I have heard about DASH diet but I do not know what exactly it is. Is it a healthy diet to follow or a mere fad? Also, can Indians follow this diet?
Answered with inputs from nutritionist Neha Chandna.
DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. It is a form of diet which is not only meant for existing patients of hypertension but also for people who have a family history or high chances of developing it.
This diet is also great for people who want to lose weight as it contains fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, etc. According to the DASH diet, salt intake of 1500-2300 mg is allowed depending on the personâ€™s age, race, activity, health problems, genetics, etc. It also recommends cutting back on processed foods, cured and smoked meats.
It increases potassium intake which helps lower blood pressure through foods like potato, sweet potato, dals, coconut water, banana, etc.
DASH diet is a great option for Indians whose diets are high in fats and processed foods as it not only helps in controlling blood pressure but also weight and other lifestyle issues like diabetes. People with diabetes can follow this sample diet plan too.
According US News and World Report magazineâ€™s health and wellness editor, Angela Haupt, â€˜DASH diet was designed to treat hypertension but itâ€™s also effective for weight loss, adding that itâ€™s a smart, sensible plan thatâ€™s safe and nutritious and helps control diabetes in addition to supporting heart health.â€™ Here is a weight loss diet by expert dietician.
Basic eating plan of a DASH diet