Data from a nationally representative sample of 18- to 64-y-old Irish adults conducted in 1999 highlighted low phylloquinone intakes. That survey, however, did not include older adults (aged =65 y), a subgroup that is potentially at higher risk of low phylloquinone intakes, or a biomarker of vitamin K status.
The objectives of this work were to measure the phylloquinone intake and its adequacy and the serum percentage of undercarboxylated osteocalcin (%ucOC), a vitamin K status biomarker, in a nationally representative sample of Irish adults aged 18-90 y, and to compare these newer data on dietary phylloquinone in adults aged 18-64 y with those from the previous survey.
Data and biobanked serum samples from the National Adult Nutrition Survey, a randomly selected sample of Irish adults aged 18-90 y (N = 1500), were accessed. Phylloquinone intakes were estimated from 4-d food diary data and were compared across age groups (18-35, 36-50, 51-64, and =65 y). Serum %ucOC was assessed by immunoassay (n = 692).
The mean ± SD intake of phylloquinone from all sources was 85.2 ± 59.1 µg/d, 99% of which was derived from food. Phylloquinone intakes and serum %ucOC were significantly (P < 0.05) lower (14-25%) and higher (27-39%), respectively, in the 18- to 35-y age group than in the 36- to 50-y, 51- to 64-y, and =65-y age groups (no differences between these 3 groups; P > 0.2 in all cases). Mean phylloquinone intakes had increased (P < 0.01) modestly (6 µg/d) in 18-64-y-olds across a decade. Of the total study population, 55% had phylloquinone intakes below the United Kingdom recommended intake of 1 µg · kg body weight(-1) · d(-1) CONCLUSION: Our study shows that younger adults (aged 18-35 y) appear to be at higher risk of inadequate vitamin K intake and lower vitamin K status, the health implications of which are unclear and warrant further investigation.