Benefits of Nattokinase Supplement and why Vitamin K2 is Removed

Benefits of Nattokinase Supplement and why Vitamin K2 is Removed

Introduction

Nattokinase, a potent enzyme extracted from natto—a traditional Japanese fermented soybean dish—has garnered attention for its cardiovascular benefits. This enzyme has been the subject of numerous clinical trials highlighting its positive effects on blood coagulation, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure, among other heart health indicators. However, a common question arises regarding the removal of Vitamin K2 from Nattokinase supplements. This article delves into the benefits of Nattokinase, the reasons behind Vitamin K2 removal, and the implications of this modification.

Understanding Nattokinase and Its Cardiovascular Benefits

Nattokinase is known for its fibrinolytic (clot-dissolving) activity, which can help in managing and preventing cardiovascular diseases. Below are some of the key benefits supported by human randomized controlled trials (RCTs).

  1. Blood Pressure Reduction:

    • Study Findings: A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial demonstrated that nattokinase supplementation significantly reduced both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in participants with pre-hypertension or stage 1 hypertension. The study showed a net change in systolic blood pressure of -5.55 mmHg and in diastolic blood pressure of -2.84 mmHg compared to the control group (Kim et al., 2008).
  2. Cholesterol Level Improvement:

    • Study Findings: Nattokinase supplementation has been associated with improvements in cholesterol levels. A study on nondiabetic and hypercholesterolemic subjects showed that nattokinase supplementation significantly increased collagen-epinephrine closure time (C-EPI CT), prothrombin time (PT), and activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), indicating beneficial effects on blood coagulation factors (Yoo et al., 2019).
  3. Blood Coagulation:

    • Study Findings: Nattokinase has been shown to affect blood coagulation processes. A clinical study cited in the correspondence demonstrated that a single dose of NSK-SD 2000 FU (a patented version of Nattokinase) influenced blood coagulation in healthy subjects, although the levels remained within the normal range (Tsukamoto et al., 2009).

Why Vitamin K2 is Removed from Nattokinase Supplements

Vitamin K2, while beneficial in various health aspects, including bone health and cardiovascular health, is removed from Nattokinase supplements for several reasons.

  1. Blood Coagulation Considerations:

    • Interaction with Anticoagulants: Vitamin K2 plays a crucial role in blood coagulation. Its presence in supplements can complicate the blood-thinning effects of Nattokinase, especially for individuals on anticoagulant medications like Xarelto. Removing Vitamin K2 helps avoid potential adverse interactions that could affect blood coagulation processes.
  2. Safety and Efficacy:

    • Clinical Safety: The removal of Vitamin K2 ensures that the Nattokinase supplement remains safe for a broader range of users, particularly those who are already taking blood-thinning medications. This was highlighted in a clinical study where the patented NSK-SD version of Nattokinase, devoid of Vitamin K2, was shown to be effective and safe in influencing blood coagulation without causing adverse effects (Venge et al., 1996).

Conclusion

Nattokinase supplements offer significant cardiovascular benefits, including blood pressure reduction and improved blood coagulation profiles. The removal of Vitamin K2 from these supplements is primarily to ensure safety, particularly for individuals on anticoagulant medications. This adjustment allows users to benefit from Nattokinase's therapeutic effects without the risk of adverse interactions related to blood coagulation.

References

  1. Kim, J., Gum, S. N., Paik, J., Lim, H. H., Kim, K. C., Ogasawara, K., Inoue, K., Park, S., Jang, Y., & Lee, J. H. (2008). Effects of Nattokinase on Blood Pressure: A Randomized, Controlled Trial. Hypertension Research, 31, 1583-1588.

  2. Yoo, H., Kim, M., Kim, M., Lee, A., Jin, C., Lee, S. P., Kim, T. S., Lee, S. H., & Lee, J. H. (2019). The effects of nattokinase supplementation on collagen-epinephrine closure time, prothrombin time and activated partial thromboplastin time in nondiabetic and hypercholesterolemic subjects. Food & Function, 10(5), 2888-2893.

  3. Tsukamoto, O., Fujita, M., Kato, M., Yamazaki, S., Asano, Y., Ogai, A., Okazaki, H., Asai, M., Nagamachi, Y., Maeda, N., Shintani, Y., Minamino, T., Asakura, M., Kishimoto, I., Funahashi, T., Tomoike, H., & Kitakaze, M. (2009). Natriuretic peptides enhance the production of adiponectin in human adipocytes and in patients with chronic heart failure. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 53(22), 2070-2077.

  4. Venge, P., Pedersen, B., Håkansson, L., Hällgren, R., Lindblad, G., & Dahl, R. (1996). Subcutaneous administration of hyaluronan reduces the number of infectious exacerbations in patients with chronic bronchitis. American journal of respiratory and critical care medicine.