Cover image for The DASH diet for hypertension : lower your blood pressure in 14 days--without drugs
The DASH diet for hypertension : lower your blood pressure in 14 days--without drugs
Moore, Thomas J., 1945-
Publication Information:
New York : Free Press, [2001]

Physical Description:
xvii, 264 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Format :


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If you or your spouse, your child, or anybody else you care about suffers from high blood pressure, this book can literally be a lifesaver. A world-class team of hypertension and nutrition experts from the medical schools at Harvard, Duke, Johns Hopkins, and Louisiana State University have joined together to produce "The DASH Diet for Hypertension," a medication-free program to lower blood pressure in just two weeks. Scientifically proven to work, the DASH Diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) is recommended by the American Heart Association, which cited it as one of the ten most important scientific discoveries of the year. A symptomless condition, high blood pressure is nonetheless a leading cause of heart attack, stroke, enlarged heart, and kidney damage. Of the 50 million Americans who suffer from hypertension, most must control their pressure by taking drugs -- drugs that can have potentially harmful side effects. No longer. The results of the DASH study -- originally published in the prestigious "New England Journal of Medicine" -- prove that the DASH diet alone can control elevations in blood pressure as effec

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Library Journal Review

For once, something that sounds too good to be true really works. Developed by the medical school staffs of Harvard, Duke, Johns Hopkins, and Louisiana State University after a large clinical trial, the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet significantly reduces blood pressure, cholesterol, and homocysteine levels through diet alone, and experts agree that widespread adoption of the DASH diet would result in a substantial decrease in coronary heart disease and stroke. The diet includes eating four servings of fruits, four servings of vegetables, and two or three servings of low-fat dairy foods daily. Fatty foods, red meat, and sugar-sweetened foods and beverages are limited. Moore, who chaired the DASH trial, and his fellow authors explain the history of the DASH research as well the diet itself and provide clear and achievable tips on improving health and incorporating the diet into daily life. Two weeks of diet plans and 61 tempting recipes are included. The steps listed for making lifelong dietary changes are excellent. Recommended for all consumer health collections. Janet M. Schneider, James A. Haley Veterans' Hosp., Tampa, FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Preface For the first time a practical diet has been created that harnesses the blood-pressure-lowering potential of healthful foods. This diet works because it contains the amounts and combinations of key nutrients needed to lower blood pressure. It lowers blood pressure as much as most prescription blood pressure medications, and it works for men and women, whites and blacks, young and old. It is named the DASH diet after the landmark study, called "Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension," that proved it lowered blood pressure to a much healthier level within 14 days. The name of the diet also hints at its speed, because it is fast-acting as well as effective. So confident are we that the DASH diet can improve your blood pressure that at the very beginning of this book we issue a "14-day challenge": we challenge you to spend two weeks eating the DASH diet -- hearty meals of familiar, common foods with an emphasis on fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products in a prescribed combination of servings -- so you can see at the end of that time how your blood pressure has improved significantly. When you see how much it has improved, we believe you will want to continue the DASH diet for the rest of your life. If you have been taking blood pressure medication, your doctor may eventually be able to take you off it if you're willing to remain on the DASH diet. Of course, under no circumstances should you go off your blood pressure medication without clearance from your health-care professional. The DASH diet was developed for people who have high blood pressure (also known as hypertension), but there is a strong argument to be made that everyone should eat the DASH way. Blood pressure naturally goes up as you age, and the likelihood is that if you live long enough, you will eventually develop this condition (half of Americans over 65 years old have high blood pressure). Following the DASH diet enables you to halt this process. The DASH diet is