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DASH Diet
- includes samples menus for 1500, 1800, and 2000 calories/day DASH Diet -

The DASH study (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) found risk of elevated blood pressure could be reduced with a low-fat eating plan rich in dairy, fruits, and vegetables. The plan is also rich in calcium, potassium, and magnesium, and protein (especially from fish, poultry, and nuts) and fiber (from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains). A second DASH study found that eating the DASH diet in combination with a reduced sodium intake results in the greatest benefit towards lowering high blood pressure. The DASH diet can be used to maintain or achieve a healthy weight and promote overall health. The diet is rich in fruits and vegetables which have been shown to lower cancer risk, high in dairy which is shown to lower osteoporosis risk, and low in saturated fat, trans fats, and cholesterol which have been shown to lower cardiovascular disease risk. Exercise is also a key element in maintaining a healthy weight and a healthy weight is a factor in normal blood pressure control.

WHERE’S THE SODIUM?
Only a small amount of sodium occurs naturally in foods. Most sodium is added during processing. The following table provides examples of the varying amounts of sodium in some foods. When reading the nutrition label, look for sodium and milligrams instead of percentages.

Food groups

Amount  Sodium (mg.)
Grains and Grain Products
Cooked cereal, rice, pasta (all unsalted)
Ready-to-eat cereal
Bread

½ cup
1 cup
1 slice

0-5
100-360
110-175
Vegetables
Fresh or frozen, (cooked without salt)
Canned or frozen with sauce
Tomato juice, canned


½ cup
½ cup
¾ cup


1-70
140-460
820

Fruit
Fresh, frozen, canned

½ cup

0-5
Lowfat or fat-free dairy foods
Milk
Yogurt
Natural cheeses
Processed cheeses

1 cup
8 oz.
1 ½ oz.
1 ½ oz.

120
160
110-450
600
Nuts, seeds and dry beans
Peanuts, salted
Peanuts, unsalted
Beans, cooked from dried or frozen without salt
Beans, canned


1/3 cup
1/3 cup
½ cup
½ cup


120
0-5
0-5
400

Meats, fish and poultry
Fresh meat, fish, poultry
Tuna canned, water pack, no salt added
Tuna canned, water pack
Ham, lean, roasted

3 oz.
3 oz.
3 oz.
3 oz.


30-90
34-45
250-350
1,020

TIPS TO REDUCE SALT AND SODIUM

REDUCING SODIUM WHEN EATING OUT

LABEL LANGUAGE
Food labels can help you to choose items lower in sodium and saturated and total fat. Look for the following labels on cans, boxes, bottles, bags, and other packaging:

Phrase What it means
Sodium
Sodium free or salt free

Less than 5 mg. per serving
Very low sodium 35 mg. or less of sodium per serving
Low sodium 140 mg. or less of sodium per serving
Low sodium meal 140 mg. or less of sodium per 3 ½ oz. (100 g.)
Reduced or less sodium At least 25 percent less sodium than the regular version
Light in sodium 50 percent less sodium than the regular version
Unsalted or no salt added No salt added to the product during processing
Phrase What it means
Fat
Fat free
Less than 0.5 g. per serving
Low saturated fat 1 g. or less per serving
Lowfat 3 g. or less per serving
Reduced fat At least 25 percent less fat than the regular version
Light in fat Half the fat compared to the regular version

      Sample menus are listed below


1500 Calories/Day DASH Diet - Sample Menu

Food Amount Servings
Provided

 

 

Total number of
servings in 1500 calories/day menu:

5-1/2 - Grains
4 - Vegetables
4 - Fruits
3 - Dairy Foods
2 - Meats, Poultry, Fish
¾ - Nuts
1½ - Fats & Oils


Tips on eating
the DASH way:

Start small. Make gradual changes in your eating habits.

Center your meal around carbohydrates, such as pasta, rice, beans, or vegetables.

