Nutritional Services


The DASH 1&2 Diet

A landmark study called DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) looked at the effects of an overall eating plan in adults with normal to high blood pressure. Researchers found that in just eight weeks, people following the DASH 1 diet saw their blood pressure decrease. A subsequent study called DASH 2 looked at the effect of following the DASH diet and restricting salt intake to 1500 mg per day. Under the DASH 2 diet, people with Stage 1 hypertension had their blood pressure decrease as much or more than any anti-hypertensive medication had been able to lower it.

What are the benefits of the DASH eating plan?

Following the DASH eating plan and eating less sodium (salt) can reduce your risk of high blood pressure. If you already have high blood pressure, following the DASH eating plan and eating less sodium can lower your blood pressure.

Results from the DASH research showed that following a DASH plan containing 2,300 milligrams (mg) of sodium per day lowered blood pressure. Following a DASH plan containing 1,500 mg of sodium lowered blood pressure even more (systolic blood pressure was lowered by about 7 to 12 mmHg).

One important note: If you take medicine to control high blood pressure, you should keep taking it. However, you should tell your doctor that you're now following the DASH eating plan.

Following the DASH eating plan

The DASH eating plan is easy to follow using common foods available in your grocery store. The DASH eating plan includes daily servings from different food groups. The number of servings you should have depends on your daily calorie (energy) needs.

To figure out your calorie needs, you need to consider your age and physical activity level. If you want to maintain your current weight, you should eat only as many calories as you burn by being physically active. This is called energy balance.

If you need to lose weight, you should eat fewer calories than you burn or increase your activity level to burn more calories than you eat.

Consider your physical activity level. Are you sedentary, moderately active, or active?

  • Sedentary means that you do only light physical activity as part of your typical daily routine.
  • Moderately active means that you do physical activity equal to walking about 1.5 to 3 miles a day at 3 to 4 miles per hour, plus light physical activity.
  • Active means that you do physical activity equal to walking more than 3 miles per day at 3 to 4 miles per hour, plus light physical activity.

Recommended by the American Heart Association and the National Cancer Institute, the DASH diet is an overall eating plan that focuses on what people should eat, rather than what not to eat. Rick in rich in fruits, vegetables, complex carbohydrates and low-fat dairy products, the DASH diet is lower in fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium, and higher in potassium, magnesium, and calcium than the typical American diet. The high levels of potassium, magnesium, and calcium in the DASH diet are thought to be at least partially responsible for its results. Table 3 below outlines the DASH eating plan.

Table 3: The DASH Diet.

Food Group

Daily Servings

Significance to the DASH Diet

Grains and grain products

7 – 8

Carbohydrates and fiber

Vegetables

4 – 5

Potassium, magnesium and fiber

Fruits

4 – 5

Potassium, magnesium and fiber

Low-fat or fat free milk or milk products

2 – 3

Calcium, protein, potassium and magnesium

Meats, poultry and fish

2 or less

Protein and magnesium

Nuts, seeds and beans

4 –5 a week

Magnesium, potassium, protein and fiber

Source: “A Clinical Trial of the Effects of Dietary Patterns on Blood Pressure.” New England Journal of
Medicine. 1997.336:1117-1124.

Table 2: Sodium, calorie, calcium and potassium content of foods.

Food Amount Food energy
Kcalories
Sodium (Na)
mg
Potassium (K)
mg
Calcium (Ca)
mg
BEVERAGES
Fruit drinks, dehydrated, reconstituted:
Lemonade 1 cup 102 13 33 71
Orange 1 cup 115 12 49 61
Fruit juices, unsweetened:
Apple cider or juice 1 cup 117 5 250 15
Grapefruit juice 1 cup 75 4 360 32
Orange juice 1 cup 120 5 498 25
Grape juice, bottled 1 cup 159 8 279 27
Prune juice 1 cup 192 5 588 35
Cocoa mix, water added (Carnation) 1 cup 110 232 176 107
Coffee, freeze-dried (using 2 tsp.) 1 cup 6 2 166 6
 