simple, but at first it may not seem easy. It involves changing eating habits you've learned over a lifetime. But the fact is that it's do-able, and in this book we provide you with all the information you need to follow the DASH way of eating. With the DASH diet you won't need a calculator every time you prepare a meal. It is based on easy-to-understand servings of whole foods, not x milligrams of this nutrient or y grams of that mineral. Simply put, we did the hard work for you. Our focus is on nutrient-rich whole foods, instead of the nutrients themselves, making our diet available to everyone. This is not a diet just for a small group of highly motivated people who are dedicated enough to figure out how to get precise amounts of minerals and other nutrients into their diet. The DASH Diet for Hypertension not only provides information on how the diet works but gives you sensible advice on how to make the principles of the plan part of your everyday life. If you want to take us up on our 14-day challenge, you can turn first to chapter 9, where daily menu plans will make it easy for you to start immediately on the DASH diet. In the second half of the book, to demonstrate that healthy eating can be not just nutritious but delicious too, we have also provided 62 recipes created by our experienced nutritionists. All our recipes were taste-tested to make sure the ones we chose for this book are the very best. Concluding the book are a number of practical resources, including a form to help you keep track of what and how much you eat. One of our goals when developing this diet was to make it easy to follow, and that includes the language we use to explain it. For those interested in more academic accounts of the DASH diet, a reading list of scientific journal articles can be found in Appendix D. By selecting this book, you've taken a major step toward improving your health. Not only does the DASH diet treat and prevent high blood pressure, but it will reduce your risk of several deadly illnesses, including heart disease, stroke, cancer, and osteoporosis. It will also make you feel better, both mentally and physically. Those are not false promises but assurances based on scientific evidence. There's nothing holding you back. So go to it. This could be the beginning of a new life dedicated to better health. Copyright © 2001 by Thomas Moore, Laura Svetkey, Lawrence Appel, George Bray, and William Vollmer Chapter 1: Introducing DASH The Isosceles Triangle Diet. The Bacon Grease and Beer Diet. We haven't heard of either of these diets, but it wouldn't surprise us to learn they existed! No doubt about it, our society has an insatiable appetite for wonder diets that will cure all our ills -- and the wackier the premise, the better. There's no reason to think people with high blood pressure are any different, especially when you consider this medical condition is so serious that it is a leading cause of heart attack, stroke, enlarged heart, and kidney damage. If you bought this book hoping to find a blood-pressure-lowering diet with a nifty formula or handy-dandy gimmick, you'll be disappointed. The same goes if you're seeking a diet to lower your blood pressure based on some oddball theory. In a day and age when uncomplicated is unfashionable, our diet isn't high-tech or even low-tech. It's no-tech. What our easy-to-understand blood-pressure-lowering diet has going for it is that not only is it safe, natural, fast-acting, and hearty enough that it won't leave you hungry, but more important, it works -- and we have proved it. This is no small achievement when you consider how much hype and hyperbole surround the field of health and nutrition. So many wild claims are passed off as fact. A good number of the diets being foisted on the American public by seemingly reputable people simply don't work, while others are plain dangerous -- whether their promoters are promising to help us lose weight, live longer, or beat cancer. Our diet to lower high blood pressure, on the other hand, was tested under carefully controlled scientific conditions. It was the subject of two of the biggest clinical research studies of their kind ever done. The studies were conducted at several of the nation's finest medical institutions under the auspices of the prestigious National Institutes of Health. More than 80 physicians, nutritionists, and technicians were involved, along with 800 study participants. The goal was to harness the power of certain whole foods that contain the key minerals and other nutrients that we believed have the ability to lower blood pressure. This combination of nutrients had never before been tested in a "regular folks" diet. The men and women who participated in our study followed the special diet we created. The results were beyond our wildest expectations. Our diet lowered participants' blood pressure as