Foods A Diabetic Should Avoid When Taking Coumadin

Coumadin® (warfarin sodium) is a prescription medication that treats existing blood clots and aids in the prevention of new ones. Coumadin is often given to patients who may be at risk for developing blood clots that could lead to heart attack, stroke, deep vein thrombosis, or pulmonary embolism. This drug is not a blood thinner, as some people believe, but it instead causes the blood to take longer to form a clot.

Certain foods can interfere with how this medication works in the body. Too much vitamin K can reduce the effectiveness of Coumadin, but patients are recommended by the American Heart Association to eat the same diet that they have always eaten. Vitamin K is found in spinach, leafy greens, and broccoli. Eating these vegetables is important in most diabetic diets.

Is a Special Diet for Diabetics Taking Coumadin Necessary?

Many people believe that they will need to eat differently if they have type 2 diabetes. This is usually not necessary, as long as the person does not suddenly increase their intake of salads, broccoli, or spinach. Too much vitamin K can prevent Coumadin from working effectively. Patients with diabetes who take Coumadin may need to test their blood sugar regularly, and they usually also require regular testing for the Coumadin drug in their blood to ensure that levels are safely where they should be. There are self-testing kits available so that you can make sure that your level of Coumadin in your system is within the safe level.

Foods to Avoid When Taking Coumadin

Many doctors and nutritionists caution diabetic patients to follow their regular diabetes diet plans to keep their blood sugar levels under control. There are some foods that should be avoided when taking Coumadin, including olive oil, canola, and soybean oils. Foods made from soy, such as bacon or burgers, should also be avoided. Cranberries can raise the level of vitamin K in the blood and should not be eaten.

Diabetics taking Coumadin need to read the labels of foods carefully to be sure that common foods like mayonnaise or salad dressing do not contain canola, soybean, or olive oils. Fat-free salad dressings without added sugar can be a healthy choice. Green tea has also been found to interfere with Coumadin, so drink it in limited quantities each day. With a few simple dietary changes, diabetics who take Coumadin can have a delicious, interesting diet each day.

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