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Updated: Dec 9, 2021


DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. The DASH diet is a healthy-eating plan designed to help treat or prevent high blood pressure (hypertension). The DASH diet includes foods that are rich in potassium, calcium and magnesium. These nutrients help control blood pressure. The diet limits foods that are high in sodium, saturated fat and added sugars.

What to eat

The DASH diet is a flexible and balanced eating plan that helps create a heart-healthy eating style for life. It's easy to follow using foods found at your grocery store. The diet is rich in vegetables, fruits and whole grains. It includes fat-free or low-fat dairy products, fish, poultry, beans and nuts. It limits foods that are high in saturated fat, such as fatty meats and full-fat dairy products. When following DASH, it is important to choose foods that are:

· Rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, fiber and protein

· Low in saturated fat

· Low in sodium

Recommended servings

Here are recommended servings from each food group for two calorie levels of the DASH diet, followed by examples of a single serving size.

Food Group

1600 Calorie Diet

Grains (mainly whole grains)

6 a day


3-4 a day


4 a day

2-3 a day

2-3 a day

Lean meats, poultry, and fish

3-4 on oz. servings or fewer a day

Nuts, seeds, and legumes

3-4 a week

Fats and oils

2 a day

Sweets and added sugars

3 or fewer a week

*source: National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute

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