Are the MK-4 and MK-7 Forms of Vitamin K2 Equivalent?

For the past couple of years I'd been supplementing with 100 mcg of Vitamin K2 MK-7.

The other day I encountered this statement

"Today, I found another difference between MK-4 and MK-7. I was reading a paper about SXR-independent effects of vitamin K2 on gene expression. The investigators found that MK-4 strongly activates transcription of two specific genes in osteoblast cells. Osteoblasts are cells that create bone tissue. The genes are GDF15 and STC2 and they're involved in bone and cartilage formation. They tested K1 and MK-7, and in contrast to MK-4, they did not activate transcription of the genes in the slightest. This shows that MK-4 has effects on gene expression in bone tissue that MK-7 doesn't have."

As a consequence I'm looking into supplementing with both the MK-4 and MK-7 forms. I haven't decided on the dosages...anyone have any thoughts?

The weblink for my quote is
http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2009/03/are-mk-4-and-mk-7-forms-of-vi tamin-k2.html

Maggie

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Pagebooks, I've been supplementing with the Life Extension Super K because it was the only K supplement I could find that had K1, K2 in MK-4 form, and in MK-7 form. Here's a link (if you scroll to the bottom of the page, you'll see the breakdown of the ingredients and amounts):

http://www.lef.org/Vitamins-Supplements/Item01224/Super-K-with-Advanced-K2- Complex.html

I chose this supplement specifically because it had the recommended amounts of MK-4 and 7 (I was basing this "recommendation" on an article I read at the Denvernaturopathclinic website about a year ago on the Japanese and K2, MK-4 and 7).

There may be another / better K supplement out there, but I've yet to find it. Maybe ask Ted Hutchinson what he takes. He seems to know where to find everything.
[NOTE: What I really want to know is how Ted manages to paste in photos and things on his posts... must ask him sometime... I bet he's some kind of computer IT person.]

Best,
Raye

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Thanks Maggie and Raye for this info----I have been reading similar K2 info and have been putting off ordering the LEF brand out of laziness. So I am now motivated---- It was also the only brand I could find that combines the two.

One researcher said that the reason MK4 doesn't stay in the blood for a long time, is that it is used up more by the body than the MK-7 form which has such a good rep because it stays in the serum longer---but may be that the MK-4 is assimilated better/quicker?? It was the form most used by the Japanese in their successful osteo tests, but they used such high doses of MK-4 that you can only get it by prescription at those doses I was told.

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There is at least one other product that's comparable to the LEF brand and I mention it only because some of us have some pocketbook issues. See

http://www.vitacost.com/NSI-Ultra-Vitamin-K-with-Advanced-K2-Complex/?ntt=N SI%207013470#IngredientFacts

I think the Life Extension Foundation does great work and I support their goals and regularly read their Website, but you can only buy what you can afford.

Maggie

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Maggie:

Thanks for this cheaper alternative. You know what drives me crazy? None of my go-to vitamin stores carry any of this stuff. Vitamin Shoppe has the LEF, but the whole fools stores don't have any vitamin K2. Grr!

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UK readers will probably find IHERB cheapest as their postal shipping to UK is just $4 they also offer cheap DHL shipping for orders above the £18 Customs VAT threshold. (DHL charge £1.25 handling fee to collect tax UK Post Office charge £8 for the same)

Iherb also offer rewards code like WAB666 that allows new Iherb users a $5 discount and those offering codes a slight discount on next order. Like all schemes that sound too good to be true not all referrals appear to be recorded.
But any extra discount is better than no discount.
Given the financial outlook many people are facing at the moment it would be much better if MORE PEOPLE shared their rewards codes so the generous act sharing of information on how to buy effective, evidence based supplements at the cheapest price available was not confused with spamming.

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Ted I brought k2 a place call Green Eart in Edwardvill.
I am out of them, But I would like to know what amount one can take for being safe? Has it can cause clots

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I too am wondering about selfmedicating with some of these vitamins/supplements. I know people take aspirin to prevent heart attacks or strokes sometimes and vit K interferes with aspirin or coumadin since it affects clotting time. By adding doses of this drug are we interfering with blood clotting- adding a problem to stop a problem (osteoporosis)? We dont want to do the same thing the drug companies do-- prevent 1 problem, add another. what are your opinions on this? stroke, MI? but good bones?

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@lilray & pagebooks--I bought LEF's Super K on ebay cheaper than they can be purchased on LEF's website.

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@chalk

Your concern about self medicating is well founded. These may be OTC products but they have consequences that need to be taken seriously. It may be that for some people self medicating is not a wise choice because they're not inclined to do the research. But for a growing cohort of citizens who have decided to take some responsibility in matters of their own health, its not difficult to access plenty of information on which to make a sound decision. Ideally we should still check with our doctor, but how many times have we done that only to learn that many doctors know next to nothing about current finding in the field of nutritional supplements.

You're absolutely right that we don't want to run the risk of perpetrating unintended consequences. With regard to Vitamin K2 causing excessive blood clotting, there seems to be adequate research indicating that it doesn't.

Maggie

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Answers to a number of questions.

It is most interesting that Vitamin K2, MK-4 is specific to osteoclasts and bone building. I recall that the MK-7 fraction has reported anti cancer properties noticed in research. Dutch research used the MK-4 form in halting or reversing ostioporosis and preventing or reversing artery calcification. The MK-7 form is given in smaller amounts than the MK-4 form but it does build up over time to high blood levels.

Life Extension gives a 1000 mcg daily recommendation for Vitamin K2 in the MK-4 fraction. Their Super K supplement mix is likely well considered. Elderly people have been treated with up to 45 mg (45,000 mcg) daily for three years with well tolerated minimal side effects. Taking three of the Super K2 pills every day is ten times less than this!

The MK-4 fraction is absorbed and used in a few hours, so researchers gave multiple doses every day, probably three to five doses which keeps the blood levels consistently high. If you took this many pills of the NSI of Life Extension Super K, it would be effective much like the research doses without requiring prescription.

In the Dutch research, they tested for and found that taking large amounts of Vitamin K as K1 or K2 did not increase blood clotting rates. Additional K1 or K2 is an issue if you are taking Coumadin, but Coumadin is best avoided as it hurts bone strength and increases artery calcification over time. Other methods like Ginko Biloba, Vitamin E, and fish oil can lower clotting risks and not affect Vitamin K2 status. See the more natural anti clotting methods in:
http://www.newswithviews.com/Howenstine/james59.htm

Vitamin K2, MK-4 is a triple reward vitamin. It pulls calcification out of the blood vessels, reduces inflammation there which reduces blood clots and builds more dense bones and stronger bones. Helping the body to regulate itself in this way is generally very safe, increasing total health while causing only the occasional problem with drugs or with recognized health conditions. Vitamin K2, at 45 mg daily, is being used by the Japanese to treat both heart disease and bone loss. No reports of this causing the problems listed in posts here!

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Regarding blood clots--strontium citrate can apparently cause clots too. Any problems taking the strontium citrate along with K2?

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My naturopath had me taking complementary prescriptions ultra k2 - menatetrenone 15 mg. She said I could take up to 45 mgs. a day but it was way too expensive so I only took it a few times a week. Now I got the LEF K, but I have to go back and talk to the naturopath. My t scores greatly improved probably from the strontium citrate but what that really means in terms of less fracture risk I don't know though she said in Europe the strontium does reduce fracture but that is the other type.

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