DAIRY PRODUCTS
Natural cheese:
Cheddar 1 ounce 112 176 23 211
Colby 1 ounce 110 171 35 192
Cottage, 4 1/2% milk fat 1/2 cup 120 457 260 108
Cream 1 ounce 99 84 34 23
Monterey Jack 1 ounce 105 152 23 209
Mozzarella, part skim milk 1 ounce 72 132 24 183
Cream, sour 1 tablespoon 26 6 17 14
Milk:
  Skim 1 cup 89 126 406 296
  Whole 1 cup 149 120 370 290
Ice Cream: 1 cup 290 112 193 208
Vanilla Yogurt:
  Regular plain 1 cup 152 105 323 272
  Fruit flavored with nonfat milk solids 1 cup 231 133 442 345
 
EGGS, FISH, MEAT, POULTRY AND RELATED PRODUCTS
Eggs, whole (boiled) 1 78 59 62 26
Fish:
  Salmon, broiled 3 ounces 156 99 378 127
  Sardines, canned 3 ounces 174 552 501 372
  Trout, brook, raw 3 ounces 86 67 319 12
  Tuna, canned in water 3 ounces 108 288 237 14
Shellfish:
  Clams, raw, hard 3 ounces 68 174 264 58
  Crab, canned 3 ounces 86 425 94 38
  Lobster, boiled (northern) 3 ounces 80 212 153 55
  Scallops, steamed 3 ounces 95 225 405 98
  Shrimp, canned 3 ounces 324 1,955 122 9
Meat:
Beef, lean hamburger, cooked 1 patty 140 55 480 14
Pork:
  Bacon, cooked 2 strips 96 274 34 2
  Ham 3 ounces 298 1,114 284 4
Poultry:
  Chicken, roasted, breast without skin 1/2 breast 142 63 220 13
  Turkey, roasted, breast with skin 3 1/2 ounces 189 67 289 21
 
FRUITS
Apples, medium (2 1/2 inches in diameter) 1 apple 87 2 165 10
Apricots 3 apricots 51 1 281 17
Avocado, raw, peeled 1 167 22 604 10
Banana, raw, medium 1 127 2 550 12
Strawberries, raw 1 cup 55 2 244 31
Cherries, raw, sweet 1 cup 82 150 223 26
Grapefruit, pink, raw, medium 1/2 40 1 135 16
Oranges, raw 1 71 1 311 65
Grapes 10 31 1 72 7
Cantaloupe 1/2 melon 60 24 502 28
Peaches, raw 1 38 1 202 9
Pears, raw 1 122 1 260 16
Pineapple, raw 1 cup 69 1 195 23
Plums, raw 1 33 1 150 9
Raisins 1 cup 462 17 1,221 99
Watermelon 1/16 melon 152 10 560 38
 
GRAIN PRODUCTS
Bread:
  White 1 slice 62 114 24 20
  Whole Wheat 1 slice 56 132 63 23
Cereals:
  Cream of Wheat, regular 3/4 cup 100 3 17 10
  Oatmeal 3/4 cup 111 1 98 16
Crackers:
  Graham 1 27 48 27 3
  Saltine 2 28 70 7 1
  Whole wheat 1 16 30 120 1
Macaroni, cooked, no salt 1 cup 151 2 85 11
Muffin, English (Wonder) 1 medium 131 293 N.L. 80
Noodles, egg, cooked, no salt 1 cup 200 2 70 16
Rice, brown, cooked, no salt 1 cup 178 10 105 18
Snacks:
  Corn chips, Fritos 1 ounce 154 231 23 35
  Popcorn with oil and salt 1 cup 41 175 256 1
  Potato chips 10 114 200 226 8
  Pretzel sticks, Frito Lay 3 324 17 99 21
 
