The Vitamin Deficiency That is Written All Over Your Face

by Sarah Healthy Living, Most PopularComments: 177

vitamin deficiency
Are wrinkles an inevitable fact of aging or could laugh lines and crow’s feet potentially indicate a vitamin deficiency or even a more serious underlying health issue?

In 2011, researchers presented findings at a meeting of the Endocrine Society in Boston that revealed that women in their 40’s and 50’s who have extensive skin wrinkling are much more likely than their peers to have low bone mass.

Researchers noted the relationship between wrinkles and bone density in every single bone tested which included hip, heel, and lumbar (spine).  In addition, this relationship existed regardless of body fat percentage and age.

Epidemiological evidence of Asian women offers further health clues to the wrinkle mystery.

It is known that Japanese women have fewer wrinkles and less skin sagging that women of the same age living in North America.   These two groups of women vary greatly in diet and lifestyle, however.

Even when Japanese women living in Tokyo were compared with women from the Asian cities of Shanghai and Bangok, however, they showed the least visible signs of aging.

Diet and lifestyle factors for these three Asian groups of women are comparable except for one notable exception: the consumption of natto in Japan.

Tokyo residents frequently enjoy natto, a strong smelling food traditionally made from fermented soybeans for breakfast. Natto is loaded with menaquinone, Vitamin K2, and blood samples of the Tokyo women revealed high circulating levels of this fat soluble vitamin.

Further research which bolsters the notion that getting plenty of anti-wrinkle vitamin K2 in the diet makes for smoother facial features is found in the research of Korean scientists and was published in the journal Nephrology in 2008.

The rate at which the kidneys are able to filter the blood is an important measure of overall kidney function.  Researchers found that reduced renal filtration rate was associated with increased facial wrinkling.

What does decreased kidney filtration rate predict?

You guessed it – Vitamin K2 deficiency, according to American research published the year after the Korean study.

Testing has been limited so far on the true extent of Vitamin K2 deficiency in the western world, but so far, of those tested, 90% tested deficient in this critical nutrient.

Avoid the Vitamin Deficiency That Causes Wrinkles With These Foods

If you want to avoid a vitamin deficiency of K2, know that it is an elusive nutrient and extremely difficult to obtain with a modern diet.   The highest sources of K2 are natto (fermented soybeans), goose liver, certain cheeses and animal fats like egg yolk, butter and lard which must come from grassfed animals.

Natto contains a whopping 1,103 mcg of K2 per 3 1/2 ounce portion which blows away every other food by a country mile.

The second highest food in Vitamin K2 is goose liver pate which has 369 mcg per 3 1/2 ounce portion.  While delicious and wonderful to eat, goose liver pate is very hard to find in most places.  It is also a very high end, gourmet food which makes the price out of reach for most.

Rounding out the top 3 foods highest in Vitamin K2 is none other than the humble Gouda cheese, which boasts 75 mcg per 3 1/2 ounce serving!  This compares to pastured egg yolks and butter, which each have about 15 mcg of K2 per 3 1/2 ounce portion.  Brie cheese is also very high in K2.

How much of these K2 containing foods should you eat to avoid a vitamin deficiency of this critical nutrient?  That part gets murky as the official recommended daily intake (RDI) of Vitamin K doesn’t distinguish between K1 and K2 despite their very different uses in the body.   The RDI for Vitamin K is only determined by the liver’s requirement for normal blood clotting factors, not the K2 needed for optimal bone and kidney health and wrinkle free skin. So, getting enough K1 in the diet via leafy greens could still mean a serious vitamin deficiency of K2.

The good news is that there is no known toxicity of Vitamin K2, so eating generously of Vitamin K2 rich foods as practiced by Traditional Societies and even potentially taking a supplement to avoid a vitamin deficiency is considered wise by Dr. Kate Rheaume-Bleue, ND, author of Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox.

Vitamin K2 Update

Recent research has shown that an Aboriginal sacred food is extremely high in vitamin K2, so high in fact that it is nearly as high as goose liver pate!  Click here for where to source authentic emu oil from the genetically pure strain of birds eating their native diet that produce this nutrient dense fat.

More Information on Skin and Avoiding K2 Vitamin Deficiency

Skin Icing: All Natural Anti-Aging Technique

Which Vitamin K 2 Supplement is Best – MK-7 or MK-4?

The Latest Scoop on the Benefits of Vitamin K2

Vitamin D Deficiency Signs Most People Miss

Macrobiotic Diet and Extreme Vitamin Deficiency

Why I Gorged on Brie Cheese When I Was Pregnant

Gouda Cheese:  The Most Nutritious Choice

The Benefits of Emu Oil: Sacred Food High in Vitamin K2

Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox

Picture Credit

Comments (177)

  • barb

    Homemade sauerkraut is full of K2…I make a crock of it every 6 months. Let it ferment in the crock for 3d to 4 weeks then store it in mason jars in the fridge. Eat about 1/4 cup of it every day…like you would cole slaw. Never heat it…it will destroy all the good probiotics. Yummy stuff.

    November 27th, 2015 9:48 am Reply
    • admin

      Yes, there is K2 in sauerkraut, but not large amounts. :(

      November 27th, 2015 6:28 pm Reply
  • Christine

    I had a allergic reaction to k2 natto supplement after 7 days taking it: rash,palpitation,dizziness,shortness of breath
    What could I take instead that is high in k2 vitamin?

    April 19th, 2015 12:49 pm Reply
  • Sunny

    I found that chelated copper once a day will turn the hair back to its natural color. It is a copper deficiency that makes the hair gray.

    November 10th, 2014 12:39 am Reply
    • Susan P

      but then too much copper is not good for us either. How do you make sure you get the proper levels?

      November 11th, 2014 12:56 am Reply
      • Rach

        Regular blood and hair (HTMA) tests, which can get expensive.

