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Vitamin K2, aspirin, fish oil and blood thinning

Posted Aug 26 2008 4:17pm

An interesting question came up from one of our Track Your Plaque Members on the Forum.

"I am now taking 9 mg of vitamin K1 and 1000 mcg of K2.

Does taking this supplement with this much K1 have a counteracting effect on the thinning/anticlotting properties of aspirin and fish oil that I also take?"

Great question (along with lots of other greater discussions we have on the Forum.)

The answer: Vitamin K should have no effect on the platelet-blocking effects of aspirin or fish oil. The majority of blood clot inhibiting effects of aspirin and fish oil arise from their ability to keep blood platelets from "clumping" (just like the TV commercials for Plavix).

Vitamin K, on the other hand, participates in the liver production of blood clotting factors (like II, VII, IX, and X, among others for you curious ones).

Thus, vitamin K-dependent clotting factors and platelet-blocking are two separate pathways to forming blood clots. Some of us refer to the difference as "red clots" from the vitamin K pathway and "white clots" from the platelet pathway, since they really do have this different physical appearance.

The vitamin K2 conversation, like that about vitamin D, is fascinating for its potential to provide the missing link between the tightly-tied fortunes of bone health and atherosclerosis. Why is someone with a high CT heart scan score far more likely to have osteoporosis? Vitamin D and K2 deficiency may provide the missing link for many people.

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