TYPE 2 DIABETES & VITAMIN K

January 21, 2020 at 8:13 pm Leave a comment

(from – in part – NaturalHealth365,  Lori Alton, staff writer, 12/19/2019)

According to a 2018 report from the CDC, the current number of American adults living with Type 2 Diabetes (D2) stands at over 30 million. I have repeatedly warned against the dangers of low-fat diets, which inevitably lead to high carbs to improve taste and palatability. So, the 30 million number is not surprising, but why is it so important?

Well, we know that D2, a potentially life-threatening condition, can have devastating consequences that include nerve damage, kidney damage, retinopathy, Alzheimer’s disease and a much greater risk of heart disease. {N.B. cardiovascular disease is what kills diabetics; and current medical prescriptions do nothing to alter this outcome. Dr. R}

Yet, we know (based on science) that supplementation with an underappreciated vitamin – vitamin K – can drastically reduce the risk of developing D2. And, if you already have D2, it can help regulate your blood sugar levels.

In recent years, researchers have uncovered vitamin K’s role in proper bloo clotting and the mineralization of bones; as well as its ability to prevent arterial calcification (plaque). {Please see my article re arterial health.} What is not well known, however, is vitamin K’s important role in glucose metabolism.

Insulin is an important hormone produced in the pancreas that helps cells absorb glucose from carbs, thereby reducing blood sugar and providing the cells with glucose for energy. The trouble begins when the body becomes resistant to insulin or fails to make enough. Insulin resistance can, in turn, lead to high blood sugar and the eventual onset of D2. Insulin resistance and D2 are brought about by environmental and lifestyle factors: such as, overweight, obesity, a diet high in carbs and sugar, extreme stress and a lack of exercise.

Unlike type 1 diabetes, which results from autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas, D2 is preventable. It’s important to note that 90% of that 30 million persons statistic are Type 2 diabetics. Obviously, this is a growing problem in the U.S. since the incidence of D2 continues to soar.

Clearly, an urgent need exists for natural, non-toxic interventions against D2. I have a program that is very effective; if you would like a personalized program please call and make a consultation appointment (626-303-3162). In this article, I am going to highlight recent studies that reveal that vitamin K is one aspect of this program.

In 2016 a study published in the prestigious American Journal of Clinical Nutrition researchers found that subjects who increased their dietary vitamin K intake reduced their diabetes risk by a whopping 51%. The team even discovered a precise formula for measuring the reduction: a 17% less risk of D2 for every additional 100 mcgm of vitamin K a day. This is the reason I have switched many of my clients to vitamin D3 with K. If you want to add vitamin K to your regimen, please let me know. I have several choices for you.

Multiple follow-up studies involving hundreds of adult participants have demonstrated that vitamin K supplementation, at amounts ranging from 500 mcgm to 1,000 mcgm a day, significantly increased beneficial insulin sensitivity and reduced insulin levels – often within four weeks.

If high levels of vitamin K acted against D2, could low levels of the nutrient be linked with the disease? This was the question researchers set out to answer in a 2018 study published in Journal of Nutrition and Biochemistry. The answer was clear. The study found that people with D2 had blood levels of vitamin K that were 2.7 times lower than those of a control group of non-diabetic patients of the same age.

Furthermore, in an influential Dutch study, researchers gave 214 post-menopausal women either 180 mcgm a day either 180 mcgm a day of vitamin K2 or a placebo for 3 years. (Important note: there are two forms of vitamin K: K1 from plant foods and K2 from animal products. Both are beneficial, but K2 has been shown to be the more effective of the two.) The study showed that supplementary vitamin K2 activated Gla proteins, which are important in bone and mineral metabolism. The participants in this study taking vitamin K2 who showed the largest increase in Gla protein activity also experienced significant reductions in harmful abdominal fat. This group also had substantial reductions in body mass index (BMI), waist and hip circumference, and waist-to-hip ratio when compared to the placebo group. These benefits translate to a lowered risk of developing metabolic syndrome and D2.

Other benefits of vitamin K include:

  1. Boosting levels of adiponectin, a beneficial hormone that helps regulate the metabolism of sugars.
  2. Reducing the activity of nuclear factor kappa B, a primary driver of inflammation.

The latest medical research is beginning to show that vitamin K fights diabetes through multiple mechanisms. In an extensive overview of studies published last year in Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, the authors credited vitamin K2 with improving insulin sensitivity through its anti-inflammatory and lipid-lowering properties.

You can increase your dietary intake of vitamin K with cruciferous vegetables and leafy greens, including broccoli, cabbage, spinach and kale. Unfortunately, the grocery-store practice of constantly spraying their produce with water decreases the efficacy of this strategy. Vitamin K is also found in meat, dairy products and fermented foods. Good examples are grass-fed beef liver, organic chicken breast, yogurt and raw cheese. Interestingly, your body produces small amounts of vitamin K, courtesy of beneficial bacteria in the gut microbiome. The National Institutes of Health currently recommends 120 mcgm of vitamin K for men and 90 mcgm for women.

I you have already been diagnosed with D2, vitamin K can still help control blood sugar levels. In addition to helping regulate glucose, vitamin K is believed to help prevent cancer, heart disease and osteoporosis.

On caveat: if you are on a blood thinner, please work with a doctor to check your clotting time before adding additional vitamin K. You can still eat dark green veggies, which are consider rich in vitamin K.

If you want a personalized nutrition program, either to avoid D2 or manage it if you already have it, be sure to make an appointment for a telephone consultation so that we can get you on a good program.

 

Entry filed under: Diabetes, Vitamins + Supplements. Tags: , , .

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