        December 21st, 2014 6:11 pm Reply
  • Susan P

    Too bad Monsanto and like ruined soy for us all, by genetically engineering it and dousing it in disease-causing chemicals like glyphosate (in Roundup). So realistically, it is very hard for us to get an uncontaminated source of K2. And if we could find it, it would be very expensive.
    Grass-fed animals are going out of existence. Also very expensive, thanks to the chemical companies screwing up our food system.

    November 9th, 2014 6:32 pm Reply
    • Katy

      There actually is organic natto. Not all natto is conventional. I have organic natto in my freezer right now. For me, I can eat pretty much anything, but natto was….. almost impossible for me to eat to say the least. But, organic natto does exist. It wasn’t too expensive.

      November 11th, 2014 11:33 am Reply
  • Lili

    “Diet and lifestyle factors for these three Asian groups of women are comparable except for one notable exception: the consumption of natto in Japan.”

    Really? You said that out loud?! What about…
    – Dramatically lower sugar intake (horrible for bones, wrinkles and the gut bacteria that make K2)
    – Dramatically lower phosphoric acid from soda (directly de-calcifies bones)
    – Much more soy (keeps post-menopausal skin more youthful)
    – An obsession with keeping white skin / high SPF sun protection (rather than fondness for a tan)
    – Dramatically lower dairy intake (correlates with much LOWER osteoporosis, not higher!)
    – Much higher fish(DHA, EPA) and seaweed (Iodine) intakes.

    …I could go on, and on…

    Seriously…the one difference you could think of was eating natto?

    November 9th, 2014 7:52 am Reply
    • Annie

      Hello Lili,
      I enjoyed your comment. I am curious to know if you have any additional info to offer regarding diet and wellness. I am recovering from 30 yrs of the standard american diet and would appreciate hearing anything you may have to share. Thank you much!

      November 14th, 2014 4:44 pm Reply
    • Jamie

      You make some very valid points. I agree that one should consider all differences and not just focus on one. I just want to say that, I love this blog and I’m very greatful for all that I have learned from not only the blog posts but also the comments.

      December 9th, 2014 9:13 am Reply
    • Leah

      Lili, her point was that out of these 3 Asian diets, the difference between these diets was the consumption of natto. She was not comparing the Japanese diet to SAD.

      December 31st, 2014 11:24 am Reply
    • Jordan

      There is no “obsession with keeping white skin”, and tanned skin is actually healither than sun deprived skin which is unnatural.

      October 4th, 2015 5:50 pm Reply
    • Katy

      Natto is high in k2, it has been proven. Women in Tokyo tend to eat it. They have less wrinkles. Not sure what the problem is with that point.

      November 17th, 2015 7:34 pm Reply
    • Lilac

      You misunderstood. She did not mean the difference between western women and asian women. she meant the difference between different groups of asian women.

      March 13th, 2016 1:31 pm Reply
  • Jackie

    Is it okay if the Gouda was originally pasturized milk?

    November 7th, 2014 12:04 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Not ideal, but ok since the K2 would not be affected by the pasteurization.

      November 23rd, 2014 10:10 am Reply
  • handtalker

    K2 vitamin necessary also when you take calcium and vit D3. It allows the calcium to get used for bones and not other wrong places.

    November 6th, 2014 6:34 pm Reply
  • Jon Tyril

    You mention goose liver paté as a good source of K2. What about just goose liver? And what about other livers like lambs liver and cod liver, which I consume regularly, not as paté, but fried in the case of the lamb liver and boiled or as oil in the case of cod liver. Do you have any data on the K2 levels in those foods?

    November 3rd, 2014 6:17 am Reply
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  • tania

    i am wondering what the research is on tempeh.. as both natto and tempeh are fermented – are there big differences in natto and k2 present? i love tempeh but not natto! thanks

    October 21st, 2014 2:50 pm Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Tempeh doesn’t have much K2 in it.

      October 21st, 2014 11:05 pm Reply
  • Robin

    Great information. However I am confused by the use of the word “epidemiological” near the beginning. It implies that the evidence gathered is in relation to studies on epidemics but does not mention illnesses etc. Are epidemics in Japan also a factor in their skin or am I reading that paragraph wrong?

    October 21st, 2014 3:35 am Reply
    • Sarah TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Epidemiological evidence has nothing to do with epidemics. It has to do with patterns, causes and effects of health in a defined population.

      October 21st, 2014 11:29 am Reply
  • Selina@acne prone skin

    Thank you Carla, for delving into this much overlooked topic.

    June 30th, 2014 7:57 pm Reply
  • Brenda

    Anyone know if nattokinase is a good alternative for natto? How much should we be getting daily? I’ve been taking a supplement with nattokinase for years for endometriosis. Just wondering if I’m getting enough from this source alone.

    June 14th, 2014 10:06 am Reply
  • Michael Waite via Facebook

    March 27th, 2014 12:20 pm Reply
  • Nicole Reid via Facebook

    Diann Miller

    March 27th, 2014 6:37 am Reply
  • Linda Tempo via Facebook

    U are what u eat!!!

    March 27th, 2014 1:15 am Reply
  • Tami Smith via Facebook

    Nicole Donahue

    March 26th, 2014 11:04 pm Reply
  • Marilyn Wallace via Facebook

    interesting and informative.

    March 26th, 2014 10:52 pm Reply
  • Martha Carolina Lopez via Facebook

    Mi grandad used to have a smoothie made with black berries and raw liver at least once a week. He also liked to have soups with organ meats that mi mom cooked for him. At 84 he had the most amazing skin I have seen in my hole life

    March 26th, 2014 8:38 pm Reply
  • Roberta Hill via Facebook

    Megumi Natto:

    March 26th, 2014 7:55 pm Reply
  • Roberta Hill via Facebook

    Interesting reviews of the book on Amazon (MK4 vs MK7):

    March 26th, 2014 7:53 pm Reply
  • Karina Stojansek via Facebook

    Tania Stojansek

    March 26th, 2014 5:13 pm Reply
  • Lorraine Givney via Facebook

    Very helpful post, thank you

    March 26th, 2014 4:53 pm Reply
  • Silver Sky via Facebook

    gloria cotton, are you saying that bacteria separate to being cultured in milk (i look for non dairy alternatives) has VK 2 (MK7) in it and therefore this bacteria would help increase these levels in the body? thanks.

