Vitamin K and flavonoids improve heart and circulatory health
Vitamin K reduced hospitalizations in circulatory conditions
Fats and cholesterols can build up on artery walls, reducing blood flow, in a type of heart condition called atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD). In this study, doctors analyzed findings from a large trial covering 53,372 adult men and women over a 23-year period.
Overall, those who got the highest amounts of vitamins K1 and K2 were 21 percent less likely to be hospitalized with ASCVD. For vitamin K2, chances were 14 percent lower. The benefits of vitamin K appeared in all forms of heart and circulatory conditions, but were particularly beneficial in peripheral artery disease—arteries other than those serving the heart and brain—reducing these hospitalizations by 34 percent.
Doctors believe vitamin K protects against calcium buildup in arteries, and recommend increasing current daily intake guidelines.
Reference: Journal of AHA; 2021, Vol. 10, No. 16, e020551
Flavonoids improve blood pressure
Beneficial bacteria in the gut microbiome break down flavonoids and enhance their capacity to protect the heart and circulatory system. In this first flavonoid-microbiome-blood pressure study, doctors measured flavonoids in the diets of 904 men and women, aged 25 to 82, and compared them to DNA microbiome bacteria samples.
After an overnight fast, doctors took three blood pressure measurements, three minutes apart. Those with the highest levels of flavonoids had lower blood pressure and greater microbiome diversity compared to those who got the least flavonoids in the diet.
Doctors said microbiome diversity from high flavonoid levels accounted for about 15 percent of the improvement in systolic blood pressure.
Reference: Hypertension; 2021, Vol. 78, No. 4, 1016-26