I've been into arugula lately. The peppery flavor pairs nicely with so many different dishes. And it's full of good for you nutrients. Among them is vitamin K, which is more interesting than you may have thought. Because I know you think about that all the time ;-). Here are 3 things (and one with a ton of detail) you should know about arugula.
- Arugula isn't just fancy lettuce. It's a lot more nutritious and it’s in the same family as broccoli and cauliflower, making it a cruciferous vegetable.
- Arugula contains vitamin A and carotenoids (your body can make vitamin A from carotenoids, which have their own benefits), the Bs including folate, and vitamins C, and K. It also contains minerals like magnesium and potassium.
- Let’s talk about vitamin K.
- It’s a fat-soluble vitamin (you need fat in your diet to absorb it, like vitamins A, D and E).
- It's needed for blood clotting, and healthy bones. Because of its blood-clotting role, those taking anticoagulant medications (Coumadin/warfarin) need to closely monitor levels of vitamin K in their diets.
- There are two forms, K1 and K2. K1 is found in plants, especially leafy greens. K2 is made by gut bacteria, and is found in animal products like meat, eggs, and cheese, and in fermented foods. Bacteria also can convert K1 to K2. K2 is better absorbed and plays more roles in the body compared to K1.
- There are different forms of K2. MK-4 (main form in Western diets) and MK-7 are examples.
- Back to bones. Evidence suggests MK-4 might help lower the incidence of fracture in osteoporosis. Vitamin K works along with vitamin D and calcium to keep your bones healthy, so if you've seen it in those supplements this is why.
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