VIt K2 MK4 or MK7? Which is better?

I am confused about which of these formulas to take. I cannot seem to find anything definitive. I had another discussion about their effects, but I didn't ask about which is better to treat osteoporosis?

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Paul, I have noticed the same thing. A number of companies are making pricey "bone" supplements, but they all contain only MK7, which is inexpensive, compared to MK4. So they have a vested interest in promoting the benefits of MK7.

I did my best to use and like MK7. I made 2 batches of natto, and still have some in the freezer. I took plain MK7, then Vitacost Ultra Vitamin K with Advanced K2 Complex, which I think is a great buy. It's the same formula as Life Extension Super K, but with 300 mcg more MK4. And it's about $6 less. As soon as I took it, I noticed my congested sinus opening up, and it closed up about 8 hours later, so I knew it was the MK4. But the MK7 in it kept me awake. I'd wake at 3 or 4 am, and not be able to get back to sleep. I had to stop using it.

So I ordered Carlson's MK4, and after several months my sinus is not closing up any more. It also cured several skin problems.

Nobody is making cheap MK4, so the manufacturing process must actually be costly.

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Re: measuring K in the blood, safety of taking K2 supplements, and eating GOUDA cheese.

dxaguru- Here is what I found on measuring Vitamin K levels in blood.
reference for measuring Vitamin K-
MY TAKE: I doubt they could have a reference range anyway since so few people have this unusual test ever! ("Measurements of vitamin K level in the blood are rarely used to determine if a deficiency exists. Since this is not a routine test, it is usually sent to a reference laboratory, and results may take several days.")

After reading this page at 12:30 pm, I did an extensive research into almost every article written about the vitamin Ks, including 4 vs 7, safety aspects, doses, etc. And at the end, I sadly concluded that we do NOT yet know what is a safe dose and whether trying hard to get it from food sources is actually the only safe way for now. Though we know it has a strong relationship to where the calcium goes and to bone health in general, we just don't have enough serious, placebo random controlled mega center studies involving (especially) postmenopausal women with OP or osteopoenia and K2.

Therefore, for now, I may just do this: Eat GOUDA CHEESE because this home economist says it is the only cheese where it doesnt matter if cows have been grass fed (a most relevant part of the equation) hoice/

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ADDENDUM TO K-2 in gouda cheese . has fat to help vitamin D absorb, has calcium and has K2. Just add 3-4 walnuts or almonds and you're probably all set if you are trying hard to accomplish something via food sources, only or mostly.

1 oz. GOUDA CHEESE nutrition facts:
Calories 101 Calories from Fat 70
Total Fat 7.8g
Saturated Fat 5.0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2g
Monounsaturated Fat 2.2g
Cholesterol 32mg
Sodium 232mg
Total Carbohydrates 0.6g
Sugars 0.6g
Protein 7.1g
Vitamin A 3% • Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 20% • Iron 0%

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I thought undercarboxylated osteocalcin (ucOC) was the test we should take?

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lilypads - Mk4 - Just checked out Carlson's - could only find K2-Mk7... That Mk4 sure is a difficult one to find!

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Molly7 - I buy Carlson's MK4 from Swanson Products at a reasonable price. Carlson MK4 also available at IHerb and Pureformulas but not sure how the prices compare.
Good luck!

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I was able to find a copy of the book "vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox" on the shelf of my local library (here in Vancouver, Canada - it is written by a Canadian doctor)

In the section about MK4 and MK7, she doesn't really distinguish that one is better than the other. She does point out that MK7 stays in the blood longer, and is thus better - though I don't agree with here on this. Unless it is being taken out by the liver or kidneys, then it is being absorbed by everything else.

In any case, it is more important that you take one of them than none at all, and she (the author) actually eats natto herself to get her K2!

Gouda is 6%mk4 and the rest MK7 and others, it is the best cheese source.

I'm looking for some goose liver pate myself.

I have already ordered some of the Green Pastures high vitamin butter oil/cod liver oil blend - that is what Weston Price used to such great success back in the 30's, and any online experiences I can find for it seem very positive.

It would seem that K2, (and magnesium) are probably the most important, and underrated supplements we can take - everything else we can get from food.

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Amazon had a good buy on Carlson's Menatetrenone (MK4) a couple months ago. Free shipping on orders over $25.

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"Dietary vitamin K intake is associated with bone quantitative ultrasound measurements but not with bone peripheral biochemical markers in elderly men and women" Here is a an article published in 2011 in the bone journal. Quite positive but do note the blurb under the article about one of the authors.

