Avocados & Vitamin K

One serving of avocado delivers about 10% of your recommended daily vitamin K.

Avocados are popular for their high fat, low carb content. In one serving of avocado — one-third of a medium fruit — you get about 8 grams of mostly monounsaturated, heart-healthy fat for just 80 calories. Plus, you also get a high concentration of many nutrients, including vitamin K, a fat-soluble vitamin. To boost your overall nutrition, add rich, creamy avocados to the fresh produce you regularly enjoy.

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Importance of Vitamin K

Getting enough vitamin K in your diet proves essential for healthy platelet function, according to Medline Plus. Your platelets — a type of small blood cells — help safeguard against blood loss by coagulating and forming clots that cut off bleeding after an injury. This coagulation requires a series of chemical reactions and these require vitamin K to occur. Some studies show that this vitamin supports bone health in older adults.

Vitamin K in Avocados

Avocado provides a moderate amount of vitamin K per serving, helping you reach the 90 and 120 micrograms recommended daily for women and men, respectively, according to the National Institutes of Health. A serving of avocado contains 11 micrograms of vitamin K, while an entire avocado contains about 42 micrograms, according to the USDA.

How to Eat Avocados

While avocados are sometimes eaten out-of-hand with a sprinkle of salt, they're mostly consumed with other foods. To make guacamole dip for your tortilla chips, mash avocado with a fork, mix in a little lemon or lime juice and minced garlic, and add some chopped tomato. Use this guacamole to top sandwiches, tacos and burgers. Add cubed avocado to omelets or salads. Toss diced avocado with diced mango, cucumber, red bell pepper and lime juice to make a salsa for fish or chicken breast.

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If you are on blood-thinning medications, consider your vitamin K intake. However, according to the Mayo Clinic, eating small amounts of foods rich in vitamin K should not pose a problem. As avocados are high in calories, be mindful of your portions. In addition to avocados, get your vitamin K from vegetables such as spinach, broccoli and cabbage, and from olive oil. Vitamin K is available as a supplement, however, consult your doctor beforehand to find out if they are safe for you.

Learn more about the latest avocado nutrition research, free resources for health professionals, and recipes at LoveOneToday.com.