    March 26th, 2014 3:15 pm Reply
  • Gila Elbaz via Facebook

    Want a wrinkle free skin?… Read this Hagit Mulian

    March 26th, 2014 2:25 pm Reply
  • Joanne Jannetta Sturgeon via Facebook

    Think that I will be shopping for Gouda now…:-D

    March 26th, 2014 12:56 pm Reply
  • Diana Beyer Batema via Facebook

    I can’t see your post. Both links give me this message: Content Encoding Error
    The page you are trying to view cannot be shown because it uses an invalid or unsupported form of compression.Please contact the website owners to inform them of this problem.

    March 26th, 2014 12:19 pm Reply
  • Gloria Cotton via Facebook

    This is very disconcerting:

    “Vitamin K2 is extremely difficult to get sufficient quantities of in the diet even if one consumes grassfed meats and dairy on a very regular basis. The reason is the worrisome depletion of our soils which grassfed farmers are valiantly turning the tide on, but which will still take several decades if not even a century or two to reverse on a widespread basis.”

    So, does eating Gouda overcome this issue?
    Would you recommend supplementing K2?

    I found one answer…Thanks!

    “Here’s the really excellent news: Gouda cheese is extremely high in Vitamin K2 even if the milk it’s made from was not grassfed. This is due to the bacterial cultures used to ferment milk into Gouda cheese. Bacteria produce a special type of Vitamin K2 (MK-7) which according to current research is as effective as the animal form of Vitamin K2 (MK-4) at preserving human health when combined in the diet with the other fat soluble activators A and D.”

    March 26th, 2014 12:05 pm Reply
  • Marissa Vaudo via Facebook

    Mmmmm natto

    March 26th, 2014 11:51 am Reply
  • Brigitte Mercier via Facebook

    Full Potential, you may want to check this article out as I believe the Paleo lifestyle might even make you look younger, lots of K2.

    March 26th, 2014 11:50 am Reply
  • Eileen Foster via Facebook

    Deficiency in Vitamin K has also been linked to strokes. We eat farm-raised eggs and Gouda at our house!

    March 26th, 2014 11:41 am Reply
  • Shelene Wilhelm via Facebook

    I take some stuff called Greens. It’s amazing and non gmo. It’s probiotic as well as all fruits and veggie servings for the whole day so if I’m not as good as I’d like, I’m covered. My husband stopped drinking Mountain Dew when he started drinking greens. We are very thankful for it!

    March 26th, 2014 11:28 am Reply
  • Barbara Ferdinandi via Facebook

    Valentina Maggia

    March 26th, 2014 11:27 am Reply
  • Bonnie Penner via Facebook

    A good scholarly article pointing to how beneficial bacteria in your gut helps your body produce and absorb vitamin k. I agree that the best way to nourish your skin is always from the inside out.

    March 26th, 2014 11:18 am Reply
  • Bonnie Penner via Facebook

    Maintaing good gut flora/bacteria and eating dark green romain lettuce is another way your body naturally produces vitamin k. Having adequate vitamin k in a woman’s diet is imperative so that women don’t over bleed during their monthly menstral cycle. Vitamin k produced by good gut flora also ensures elimination of #xenoestrogens women are exposed to by use of feminine hygiene products.

    March 26th, 2014 11:13 am Reply
  • The Healthy Home Economist via Facebook

    No wonder Traditional Cultures were so youthful looking even at advanced ages … the foods they revered and even held sacred were found to be extremely high in Activator X (K2) from research from Dr. W.A. Price.

    March 26th, 2014 11:09 am Reply
  • Diana Van Pelt via Facebook

    Raw kraut? That’s great news because I just made another 3 quart batch. Love it with avocado and sardines!

    December 17th, 2013 3:31 am Reply
  • DrGrace Gniazdowska via Facebook

    almost every supplement is in magnesium stearate and cellulose capsules and soy (what is the source of the soy?, is it GMO soy?). I noticed even companies I used to like, use it.

    All the supplements used to be gelatin caps, now even though you are trying to lookout for yourself and your loved ones, they found a way to still put toxins and insoluble ingredients/gmo elements into our bodies, through our supplements.

    I started taking D.E. Earth “food grade” (powder form) a heaping tbsp in my 100% grass fed milk, every day. It’s from earthworks and got it a few days ago. This is the best DE on the market :)

    December 16th, 2013 9:46 pm Reply
  • Mary Vance, Certified Nutrition Consultant via Facebook

    raw kraut is a great source of K2

    December 16th, 2013 9:14 pm Reply
  • Eat to Evolve via Facebook

    Interesting…thanks for sharing!

    December 16th, 2013 7:20 pm Reply
  • Janet Murphy Peters via Facebook

    My husband can’t be around me when I eat natto!

    December 16th, 2013 7:06 pm Reply
  • Sheena Golish via Facebook

    Natto and rice cooked in bacon fat and a little salt and a little dark sesame oil is a favorite lunch for my girls.

    December 16th, 2013 5:18 pm Reply
  • Dawn Shepherd via Facebook

    Thanks for the article. My Mom’s facial skin Never showed her age. She had Beautiful skin almost until the day she passed away. She did however grow up on a dairy farm, and consumed lots of raw milk, butter, and lard. And she had a wonderful attitude about life. : )

    December 16th, 2013 1:02 pm Reply
  • Stephanie Servy via Facebook

    Claire interesting…

    December 16th, 2013 11:11 am Reply
  • Stephanie Servy via Facebook

    Claire interesting…

    December 16th, 2013 11:11 am Reply
  • Heather Erickson via Facebook

    This is my absolute favorite butter oil! It is delicious:

    December 16th, 2013 9:58 am Reply
  • Leila Kairns via Facebook
    high vitamin butter does

    December 16th, 2013 9:19 am Reply
  • Annie Jenney via Facebook

    Does fclo have k2?

