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High Blood Pressure? Have a DASH of Spark

There's More to it than Your Sodium Intake


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I've followed this type of diet for years as I have had HBP for a while now. However when you get older often the diet with exercies fails due to a lower motabolizim, weight gain or other health related factor. I prefer to see the nuts section be added everyday with the meats section cut down to 2-3 times per week...rather add beans/rice, pasta dishes, omletes/salad combos, etc. Also people often miss how much salt is in things like bread, muffins, and canned goods.....using a cookbook sponsored by the american heart association for low salt cooking works great and eatting whole foods, sauces cooked from scratch and learning how to make a home made soup broth or tomato sauce works great when added to other items in order to cut the salt. Ovo Vegitarian style keeps some fats as compared to a full vegan. Use some no salt peanut butters such as Crazy Richards, oils, nuts, eggs (egg substitute), and dairy (soy milk or skim) while still keeping the cholesteral/salt out of the diet. In addition oats, brown rice, or whole grain pasta should be the grain of choice...and stay away from mom always told me beans are good for your heart ;)....and so they are..add to soup, salad, rice casserole dishes or make a sandwich spread out of them! Report
I am 71 years old and have recently been able to stop taking my HBP (water) pills after about 25 years. I credit the Dash Diet for this improvement. I check my BP at home and take my results to the doctor's office once a month. He's very pleased with the results. The book is available in print or for the Kindle and it's well worth it. I'm never hungry when I follow this diet. Report
All of your comments are so inspiring. I was diagnosed with hypertension about 2 months ago and the doctor put me on meds. My goal is to come off of the medication. I am so happy to learn about the DASH Diet and will be following this asap. Thanks so much.
PS: Those of you who try the DASH diet and stick to it by the book (its easy) will NEVER be sorry you did Be excited over this one--It is the only one I cold stick with and enjoy the food and not be hungry all the time. God bless each of you. Report
I have been on the DASH diet for 6 months (since two heart attacks and a stroke). BP is normal and holding in that pattern. Lipid counts are normal and they were high, high, high.
Feel great AND I have lost 60 pounds without trying!!! Go DASH. Get the book with the meal plan and the recipes for the meals. It is worth the $12 I paid for it. Report
This is positive news about the DASH diet and principles. I am motivated to use this to reduce my high blood pressure, which is now controlled by medication. I aim to get off this medication. Report
Is it possible to have a DASH diet setup with menus on the Nutrition Tracker? Report
I've followed this diet for one year and now have normal blood pressure and better health. The food groups are easy to follow. I made myself a little check list that helps me keep on track and to know what to choose if I want a snack. However, I haven't been able to find a good exchange list for the foods. For example, is one egg equal to one meat exchange? I wish I could find more details (maybe it is in the book, I haven't read it yet). Report
This was a good article to remind me of balancing my food groups. The nutrition guide is great but if you are charting your own foods this helps balance it out. Report
I was just diagnosed with hb 140/96 and at first the doctor was going to give me meds which he said would be for life. After discussing my lifestyle and my motivation to go back to healthier patterns of eating and exercise that I had before working the graveyard shift, he put me on the DASH Diet. I read some of the book at the Bookstore and went on-line and found great descriptions. The doctor's information was from 1997, but the new information is just confirming that this is an option for some like me. I have lost weight and feel healthier after just 1 week. I am returning to Sparkpeople for support. Fell off the Sparkwagon before. These DASH comments were very encouraging. Thanks all. Report
One of the best things I ever did was find out about the DASH Diet. I share it as often as I can. It is now being reviewed in my community by a Living Donor Transplant Co-ordinator. Even as a health profession they were not aware of it. It have some really invaluable information. One of the most empowering books I've ever bought! Report
I heard a chef say lately that she had worked all over the world and no other country uses as much salt as the US. WHY? I have cooked without salt for years (unless cooking for company), use lots of herbs and my husband and I are used to it. Everyone else likes my cooking, too. Through experimentation my doctor and I have proven that sodium directly affects my blood pressure. Even though I never pick up a salt shaker it is difficult to keep that sodium count really low. Report
i was diagnosed with HBP 3 weeks ago 195/110 and 1 week ago after going on diet and exercising it was 167/90. I am about to be monitored for 24 hours in case of 'white coat syndrome' and then have been told I should go on medication. I don't want to do this. Am trying to decide if the risk is too great and also trying to find out if I have to stay for ever on meds if I start them but no one can help. Nearly everyone I mention it to is on med for it. There must be a better way........ then I found Sparkle people.........I just made up my mind to try without meds, so thanks for thesupport help and advice!! Report
Thank you! Information helps to equip us in making smarter decisions regarding our lifestyle behavior. Report
I was diagnosed with High Blood Pressure 2 yrs ago and my doctor wanted to put me on medication. I am not into taking meds. I believe in natural healing. After being diagnosed, I went home and started researching other ways to get my pressure down. I found this DASH diet, started it and lost over 50 lbs and pressure went way down. I am living proof that this plan works. I will be on the program for life. Report

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