We often associate diets with losing weight. But did you know that one of the world’s most successful diets has a completely different focus? Instead of losing weight, the DASH diet’s main aim is to actually reduce your sodium intake and reduce the risk of developing hypertension. So, learn how to start the diet and what should be on your DASH Diet shopping list for phase 1.
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- What Does DASH Diet Mean?
- Dash Diet FAQs
- Can anyone do the DASH diet?
- What Are the Benefits of Sticking to a DASH Diet Food List?
- Will I lose weight using a DASH diet shopping list?
- What foods are not allowed on the DASH diet?
- What fruits are allowed on the DASH diet?
- Are eggs on DASH diet?
- Can you eat pizza on the DASH diet?
- Do I really need to create a DASH Diet meal plan and shopping list?
- Your DASH Diet Shopping List
What Does DASH Diet Mean?
DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.
It is a diet that was created and promoted by the American National Institutes for Health in 2002 as hypertension was such a prevalent health issue at the time.
But how does the diet reduce the risk of hypertension?
Well, the research into creating the diet showed a significant decrease in a person’s sodium intake greatly reduced blood pressure and therefore the risk of hypertension.
In short, the DASH Diet is a low-sodium diet. Sodium intake should be limited to 2,300mg a day. A stricter version of the diet sees you decrease your sodium intake to a mere 1,500mg a day.
So, let’s go over some questions you might have about the DASH Diet so you’re more knowledgable about its aims and benefits. However, you can skip straight to the free printable DASH diet food list if you so wish.
DASH Diet FAQs
Can anyone do the DASH diet?
One of the great things about the diet is that you don’t need to have blood pressure or hypertension issues to do it. It’s actually a healthy diet for absolutely anyone to do.
What Are the Benefits of Sticking to a DASH Diet Food List?
The main benefit, of course, is to reduce your blood pressure and reduce your risk of hypertension.
However, there are some other benefits to using a DASH diet grocery list, too, such as better kidney health. This is because, with less sodium in your body, they don’t have to work as hard.
Also, because of its focus on high-fiber and low-saturated fat food, you can improve your digestive health and reduce the risk of heart disease respectively. A lack of sugar in much of the food will also help you prevent or control type-2 diabetes.
Will I lose weight using a DASH diet shopping list?
This is because much of the food that the diet focuses on is healthy food that is included in a lot of other diets. You’ll be eating things like lean meat, leafy greens, and wholewheat grains. All this food is high in fiber and protein, both of which will keep you feeling full for longer. This you’re less likely to snack as you’ll feel less hungry.
1 version of the diet, as a way to increase your chances of losing weight, splits the diet up into 2 phases. The 1st phase focuses on low-carb and protein-rich food for 2 weeks. You will avoid all fruit and grains. You’ll achieve this by eating non-starchy veg and lean meat. The idea is that this will “reset” your metabolism to make your body respond better to the diet’s anti-hypertension benefits. It also has the added benefit of making you lose a lot of weight, similar to the weight loss people experience on the keto diet.
What foods are not allowed on the DASH diet?
In the broadest terms, very little.
The only thing you should be limiting is your sodium. You can even have food that contains salt, as long as you keep your sodium intake below 2,300mg a day. Chocolate is absolutely fine as long as it’s not salted caramel flavor. It might be unhealthy for you in other ways, but in terms of sodium intake, you’re golden.
If you’re opting for the 2 phase approach, then you will not be allowed any starchy vegetables such as potatoes, or grains such as pasta and rice for the 1st 2 weeks. Even low-sodium chocolate is off the list because of its high carb value. But these can be reintroduced in phase 2.
What fruits are allowed on the DASH diet?
It’s only if you’re taking the 2-phase version that fruit is forbidden for the 1st 2 weeks. But after that, you can keep your fruit bowl as overflowing as you like.
Are eggs on DASH diet?
1 large egg contains 62mg of sodium. So, you’ll need to eat a lot of eggs to reach that 2,300mg threshold. But, you will need to make sure that eggs won’t make you break that limit once you include all your other food for the day.
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Can you eat pizza on the DASH diet?
Pizza, especially store-bought or the kind you get from fast-food outlets and in restaurants, can be very high in sodium. Indeed, 1 slice of a medium Pizza Hut’s Meat Lover’s pizza contains 830mg of sodium That means you’ll only need 2.7 slices to reach your daily sodium limit.
However, this doesn’t mean you have to forsake pizza completely. You can find many DASH-friendly pizza recipes online. Whilst using low-fat and wholegrain ingredients are best, you can use whatever ingredients you like as long as they’re low in sodium.
Do I really need to create a DASH Diet meal plan and shopping list?
It will help you out a lot!
If you plan your meals for the entire week and put exactly you need to buy on your grocery list, you can avoid temptation.
Well, it’s easier to say “no” to something if you’re sticking doggedly a well-prepared grocery list. You can even go a step further and put a “DO NOT BUY” section on your shopping list to encourage you to stay away from food that is your dietary Achilles heel.
Proper planning and good shopping techniques, such as preparing meals plans and using a shopping list, are great for any diet. So, why wouldn’t it be great for this one?
Your DASH Diet Shopping List
Now that you’re a bit more clued-up about the DASH diet, you can use this DASH diet food list when you’re shopping. You can make any changes to this as you see fit, such as removing food you don’t like or putting on items you think are missing. Happy dieting!
DASH Diet Shopping List ?❌??Copy to clipboard
Dash Diet Shopping List Phase 1
Meat & Fsh
- Fatty fish
- Lean beef
Dairy & Eggs
- Low-fat yogurt
- Bell Peppers
- Chia seeds
- Brazil nuts
- Cashew nuts
Phase 2, add:
- Black beans
- Black-eyed peas
- Red kidney beans
- Sweet potatoes
- Brown rice
- Bulgar wheat
- Pearl barley
- Wholegrain pasta
- Wholewheat bread