It's easy to get answers about health and nutrition! Just send your question by email to [email protected] and Dr. Harlan will respond to selected questions of general interest. Answers will be posted in the Ask Dr. Gourmet newsletter (sign up now!) and archived in the Ask Dr. Gourmet section of the website.

Please note that the Ask Dr. Gourmet feature is restricted to questions regarding food and nutrition. Due to the many questions we receive, not all questions may be answered. For more specific questions about your individual health, please contact your doctor. About Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy


Ask Dr. Gourmet

Are blueberries and blackberries safe for a Coumadin (warfarin) user to eat regularly?

First of all, thank you for your fantastic warfarin meals and recipes. I have been on this for about 8 wks now. Have lost about 23 lbs and my warfarin doses have actually changed from 47 1/2 to 37 1/2 per week. It is so seldom that I actually see recipes directed at warfarin users, especially the salads. I do still have one question. I eat the blueberry muffins and also include blueberries and blackberries in my alloted fruits per week. Is this safe or are the berries considered off limits for regular servings of fruit? It seems like I have seen questions or articles in favor of both. Thank You.

Dr. Gourmet Says...

Wow! We're really excited for you here at Dr. Gourmet. It's always great to hear about weight loss such as yours and that you like the recipes!

Blackberries and blueberries do have higher amounts of Vitamin K than some fruits, but in an amount might be considered as moderate and not off limits. Each has around 28 micrograms of Vitamin K per cup.

At the same time we know that these berries are great choices for a lot of reasons, including their high proportion of great quality vitamins and antioxidants.

This is one area where consistency is key. As I have written and has been well established, consuming a consistent daily amount of Vitamin K is one of the best ways to keep INR levels stable in those taking Coumadin. By having a cup every day you will be consistent, get great nutrients in your diet, and best of all, get to eat fantastic food.

If you have been avoiding them and are going to start, it might be a good idea to check with your doctor and get your INR checked to make sure that it is stable and that no adjustments need to be made.

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS
Dr. Gourmet