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Dash Diet - Key to Healthier Eating

Dash Diet Eating Plan

A study was done that indicated that elevated blood pressures were reduced by an eating plan that puts an emphasis on eating fruits, vegetables, and low fat dairy foods. It also includes food that is low in saturated fat, total fat, and cholesterol.

It's easy to adapt to a dash diet if you follow simple rules.

Change to a dash diet gradually.

 If you now eat one or two vegetables a day, try adding a serving at lunch and another at dinner.
 If fruit is not currently in your diet or you have only juice at breakfast, add a serving to your meals or try it as a snack.
 Cut your serving of butter, margarine, or salad dressing to half what you do now.
 Try low fat or fat free condiments, such as fat free salad dressings.
 Gradually increase your intake of dairy products to three servings per day. For example, drink milk with lunch or dinner rather than soda, alcohol, or sugar-sweetened tea. Choose low fat (1 percent) or fat free (skim) dairy products to reduce total fat intake.

A dash diet also means you treat meat as one part of the whole meal, instead of the main focus.

 Buy less meat. If it's not there, you won't eat it. I've found simply eating 1 serving of meat rather than 2 has cut my cholesterol numbers dramatically.
 Limit meat to 6 ounces a day (two servings). Three to four ounces is about the size of a deck of cards.
 If you now eat large portions of meat, cut them back gradually--by a half or a third at each meal. Not as hard as it sounds and this is coming from a meat lover!
 Include two or more vegetarian-style (meatless) meals each week.
 Increase your servings of vegetables, rice, pasta, and dry beans. Try casseroles and pasta, and stir-fry dishes, having less meat and more vegetables, grains, and dry beans.

Use fruits or low fat foods as desserts and snacks.

 Fruits and low fat foods offer great taste and variety. Use fruits canned in their own juice. Fresh fruits require little or no preparation. Dried fruits are easy to carry with you.
 Try these snack ideas:
  • unsalted pretzels or nuts mixed with raisins
  • graham crackers
  • low fat and fat free yogurt and frozen yogurt
  • plain popcorn with no salt or butter added
  • and raw vegetables.


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My wife was a diabetic for over 40 years until she received a pancreas transplant recently. Healthy food has always been something we strived for and, of course, our menu had to be planned around her needs.

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