The DASH diet can be helpful and effective for high blood pressure. Which foods are allowed and what you should avoid if you have high blood pressure – we’ll tell you!
In the case of high blood pressure (hypertension), doctors often prescribe antihypertensive medication, but the values can also be improved without medication – with the DASH diet.
Lower blood pressure with the DASH diet
High blood pressure is one of the risk factors for cardiovascular diseases, which are among the most common causes of death in Germany. The number of patients with high blood pressure is constantly increasing. The disease can lead to hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis), heart failure (heart failure), heart attacks, and strokes.
Scientists found out that in addition to genetic influences, the wrong diet is a major risk factor for high blood pressure. From this, they developed the DASH diet. The acronym stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, i.e. for a diet against high blood pressure.
What is the diet plan at DASH?
In the United States, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) has developed several sample DASH diet plans.
The shopping list for a DASH diet should look like this:
- Grains or grain products, preferably whole grain products such as oatmeal, muesli, whole grain bread, rice, and pasta.
- Fruits: fresh, dried, and in the form of freshly squeezed juices.
- Fresh vegetables and vegetable juice
- Low-fat dairy products, such as low-fat cheese, yogurt, quark, or low-fat milk
- Oils: olive oil, linseed oil, or sunflower oil
- Meat, poultry, or fish (low-fat and not smoked)
- Coconut blossom sugar or agave syrup instead of regular sugar
- Legumes, such as lentils, chickpeas, and beans
- nuts and seeds
What else should be considered on a DASH diet?
Today we know that a diet high in salt can increase blood pressure. That’s why the DASH diet tries to severely limit salt consumption. Experts from the German Society for Nutrition (edge) generally recommend no more than six grams of salt per day. To save salt, you should first do without ready-made products – because they contain a lot of salt – and secondly switch to herbs and spices to flavor food.
Also important for the DASH diet: Red meat should only rarely be on the table and sugar consumption should be reduced to a minimum.
How does the Dash diet work for gout?
Researchers have been able to show that patients with gout also benefit from a DASH diet in two ways. The special choice of food reduces the intake of uric acid, which is the main cause of gout. In addition, some gout patients suffer from high blood pressure at the same time.
Some even have metabolic syndrome. These include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, and high cholesterol. With the DASH diet, many of these laboratory values can improve.