DASH to Lower Your Blood Pressure

Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.

DASH to Lower Your Blood PressureThere is one well-accepted way you can eat your way to lower blood pressure. This, in turn, could protect you from a wide variety of series cardiovascular problems. The diet is called DASH, short for “Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.” Let’s take a look at what it’s all about.

The DASH eating plan is specifically recommended for lowering blood pressure. It is a modification of the United States Department of Agriculture “Dietary Guidelines” with specific recommendation to lower sodium intake to less than 1,500 milligrams (mg) per day.

Food Number of servings for
1,600 – 3,100-calorie diets
Servings on a 2,000-
calorie diet
Grains and grain products(include at least three whole
grain foods each day)
6 – 12 7 – 8
Fruits 4 – 6 4 – 5
Vegetables 4 – 6 4 – 5
Low-fat or
non-fat dairy foods
2 – 4 2 – 3
Lean meats,
fish, poultry
1.5 – 2.5 2 or less
Nuts, seeds, and legumes 3 – 6 per week 4 – 5 per week
Fats and sweets 2 – 4 limited

The DASH diet has helped more than 80% of hypertensive people achieve a normal blood pressure. That is a very significant figure. It successfully reduced systolic blood pressure (men by 12 mmHg; women by 11 mmHg) and diastolic blood pressure (men by 6 mmHg; women by 7 mmHg) in those with metabolic syndrome. (Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of issues such as high cholesterol, blood pressure, triglycerides and body fat.) These blood pressure reductions are much greater than in those treated with diets designed simply to shed pounds.

When combined with exercise and reduced, the effect of the DASH diet is much greater. Combined with the latter, blood pressure lowered by systolic 16.1 mmHg and diastolic by 9.9 mmHg compared to 11.2 mmHg and 7.5 mmHg on the diet alone. Moreover, the DASH diet has a favorable influence on body weight, cholesterol, and fasting blood glucose.

The DASH diet deviates from the traditional American diet by providing much more fiber and less fat and cholesterol, and by being high in calcium, magnesium and potassium and low in sodium on account of greater intakes of fresh fruits and vegetables. For these reasons, this eating plan is not palatable to most people who have tried it and compliance is relatively low. Advice from experts is to change your diet slowly towards the DASH eating plan instead of jumping right into it.

But make no mistake: this is an eating plan worth diving into.

Here are the previous parts of this series: