Patient Daily Living

Diet Smarts When You’re On Coumadin

By Anastasia Hobbs

The Dr. Gourmet Diet for Coumadin Users by Timothy Harlan, MD, shows you how to enjoy healthy, tasty food and improve your health.

If you’re on the blood-thinner Coumadin, a medication prescribed for people at increased risk of forming blood clots, you know that you have to be careful about the amount of foods with vitamin K that you eat. To make this meal planning easier, Dr. Gourmet, Tim Harlan, MD, a member of the Parentgiving expert panel, has just introduced a new book. With The Dr. Gourmet Diet for Coumadin Users, you can follow a normal, healthy diet while taking Coumadin—no avoiding salads or vegetables while you eat delicious food without worry. Dr. Gourmet’s book includes six weeks of healthy menus that will show you that eating on Coumadin can be tasty and varied, with recipes like Zucchini & Chevre Frittata and Blueberry Pancakes.

You’ll also get six weeks of shopping lists, making grocery trips quick and easy, plus 95+ delicious Coumadin safe recipes, information about managing your diet while taking Coumadin and ingredient and cooking tips throughout the book. Complete nutrition facts include the vitamin K content for each recipe, and you’ll also get ideal body weight tables to identify your target weight, and an estimated caloric intake needed to reach that ideal weight; breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack guidelines that detail meal options to suit any craving; weekly meal plans with complete grocery shopping lists; and recipe tags instantly identify serving sizes, meal time (breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack) and how much time is needed to prepare.

In addition to the book, Dr. Harlan, a board-certified internist and medical director at Tulane University School of Medicine, created two new iPhone Apps, vitKdiet and vitKfood, both of which take into special consideration the interactions and side effects of taking the anticoagulant drug and provide even more Coumadin-friendly recipes, full shopping lists, information about managing your diet and lists of vitamin K content in over 700 of the most common foods.
Here’s just one of the great recipes everyone in your family will enjoy.

Linguine with Shrimp in Vodka Tomato Cream Sauce

Serving Size = 2 ounces pasta/4 ounces shrimp
45 Minutes

This recipe can easily be multiplied by 2 if you use a large skillet. Leftovers are fair at best. This recipe requires the Tomato Sauce (pg. 93) to be made first.

1 cup water
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes sliced
3 cups water
16 spears asparagus
4tsp. unsalted butter
1 lb. large shrimp (peeled & deveined)
1 cup shallots (sliced)
1/2 cup vodka
1 cup tomato sauce (recipe included)
1 cup 2% milk
1/4 tsp. salt
5 quarts quarts water
8 ounces ounces linguine
2 Tblsp Tblsp fresh basil (chiffonade)

Heat 1 cup water until boiling and pour over the sun-dried tomatoes. Allow to stand for about 15 minutes, until soft and then drain the liquid into a sauce pan. Heat the liquid on high heat until it boils and reduce to 1/4 cup. Set aside.

Heat 3 cups of water to the shiver stage in a medium skillet. Add the asparagus and blanch for about 2 – 3 minutes, until they just begin to turn bright green. Remove and let dry on a paper towel. When they are cool, cut them in 2 inch segments.

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and sauté until slightly firm (no more than about 2 minutes on each side). Remove shrimp to a plate.

Begin heating the 5 quarts of water in a large pot. Add the linguine and cook about 15 minutes until just done (the pasta should have a slightly firm texture).

As the pasta is cooking, add the shallots to the skillet and cook over medium heat until they begin to soften and turn slightly brown (about 7 - 10 minutes).

Reduce the heat to low, add the vodka and cook briefly; then add the reduced water from the sun dried tomatoes, tomato sauce, milk and salt. After this has cooked for about 3 minutes, add the asparagus and sun-dried tomatoes. Simmer until tomatoes are tender (about 4 minutes). Add shrimp; toss to coat and allow to cook for another 4 minutes, until the shrimp is heated through.

Drain the linguine. Add the pasta to the tomato sauce and toss to coat well. Season to taste with fresh ground black pepper.

Served topped with basil.
The Dr. Gourmet Diet for Coumadin Users is available for download at for $19.95 and eBook for $4.95. VitKdiet and vitKfood are available for download on iPad, iPhone and iPod touch in the iTunes App Store for $9.99 and $4.99, respectively.

More about Dr. Gourmet.?Dr. Harlan, who practices medicine daily in New Orleans, writes extensively on diet and health. His books, It's Heartly Fare and Hand On Heart, guide readers on what they can eat for optimum health. Just Tell Me What to Eat (Da Capo Lifelong Books) will be released in June 2011.

- Written By

Anastasia Hobbs

Elder Care Expert
With over 20 years of experience in the eldercare industry, Anastasia Hobbs is a true elder care expert. Anastasia is passionate about providing compassionate care for elderly individuals and helping them stay independent.