Increased intake of vitamin K2 may reduce the risk of prostate cancer by 35 percent, according to the results of European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC).
The potential benefits of K2 were most pronounced for advanced prostate cancer. Vitamin K1 intake did not offer any prostate benefits.
The findings were based on data from more than 11,000 men taking part in the EPIC Heidelberg cohort. It adds to a small but ever-growing body of science supporting the potential health benefits of vitamin K for bone, blood, skin, and now prostate health.
More than 500,000 people, world-wide, are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year and it is the direct cause of over 200,000 deaths. I find it helpful to view prostate cancer as the male equivalent of breast cancer.
The conventional treatments for prostate cancer include surgery to remove the prostate gland or radiotherapy. However, more recent research has begun to question these radical treatments as they may not be necessary for most men diagnosed with a low-grade of the disease.
Two “Forgotten Vitamins” Prove Crucial for Cancer Reduction and Health
One specific treatment for prostate cancer that has been brought to the research forefront is vitamin D from sunshine exposure – another frequently forgotten vitamin besides vitamin K.
According to a previous study, men with higher levels of vitamin D in their blood were half as likely to develop aggressive forms of prostate cancer as those with lower amounts.
Another groundbreaking study discovered that correcting vitamin D deficiencies through appropriate sunshine exposure could prevent 600,000 cases of colorectal- and breast cancer each year, world-wide. Numerous studies confirm the link between vitamin D deficiency and multiple types of cancer.
Likewise, vitamin K has been found beneficial in the fight against various cancers, including liver, colon, stomach, nasopharynx, and oral cancer.
Studies have also suggested vitamin K may be used therapeutically in the treatment of patients with lung cancer, liver cancer, and leukemia.
Vitamin K is vital in heart disease prevention as well, because it helps prevent hardening of your arteries – a common risk factor in coronary artery disease and heart failure.
Other beneficial effects of vitamin K include:
- Helpful against Alzheimer’s disease
- Topical vitamin K may help to reduce bruising
- May have antioxidant properties
- Strengthens bone (some studies have actually shown vitamin K to be equivalent to Fosamax-type osteoporosis drugs)
- Improves skin
It is such an important vitamin that, although I don’t typically recommend adding extra supplements to your diet, vitamin K is of the few supplements you should seriously consider because many people don’t get nearly enough of it on a daily basis through the foods they eat.
Although the exact dosing is yet to be determined, one vitamin K expert, Dr. Cees Vermeer, recommends between 45 mcg and 185 mcg of vitamin K2 daily for adults. You must use caution on the higher doses if you take anticoagulants, but if you are generally healthy and not on these types of medications, I suggest 100 mcg of vitamin K2 daily.
It is quite likely that doses of several times that amount are safe for the average person, but we just lack the research to confirm it at this time.
If you’ve experienced stroke, cardiac arrest, or are prone to blood clotting, don’t take vitamin K without consulting your physician first.
Another important note is that vitamin K is a fat-soluble vitamin, which means that dietary fat is necessary for its absorption. One easy way to do this is by adding liquid vitamin K drops directly into your fish oil or krill oil. This will ensure that the vitamin K is well-absorbed by your body. Alternatively, you could add it to any other food that contains healthy fat.
To ensure you’re getting enough vitamin D, make it a habit of getting regular sunshine exposure – at minimum 15 minutes per day with at least 40 percent of your body uncovered. For more in-depth information about the health benefits of sunshine, keep your eye out for my new book Dark Deception, due out later this year, or take a look at my Special Report on Sunshine, which is available now.
Which Kind of Vitamin K is Most Beneficial?
A lot of research has focused on synthetic vitamin K3 taken at high doses, and it is commonly being used with chemotherapy agents for enhanced effectiveness. However, I do not advise using the synthetic vitamin K3, but rather the plant-based vitamin K1 (phylloquinone, a.k.a. phytonadione) and bacterially produced vitamin K2 (menaquinone).
K1 is found in dark green leafy, and makes up about 90 per cent of the vitamin K in a typical Western diet. The following table lists some vegetable sources of K1 that you should consider eating frequently:
K2, on the other hand, makes up only about 10 per cent of Western vitamin K consumption.
Fermented foods, such as natto, typically have the highest concentration of vitamin K found in the human diet, and can provide several milligrams of vitamin K2 daily. This level far exceeds the amount found in dark green vegetables.
For example, vitamin K2 concentration after the consumption of natto has been shown to be about 10 times higher than that of vitamin K1 after eating spinach. Unfortunately, most Americans do not eat many fermented foods.
Vitamin K2 is synthesized by intestinal bacteria, and is absorbed from the distal small bowel. Keep in mind that taking antibiotics hampers vitamin K2 absorption.
Natto is such an amazing superfood that I seek to regularly incorporate it into my diet.
How to Prevent and Treat Prostate Cancer Naturally
In addition to adding vitamin K to your diet, these helpful tips on prostate cancer prevention and all-natural alternative treatments were given to me by former guest commentator Dr. Larry Clapp, author of Prostate Health in 90 Days Without Drugs or Surgery.
- Cleanse past accumulation of toxins in your tissue, gut and colon with a good detox program
- Cleanse your mouth of hidden infections from root canals, amalgam fillings, decay and gum infections. Then, chelate mercury from your body, nutritionally.
- Avoid as many toxins as possible as your prostate was designed by nature to filter toxins from your semen.
- All types must eliminate:
- High glycemic carbohydrates, such as sugar, pasta, potatoes, bread and most grains
- All pasteurized dairy
- Conventional grain and chemical fed animals
- Most fish, due to high levels of mercury and PCB contamination
Also incorporate natural lycopene foods such as:
- Cabbage family foods, such as broccoli and broccoli sprouts to help control excess estrogens, the real enemy of the prostate.
- Take a high quality fish oil with Vitamin E, to rebuild omega 3 fat levels, which are deficient in most people and a major cause of inflammation and disease.
- Get full body sun exposure whenever possible to increase vitamin D levels, which need to be tested regularly.
- Avoid biopsies, which permanently damage the prostate and can spread or cause cancer. Have a far more reliable, non invasive, Power Color Doppler Sonogram of your prostate done by Robert Bard, MD in New York City, www.cancerscan.com or other qualified Radiologists. PCD is the first line of diagnosis in other countries, but is not sanctioned by American Urologists so it is difficult to find.
See Dr. Mercola's site for more information and full store. http://www.mercola.com/