June 30, 2016
font size


The DASH Diet

Medical Author:
Medical Editor:

What is the DASH diet?

DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, and the diet was developed for a research study in the early 1990s.1 The purpose of the study was to identify a food-based strategy to lower blood pressure. Even though the original research was quite a long time ago, scientists recently conducted a meta-analysis for a DASH diet review to summarize how much blood pressure can be reduced by the DASH diet. The study found, on average, people reduce their blood pressure by 6.7 mmHg systolic and 3.5 mmHg diastolic in just two weeks. The more sodium is restricted, the lower blood pressure goes.

Or more simply stated, the DASH diet plan includes eating more

  • fruits and vegetables,
  • low-fat or nonfat dairy,
  • beans, and
  • nuts.

And eating less

Since the original research, scientists also have found that they could apply the DASH diet plan for weight loss.2 When people follow the Dash diet in addition to increasing exercise, they lose weight and improve metabolic measures such as insulin sensitivity. However, in comparison to low-carbohydrate diets, the DASH diet alone was not as effective a strategy for weight loss. When the DASH diet is followed along with exercise and caloric reduction, people improved their blood pressure even more; lowering it by 16 mmHg systolic and 9mmHg diastolic; plus, they lost some weight.2 As people adopt the DASH diet and lower their blood pressure, they may have a reduced need for medication. Discuss the diet-based changes you are making with your health-care professional, and if your blood pressure is at or below goal (<140/80), you can discuss reducing your medications and maintaining your blood pressure with diet alone.

What is the recommended daily allowance of sodium?

The National Institutes of Health's 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend consuming less than 2,300 mg of salt each day as part of a healthy diet.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/10/2016

Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/the_dash_diet/article.htm

Hypertension

Get tips on handling your hypertension.

advertisement
advertisement
Use Pill Finder Find it Now See Interactions

Pill Identifier on RxList

  • quick, easy,
    pill identification

Find a Local Pharmacy

  • including 24 hour, pharmacies

Interaction Checker

  • Check potential drug interactions
Search the Medical Dictionary for Health Definitions & Medical Abbreviations