occasionally Vitamin D3 levels are so level I may choose a higher dose, but I would not do this without advice from a qualified therapist.

Looking for an Appointment?

You can book a free 30-minute discovery call with me simply visit www.peytonprinciples.com, call me direct on 07730 513303 or email caroline@peytonprinciples.com

Again, thanks for reading. 

Keep your eye out for more articles and Peyton Principles in the media.


Caroline is a Professional Nutritionist, Naturopath based in Wiltshire.

A little more about me…

Providing expert, personalised, health advice utilising 10 years of nutritional therapy and naturopathy experience with a strong emphasis on digestion and gut health. Zoom or face to face Consultations.

I also develop and deliver well-being in the workplace workshops.

Helping people live happier, healthier more active lives.

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