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Sample menus for the DASH eating plan
Interested in following the DASH eating plan but not sure how? Here are sample menus to get you started.By Mayo Clinic staff
The eating plan known as Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) is used to lower or control high blood pressure. The DASH diet contains foods that are lower in sodium. A key goal is to include foods that are rich in nutrients that are also associated with lowering blood pressure — potassium, magnesium and calcium. The DASH diet features menus with plenty of vegetables, fruits and low-fat dairy products, as well as whole grains, fish, poultry and nuts. It offers limited portions of red meats, sweets and sugary beverages.
Maybe you want to try the DASH diet, but aren't quite sure how to incorporate DASH into your own daily menus. To help you get started, here are three days' worth of menus that conform to the DASH plan. Use these menus as a basis for your own healthy meal planning.
Remember that on some days, you may eat more of or fewer than the recommended servings for a particular food group, or you may exceed your sodium goal. That's OK, as long as the average of several days or a week is close to the recommendations. Also note that the values for nutritional information may vary according to specific brands of ingredients you use or changes you make in meal preparation.Next page
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- Your guide to lowering blood pressure with DASH. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/hbp/dash/new_dash.pdf. Accessed Dec. 10, 2010.
- Blumenthal JA, et al. Effects of the DASH diet alone and in combination with exercise and weight loss on blood pressure and cardiovascular biomarkers in men and women with high blood pressure. Archives of Internal Medicine. 2010;170:126.
- Nelson JK (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dec. 10, 2010.
- Nutritionist Pro diet analysis (computer program). Stafford, Texas: Axxya Systems; 2008. http://www.nutritionistpro.com/dietanalysis.php. Accessed Dec. 29, 2010.