    December 16th, 2013 8:11 am Reply
  • Peter Pugliese via Facebook

    This is for you Rebecca Ritchie!! 😉

    December 16th, 2013 3:58 am Reply
  • Janina Edgar via Facebook

    Just a thought for those who cannot stomach liver or natto, how about cutting it up into small pellet size bits and freezing it, take it like a pill with something that will compliment it for digestion :)

    December 16th, 2013 12:33 am Reply
  • Stephanie Armstrong via Facebook

    Natto is disgusting. I live in Japan and have tried so hard to like it. It’s just awful!!

    December 16th, 2013 12:21 am Reply
  • Kesed Crowson via Facebook

    Great read….my concern is the likely gmo-laced supplement linked in the article….wouldn’t this be a better option?

    December 15th, 2013 10:56 pm Reply
  • Lisa Lanza Menard via Facebook

    I hate liver!

    December 15th, 2013 10:48 pm Reply
  • Joy Foggia via Facebook

    Great article but surprised the author didn’t mention the extreme cruelty geese endure as a means to get their livers. She only mentioned the high price and how it can be hard to find.

    December 15th, 2013 10:45 pm Reply
  • Lisa Lanza Menard via Facebook

    Good article, but I’m scared to try Natto, lol.

    December 15th, 2013 10:44 pm Reply
  • Kat Stabe via Facebook

    Very interesting article. Now to source vitamin K2 along with grass fed butter.

    December 15th, 2013 10:39 pm Reply
  • Kat Stabe via Facebook

    Very interesting article. Now to source vitamin K2 along with grass fed butter.

    December 15th, 2013 10:39 pm Reply
  • Susan Bradshaw via Facebook

    Do you have a particular brand of supplement you recommend for this?

    December 15th, 2013 10:38 pm Reply
  • Angelique

    I eat whole bread and cheese in the morning, and I’m definitely going to choose Gouda cheese instead of the others ! It’s quite good too, not too strong. Thanks for the useful info !

    August 25th, 2013 6:05 am Reply
  • Ruffslitch

    An omlette made with my pastured chicken’s eggs and Gouda cheese! And spinach! And fresh tomatoes!

    August 24th, 2013 11:49 pm Reply
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  • Jasanna Czellar

    What exactly does natto taste/smell like?

    August 4th, 2013 10:10 pm Reply
    • Ruffslitch

      Google pix of it-it looks nasty! Long, stringy clumps of icky-looking stuff. But to each his own…

      August 24th, 2013 11:50 pm Reply
  • Josh Brancek

    Wow, I never heard of this vitamin K2!!! I have to study more about this subject as my mum is showing all the symptoms you described!!!

    June 27th, 2013 2:15 am Reply
  • Arsenal1Again

    Coumadin (Wararin) users cannot touch Vitamin K. It’s the whole point of Coumadin (Wararin) … to eradicate the effects of Vitamin K.

    May 31st, 2013 2:55 pm Reply
    • LindaR

      Only partially true. Those on blood thinners CAN eat foods containing high levels of vitamin K1 “IF” they are consistent in intake from day-to-day so that the medication can be adjusted accordingly. Vitamin K2 apparently affects calcium metabolism and doesn’t have any influence on blood thickness/clotting.

      July 31st, 2013 1:55 pm Reply
      • GregM

        Linda is right on one point. Coumadin levels can be adjusted to accommodate daily vitamin K intake.

        But she is wrong about the clotting. All Vitamin K types work with clotting too.

        (Warning – techy sentence) Vitamin K works molecularly to make a certain type of calcium-carboxyilic acid bonds possible (by adding a carboxyilic acid group to a glutamate amino acid that is found in a protein). the result is called a Gla protein. (Some of the result are enzymes, others are structural molecules.)

        Bottom line, Vitamin K it is critical in making certain types of special proteins in the body, some of which work in relation to the coagulation (clot) cascade (four different proteins). Other vitamin K related proteins work in relation to calcium utilization (and other things).

        Coumadin (warfarin) works to inhibit the recycling process of Vitamin K in the body, so, barring increased intake, the body gradually becomes deficient in vitamin k and the clotting proteins will not do their thing when clot signaling occurs. The same can be said of the other types of proteins. (“PT” level is a measurement used with warfarin use, and measures “prothrombin [a protein] time” – that is, how long to clot. Prothombin is a vitamin K dependent Gla protein that is central to clotting.)

        But the real question is what are the side effects of long term, warfarin induced vitamin K deficiency? And are some of them offset if you consume vitamin K along with your Coumadin and readjust the med? I wish I could tell you the answer. But personally, I would supplement and adjust the med if I had to take it. I am not fond of the idea of calcified heart valves. (From which my mother died from after being on long term Coumadin and no vitamin K before I understood the biological mechanisms in play.)

        December 6th, 2014 5:02 am Reply
  • Roberta

    But not good for you if you take blood thinners.

    May 31st, 2013 11:43 am Reply
  • Dana

    Would love to know your family’s reactions to the MK-7. My first bottle arrived today. Thanks.

    May 15th, 2013 10:45 pm Reply
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  • Craig

    Genetics is still the main reason Asian women look young. And correlation is not causation in any case.

    This article has all the hallmarks of vitamin crankery. In addition to the K-12 I recommend a large grain of salt.

    April 26th, 2013 10:37 pm Reply
    • leah

      And nutrition cannot affect genetics? Ever heard of generational addiction problems? What about genetic-related obesity? Since obesity is a relatively new problem in humanity, how do you explain a genetic pre-disposition to something that was almost unheard of before the year 1800? Of course genes play a role. But what you eat can “switch on” or “switch off” certain genetic traits, and what you eat can change gene expression so that future generations are effective.

