It appears that eating vitamin K–rich foods like kale and other leafy greens more often is a recipe for longevity. A multiethnic study out of Tufts University found that older adults (ages 54–76) with low vitamin K levels were more likely to die within 13 years compared with those whose vitamin K levels were adequate. Why? Vitamin K is an essential nutrient that is important for several bodily functions, including maintaining healthy blood vessels. So even if you are part of the younger generation, it’s a good idea to get in the habit of eating for lasting health. Why not start with a bowl of this hearty vitamin K–rich stew!

1 T canola oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

1/2 t salt

8 oz chopped crimini
mushrooms

2 celery stalks, chopped

2 medium carrots, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 T tomato paste

2 t dried thyme

1/2 t red chili flakes

1/4 t black pepper

1 C white wine

1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes

4 C vegetable broth

1/2 C quinoa

1 (14 oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

5 cups torn kale leaves

2 T red wine vinegar

1 C parsley

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and salt; heat 6 minutes or until onion is soft and darkened. Add mushrooms, celery, carrot and garlic to pan; heat 3 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, dried thyme, chili flakes and black pepper; heat 30 seconds. Place wine in pan, raise heat to medium-high and simmer for 2 minutes. Add broth, tomatoes and quinoa to pan. Return to a boil, lower heat to low and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender. Stir in beans, kale and red vinegar; heat 1 minute. Ladle stew into serving bowls and serve garnished with parsley.

Ingredient Breakdown

Cannellini Beans

Also called white kidney beans, cannellinis contain a wealth of B vitamins, as well as iron, potassium, zinc and other essential minerals.

Quinoa

Gluten-free (and delicious) quinoa is an excellent protein source that contains all 9 essential amino acids plus iron, zinc, potassium, calcium and vitamin E.

Kale

With just 8 calories in a cup, kale packs a nutritional punch with iron, calcium, vitamins C, K and A, and antioxidants, too.

Parsley

Even the ancient Greeks appreciated parsley’s value; winners at sports received a crown of parsley! It’s also a great source for vitamins K, C and A.

Source: PrecisionNutrition.com.