Asparagus and Warfarin

Publication Date: 
Mon, 06/01/2015
By: Alere Staff

It’s that time of year again – summer! Who doesn’t look forward to nice weather and delicious fresh vegetables from the garden?

One of the earlier vegetables that are ready to be harvested and eaten at the beginning of summer is asparagus. While delicious and healthy, it is also high in Vitamin K.Four spears of asparagus cooked can range from 29 to 48 micrograms of Vitamin K, depending on type of preparation: fresh, frozen or canned.1

It is a “rule of thumb” that the darker color green the vegetable, the greater the chance that it is high in vitamin K.2 As you know, high amounts of vitamin K can lower the effect of your warfarin causing your INR to be low.2

The key to success is keeping your dietary intake consistent. Eliminating vitamin K from your diet is not necessary as the vitamin helps keep bones strong and healthy.2 Go ahead and enjoy the heart healthy green vegetables, but do it in a consistent fashion to prevent a negative effect on your INR.  Communicate any changes in your diet with your doctor as you may need to test your INR more often to ensure your dose of warfarin is keeping your INR in your target range. 

Interested in other summer foods? Check out these related articles:

References:

  1. http://www.ptinr.com/en/home/cafe-ptinr/vitamin-k-finder.html.  
  2. Diana M. Schneider, Ph.D; The Coumadin (Warfarin) Help Book, Anticoagulation Therapy to Prevent and Manage Strokes, Heart Attacks, and Other Vascular Conditions; Diamedica publishing ; 2008.