Jun 17, 2013

Middle-earth Soup + Raw Dairy and Vitamin K1 vs. Vitamin K2

Elves and fairies agree… this soup is magical! It’s loaded with health-promoting mushrooms and greens in a creamy, nut base. I know it’s summer. But I like soup all year long. Soups are always easy-to-prepare, fast and hearty meals for me.

I gave a batch of this to a non-vegan friend of mine and she loved it. You don’t need cream or other dairy products to enjoy a creamy, silky soup! I am dismayed by Dr. Mercola’s article today regarding cheese. Many people subscribe to what he believes in and promotes. He is now saying that cheese is healthy if it is raw (non-pasturized). Before I became familiar with the many studies regarding animal product consumption and their disease-promoting effects, I was led down that path…

I always had a sensitivity to dairy and found it difficult to digest. A well-intentioned friend told me that I should be eating raw dairy because it would be easier to digest due to its enzyme content. So I purchased some raw yogurt and cheese. I had no idea where it came from. Someone delivered it to a location in my town and several people would be there, lined up with coolers to cart their purchases home (selling non-pasturized dairy was illegal in my state). Within one week I was so sick I could not get out of bed. I just got worse and worse. The pain and bloating in my abdomen was unbearable. At first I thought it was “just a stomach flu” but two trips to the ER later, I found out that I had contracted a very deadly form of e-coli from that raw dairy. So if you consume raw dairy products, PLEASE be certain of the source. Make sure that it is from a farm which is “Grade A” which will ensure that they are regularly monitored for bacteria in their products. But I say, why take chances with your precious health? Especially when you can enjoy delicious, plant-based meals…


Mercola states in his article that we need vitamin K2 (menaquinone), which is only found in fermented animal products. However, the scientific consensus has been that either of the two types of vitamin K (K1 or K2) are nutritionally adequate, especially regarding vitamin K’s blood clotting activity[1]. Additionally, menaquinone is produced by a number of different bacteria species that typically live in the digestive tract of humans[1], and can be absorbed in the distal part of the small intestine[2] unless someone has had significant antibiotic therapy.
One study measuring blood-clotting in vegans[3] did not show them to have slow blood clotting times. An abnormal rate of blood clotting problems has not been apparent for children raised vegan from birth; it would be unusual for their diets to be supplemented with menaquinone.
It therefore seems safe to assume that vegans have no need for menaquinone supplementation; especially when it comes to vitamin K and blood clotting. But what about bone health? Again, apparently healthy vegans are probably getting plenty of menaquinone, if it’s even necessary to have in addition to phylloquinone (K1), from gut bacteria. There is evidence that elderly women can reduce their chance of bone fracture by supplementing with vitamin K, specifically phylloquinone[4]. So it appears that phylloquinone is also adequate for bone health and there is no evidence to date that menaquinone is superior.  All animal product consumption (including raw dairy) produces the hormone called IGF-1 (insulin-like growth factor 1) one of the body’s important growth promoters both in the womb and during childhood, but later in life IGF-1 promotes the aging process and cancer. Good sources for vitamin K1 are leafy greens, cabbage, brussels sprouts and broccoli. 

Okay, I will get on with today’s recipe now!


  • 1 pound sliced white mushrooms
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 4 cups tightly packed greens (I used baby spinach but chopped collards or kale or any combination will do) 
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 TBS Bragg’s Organic Sprinkle (see notes)
  • 1 TBS low sodium veggie base ( I use Vogue brand)
  • 1 ½ cups raw cashews
  • 2 dates
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼  cup chopped walnuts


  1. Place all ingredients, except the cashews, in a soup pot and simmer until the onions are soft.
  2. Place the cashews in a high powdered blender and add just enough of the soup broth to cover. Blend until smooth.
  3. Add about half of the remaining soup to the blender and blend until combined. 
  4. Return blended soup to the pot and stir to combine.
  5. Top with some chopped walnuts.

Serves 4. Enjoy!

Helyn’s Notes: Bragg Organic Sprinkle is a wonderful mix of flavors and perfect for many of my recipes! I highly recommend that you have it on hand. If you don’t have it yet, you can substitute with rosemary and thyme to taste. 

Healthy trails,

  1. Suttie JW. Vitamin K in Health and Disease. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL. 2009.
  2. USDA National Nutrient Database
  3. Sanders TA, Roshanai F. Platelet phospholipid fatty acid composition and function in vegans compared with age- and sex-matched omnivore controls. Eur J Clin Nutr. 1992 Nov;46(11):823-31. (Same study population as citation 25.)
  4. Stevenson M, Lloyd-Jones M, Papaioannou D. Vitamin K to prevent fractures in older women: systematic review and economic evaluation. Health Technol Assess. 2009 Sep;13(45):iii-xi, 1-134. Review.

One response to “Middle-earth Soup + Raw Dairy and Vitamin K1 vs. Vitamin K2”

  1. Margie says:

    Well said, Helyn. So easy to get confused by so much info out there. Can't wait to try this soup – yum!

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