Many conventional health experts warn about eating too much cheese, butter, and egg yolks because of all the fat and cholesterol. These people usually say things like “It’ll clog your arteries!” and “Your heart attack risk factors are too high!”

Well, did you know that these fatty, cholesterol-laden foods can actually reduce your risk for heart disease (and quite a few others)?

This is because foods like butter, egg yolks, hard cheeses, and soft cheeses are fairly high in vitamin K2, the highest being a soy based dish called natto which is popular in Japan.

In a study from the Netherlands, researchers collected data pertaining to the vitamin K intakes of subjects between the years 1990 and 1993. Researchers measured the extent of heart disease in each subject, which subjects died from it, and how this all was correlated to vitamin K intake and arterial calcification (which they found to be the best predictor of heart disease.)

The results showed that subjects with the highest intakes of vitamin K2 were 52% less likely to develop severe arterial calcification, 41 percent less likely to develop heart disease, and 57 percent less likely to die from heart disease. (Galeijnse et al., 2004, p. 3100-3105)

It is important to note that vitamin K1 intake had no effect on heart disease.

So, let’s briefly discuss some of the top foods highest in vitamin K2. Natto, the fermented soy dish from Japan is the highest amongst all the foods tested. I usually don’t recommend soy foods because most of them are genetically modified and, even if they aren’t, there are many contraindications and research to suggest that soy may actually be detrimental to one’s health.

Butter is not really a good source unless it is raw butter from organically raised, grass fed cows. Most of the butter available in supermarkets is from grain fed cows confined to small feedlots which usually never even see a green pasture. The same goes for cheeses. Buy organically when possible.

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