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What are the possible benefits of the DASH diet?

Marla  Heller, MS, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics

The DASH diet was originally developed to help people to lower blood pressure without medication, but it's been shown to have many additional health benefits. Watch registered dietitian Marla Heller describe the positive benefits of the DASH diet.

The DASH diet got the number one rating from a US News & World Report panel of health experts. Why? Because it’s a balanced plan and it has the research behind it to show that it works quite effectively. It has been shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol and it may lower the risk of cancer, heart disease, stroke, heart failure and kidney stones. It may also help prevent diabetes.
Audrey K. Chun, MD
Geriatric Medicine
The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet has already been proven to reduce high blood pressure by as much as 10 points in two weeks. Now we know that it also decreases heart disease risk, according to a study published online in the journal "Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes."

The new data show that subjects who followed the DASH diet decreased their 10-year risk of coronary heart disease by 18% over those who ate a more typical American diet and by 11% over those who ate a diet rich in fruits and vegetables but otherwise similar to a typical American diet.

The DASH diet was specifically designed to reduce blood pressure, and we now know that it also reduces the risk of heart disease, as well as stroke and kidney stones. In the DASH diet, the emphasis is on modifying your diet as necessary to increase your intake of fruits and vegetables along with low-fat or fat-free dairy products.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.