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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BHNRC) » Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center » Nutrient Data Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #338581

Research Project: USDA National Nutrient Databank for Food Composition

Location: Nutrient Data Laboratory

Title: Multiple Vitamin K Forms Exist in Dairy Foods

Author
item Fu, Xueyan
item Harshman, Stephanie
item Shen, Xiaohua
item Haytowitz, David
item Karl, Phillip
item Wolfe, Sarah
item Booth, Sarah

Submitted to: Current Developments in Nutrition
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/31/2017
Publication Date: 6/1/2017
Citation: Fu, X., Harshman, S.G., Shen, X., Haytowitz, D.B., Karl, P.J., Wolfe, S.L., Booth, S.L. 2017. Multiple Vitamin K forms exist in dairy foods. Current Developments in Nutrition. doi:10.3945/cdn.117.000638.

Interpretive Summary: The plant-based form of vitamin K (phylloquinone, PK, vitamin K1) has been well-quantified in the U.S. diet. Menaquinones (MK, vitamin K2) are another class of vitamin K compounds that differ from PK in the length and saturation of their side chain but have not been well characterized in foods. The objectives of this study were to: 1) quantify, using mass spectrometry technology, PK and the different forms of MK (MK4 through MK13) in milk, yogurt, Greek yogurt, creams and cheeses; and 2) compare the MK contents of full-fat, reduced-fat and non-fat dairy products. All dairy samples were either obtained from USDA National Food and Nutrient Analysis Program or purchased from retail outlets. Full fat dairy products contained appreciable amounts of MK, primarily in the forms of MK9, MK10 and MK11. We also measured modest amounts of PK, MK4, MK8 and MK12. In contrast, there was little MK5-7 or MK13 detected in the majority of dairy products. The total vitamin K contents of soft cheese, blue cheese, semi-soft cheese and hard cheese were 506±63, 440±41, 289±38 and 282±5.0 µg/100 g, respectively. Non-fermented cheeses, like processed cheese, contained lower amounts of vitamin K (98±11 µg/100 g). Reduced fat or fat free dairy products contained ~5-22% of the vitamin K found in full fat equivalents. For example, total vitamin K contents of full fat milk, 2% milk, 1% milk and non-fat milk were 38.1±8.6, 19.4±7.7, 12.9±2.0 and 7.7±2.9 µg/100 g, respectively. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of MK contents of U.S. dairy products. Findings indicate that the amount of vitamin K contents in dairy products is high and proportional to the fat content of the product. If biological activity of MK from foods is established, dairy products could have an important dietary role in vitamin K nutrition.

Technical Abstract: The plant-based form of vitamin K (phylloquinone, PK, vitamin K1) has been well-quantified in the U.S. diet. Menaquinones (MK, vitamin K2) are another class of vitamin K compounds that differ from PK in the length and saturation of their side chain but have not been well characterized in foods. The objectives of this study were to: 1) quantify, using mass spectrometry technology, PK and the different forms of MK (MK4 through MK13) in milk, yogurt, Greek yogurt, creams and cheeses; and 2) compare the MK contents of full-fat, reduced-fat and non-fat dairy products. All dairy samples were either obtained from USDA National Food and Nutrient Analysis Program or purchased from retail outlets. Full fat dairy products contained appreciable amounts of MK, primarily in the forms of MK9, MK10 and MK11. We also measured modest amounts of PK, MK4, MK8 and MK12. In contrast, there was little MK5-7 or MK13 detected in the majority of dairy products. The total vitamin K contents of soft cheese, blue cheese, semi-soft cheese and hard cheese were 506±63, 440±41, 289±38 and 282±5.0 µg/100 g, respectively. Non-fermented cheeses, like processed cheese, contained lower amounts of vitamin K (98±11 µg/100 g). Reduced fat or fat free dairy products contained ~5-22% of the vitamin K found in full fat equivalents. For example, total vitamin K contents of full fat milk, 2% milk, 1% milk and non-fat milk were 38.1±8.6, 19.4±7.7, 12.9±2.0 and 7.7±2.9 µg/100 g, respectively. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of MK contents of U.S. dairy products. Findings indicate that the amount of vitamin K contents in dairy products is high and proportional to the fat content of the product. If biological activity of MK from foods is established, dairy products could have an important dietary role in vitamin K nutrition.