CONFLICT of interest: Dr. Jordi Salas-Salvadó is a nonpaid member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the International Nut Council. The other authors have no conflict of interest affecting the conduct or reporting of the work submitted.

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Hi Paul and Sylvia

Thanks for your reply. I didn't know that MK-4 was also good for stopping calcium buildup in the arteries/ organs.

One of the reasons why I wondered about stopping the MK-4 is that I live in the UK and buy the Carlson 5 mg capsules from i Herb in the USA. I am sick of having problems actually receiving the tablets. Our UK Customs stop any orders over about £15 and slap VAT duty of 20% on the bill. We also have to pay the Post Office a fee for collecting the VAT. I sometimes had waited over a month for the tablets to arrive. If I happen to be at work when the post comes, they will not leave the parcel with a neighbour, so I have to do about a 12 mile round trip to pay the VAT/ collection fee before they will hand over the tablets.
One of our forum members, Ted was saying that he places a large order to get a discount and uses a Carrier rather than the Post Office. He still has to pay the VAT duty but the carriers fee is less. I have considered doing this but as a pensioner I am reluctant to generate such a large bill.

The other point is that I take Strontium ranelate and Servier who make it, haven't tested it with K2, so I am slightly worried that the mode of action of MK-4 and SR may be quite similar and I have no idea whether its wise to 'overdo' it.

I completely agree with you that its better get your minerals/vits from food where ever possible. I get a lot of my Ca from dairy. Although most folk state that you should avoid dairy products because they are acidic, I routinely check my urine pH and find that milk doesn't make it acidic, although cheese, eggs and occasional fish does. I don't eat meat, so rely on the dairy for much of my complete proteins.

I weigh and log all my food and I aim for between 1200 and 1500mg of total Ca per day. I take Chelated Mg at a ratio of at least 1 part Mg to 2 Ca. As well as the 90mcg of MK-7 and 5mg of MK-4, I also take D3, boron, manganese, vit B complex and omega 3. I dare not add up how much I spend on supplements each month. I will certainly reconside what I want to do about the MK-4.

One quick question: I live in a 'hard water' area, which is great in as much as the water pH is about 7.2 but I mix my strontium R pdr. in just under 200ml of tap water. I cannot find out from the Water Supplier whether the tap water contains a measurable amount of calcium. I have emailed Servier who make the SR, and asked whether the inknown Ca amount found in hard tap water is likely to stop me absorbing the SR into my bones. Have either of you, seen references to calcium in tap water?

Thanks again

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Generally, "hard" means calcium.

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Hi LynH,

I am sorry to hear that it is so much trouble to get Mk4 into the U.K. Perhaps you can contact Ted and buy some from him? Professor Ted is always very helpful. My friends and I have bought things together (from far away places) to save $. It works well.

And, you can get Mk4 from food. It's actually more fun. I love Foie Gras. Unfortunately, it's "illegal" in California. Goose liver paste provides 370 mcg of Mk4 per 100 grams. Egg Yolk provides 16 to 32 mcg per 100 g and hard cheeses provides 5 mcg per 100 g. (ref. In addition, organic butter or butter oil is a great source also.

As for Calcium in water and Strontium, I have not been concerned about the conflict as I do not take Strontium. If you have hard water, you may get approximately 100 mg per liter. It's from a relatively old report and it's only for U.S. and Canada, but it can be a reference. Pls see excerpt below from How Much Calcium Is in Your Drinking Water? A Survey of Calcium Concentrations

"The calcium concentration of water varies from 1 to 135 mg/L across the USA and Canada. Most spring waters were found to have a relatively low calcium concentration, with an average of 21.8 mg/L. Purified waters contain a negligible calcium concentration. Mineral waters, on the other hand, were generally found to contain higher calcium concentrations, an average of 208 mg/L of calcium. Filtration was found to remove a considerable amount of calcium from the water, removing 89% on average ..."

Reverse Osmosis filtering is effective. You may want to try it.

btw, I am not against taking Strontium. I just want to improve naturally, if possible. It's also good to be able to use DEXA results as a gauge. Although density is secondary to quality, it's still good to have a non-destructive measurement.

Take care and wishing you better bones,

> Sylvia < < < < <

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Hi Lela,

Its true, the effectiveness of MK-4 Vitamin K2 is in its carboxylation level of the calcium handling proteins. If they are carboxylated, they are functional. So its the cOC/ ucOC+cOC ratio that researchers are looking for. Vitamin K2 in the MK-4 form is very safe at high doses which are given in research and treatment in Japan.