      April 27th, 2013 10:26 am Reply
  • Lisa

    I am confused……another article posted on this blog, says 170 scientific reasons to stay away from soy, but here it says take natto??? which is soy.

    April 24th, 2013 5:12 am Reply
    • Susan

      Unfortunately, thanks to the giant chemical/ agriculture companies like Monsanto, what was once a good food if fermented has turned dangerous. Most of the world’s soy is genetically- engineered (or genetically- modified) and can cause many problems for your health, because GE crops would never be found in nature, they are manipulated by man. That’s why it’s important to know if it’s grown organically, or non- GE, non-GM. The US grows 94% of its soy, genetically-engineered. If the crop terminates every year, and every year new seeds have to be bought from Monsanto, Syngenta & friends, then you know it’s genetically-engineered, or GMO.

      April 24th, 2013 10:15 am Reply
    • LEAH

      The same article mentioned natto, miso and tempeh as the only acceptable/beneficial/traditional soy foods to be eaten in moderation. Apparently this natto bacteria produces a huge immune-boosting benefit, aside from the vit k, and breaks down some of the detrimental properties of soy. And like susan said, most soy is genetically engineered to be even worse for us. trust me: if you eat natto, tempeh or miso, you can’t eat more than a very small amount, so it is self-limiting, unlike sugar-sweetened soymilk or soy protein isolates.

      April 24th, 2013 11:53 am Reply
  • Alison Smart

    Not happy eating anything with soy bean in but the next two options are fine. Our backyard chooks are grass fed in the main so I score well there. Genetics must play a big part too as I seem to be lucky with the absence of wrinkles at 61.

    April 14th, 2013 10:51 pm Reply
  • Susan

    A friend who lives in Japan say they are not allowed to grow GMO. However, I think Japan, like Europe, does import soy through the ‘back door’ in the animal feed. So you can’t sell GMO to consumer directly, but who knows what happens with the animal feed.

    April 11th, 2013 11:03 am Reply
    • leah

      So if that’s the case, the “product of Japan” natto should be GMO free, right? I’m a little afraid to assume it though. I’d much rather it explicitly say it’s not GMO or that it’s organic, though finding that is proving very difficult, unless I just want to go with a natto extract supplement. I’ve heard more about it, though, and that the probiotics in it are super beneficial, on top of the K2, and who knows what else, so I’m hoping to add it to my diet rather than take a vitamin.

      April 11th, 2013 12:06 pm Reply
      • Susan

        Best thing is ask the company whose product you are looking at. I literally have to do that with almost every packaged product I consume. And found it to be worth it. You’d be amazed to find that things are not really how they are marketed because of ‘loopholes’ in definitions. That’s why I try not to eat too many packaged foods. That makes me end up cooking and preparing food a lot more than I used to, but you gotta do what you gotta do for your health. I was hoping some day, to organize a pool of people to take turns cooking.

        April 11th, 2013 12:36 pm Reply
  • Leah

    I’m also wondering how difficult this is to make myself. I’ll have to do some research to see where I can get the strain of natto bacteria. If anyone knows of a place or has experience, I’d love to hear it.

    April 10th, 2013 1:37 pm Reply
  • Leah

    I went around to several Asian stores yesterday, sure I could find organic natto at one of them. No dice. None are labeled organic or non-GMO, so I didn’t buy any of them. Also, all were frozen and all were labeled “product of Japan.” I have no idea if there are GMO soy crops in Japan or not, but it needs to be labeled if I’m going to put it in my body. I asked the manager and other employees, none of whom knew what GMO meant. I came home and did a search and found this: which has organic and GMO free Natto. There is a store list under “where to buy” and I think you can order it online as well. These are fresh, not frozen, so it looks like the taste is also better. It’s good for me, because they’re local to where I live (NorCal), but at least there’s an option if you can’t find it in your area.

    April 10th, 2013 1:36 pm Reply
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  • Manang Kusinera via Facebook

    What about raw butter? Isn’t the vitamin K2 aka as the Wusthoff factor present in raw fats? Oh I see butter there now, but they should have specified raw. Per NT book, vit K2 is damaged by heating.

    April 8th, 2013 12:50 pm Reply
  • Steven Featherkile via Facebook

    Can I has more gouda cheese?

    April 8th, 2013 11:50 am Reply
  • Megan

    While I am a follower of this website the author has a tendency to turn factors that may assist with something into true cause and effect facts. Other major factors here are pigmentation of the skin, genetics, physical environment, etc.

    April 8th, 2013 11:03 am Reply
  • Rahul Sharma

    Hello Authorm

    Well written about Vitamin deficiency that we can easily observe through our face. It seems you studied a lot on Vitamins and related nutrients.

    I got lots of helpful information on Vitamin K2, Its my pleasure to read helpful stuff here.

    Thanks, Keep posting. :)

    April 8th, 2013 9:24 am Reply
  • Michel

    Hi guys I have a questions for you and sorry is out of the subject. I use a natural dishwasher liquid with plant based ingredients including SLS, but I’d like to wear cloves to avoid those ingredients for intering my skin. I used to wear latex gloves and I have read that those the gloves made with latex netril and vinyl free phtalete contain products can cause cancer. My question is what are the safest gloves to wear ? thank you

    April 8th, 2013 4:03 am Reply
    • Susan

      I’d like to know more about the gloves too.

      April 27th, 2013 4:20 pm Reply
  • IC

    Doesn’t kefir also contain high amounts of K2 if it’s made from milk from grassfed cows?

    April 8th, 2013 2:33 am Reply
  • Susan

    The results will be different because Asians and Africans have naturally thicker skin than Caucasians.

