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Archive for September 12, 2013

Why are people buying Vitamin K supplements?

There’s been a wave of supplements launched containing Vitamin K, particularly K2. Why do people take them?


Not everybody will have heard of Vitamin K2.

But more and more of us are consuming it in supplements, according to market research firm Mintel.

It says new food, drink, vitamin and supplement product launches containing Vitamin K2 have gone up 183% globally between 2008 and 2012.

The better known form of Vitamin K, Vitamin K1, posted a healthy, but slower growth – 96% – over the same reviewed period.

The number of products containing Vitamin K1 still far outstrips those containing Vitamin K2. All types of Vitamin K were in 1% of all food, drink, vitamins and supplement launches last year, according to Mintel.

But what is Vitamin K, what’s the difference between K1 and K2, and why are people taking Vitamin K supplements?

The answer

  • Vitamin K is increasingly being seen as a bone health ingredient
  • Ageing population and rise in osteoporosis having impact

The NHS says Vitamin K has several important functions, for example blood clotting, which helps wounds heal properly. Babies are born with lower levels of Vitamin K, and for this reason the NHS offers an injection of it soon after birth to prevent internal bleeding problems.

There is also increasing evidence fat-soluble Vitamin K is needed to help build strong bones.

Baby being injected orally with Vitamin K
New-born babies are given a dose of Vitamin K

Adults need approximately 0.001mg a day of Vitamin K for each kilogram of their body weight, according to the NHS.

It says people should be able to get all they need by eating a varied and balanced diet, with any not needed immediately stored in the liver for future use.

It cites green leafy vegetables such as broccoli and spinach, vegetable oils and cereals as good sources of Vitamin K. Small amounts can also be found in meat such as chicken and dairy foods.

The NHS also advises that taking too many Vitamin K supplements might be harmful.

Those taking anticoagulants should also take heed of the experience of an Ayrshire man with a mechanical heart, who was hospitalised after hiseating too many Brussels sprouts – which contain lots of Vitamin K – counteracted their effect.

So why are Vitamin K, and particularly Vitamin K2, supplements on the rise?

What are vitamins

  • Essential nutrients needed in small amounts by human body
  • Some vitamins are fat-soluble (Vitamins A, D, E, K) and found in animal fats, including butter and lard, vegetable oils, dairy foods, liver and oily fish
  • B-vitamins, Vitamin C and folic acid are water-soluble, and found in fruit, vegetables and grains
  • Fat-soluble vitamins can be stored by body; water-soluble vitamins cannot

Vitamins and minerals – NHS Choices

Laura Jones, a global food science analyst at Mintel, says recent research has revealed Vitamin K2 has much broader health benefits than previously thought, and is increasingly being seen as a bone health ingredient.

“Vitamin K1 has a relatively short half-life and is rapidly cleared from the blood and is cleared by the liver within eight hours. In comparison vitamin K2 has a longer half-life of up to 72 hours, meaning it remains biologically active in the body for longer.

“Vitamin K2 is also absorbed better by the body, and is linked to cardiovascular health. It directs calcium to the bones, and prevents it from being deposited where it shouldn’t be, for example arteries and organs, where it can cause harm,” she says.

The health claims for Vitamin K have had support from the European Food Safety Authority in recent years, with the body stating that “Vitamin K contributes to maintenance of normal bone,” and “Vitamin K contributes to normal blood coagulation”.

Cabbage; bowl of strawberries
Cabbage and strawberries both contain Vitamin K

The ageing population – especially in major markets like Europe, Japan, China and the US – is also having an impact on supplement sales, with an increase in osteoporosis resulting in more interest in bone health.

The number of new products with bone health claims having grown 44% since 2009, according to Mintel.

And while calcium and Vitamin D continue to be the most common vitamins in food and supplements making a bone health claim, Jones thinks that as consumers’ awareness of Vitamin K2 increases, so will its prevalence.

Who, what, why?

Question mark from original drawing for Television Centre

A part of BBC News Magazine, Who, What, Why? aims to answer questions behind the headlines

But not everyone is convinced.

Dr Sarah Jarvis, a general practitioner and regular guest on the BBC’s The One Show, says there is no evidence to suggest that people aren’t getting enough Vitamin K.

“I can see no reason why normal healthy people would need a vitamin K supplement or any supplement – with the exception of Vitamin D – it’s far better to have a balanced healthy diet,” she says.

She thinks supplements send the wrong message.

“My feeling from young people that come into my clinic is that they think they can have a rubbish diet and take multi-vitamins to make up for it, which they can’t.