much as a typical blood pressure medication, and it did so quickly -- within 14 days of beginning the diet. To demonstrate the effectiveness of the DASH diet, in this chapter we'll share some of the personal success stories of individual study participants. Take Melody Smith, for example. She is quite typical of the person with high blood pressure who participated in the DASH study. After being diagnosed with high blood pressure 10 years ago, this 42-year-old computer software salesperson tried several antihypertensive medications to keep her blood pressure down. However, Melody hated the side effects of the medications, not to mention their high cost. Sometimes she stopped taking her medications without her doctor's permission. That's when she asked us about participating in the DASH study. Melody was skeptical when she started the study but hopeful she would find a natural way to improve her blood pressure. Imagine Melody's surprise when she was informed that after just two weeks eating the DASH diet her blood pressure had dropped from 144/94 (in the "high" range) down to 132/88. The blood-pressure-lowering effect she got from the DASH diet was just about what she had gotten from the drugs she had taken before -- but without the side effects. Equally important for Melody, her doctor agreed that she no longer needed to take antihypertensive medications. The medical implications of the DASH diet are profound. If, like Melody Smith, you are one of the tens of millions of Americans with hypertension, lowering your blood pressure will enable you to significantly reduce the life-threatening consequences of this disease, including heart attack, stroke, and hardening of the arteries. The DASH diet will help you even if you don't have high blood pressure right now. Blood pressure tends to go up the older you get, and by their mid-sixties more than half of all Americans have high blood pressure. Following the DASH diet will help you avoid this eventuality. This is not an issue just for older people. Since blood pressure naturally starts going up in the teen years, it's almost never too early to encourage young people to start incorporating the DASH diet into their lives. You are especially likely to develop high blood pressure if your blood pressure level is in the "high-normal" range or if you have a family history of high blood pressure. Again, eating the DASH diet can reduce the likelihood you will develop high blood pressure if you are predisposed for these reasons. Another DASH success story is Charles Runnel, a 64-year-old retired chemistry professor. With blood pressure in the "high-normal" range (136/88), Dr. Runnel was a prime candidate for developing hypertension before he enrolled in the DASH study. Two weeks after he started eating the DASH diet, his blood pressure had dropped to 126/80. Like numerous other men and women with "high-normal" blood pressure who continued eating the DASH way after participating in the DASH study, Dr. Runnel avoided the virtual certainty he would eventually develop hypertension. For both Melody Smith and Charles Runnel, taking medication for their blood pressure was a big issue -- Melody wanted to get off her medication and Charles wanted to avoid starting one. In fact, most people who have high blood pressure are eventually prescribed medications that are often expensive and can have unpleasant and possibly harmful side effects. If you're on blood pressure medication and would like to get off or if you want to avoid ever taking medication, the DASH diet may offer more good news: If you have stage 1, or "mild," high blood pressure and you are not yet taking blood pressure medications, following the DASH diet could lower your blood pressure to the "healthy" range and help you avoid the possibility of ever having to take drugs for blood pressure (see the table on page 14 for classifications of the different stages of high blood pressure). If you are taking medications to keep your blood pressure at a healthy level and your doctor thinks you should keep taking them, following the DASH diet may help you keep your blood pressure in the healthy range on fewer medications or lower doses. If you have a family history of high blood pressure or "high-normal" blood pressure (again, see page 14 for classifications), the DASH diet can be an effective preventive therapy and may help you avoid ever having to take blood pressure medications. Remember, never change your medication or stop taking a medication without first getting clearance from your doctor and having your blood pressure properly monitored. In addition to its role in lowering blood pressure, our diet has other important benefits. The foods in the plan help to lower the risk of heart disease and osteoporosis. Surveys of the men and women who participated in our study showed that the diet actually made them feel