    April 8th, 2013 2:30 am Reply
    • Jack

      Exactly. Asians show less photo aging due to their genetic makeup just like africans probably due to the different melanin content of their skin

      April 20th, 2013 7:59 pm Reply
  • Susan

    What are geese fed these days? I hope not the gmo corn & soy crap that all the other animals are fed these days. Now alfalfa too.

    April 8th, 2013 2:29 am Reply
    • Helen T

      I have a hard time getting organic liver here in France. The European Union has allowed GMO feed for animals sometime ago. Plus GMO potatoes are now allowed to be grown for animal feed – going through the backdoor, so-to-speak. And I’ve never seen labels identifying GMOs here.

      April 8th, 2013 12:14 pm Reply
      • Susan

        I’ve been saying that when people say there is no GMO in Europe. Exactly, it’s through the back-door in the animal feed.

        April 8th, 2013 12:42 pm Reply
  • Susan

    Where can you find a trusted source of GMO-free Natto?

    April 8th, 2013 2:25 am Reply
    • Susan

      In theory, these suggestions would work well. In reality, it’s hard to find them, because of GMO contamination and other issues. Give us real places or sources we can get un-GMO-contaminated products. The choices are getting narrower & narrower because Monsanto & friends are getting the noose tighter & tighter on us, where one day, we will no longer have a choice. Sorry for the message delivery, but I hope people realize how serious the situation is.

      April 10th, 2013 12:46 am Reply
  • Melinda

    Fats along with natural myofunctional therapy.

    April 8th, 2013 1:19 am Reply
  • Rita

    I was researching some things you posted about soy and natto, and I’m a little confused being that there are so many post about how soy is so bad for us. Here is a bit of one of your posts.

    Be sure not to be taken in by the argument that because soy is organic, nonGMO or sprouted that it is just fine to eat it. Fermented soy in small, condimental amounts as practiced in traditional Asian cultures is the only safe way to consume this legume and even then, only for those who have healthy thyroid function because it is so extremely goitrogenic. Miso, tempeh, natto and soy sauce (IF traditionally brewed) fall under this category.

    So is it safe for us to take the MK-7 that comes from natto? Does the daily dosage fall under the “small amount”. And if natto is a natural plant estrogen is it something I should give to my sons and husband?
    I truly respect your opinions and your research. Thank you for helping change my family’s life!

    April 7th, 2013 11:59 pm Reply
  • marina

    since I started giving the kids gouda cheese , a cavity which my child had stopped decaying further.
    we buy goose liver pate in farmers market here in Ontario, it is not very expensive by the way the way. kids love it on bread.

    April 7th, 2013 9:22 pm Reply
    • IC

      My kids all love liver pâté on bread with mustard. I craved it while pregnant.

      April 8th, 2013 2:20 am Reply
  • Susan Swayzee via Facebook

    It’s unwise to think that an Asian style diet would produce the same results in American women of European descent. We have very different biochemistry and abilities to digest certain foods. For example, I am HIGHLY sensitive to soy, it gives me extreme digestive upset. Just as Asian and Japanese women tend to have difficulty digesting dairy products. Perhaps the K2 is an answer. Perhaps there are others as well. I believe, though, that the biggest problem we have in our diets is what has been ADDED to them that shouldn’t be there, rather than what is lacking.

    April 7th, 2013 9:04 pm Reply
    • Leah

      Of course genetics are different, but it can’t hurt to look at what they are doing differently to give them different results, can it? You may be sensitive to soy, but have you tried Natto? the point is that it’s very fermented, as is miso. Unfermented soy products, such as tofu and soymilk, are never recommended for lots of reasons. Everyone is sensitive to those, whether they realize it or not, because they are mostly indigestible to humans, and the phytoestrogens are toxic to our endocrine systems. No one is recommending you eat soy. Small amounts of fermented soy, however, have their benefits. Fermentation is key.

      April 7th, 2013 10:22 pm Reply
  • Lisa Self via Facebook

    Goose liver? Gross, lol….. Kale has a lot of vitamin K. I don’t know the difference in K and K2 though.

    April 7th, 2013 8:56 pm Reply
  • ella

    Japan also does not fluoridate its water and fluoride has been shown to increase hip fractures. I wonder if that plays a role in their health?

    I think I’ll buy some gouda :). Getting K-2 through soy makes me a little nervous. I’m not allergic, but I do try to avoid soy because of my thyroid and because of estrogen factors. I’m not sure I can get passed that…

    April 7th, 2013 6:39 pm Reply
  • Sakurako

    I am from Japan and we usually eat natto for breakfast. We mix it with raw egg (or egg yolk), sauce that comes with the package of natto (or soy sauce), some sliced scallions and sprinkles of nori. Pour it over hot rice. It smells and also stringy but my children and I love it! My husband from Australia didn’t like it first but he eats it now.

    April 7th, 2013 5:46 pm Reply
    • Beth

      Yum! This reminds me of the time I spent in Japan teaching English. I loved the Japanese food, especially breakfast!

      April 18th, 2013 4:24 pm Reply
  • Joyce Lenardson via Facebook

    When my face became extreamly wrinkled it was my thyroid.

    April 7th, 2013 5:30 pm Reply
  • Juliette

    How/where do you buy Natto? How do you eat it?

    April 7th, 2013 4:29 pm Reply
    • Beth

      Avoid the sauce that comes with it (prone to have MSG) and make your own with tamari and mustard or some combination of robust flavors that you enjoy.

      April 7th, 2013 9:51 pm Reply
  • Mali Korsten

    As if I needed another reason to eat more cheese 😉

    April 7th, 2013 4:29 pm Reply
  • KathrynB

    Does it have to been grassfed gouda or raw gouda, or just any kind?

    April 7th, 2013 3:07 pm Reply
  • Deborah Gordon via Facebook

    Thank you for posting this, how very helpful. As a fairly unwrinkled 65 year old, I’m going to assume my bones are good! from either the fermented cod liver oil or the IPA beer in the summer, my 2 favorite sources of vitamin K2.

