The DASH Diet to Reduce High Blood Pressure

What you choose to eat has a direct effect on your odds of developing high blood pressure. Recent studies reveal that blood pressure tends to be lowered by utilizing the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) food plan. This along with eating less salt offers the best benefit and may even aid the prevention of the development of high blood pressure.

The DASH eating plan is made up of: Eating more fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products; Decreasing foods which are high in saturated fat, cholesterol, and trans fats; Eating more whole grain products, fish, poultry, and nuts; Eating less meat (particularly processed meats) and sweets; Eating foods that are rich in magnesium, potassium, and calcium.

Getting started with the DASH Diet

The DASH diet calls for a specific amount of servings daily in a number of food groups but varies according to your caloric necessity. When beginning the diet plan, ease into it and make gradual changes. Look at taking on a diet plan that allows 2,400 mg of salt per day (approximately 1 teaspoon). Then, as soon as your body has adjusted to the diet, further lower your salt intake to 1,500 mg per day (about 2/3 teaspoon). These volumes include all salt eaten, as well as salt in food products in addition to what you cook with or add at the table.

The following are some tools to get you started on the DASH food program: Include a helping of vegetables at lunch and also at dinner; Include a serving of fruit in your meals or as a treat; Consider using canned and dried fruits as they are really simple to use; Only use half your typical portion of butter, margarine, or salad dressing, and use low-fat or fat-free condiments. Use low-fat or skim milk and dairy products whenever you would ordinarily use whole fat versions; Restrict beef to 6 ounces each day. Mix it up by trying some vegetarian meals; Increase the vegetables and dry beans in your diet regime; As a substitute for the usual snacks like chips, eat unsalted pretzels or nuts, raisins, fat-free yogurt, unsalted popcorn without butter, and vegetables; Pick items that are low in sodium by diligently reading the food labels.

Given the effectiveness of the DASH Diet, it is highly recommended by the following organizations: – The American Heart Association (AHA) – The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (one of the National Institutes of Health, of the US Department of Health and Human Services) – US guidelines for treatment of high blood pressure – The Mayo Clinic

By adding regular exercise to your Dash eating program, you may also increase your mental activity as shown by a research study in 2010.

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