Dash diet for beginners
Even though the DASH diet hasn’t been endorsed by any big celeb in recent times, it still has gained all the attention and appreciation from the famous doctors and dieticians around.
Such was its popularity that the DASH diet has been named as the best overall diet plan by the US News and World Report for 8 successive years.
The diet plan was designed and developed by the National Institute of health to combat hypertension (high blood pressure) issues.
Still, before you give this diet plan a shot, do ensure to keep yourself aware of the following key elements.
1. Helps in controlling high blood pressure
There have been numerous studies and researches in place which have confirmed that the DASH diet plan is quite effective in lowering the high blood pressure in the body.
There were 17 random studies in the same perspective which concluded that the DASH diet plan can lower the systolic blood pressure by an impressive 6.74mmHg.
Moreover, it can also help lower the diastolic blood pressure by approx 3.54mmHg.
2. Weight loss and other health benefits
Although the DASH diet program wasn’t been designed to support the weight loss process, it can lay a big impact on the same whilst keeping the blood glucose levels in check.
Besides that, it will also help in improving the HDL levels whilst minimizing the LDL levels in the body.
This is where the DASH diet can prove effective in keeping chronic diseases like Type 2 diabetes, stroke and heart diseases.
This is the reason why this diet plan is getting popular amongst most of the health and fitness enthusiasts around.
3. You may have to compromise on animal foods
DASH diet comes to light on poultry, lean meat, and seafood and you are just allowed to consume 6 ounces of the same on the daily basis.
Well, you can also consume eggs but their consumption is also limited to 1 ounce per day.
Apart from the eggs and meat, you are also allowed to consume 2-3 servings of low-fat dairy and this is where you have to keep a tab on the animal foods.
You may get a bit tempted by the missing food items but that’s where the whole discipline and effort comes into the picture.
4. Never miss on the proteins!
Whilst you get along with the DASH diet, you have to ensure consuming the required amount of proteins in your overall diet plan.
Although there is a limit to the overall consumption of meat, poultry and seafood in the DASH diet, you can certainly cover up the nutrition with some legumes, nuts and grains in the process.
A DASH diet must include 60 grams of protein in the daily average of 200 calories and you must talk to your specific dietitian and nutritionist before the same.
5. Keep the veggies going!
You may find it a bit hard but getting along with your daily dose of veggies is the key to a DASH diet.
Well, you can prepare a vegetable salad with 2 cups of veggies for the lunch and consume the same veggies in roasted or stir-fried form, for the dinner.
You can also experiment a bit with the DASH diet recipes whilst including veggies in your desired form.
You can use the low carbs veggies like cucumber, celery, bell pepper or spinach and munch them for snack purposes during the day.
6. Keep a check on your daily sodium consumption
High-on sodium diets often lead to increased hypertension issues and this is where you have to keep a check on the sodium consumption during a DASH diet.
The recommended daily dosage is around 2300 milligrams of sodium per day.
On the other side, if you are on a low sodium DASH diet, the daily permitted limit is 1500mg of sodium per day.
This is another version of the DASH diet which is largely prescribed for severe hypertension cases.
7. Ensure taking the complete nutrition
It has often been observed that most of the people following the DASH diet forget to take care of their daily nutritional needs.
This is where they have to keep a track of their daily dose of proteins, carbs, healthy fats and fibers in the process.
You are allowed to consume food items like whole grains, fresh fruits, veggies, legumes, nuts and limited portions of meat and eggs.
All these food not only helps in keeping the blood pressure in check but also offers other health benefits like improved digestion, healthy blood circulation and nerve functioning
8. DASH diet will boost your energy levels
Once you will be practicing a DASH diet, you will be keeping a tab on your blood glucose levels for sure. Hence, your body will stay stable in terms of energy levels for longer durations.
There have been studies and observations in the same regard and medical experts have quoted that stable blood glucose levels will keep the body fueled with the right energy levels for longer periods.
9. Focus on home-cooked food
While you understand that the DASH diet mainly focuses on the diet which is low in sodium and other preservatives which trigger hypertension, focus on cooking your meals at home only.
This will require you to shop for all the requisites from the grocery store and you must make the most of it in the process.
Pick the right food items which can add some nutritional value to your meals, whilst still keeping the taste right.
This is where you can use certain condiments like vinegar and olive oil which will serve as a perfect dressing for your salad. Moreover, you can also get some healthy fats from these in the process.
10. You may come across certain side effects
Getting along with a DASH diet may come along with certain side effects like gas and bloating.
You may be someone who would like to consume those whole grains and beans but this is where consuming the right fibers holds the key.
Fresh fruits and veggies are rich in dietary fibers and this is where you can keep all these side effects at bay during the DASH diet plan.