Vitamin K Foods
Vitamin K foods should be a part of a normal, healthy diet because they react with certain proteins in the body to aid in natural blood coagulation. Vitamin K has also been found to improve bone health, and vitamin K deficiency in older women may increase the risk of developing osteoporosis. There are also some studies that have shown that vitamin K helps to prevent cardiovascular disease.
Green, leafy vegetables are by far the best food source of vitamin K, but nutritionists have found that some people get most of their daily dose of vitamin K through the absorption of oil and oil-based supplements. Vitamin K is not always present in multi- vitamins, so check the label if you are looking to up your intake of vitamin K.
Large amounts of vitamin K are not stored in the human body, so vitamin K foods should be a part of the daily diet. According to the USDA, the adequate daily intake of vitamin K is 90 micrograms per day for adult females and 100 micrograms per day for adult males. Some researchers, however, say that more vitamin K is required for good bone health.
Vitamin K foods with more than 1000 micrograms per serving:
• Collards, frozen
• Kale, frozen
• Spinach, frozen
Vitamin K foods with between 500 and 1000 micrograms per serving:
• Beet Greens
• Collards, unfrozen
• Spinach, canned
• Turnip Greens
Vitamin K foods with under 500 micrograms per serving:
• Boston, Bibb or iceberg lettuce
• Brussels Sprouts
• Dandelion greens
• Endive, raw
• Mustard Greens
• Parsley, raw
• Scallions or spring onions
• Spinach, raw
Other vitamin K foods include avocados, cucumber, kiwi fruit, okra, peas and rhubarb.
The vitamins in vitamin K foods are not always absorbed by the body, but vitamin K is well-absorbed when taken via supplement. Since vitamin K is not toxic, there are no maximum limits on vitamin K intake set by the USDA.
Since vitamin K helps the body with blood clotting, it can interfere with blood-thinning medications, like Coumadin, or warfarin. Anyone who is taking a medication to thin their blood will want to refrain from eating high vitamin K foods and speak with their doctor about taking any supplements that contain vitamin K.