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What is the DASH diet? And who can benefit from it?

What is the DASH diet? And who can benefit from it?

A few days ago, a friend of mine asked me about the DASH diet. She wanted to know its characteristics and the people who may benefit from it. For this reason, I thought I would better share my answer with you all. In fact, the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) is specifically designed to help lower blood pressure. Its effectiveness in this domain has been proven by a variety of scientific researches.

Generally speaking, this diet is based on the principle of a food plan that is rich in fruits and vegetables, in whole grains, in low-fat dairy products, and in vegetable proteins. This diet is also low in saturated fat and in cholesterol, and it prescribes the limitation of salt and concentrated sugars consumption.

Be careful however! You should never adopt such a diet before taking the advice and consent of your doctor who is the only person allowed to recommend and modify it so that it suit your needs and health status.

This being said, here is below the DASH food plan which is based on an intake of 2000 calories per day. Also, the number of daily servings may vary depending on your calorie needs.

*** Per day:

– 7 to 8 servings of grains. A serving equals to: 1 slice of bread of about 40g or 1/2 cup of cooked whole wheat pasta, of brown rice or of whole grain, etc.

– 4 to 5 servings of vegetables. A serving (75 grams) equals to: 1 cup of raw leafy vegetables or ½ cup of cooked vegetables or ¾ cup of vegetable juice

– 4 to 5 servings of fruits. A serving (75 grams) equals to: 1 small piece of fruit or ½ cup of fresh, frozen or canned fruit pieces, or ¾ cup of fruit juice

– 2 to 3 servings of skimmed or semi-skimmed dairy products. A serving equals to: 1 cup of milk or 1 plain yogurt or 40 g of cheese

– 2 or less servings of meat, poultry or fish. A serving equals to: 90g of cooked lean meat, skinless poultry or fish

– 2 to 3 servings of fats. A serving equals to: 1 teaspoon of oil or margarine rich in omega-3 or 1 tablespoon of light mayonnaise and 2 tablespoons of light salad dressing

*** Per week:

– 4 to 5 servings of nuts, seeds, legumes. A serving equals to: 1 small handful of nuts (or hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios, etc.) or 1 tablespoon of sunflower seeds or ½ cup of cooked legumes

– 5 servings of sweets. A serving equals to: 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey or jam or 1 glass of lemonade or ½ cup of sorbet

About Denise Abou Jamra

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