DESSERTS AND SWEETS
Cookies:
  Brownies, iced, frozen 1 126 69 54 12
  Chocolate chip (commercial) 2 cookies 104 69 30 8
  Oatmeal and raisins 2 126 55 104 6
  Sandwich type (round) 2 99 96 8 5
  Sugar 1 89 108 15 16
Doughnut, cake (plain) 1 125 160 29 13
Cakes, from mix:
Angel 1/12 121 134 40 4
White 1/12 187 238 38 31
Pies, frozen:
  Apple 1/8 of pie 160 208 76 13
  Cherry 1/8 of pie 100 169 82 12
 
LEGUMES AND NUTS
Almonds, roasted and salted 1 cup 984 311 1,214 369
Beans, baked, no pork 1 cup 236 606 832 100
Beans and peas, dry, cooked:
Northern 1 cup 118 5 416 50
Blackeye, cooked 1 cup 178 12 625 40
Pinto, calico, raw 1/2 cup 349 4 984 135
Split, cooked 1 cup 208 5 536 20
Kidney, canned 1 cup 225 844 660 72
Cashews, roasted 1 cup 561 1,200 464 38
Peanuts:
Dry, roasted, salted 1 cup 838 986 1,009 104
Unsalted 1 cup 838 8 1,009 104
Peanut butter 1 tablespoon 86 81 123 11
Pecans 1 cup 696 1 420 74
Pistachios 1 cup 594 6 972 131
Walnuts, English 1 cup 781 3 540 119
 
VEGETABLES
Asparagus, canned 4 spears 14 298 127 14
Snap beans, canned 1 cup 43 326 227 81
Beets, cooked, fresh 1 cup 54 73 344 24
Broccoli, raw 1 stalk 32 23 382 103
Cabbage, green, raw 1 cup 24 8 233 49
Carrots, raw, grated 1 cup 46 34 375 41
Cauliflower, raw, flower pieces 1 cup 27 17 295 25
Celery, raw 1 stalk (outer) 8 25 170 20
Corn:
  Cooked, fresh 1 ear 70 1 151 2
  Frozen 1 cup 130 7 304 5
  Cream style, regular, canned 1 cup 210 671 248 8
Cucumber 7 slices 4 2 45 7
Lettuce, iceberg, chopped 1 cup 7 4 96 11
Mushrooms, raw 1 cup 20 7 290 4
Onions 1 medium 38 10 157 27
Peas:
  Cooked 1 cup 106 2 294 34
  Frozen, regular 3 ounces 58 80 116 16
Potatoes:
  Baked or boiled without skin 1 medium 139 5 755 14
  French fried 10 strips 137 15 427 8
  Mashed with milk and salt 1 cup 137 632 548 50
Pumpkin, canned 1 cup 76 12 552 58
Spinach:
Raw, chopped 1 cup 14 49 259 51
Frozen, chopped, cooked 1/2 cup 23 65 333 113
Squash, summer, cooked 1 cup 28 5 282 50
Squash, winter, baked, mashed 1 cup 126 2 922 56
Sweet potatoes:
Baked or boiled 1 sm. potato 141 20 300 40
Canned, solid packed 1 sm. potato 108 48 200 25
Tomato, raw 1 med. tomato 33 14 366 20
Tomato paste 1 cup 215 77 2,237 71
Tomato sauce 1 cup 97 1,498 1,060 32
 
CONDIMENTS, FATS AND OILS
Catsup 1 tablespoon 16 156 55 3
Mustard, prepared, yellow 1 teaspoon 4 65 7 4
Olives, green, large 4 olives 18 323 8 10
Pickles, dill 1 lg. pickle 11 928 200 26
Sauces:
  A-1 1 tablespoon 12 275 51 3
  Barbecue 1 tablespoon 15 130 28 3
  Worcestershire 1 tablespoon 12 206 120 15
Butter, regular 1 tablespoon 108 116 4 4
Margarine 1 tablespoon 108 140 3 3
Salad dressing:
  Blue cheese 1 tablespoon 71 153 5 11
  French, bottled 1 tablespoon 57 214 11 2
  Italian, bottled 1 tablespoon 77 116 2 2
  Mayonnaise 1 tablespoon 61 78 1 2
  Thousand Island 1 tablespoon 70 109 16 2