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Key Components of Dash Diet For Blood Pressure

The Dash Diet for blood pressure is for you to eat a daily mix of grains, fruits, vegetables, low-fat products, and a weekly amount of nuts and seeds.  Reduce your consumption of high-fat dairy products, meats, fats and sweets.  This diet requires no special supplements, vitamins or minerals, or daily or weekly visits of group therapy. 

You are going to love this, because craving will become a thing of the past, and you will not miss eating meat or dairy products.  The only main change you might have to make is, if you do not have a chef or someone to prepare your meals, then you'll have to prepare your own foods.

This diet has been proven to be one of the best way in treating high blood pressure.  So start by making small changes to how you eat.  Like adding more vegetables, eating fruits as snacks or your desserts instead of cookies, cake or ice cream.

Also, if you have health insurance you should consider the services of a knowledgeable dietitian.  This might be covered by your health insurance carrier.

The Dash Diet For Blood Pressure Study

This has been said to me by my Doctor and others "You are what you eat".  And Hippocrates once said, "Food is your best medicine"?  These sayings have never been more relevant, especially when high blood pressure can be made much worse by a poor diet.

Studies were completed on two groups of individuals by The Dash Group and here are some of their results:

I)  One group had a typical high fat American diet, another group consumed a typical high fat diet, but increase their intake of fruits and vegetables.

II)  The last group participated fully and their daily intake was the DASH diet which included lots of fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy products and foods reduced in saturated fat. 

The Result of Dash Diet I

After eight weeks the adults on the Dash Diet for blood pressure combination experienced an average lowering blood pressure of 111.4 mm Hg systolic and 5.5 mm Hg diastolic.

The researchers also compared the effects of this diet with the effects of drug therapy using one anti-hypertensive medication.  They concluded that the combination diet could serve as an alternative to drug therapy for individuals with mild hypertension.

Dash Diet II

After seeing such great results, the researchers decided to do a second study that was a combination of the DASH diet plus sodium restriction against the standard American diet.

This study showed significant decreases in the lowering of blood pressure.

Danger of Severely Lowering Sodium

On average the typical American sodium daily intake of sodium is between six to ten grams, which is equivalent to about three to five teaspoons of salt.  Your body can function on 500 mg per day, and you need more if you exercise heavily, because you lose sodium through your perspiration.

But, if you lower your sodium intake severely you can become dehydrated.  So please keep your daily sodium intake between 1,500 mg and 2,000 mg. 

Did You Know That

  • Salt: 75% of our sodium intake comes from processed foods and the rest from salt added to our food in cooking and at the table. (Try substituting potassium chloride for salt.)

  • MSG: Found in ketchup and in restaurant food. (Just add more spices if you want more taste.)

  • Baking Powder of sodium aluminum sulfate: You can substite potassium bicarbonate for baking powder.

What To Look Out For

Try and limit your consumption of foods that contains:

  • Disodium phosphate

  • Sodim alginate

  • Sodium benzoate

  • Sodium hydroxide

  • Sodium propionate

  • Sodium saccharin

  • Sodium sulfite

High Sodium Medications

Even medications contains high levels of sodium. You may not realize this but a lot of over the counter medications is guilty of this.  There are low sodium equivalents available, so check with your doctor or your pharmacist for recommendations.

And, read the labels.

Whats Left To Eat

I know you are thinking so what can I eat on this dash diet for blood pressure that is tasty and not full of sodium.  Well they are plenty of delicious foods out there. 

Start by choosing cereal, grains and pasta that are unsalted grains or noodles, shredded wheat, and yeast breads.  Eat fresh or frozen vegetables and if you are choosing canned product make sure it is without added salt. 

Fruits is major part of lowering blood pressure but remember to have it first, at least half an hour before eating your meal.  Fresh is better but frozen is also acceptable, but if eating canned make sure it is without added salt or sugars. 

Since you are lowering the amount of salt you are adding to your foods, increase your seasonings by using lots of herbs, garlic, lemon juice, onion, pepper, peppermint and scallion.

Begin With One Step

Don't worry you do not have to become a perfect eating machine overnight, just start slowly.  Begin your dash diet for blood pressure by increasing your servings of fruits, vegetables and grains and lower your intake of fats. 

Gradually cut back on your intake of sodium and replace your sodium with potassium chloride.

Over time you are going to find that your food is actually tastier, and that fresh fruits and vegetables have subtle but great delicious flavors that you were not aware of before.

Remember the dash diet for blood pressure is for your life and is a marathon, not a sprint.

Read more about the Dash Diet Eating Plan.

Your Lifestyle Diet For High Blood Pressure

What lifestyle have you adopted since you were diagnosed with high blood pressure? Are you feeling satisfied and are there any weight loss?

Share your secrets on the diet that has reversed or complement your high blood pressure treatment. And how long have you maintained this way of eating?

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