What Is the DASH Diet?
DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. The diet was originally developed to help people with hypertension and prehypertension. Known for it’s inclusiveness of the food pyramid, the Dash diet requires generous consumption of low-fat dairy, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. While still present, consumption of fish and poultry are limited and red meat, sweets and fatty foods are to be limited.
Who Created the Dash Diet?
The diet was developed by a team of medical researchers who were funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Y0u can find their guide to eating according to the DASH plan here.
What Do DASH Dieters Eat?
DASH dieters eat a variety of foods. Three whole grains a day, fruits, vegetables, low-fat or non-fat dairy, lean meats, fish, poultry, nuts, seeds ad legumes. Fats and sweets are also allowed, but limited.
Why Would This Diet Work for Me?
Since the DASH diet was developed for people who want to reduce or regulate their blood pressure, this diet will work for anyone trying to eat reduce their sodium levels and reign in unhealthy habits. The average American currently eats between 3,300 – 4, 200 miligrams of soidum per day. Compare that to the recommended 1,500 milligrams recommended to reduce blood pressure. Those with high blood pressure and prehypertension may benefit especially from following the DASH eating plan and reducing their sodium intake.
Getting Started on DASH
Experimenting with a new way of eating can be a daunting task. Gradual change is recommended. Add an extra vegetable serving at dinner. switch out sodas for water or milk. Source your poultry and beef from organic and grass-fed sources. And above all, trust yourself and follow your gut!