Bless the nurses and staff at the hospital who cared for Joe. They passed on so much information about the care and feeding of Joe that I became totally overwhelmed by it all. Not the least of which is his daily intake of foods and their Vitamin K content.
Frankly, I didn’t even know that Vitamin K was one of the proponents of food. Long ago, when I was 20 something, a neighbor’s dog ate something that had been laced with rat poison. The poor dog was bleeding from his mouth, nose, and ears. A hurried trip to the vet with the dog in my lap on a blanket while my neighbor frantically drove was quite horrifying to me. Once at the vet an injection of Vitamin K was administered followed by cleaning the blood from the poor dog and keeping watch of further blood loss. When it subsided enough that the vet was happy an IV was started and another shot of Vitamin K was given. The poor dog was kept at the vets office for a number of days until he was deemed recovered.
Having that memory stirred in my brain at the mention of Vitamin K by the hospital staff and trying to decipher what they were telling me about watching Joe’s daily intake left me wondering if I were supposed to keep ALL food items with Vitamin K out of his diet. What foods contain Vitamin K anyway? I was given a list. Click on the photo below for a larger view. You can even drag and drop this list to your computer for your own reference.
Vitamin K is a natural chemical in your body which aids in forming the healing clots needed to close wounds. Taking an anticoagulant makes the healing process take longer. There is a video series from Johns Hopkins on the “Coagulation Cascade” that takes place within our blood stream to repair damage to blood vessels and veins you tech junkies might find interesting.
Joe is on daily injections of Lovenox into the fatty tissue of his abdomen
plus a daily pill of Coumadin to thin his blood. These injections cause bruising sometimes by the next day.
The Lovenox will be stopped tomorrow night if his blood tests indicate the necessary readings are within the acceptable range of clotting factors. I’ll get into the PT-INR blood tests in another post tomorrow. These clotting factors are based on his daily intake of Vitamin K which can really cause a problem for him – and me in my cooking.
The way I have come to understand this Vitamin K chart is this.
- Leafy greens that are COOKED are to be kept at a minimum. 1/2 cup or less per day.
- If COOKED leafy greens are eaten (or scheduled for dinner) no other vegetables in the leafy green category (see the Moderate Vitamin K chart) are to be consumed on the same day.
- On a day when no leafy greens will be cooked raw vegetables and fruits can be consumed as long as the quantity in the chart and the micrograms do NOT exceed 500 mcg in the entire day.
This complicates my cooking a bit and what I will allow Joe to eat at breakfast, lunch, and a snack. I am heavily relying on the website Dr. Gourmet and paying close attention to the Vitamin K listings in the recipes for one serving.
Also, one thing we’ve found is our daily vitamin – Centrum Silver – has over 500 mcg of Vitamin K in one tablet. I’ve had to discontinue this vitamin supplement in Joe’s daily vitamin intake.
I’m thrilled to report that Joe is under 300 pounds in weight 😀
We have to watch his daily weight. If he gains 2 to 3 pounds overnight I have to call his doctor. If he gains 5 pounds in a couple days he has to return to the hospital.
I’ve been walking more and eating the same as Joe and I’m losing weight as well. I’m down from 232 to 225. This is beneficial to the both of us. Sad that it takes a major jolt and threat to his life for me to get on the band wagon here 😦
Last night’s dinner was Cottage Pie from Dr. Gourmet with cantaloupe and honey dew melon slices.
One of our comfort foods is my major fat concoction of this dish with creamy mashed potatoes oozing butter on the top after it does the final bake in the oven.
This is the healthier version of Cottage Pie and it tastes pretty good. One of the ingredients is tomato paste. I only needed about 2 tablespoons for this recipe. I’ll give you a tip for safely storing the contents from the can instead of throwing the rest out. Freeze it by tablespoons.
I use a product called “Press and Seal” by Glad. Tear a piece off and put the sticky side face up. Deposit 1 tablespoon measures on the plastic as shown in the photo below.
Cover the tomato paste scoops with another piece of plastic wrap and press the plastic together around the mounds of paste.
Then place this sheet of tomato paste in your freezer to harden.
You now have 1 tablespoon measures of tomato paste you can use in your recipes without running to the store for a can. Once the paste is frozen solid you can cut the individual mounds and store them all in a ziplock baggie to take up less space in your freezer.
While I’m the topic of freezing foods. One DON’T is to freeze bananas with the peels on.
The thawed results are quite gross. Instead, peel the bananas first and put them in a bag to freeze.
You can freeze your strawberries and blueberries as well. Just put the amount you would use for a morning Smoothie in a ziplock bag and toss them in the freezer. You won’t need to add much ice to the blender when making your morning treat.
How we are going to deal with Joe’s Vitamin K issues once we get back on the road is going to take a bit more research on my part. Let me tell you – this guy is getting to be “High Maintenance” 😀 He’s worth it though.
Enjoy your weekend.