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Hi Molly,

You can find MK-4 in searches if you specify 5 mg, 15 mg or sometimes liquid. These are the sizes of larger Vitamin K2 Mk-4 pills, the MK-7 pills are all in mcg (micrograms). It also helps to read the details on the Vitamin K2 which often mentions if its MK-4 or MK-7.

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@ Lyn H,

Wow, that is a lot of supplements! Hope you have some money left for food!

As an alternative, why not try the high vitamin butter oil/cod liver oil blend from Green Pastures(my first bottle arrives tomorrow)
It has all the A, D, K2 and EPA/DHA in one place.
Also, the cod liver oil is fermented, old style, never heated (heating damages the EPA and DHA). Almost any commercial fish oil has been distilled = heat.
Also, this way, you get all the other vitamins and trace minerals in there (there are actually some 3000 vitamin D's).

You can buy it online, in the UK, here; osCsid=fip03nuiut7ogm6k26um6nu233

Also, interestingly, if you take your vitamin D in the morning, not evening, you will sleep better!

I would suggest, that once you have got your food and supplements sorted, that you don't weight everything for Ca - this is causing you undue stress. You can't micromanage your nutrients too much - a stressed body doesn;t actually absorb them!
Get your food right, and then enjoy eating it.

Following on from taking Vit d in the morning, I now find that my best routine is coffee with cream+coconut oil (!) for breakfast (along with D3 +fish oil+ CoQ10 - ubiquinol), and a light lunch and then a good dinner. I take my Mg after dinner and I sleep better than I ever have. Also, install f.lux on your computer (free download), if you must use it after dark. Sleeping well is as important as
nutrition, in my opinion.

Finally, for dairy, I would suggest kefir - it is *way* better than yoghurt, and, once you have kefir grains, is the easiest thing in the world to make. I don't, and wouldn't, drink any unfermented milk - let the bugs eat the casein!


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Tango02 - thanks. Yes, can confirm, I most always read pretty much everything on the bottle/packaging. Even have a cute mini magnifying glass for just such use!

Found a lot of mcg but not many outlets selling Mk4. Interesting.

Thanks for response -

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Another good post PaulN. We have a lot of fermented milk in all food outlets here in France. Both cows and goats milk. Have not tried it - yet. But pursuant of yr recommendations, then will have to so do. Love yogurt, but not too keen on fermented foods/milk. See if I can get a taste for it (but NOT in coffee or tea, thanks <VBG>).

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kefir is amazing stuff - you can flavour it (I use vanilla and stevia) - and I have found it will almost always settle an upset stomach.
I also let it set and use the kefir whey to ferment anything and everything - from making sourdough breads (wheat free, of course), porridge, fermented mustard (amazing!) sauerkraut, fermented fish, fruits/fruit juice, and on and on.

The beauty is that it does not need to be "warm", it works best at room temp and I have never had a batch go bad. I just do it in canning (preserving) jars so I can see what's going on.

Google "doms kefir site Australia" to learn more than you ever thought there was to this amazing stuff - you'll never go back to store bought yogurt again.

And try to avoid buying anything that has "modified milk ingredients" or some such (most skim milks and yogurts do) - these are heat dried milk proteins and contain oxidised cholesterol - just what you don't want!

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Another way to search for MK4 is to use the word "Menatetrenone."

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Hi, I buy my K2 MK-4 from Europe to avoid customs fee. This is what I ordered:
Vitamin K2 - 1oz (30 ml) – Thorne Price: £76.99
Yes it was expensive but I did it. This bottle will last a long time, at least that is what I've read.

These are the Manufacturer of vitamin K2 MK-4 in UK, that I found when I looked around in April this year:

Vitamin D/K2 (1oz - 30ml) – Thorne Price: £29.99
Vitamin K2 - 1oz (30 ml) – Thorne Price: £76.99

5mg - 60 Caps - Carlson Labs Price: £22.99

15mg - 90 Veg Caps – AOR PEAK K2 Price: £44.99
15mg - 90 Vegi Caps - AOR PEAK K2 Price £39.95 urope-peak-k2-15mg-90-vegi-caps-600.html
15mg - 90 Veg Caps – AOR PEAK K2 Qty Discounts Off Price 1 £39.95 2-3 £37.96 4+ £36.95 s-15mg-p-2078.html
15mg - 90 Vegi Caps - AOR PEAK K2 Price £39.95 SOLD OUT

A friend also told me of this manufacturer in Holland

15mg - 90 Vegi Caps - AOR PEAK K2 Price € 45,75 ct_ID=291

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