    April 7th, 2013 2:59 pm Reply
  • watchmom3

    How do you eat natto? I do have too many wrinkles, but I spend a lot of time outdoors in the west texas wind and sun! Anyway, is there still a special on the cod liver oil? Thanks!

    April 7th, 2013 2:20 pm Reply
  • susan

    Is that Gouda cheese from grass feed cows only?

    April 7th, 2013 2:18 pm Reply
    • Nicole

      Sarah said in a different post, that although the K2 is highest in grassfed cows- it is also present in conventional gouda cheese

      April 10th, 2013 11:26 pm Reply
      • Greg Bryson

        Cheese will contain multiple forms of vitamin K2. There will be some Mk-4, more if grass fed, and there will be a larger quantity of higher menaquinones (Mk-5 – Mk-10, mostly Mk-7) from the bacterial fermentation. Hard cheeses tend to have the most vitamin K2, due to the lengthy fermentation.

        April 16th, 2013 12:39 pm Reply
  • Cayceus

    I’m taking the vitamin k2 from Dr. mercola which is natto in capsules. Would this be efficient?

    April 7th, 2013 2:10 pm Reply
  • Bonnie

    Great article! Would you recommend a source for Organic Natto?

    April 7th, 2013 2:01 pm Reply
    • E

      I’d love to know this too!!

      April 8th, 2013 12:04 pm Reply
  • Christina Mendoza

    Awesome information, thank you! I had read an article on Dr. Mercola’s website about the benefits of vitamin K for bone health, and finding out it can also prevent wrinkles is a wonderful bonus!

    April 7th, 2013 1:53 pm Reply
  • Christine

    Can Nattokinase be a supplement similar to Natto? I know it has been used as a blood thinner to reduce the fibrin in the blood. If I take to much of it, I start to bruise. I have read the book “Vitamin K2 and the Calcium Paradox” which really explained how K2 along with Vitamin D and Vitamin A work together for bone health. I think you recommended it Sarah. It’s one of the best books I have read about nutrition. Thanks for recommending it.

    April 7th, 2013 1:36 pm Reply
  • Sandra Dunbar via Facebook

    I have a lot of wrinkles and very good bones, so I’m wondering if it isn’t my exposure to the sun over the years that caused wrinkles and also genetics as my father had a lot of wrinkles too.

    April 7th, 2013 1:27 pm Reply
    • Mmom

      Yes to both. If your skin is very thin, dry, and gentle then it will age faster. I knew so many women who had beautiful skin when they were young. They had baby’s skin, but this beauty did not last long, unfortunately. Every one of them got fine wrinkles like crumbled paper very yearly in life and they could not reverse it naturally. My skin is thick and oily. I had acne prone skin and it was not so attractive, but my parents and grandparents looked young very long and almost no wrinkles until they were over 60.

      April 9th, 2013 11:39 pm Reply
  • Virginia

    So what is it about Gouda that makes it have more K2?

    April 7th, 2013 1:02 pm Reply
    • Salem

      It’s the bacteria that is used to produce the gouda. Brie uses the same/similar bacteria. If you have healthy gut flora, it will produce some K2 for you. However, the majority of what it (gut flora) produces is tied up somehow (I think in the nucleus), so it isn’t bioavailable. Dr. Kate’s book that Sarah mentions at the end is being re-printed this month. I’m getting one (probably on Amazon). If you are more curious about it, her book is probably a good source of information.

      July 4th, 2013 5:14 am Reply
  • Jill Reid via Facebook

    Carolyn Reid little article on Vit K2 you might enjoy :)

    April 7th, 2013 12:44 pm Reply
  • Beth

    Be sure to ask around and find farmers whose egg-laying hens are out on fresh green grass, eating the bugs and grubs harbored in grass since this is what provides these nutrients. Ideally, they are following cows, scratching up the cow pies, eating the bugs, replenishing the land and becoming super nutrient dense. No “vegetarian fed” hens–they need the bugs, grubs and worms.

    April 7th, 2013 12:36 pm Reply
  • CCM

    Vitamin K2 seems to be the compound identified by Weston A. Price as ”Activator X.” He found a way to make a concentrated form by centrifuging cream from cows eating actively growing grass. This is known as “high vitamin butter oil” which we are fortunate to be able to purchase from Green Pastures and Nutrapro. Weston A. Price discovered that a traditional diet supplemented with high vitamin butter oil and traditional cod liver oil was powerfully healing.

    April 7th, 2013 12:33 pm Reply
  • Donna Molles via Facebook

    Very interesting. I’ve got the pastured eggs and butter going, but will look into some organic natto.

    April 7th, 2013 12:17 pm Reply
  • Bill Hada via Facebook

    The best prevention: preparation h. Think about it.

    April 7th, 2013 12:04 pm Reply
  • Laura Hartman via Facebook

    I will take wrinkles over natto, lol.

    April 7th, 2013 11:58 am Reply
  • Kathy Musselwhite

    Please do not encourage goose liver pate-it is very cruelly produced.

    April 7th, 2013 11:54 am Reply
    • arcadia11

      thank you, kathy, for bringing up the cruelty.
      i do not understand how people think they can
      gain ‘health’ for themselves by torturing and
      slaughtering other life forms.

      cheers ~

      September 1st, 2013 4:23 pm Reply
  • Jennifer Cosper Howard via Facebook

    Thanks for the blog post! We recently started using the MK-4 drops, but I just ordered the MK-7 that you recommend. Thanks for all that you do! I’ve learned so much from you!

    April 7th, 2013 11:25 am Reply
  • Kathleen Hassett via Facebook

    As far as the MK-4 and MK-7 debate, I think it’s always better to stay away from the synthetic. I would probably go with the MK-7.

