Standby Vitamin K for warfarin users - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation

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Standby Vitamin K for warfarin users

Jocastina profile image
5 Replies

A warfarin question (I’m 6 weeks post op): I eat some Vit K foods every day and try to keep it consistent, like a salad every lunchtime or other green veg or spinach quiche (small portion). So far my INR has been fine. Today we had to throw the salad out as it had gone off, so I had an egg and some avocado instead. But maybe I should keep some ‘emergency Vit K’, like a tin of chick peas or spinach in the freezer, so that I’ve always got some available. Does anyone else do this and what foods with Vit K do you keep on standby? Thank you!

5 Replies

Hi there , I just take a vitamin k supplement every day .

ILowe profile image
ILowe in reply to

The good news about Warfarin is that it is usually incredibly sluggish, and tolerant of the occasional binge or fast. There are very few studies on this, but the gut flora produce Vitamin K, around half of your natural need. This means that the odd change for a day does not really matter. You also have the way Warfarin has a time lag of around two days so 'buffering' the odd change in meal.

Some people may be more sensitive than others. I take the view, confirmed by some personal experiments, that a change for a meal or two averages out. So for instance, sometimes I will binge on some delicious fresh Brussels sprouts. I have lived for 27 years totally ignoring diet. I have lived through seasonal changes in diet, and through enforced changes for a week or more.

Jocastina profile image
Jocastina in reply to ILowe

Thank you so much - that’s very reassuring!

Shar28 profile image

Hello, my husband’s been on Warfarin for 3 years now. The advice he was given was to eat and drink a normal balanced diet and alter the dose as required accordingly. So we have green leafy veg most days because it’s tasty and good for you and he likes it. If he’s had more than one drink the evening before, he normally eats more coleslaw or similar the next day. You’ll find your INR will vary as your body settles down post op and the drugs you were given for surgery gradually leave your body. If your meds change in any way it could affect your INR as could getting a cold or being otherwise unwell. We don’t specifically keep any vitamin k rich foods handy in case INR rises out of range.

There are some really useful factsheets on the AF website. Scroll down to W on this link

All the best to you and your loved ones.

Jocastina profile image
Jocastina in reply to Shar28

Thank you for this, it’s really helpful. That’s the advice I’ve been given and I like green veg too. It was just that we ran out of anything else with Vit K in yesterday so I was wondering what other food to keep in the cupboard as a back up plan if we end up with a bag of mouldy salad again!

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