Treat meat as one part of the whole meal, instead of the focus.

Use fruits or low-fat, low-calorie foods such as sugar-free gelatin for desserts and snacks.


REMEMBER! If you use the DASH diet to help prevent or control high blood pressure, make it part of a lifestyle that includes choosing foods lower in salt and sodium, keeping a healthy weight, being physically active, and, if you drink alcohol, doing so in moderation.

Breakfast
Orange juice 6 ounces 1 fruit
Skim milk 8 ounces (1 cup) 1 dairy
Corn flakes (with 1 tsp sugar) 3/4 cup 1 1/2 grains
Banana 1 medium 1 fruit
Light whole wheat bread
(with 1 TBSP jelly)
1 slice 1 grain
Lunch
Baked chicken 3 ounces 1 poultry
Pita bread 1/2 slice, large 1 grain
Raw vegetable medley consisting of:
Carrot and celery sticks
Radishes
Loose-leaf lettuce


3-4 sticks of each
2
2 leaves
All equal
1 vegetable
Part skim mozzarella cheese 1 1/2 slices
(1 1/2 ounces)
1 dairy
Skim milk 8 ounces (1 cup) 1 dairy
Fruit cocktail in water 1/2 cup 1 fruit
Dinner
Herb baked cod 3 ounces 1 fish
Scallion rice 1/2 cup 1 grain
Steamed broccoli 1/2 cup 1 vegetable
Stewed tomatoes 1/2 cup 1 vegetable
Spinach salad consisting of:
Raw spinach
Cherry tomatoes
Cucumber

1/2 cup
2
2 slices
All equal
1 vegetable
Light Italian salad dressing 1 tbsp 1/2 fat
Soft margarine 1 tsp 1 fat
Melon balls 1/2 cup 1 fruit
Snacks
Mini pretzels 1 ounce (3/4 cup) 1 grain
Mixed nuts 2 tbsp 3/4 nuts
Diet Ginger Ale 12 ounces 0

1800 Calories/Day DASH Diet - Sample Menu

Food Amount Servings
Provided

 

 

Total number of
servings in 1800 calories/day menu:

8 - Grains
4 - Vegetables
4 - Fruits
3 - Dairy Foods
1¾ - Meats, Poultry, Fish
1 - Nuts
2½ - Fats & Oils


Tips on eating
the DASH way:

Start small. Make gradual changes in your eating habits.

Center your meal around carbohydrates, such as pasta, rice, beans, or vegetables.

Treat meat as one part of the whole meal, instead of the focus.

Use fruits or low-fat, low-calorie foods such as sugar-free gelatin for desserts and snacks.


REMEMBER! If you use the DASH diet to help prevent or control high blood pressure, make it part of a lifestyle that includes choosing foods lower in salt and sodium, keeping a healthy weight, being physically active, and, if you drink alcohol, doing so in moderation.

 

Breakfast
Orange juice 6 ounces 1 fruit
Skim milk 8 ounces (1 cup) 1 dairy
Corn flakes (with 1 tsp sugar) 1 cup 2 grains
Banana 1 medium 1 fruit
Whole wheat bread
(with 1 TBSP jelly)
1 slice 1 grain
Soft margarine 1 teaspoon 1 fat
Lunch
Chicken salad 1/2 cup 3/4 poultry
Pita bread 1/2 slice, large 1 grain
Raw vegetable medley consisting of:
Carrot and celery sticks
Radishes
Loose-leaf lettuce


3-4 sticks of each
2
2 leaves
All equal
1 vegetable
Part skim mozzarella cheese 1 1/2 slices
(1 1/2 ounces)
1 dairy
Skim milk 8 ounces (1 cup) 1 dairy
Fruit cocktail in water 1/2 cup 1 fruit
Dinner
Herb baked cod 3 ounces 1 fish
Scallion rice 1 cup 2 grains
Steamed broccoli 1/2 cup 1 vegetable
Stewed tomatoes 1/2 cup 1 vegetable
Spinach salad consisting of:
Raw spinach
Cherry tomatoes
Cucumber