    April 7th, 2013 11:06 am Reply
    • Greg Bryson

      Different organs appear to have different preferences for the various forms of vitamin K2. The kidneys and brain appear to prefer Mk-4 (or at least store it), based on this paper: While higher menaquinones like Mk-7 do perform some of the functions of Mk-7, they might not perform all of them. It appears that Mk-4 is the only K vitamin to cross the placenta, and Mk-4 can activate certain genes that Mk-7 cannot. A healthy diet probably contains some of each. I wouldn’t be concerned about synthetic, as long as it’s chemically the same as found in food. Thorne Research makes Mk-4 products in drop form, of which 99.9% of the K2 is bio-identifcal to that found in food sources.

      April 16th, 2013 12:29 pm Reply
  • Jill

    I have tried to pick up Natto at Asian grocery stores and also Whole Foods. WF does not carry it, and the Asian stores carry products that have a LOT of undesirable stuff in it like MSG and HFCS. Do you know of any other source, perhaps that’s organic?

    April 7th, 2013 11:04 am Reply
    • Nicole

      the “undesirables” are in a little seasoning packet inside the natto packet. It’s not in the natto itself. So you are fine to buy it- just toss the seasoning/mustard packet 😀

      April 10th, 2013 11:23 pm Reply
      • Leah

        Sure, but what about the soybeans? They’re not labeled organic or non-GMO. They do all say “product of Japan.” anybody know if Japan has GMO soybeans or not?

        April 11th, 2013 10:28 am Reply
        • Beth

          It is possible to find organic, non-GMO natto in some stores. Just be sure to ditch the flavor packet and make your own sauce out of mustard and Red Boat fish sauce or tamari or something along those lines.

          April 18th, 2013 4:20 pm Reply
  • Leah

    What about graying hair? I have way too many gray hairs for my age (my parents have both just started graying themselves and I already have a lot). Is that a deficiency of some kind? I haven’t been able to find any research or even speculation on this.

    April 7th, 2013 11:02 am Reply
    • Tracy


      Have you had your thyroid checked recently? My DD and DH both had early graying (DD at 8!!) and it is related to their hypothyroidism. Our doctor told me she looks for premature graying (before age 40) as a signal that the thyroid should be checked, especially in men since they’re less likely to seek help for their symptoms (or even know about them.)

      April 7th, 2013 11:54 am Reply
    • Beth

      I don’t know for certain, but I’d heard that graying hair is a sign of low B12, another common deficiency.

      April 7th, 2013 12:28 pm Reply
      • Katie

        Hmmmm…..In the last year I’ve grayed considerably and I’m only 32! Granted, I have been under a LOT of major stress, but I’m wondering if a lack of B12 is to blame, too?

        April 7th, 2013 7:08 pm Reply
        • Leah

          Katie–me too. I’m 34. It’s a little bit upsetting to see it happening so early, right? But I’ve got stress as well. No wrinkles–but plenty of gray hairs. Fortunately they’re mostly covered by the good stuff, but it still bothers me. I’ve been playing with my diet and supplements a lot to see what could reverse it. I have seen a few hairs that went back to brown *from* gray, so I know it’s possible. Pretty sure I have to figure out a better way to un-stress.

          April 7th, 2013 10:19 pm Reply
          • Nils

            I’ve come across internet comments from people who reversed their grey hair (at least partially) by taking blackstrap molasses – which they also say is good for alleviating menstrual issues because of its mineral-rich content. It should be unsulfured, organic blackstrap molasses. Not sure I could swallow a spoonful of the thick stuff – tried it just once in green tea but it didn’t quite work and I couldn’t finish it – but am the same age as you and already have oodles of white hair which is so-far still semi-concealed. Too soon, no?!

            July 3rd, 2013 4:37 am
    • Sharon

      Minerals (taken internally) color the hair.

      April 7th, 2013 1:15 pm Reply
      • Nancy Liberty Jacques

        Sharon, can you elaborate on the minerals and hair color?

        April 10th, 2013 9:26 pm Reply
    • Adrian

      Copper is the key mineral required for melanin production, as well as for collagen formation and tight skin. Interesting to see that an article on skin wrinkles has also created the question on greying hair, since the 2 usually go hand in hand. Copper is best taken transdermally by use of a simple copper bracelet, which will react with skin moisture causing a blue copper sulfate stain on your skin. Perfectly normal, and perfectly healthy.

      November 29th, 2015 5:57 pm Reply
  • Sandra

    Is the fermented skate liver oil a good source of K2?

    April 7th, 2013 10:57 am Reply
  • Lynn Branham via Facebook

    I started eating Natto just last month for the K2.

    April 7th, 2013 10:57 am Reply
    • Deb Arnold

      Where do you get the Natto from in the united states? I would love to know so I can get started on it. I am in my 50’s and have managed to keep the wrinkles down to a minimum. I use to be very active but was diagnosed with multiple plexiform neurofibromas in my groin and abdomen. So I am disabled and have a hard time moving around, even in my home. So thanks for whatever information you can give me.

      April 13th, 2013 5:02 pm Reply
      • Sheilah


        I buy my Natto in the frozen food section of our local Asian market. I’m in the Denver Metro Area.

        If you Google the terms “Natto Making FAQ”, you will find a recipe.

        Good luck.

        May 21st, 2013 1:56 am Reply
  • Geertje van der Burgh via Facebook

    Hey has there also been research on the skin aging of us Dutchies? We do eat lots of grass fed cheese!

    April 7th, 2013 10:51 am Reply
  • Susan Brueck via Facebook

    Can the aging be reversed?

    April 7th, 2013 10:50 am Reply
    • Maria

      You can’t reverse time but you can slow the aging process.. to a point where it looked like you reversed time.

      December 16th, 2013 8:23 am Reply
  • Anne Parker Blackwell via Facebook

    Gouda for lunch!

    April 7th, 2013 10:44 am Reply
  • Health-e-links via Facebook

    One more reason to break out the butter.

    April 7th, 2013 10:33 am Reply
  • Sue Sullivan via Facebook

    Great writeup on K-2. Thanks!

    April 7th, 2013 10:19 am Reply

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