The DASH diet was developed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States to address the growing concern of hypertension.
The DASH diet encourages the consumption of foods that are rich in essential nutrients. These nutrients play a crucial role in regulating blood pressure and overall cardiovascular health.
The diet places a strong emphasis on consuming a variety of fruits and vegetables. These foods are naturally low in sodium which helps counteract the effects of sodium on blood pressure.
The DASH diet encourages the consumption of whole grains like whole wheat, brown rice, quinoa, and oats. Whole grains are a good source of fiber and help stabilize blood sugar levels.
The diet recommends lean protein sources, such as poultry, fish, beans, lentils, and nuts. These options provide essential amino acids without the saturated fat found in some red meats.
Reducing sodium intake is a crucial aspect of the DASH diet. It suggests limiting sodium to around 2,300 mg per day, or even lower for individuals with high blood pressure.
The DASH diet encourages moderation when it comes to added sugars. Sugary foods and beverages should be limited, as excessive sugar intake can contribute to weight gain.
The diet promotes the consumption of healthy fats, such as those found in olive oil, avocados, and nuts. These fats have been associated with improved heart health.
The DASH diet is a balanced and sustainable approach to eating. It's not overly restrictive and can be followed long-term, making it a practical choice for individuals looking to manage their blood pressure