“And if older people are worried about their bones, it’s more important they look at calcium and Vitamin D. Vitamin K is connected with clotting – too much can have a negative impact,” she says.

via BBC News – Why are people buying Vitamin K supplements?.






黃斑部病變 年齡是致病主因







蔡裕棋醫師強調,眼科門診中,除了青光眼、白內障外,老年性黃斑部病變是常見病灶。由於身體器官的老化,有視力障礙的老年人中,每4人中,就有1人可能患有黃斑部病變,若2年內未積極治療,9成患者的視力可能惡化至 0.1 以下,達到法定失明標準,不容輕忽。




黃斑部病變 需要早治療




預防黃斑部病變 掌握4大重點


醫師建議,平常可利用簡便的自我評估工具「阿姆斯勒方格表(Amsler Grid)」自我檢查。(圖片/新竹馬偕醫院提供)

醫師建議,平常可利用簡便的自我評估工具「阿姆斯勒方格表(Amsler Grid)」自我檢查。(圖片/新竹馬偕醫院提供)




4.自我檢測:平常時可利用簡便的自我評估工具「阿姆斯勒方格表(Amsler Grid)」(或「家中磁磚」、「窗框」等直橫條排列處),左右單眼依序注視格線,若發現視野模糊、扭曲變形,甚至中央有黑影或部分出現空缺時,切記眼睛也有分專科,請盡速至「視網膜專科」諮詢。

via 視物線條走鐘?老年黃斑部病變搞怪 | 20130912 | 華人健康網.

只要10顆輪狀病毒 寶寶就會染病












醫:7種輪狀病毒 疫苗有效預防



via 只要10顆輪狀病毒 寶寶就會染病 | 20130912 | 華人健康網.

氣喘兒免驚 6個運動處方強身





6個運動處方 氣喘兒動起來!












相揪來運動 10/6永慶盃路跑


via 氣喘兒免驚 6個運動處方強身 | 20130912 | 華人健康網.

研究:每天運動半小時 預防子宮癌





根據英國國家廣播電台《BBC》報導指出,倫敦帝國學院(Imperial College London)進行的研究蒐集了自2007年起所有關於「子宮內膜癌」的研究報告,並與飲食、生理活動、體重等變因做比較分析。研究發現,在個案分析中每年有44%比例的病患可以藉由規律運動習慣、維持身材來降低罹患子宮癌症的機率。









via 研究:每天運動半小時 預防子宮癌 | 20130912 | 華人健康網.

“Humanised mouse” developed to test dengue drugs

Researchers at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research Technology (SMART) have developed a humanised mouse to test dengue drug treatments on animals.

Scientists in Singapore have developed a “humanised mouse” that mimics human responses to dengue infection, allowing scientists to test dengue drugs on animals which are usually unaffected by the virus.

SINGAPORE: Scientists in Singapore have developed a “humanised mouse” that mimics human responses to dengue infection, allowing scientists to test dengue drugs on animals which are usually unaffected by the virus.

The lab mice are injected with human fetal liver stem cells when they are a day old, developing a human immune system after three months.

This means that when the mice are infected with the dengue virus, their immune system responds in the same way as a human being’s, for example, its platelet count drops.

Researchers at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research Technology (SMART) hope to one day develop vaccines for dengue.

Humanised mice have been used in previous clinical trials, but this is the first time scientists have detected the presence of human platelets in the mice.

– CNA/ec

via “Humanised mouse” developed to test dengue drugs – Channel NewsAsia.

Healthcare system is rapidly changing: PM

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak meeting participants after officiating the Hospital Engineering International Conference and Exhibition. NSTP/Effendy Rashid


KUALA LUMPUR: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said the healthcare system in Malaysia was rapidly changing in line with the government’s 2020 Vision.

Speaking at the opening of the Hospital Engineering International Conference and Exhibition 2013 here this morning, Najib said Malaysia had progressively taken steps to improve the healthcare facility and engineering services.

He said: “Our initiative of privatising hospital support services has successfully improved the quality of hospital support services in public hospitals.

“This has in turn set the benchmark for the private sector to emulate”.

Najib said this had resulted in the World Health Organisation (WHO) recognising the provision of clinical waste management services in Malaysia as among the best in developing countries and comparable to those in developed countries.

Read more: Healthcare system is rapidly changing: PM – Latest – New Straits Times

via Healthcare system is rapidly changing: PM – Latest – New Straits Times.

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