Vitamin K, a fat-soluble vitamin, is often referred to as an antihaemorrhagic vitamin. Vitamin K is needed to maintain the optimum blood clotting process and bone density.
Deficiency of vitamin K results in serious complications such as prolonged blood clotting time and an increased risk to haemorrhages. Inadequate intake of vitamin K can lead to a deficiency. The best way to counter the symptoms of vitamin K deficiency would be to add foods like soybeans, leafy vegetables (spinach and broccoli), wheat bran, berries, etc. in the diet.
Signs of vitamin K deficiency:
· Deficiency of vitamin K causes delayed blood coagulation, easy bruising, and tendencies toward nose-bleeding and gum-bleeding.
· Appearance of blood in urine or stool and experiencing heavy bleeding during menstrual cycle are also signs of vitamin K deficiency.
· Deficiencies of vitamin K are not very common among adults, but newborns are found to be at a higher risk as breast milk is typically low in vitamin K and the infant’s natural vitamin K cycle may not be fully developed.
· Signs of vitamin K deficiency include weakening of bones, osteoporosis, and fractures.
· Other symptoms of vitamin K deficiency are hardening of heart valves, owing to calcification, purpurea, and neural tube defects.
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