1/2 cup
2
2 slices
All equal
1 vegetable
Light Italian salad dressing 1 tbsp 1/2 fat
Whole wheat dinner roll 1 small 1 grain
Soft margarine 1 tsp 1 fat
Melon balls 1/2 cup 1 fruit
Snacks
Mini pretzels 1 ounce (3/4 cup) 1 grain
Mixed nuts 1½ ounces 1 nuts
Diet Ginger Ale 12 ounces 0

2000 Calories/Day DASH Diet - Sample Menu

Food Amount Servings
Provided

 

 

Total number of
servings in 2000 calories/day menu:

8 - Grains
4 - Vegetables
5 - Fruits
3 - Dairy Foods
2 - Meats, Poultry, Fish
1 - Nuts
2½ - Fats & Oils


Tips on eating
the DASH way:

Start small. Make gradual changes in your eating habits.

Center your meal around carbohydrates, such as pasta, rice, beans, or vegetables.

Treat meat as one part of the whole meal, instead of the focus.

Use fruits or low-fat, low-calorie foods such as sugar-free gelatin for desserts and snacks.


REMEMBER! If you use the DASH diet to help prevent or control high blood pressure, make it part of a lifestyle that includes choosing foods lower in salt and sodium, keeping a healthy weight, being physically active, and, if you drink alcohol, doing so in moderation.

 

Breakfast
Orange juice 6 ounces 1 fruit
1% low fat milk 8 ounces (1 cup) 1 dairy
Corn flakes (with 1 tsp sugar) 1 cup 2 grains
Banana 1 medium 1 fruit
Light whole wheat bread
(with soft margarine)
(1 TBSP jelly)
1 slice
1 teaspoon
1 grain
1 fat
Lunch
Chicken Salad 3/4 cup 1 poultry
Pita bread 1/2 slice, large 1 grain
Raw vegetable medley consisting of:
Carrot and celery sticks
Radishes
Loose-leaf lettuce


3-4 sticks of each
2
2 leaves
All equal
1 vegetable
Part skim mozzarella cheese 1 1/2 slices
(1 1/2 ounces)
1 dairy
1% low fat milk 8 ounces (1 cup) 1 dairy
Fruit cocktail in water 1/2 cup 1 fruit
Dinner
Herb baked cod 3 ounces 1 fish
Scallion rice 1 cup 2 grains
Steamed broccoli 1/2 cup 1 vegetable
Stewed tomatoes 1/2 cup 1 vegetable
Spinach salad consisting of:
Raw spinach
Cherry tomatoes
Cucumber

1/2 cup
2
2 slices
All equal
1 vegetable
Light Italian salad dressing 1 tbsp 1/2 fat
Whole wheat dinner roll 1 small 1 grain
Soft margarine 1 tsp 1 fat
Melon balls 1/2 cup 1 fruit
Snacks
Dried apricots 1 ounce (3/4 cup) 1 fruit
Mini pretzels 1 ounce (3/4 cup) 1 grain
Mixed nuts 2 tbsp 3/4 nuts
Diet Ginger Ale 12 ounces 0

A registered dietitian can tell you the number of calories you need per day.

Additional information is available from the following web sites: DASH Eating Plan 

Sources
Zernel, M. B. (1997), Dietary Patterns and Hypertension: The DASH Study. Nutrition Review, 55: 303-305.


If you are a registered University of Illinois student and you have questions or concerns,
or need to make an appointment, please call: Dial-A-Nurse at 333-2700

 

If you are concerned about any difference in your treatment plan and the information in this handout,

you are advised to contact your health care provider.

 

Visit the McKinley Health Center Web site at: http://www.mckinley.illinois.edu


HEd. III-155

© The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois, 2008.

05-02-08

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