Last Updated on August 22, 2023 by Jade Roberts
The link between Vitamin K and tooth decay came about quite by accident. Vitamin K was discovered in 1929 by a Danish scientist, Henrik Dam. It was also at about that time when American dentist Weston Price began researching the link between diet and other health diseases. His focus soon shifted to tooth decay when he asked how cavities and crooked teeth were common in modern day humans.
In his research, Price travelled all over the world seeking answers and instead discovered that bad teeth and Western food appeared to be connected. The link became obvious when abroad and people he encountered had straight teeth without cavities. It was in Western societies where Price noted dental issues. He eventually determined that processed food that contained sugar, rice, flour and vegetable fats – all common ingredients in Western diets – were to blame.
In response to his research, Price created a product he called Activator X. It was made with cod liver oil mixed with the butterfat that came from grass-fed cattle. He promoted it as the “cure for cavities” and although it produced tremendous results, it was because of something Price had no idea was hidden deep within his formula. The true activator inside Activator X was Vitamin K2 which was brought into the picture by the grass-fed cattle that produced the butterfat.
The Best Source of Vitamin K2
Vitamin K2 is an important vitamin that you probably don’t have in your diet; however, you can add it through supplementation. The vitamin actually works in your body to activate osteocalcin. Osteocalcin is a vital protein that helps in the development of bone structure and growth. It actually contributes to the development of a broad, symmetrical face in utero and continues to work on this and other bone health during the crucial growing phases of life.
But where can you get Vitamin K2 if Activator X is no longer available?
Well, that goes back to the formula of Activator X. The butterfat came from cattle that were grass-fed. Unless your diet contains several products produced by grass-fed cattle, including raw milk, you probably fall a little short on Vitamin K2 and probably have had your share of cavities over your lifetime. Oddly enough, the protein osteocalcin exists in the body and generally speaking 90% of uncarboxylated osteocalcin does not get activated – without Vitamin K2.
How Much Vitamin K2 Do You Need?
That is a question with no clear answer. Although the discovery of Vitamin K2 was made relatively recently, not enough time has passed to allow the medical community to determine what a recommended dosage or too much would amount to. Tests and further research is necessary before this will happen. But you do have an option. All you need to do is monitor how much of your osteocalcin has been activated to know if you have had enough.
The Effect of Calcium
Calcium is already in your body and if you get enough of it from your diet then you don’t have to add more through supplementation. What you need to do to get that calcium sent to where it will do the most good is by adding Vitamin K2. When Vitamin K2 activates the osteocalcin protein, it actually sends the calcium to where it is needed most – your bones and teeth. Without Vitamin K2, when you add more calcium, the calcium does not get used properly.
Vitamin K2 Does More Than Just Help Bones And Teeth
Because Vitamin K2 has an antibiotic property, it can protect your mouth, teeth, and gums. This is what made Activator X so popular. The vitamin K2 content, when it moves calcium to the teeth, actually helps strengthen teeth to the point where they would help to stop cavities from forming. Healthy strong teeth means that you may be able to avoid false teeth options in your later years.
You can read more about how vitamin K helps, not only with your dental health but also your overall health, in this article.
There is a definite link between Vitamin K2 and tooth decay. Vitamin K2 doesn’t directly do the work, but it is the only thing that will get the protein called osteocalcin moving in your body. This protein seeks the calcium that is already in your system and sends it to your teeth and bones. So calcium is important, but it does not work as effectively for your teeth or bones without Vitamin K2 to kick it into gear and move to those places.
The most difficult part of the link between Vitamin K2 and tooth decay is getting the vitamin. Supplementation is the easiest way to get it into your body. That’s simply because the other methods are likely not a common part of your daily diet. That is unless you are consuming products that are produced by cattle that have been grass-fed. Grain-fed cattle do not have K2 as they can only convert Vitamin K1 to K2 through a grass-fed diet.
Hopefully, this clears up where oral health can be improved with the assistance of Vitamin K2.