DASH Diet Weight Loss & Maintenance

Heart Health

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I believe the research, without a single doubt, because the diet completely eliminated my hypertension without the need for drugs.  In 2009, just before I started DASH diet at the recommendation of my doctor, my blood pressure was 170/90.  I lost 90 pounds in 18 months with DASH diet/exercise.  It made me younger on the inside!  My blood pressure returned to normal and my hypertension has never returned.  Hoping to keep it that way by sticking to the DASH diet for the rest of my life!

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I eat a combination of the low sodium DASH diet (max 1500 mg sodium per day) and mediterranean diet and have been doing so since the spring of 2009.  I started following the diet after my blood pressure hit 170/90 and my Doctor insisted I take action. He gave me 3 options, blood pressure meds, get on the list for weight loss surgery or DASH with large weight loss.  Fortunately the DASH diet worked to help me lose 90 pounds in 18 months and I will have maintained it for 8 years, come summer 2019.

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These are all foods I eat often as part of the DASH diet.  The MIND diet is a hybrid of the DASH and Mediterranean diet.  I pay particular attention to these foods because alzheimers disease runs badly in my family. My mother is currently very ill with this disease and my grandmother had it as well.

I began following the DASH diet in June of 2009 at the recommendation of my Doctor to reduce my blood pressure, because I was at that time hypertensive.  Fortunately, I was able to eliminate the hypertension without blood pressure drugs, using only the DASH diet, weight loss (lost 90 pounds with DASH) and exericse.

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Research is now showing that it is not only salt that contributes to high blood pressure, but also sugar. Too much sugar makes the effect of too much salt, that much worse. I am sure it is very difficult for scientists to tease out which is worse. My hypertension was completely eliminated through DASH diet and my 90 pound weight loss and too much sugar is very much associated with obesity. My doctor was very clear with me, that if I lost weight, my blood pressure would recede and he was 100% correct. I focused on reducing sodium because my intake was was too high and I had not even realized it. However my sugar intake was also reduced, just by following the DASH diet, because it is low sugar diet.

I highly recommend following the DASH diet to reduce intake in both areas!

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Feel so good after running for 1st time in 5 months!! Now this is the good sweat I remember! 

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The DASH diet is a plant based diet, but it is not a vegetarian diet, although you could easily design it as vegetarian. For vegetarian DASH options, substitute lentils, nuts, beans, tofu, etc., in for meat as your protein.  The diet actually encourages these foods and meatless days as well.  An easy way to eyeball plant based, is to look at any meal and determine if half of it is fruit and veggie.  If half your plate is filled with these then you are golden!

I eat 8-10 servings of fruit and veggie everyday.  I find it easier to get my fruit servings in,  so for the veggies, I double up, sometimes even triple or quadruple servings to get the veggies I need each day (e.g instead of half a cup of steamed broccoli and cauliflower with melted cheddar cheese, I eat 2 cups).  This helps keep my fibre intake way up and my appetite under control.  Sure fills me up!

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