better, physically and mentally. This is what the DASH diet can do for you: Lower your blood pressure in 14 days. Lower your cholesterol. Reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. Reduce your risk of osteoporosis. Increase antioxidant levels in your system. Improve your mood and quality of life. Above all, though, this is a diet for lowering blood pressure. Although high blood pressure is very common, it is also widely misunderstood even by those who suffer from it. Before we take a much closer look at the DASH study, it's important to learn more about the deadly disease that made this diet necessary, which we'll do in the next chapter Take the 14-Day DASH Diet Challenge! We want to get you started as soon as possible on our lifesaving diet. For that reason we are issuing you our "14-day challenge." We challenge you to eat our simple diet of nutritious foods for two weeks and see the difference it makes in your blood pressure. Believe it or not, your blood pressure will drop significantly to a much healthier level. If you have "mild" high blood pressure (stage 1), your blood pressure may go down to a level where you can go off your medication if your doctor says it's okay. If you have more severe high blood pressure, your blood pressure may go down to a level where you may be allowed to reduce your blood pressure medication dosage, making it easier to keep up with your drug regimen. Sticking to the DASH diet will keep your blood pressure down, and it also has a host of other profound physical and mental health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease, osteoporosis, and various cancers. For all these reasons, eating the DASH diet can literally save your life. Skeptical? Don't believe a straightforward diet could have as powerful an effect as high-priced medications? Then take the 14-day challenge! How do you take us up on our challenge? First, schedule an appointment with your doctor or nurse to get your blood pressure tested. Then start eating the DASH diet. At the end of 14 days, get another blood pressure reading. If you've stuck to the diet, your blood pressure will have dropped to a much healthier level. If you continue to eat the DASH diet, your blood pressure will stay at a healthy level. Why are we so confident your blood pressure will respond? Because we achieved these results in hundreds of men and women who participated in the DASH study. Caution Keep in mind, the 14-day challenge may not be for everyone. Some people with kidney problems may not tolerate the amount of potassium contained in DASH foods. If this applies to you, talk to your doctor before starting the diet. But for most people the DASH diet is a healthy eating plan that has been proven to lower blood pressure. For guidance on easing into the DASH diet, refer to page 117. And remember our admonition to get clearance from your doctor before making any change in your medication regimen. Copyright © 2001 by Thomas Moore, Laura Svetkey, Lawrence Appel, George Bray, and William Vollmer Excerpted from The Dash Diet for Hypertension: Lower Your Blood Pressure in 14 Days - Without Drugs by Thomas Moore, Mark Jenkins All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

Table of Contents

Part 1 Why We Need DASH and How It Works Introducing DASH
Take the 14-Day DASH Diet Challenge! Why DASH? Hypertension: The Silent Killer
A Deadly Disease That Affects Millions
What Is High Blood Pressure/Hypertension?
What Causes High Blood Pressure?
Who Is Most at Risk for Hypertension?
Understanding Blood Pressure Readings
Truth and Consequences
How High Blood Pressure Is Treated Proving the Diet Works: How We Did It
Top-Level Study Finally Launched
DASH Study Design
The Results
The Science Behind DASH
Implications of the Diet
A "Feel-Good" Diet Too!
A Postmodern Diet
Part 2 Making the Most of Your Commitment Optimizing the Diet: Salt Reduction Is the Answer
The DASH-Sodium Study
How Salt Influences Blood Pressure
Lowering Your Salt/Sodium Intake: Here's How DASH Plus: Weight Loss, Exercise, and Limiting Alcohol Consumption
Bring Your Body Fat to a Healthy Level
Start an Exercise Program
Launching a Vigorous Exercise Program
Limit Your Alcohol Consumption Want to Lose Weight? DASH Has the Answer
Fundamentals of Weight Loss
Customizing the DASH Diet for Weight Loss
The Substitution Solution
The Skinny on Fat
Nutrition Facts Panel and Food Labeling
Keeping It Off
Part 3 DASH in Action Putting DASH into Action: How to Start Eating the DASH Way
DASH in Three Easy Moves
Preparing to DASH
Fruits/Fruit Juices
Dairy Foods (Milk, Cheese, and Yogurt)
Grains (Bread, Cereal, Rice, and Pasta)
Meat, Poultry, and Fish
Nuts, Seeds, and Legumes
Added Fats and Oils
Healthy Hints for Home Cooking
DASH-Friendly Cooking Methods
Supermarket Savvy: How to Shop for DASH
Dining Out on DASH
Eating the DASH Way: Any Tom, Dick, or Harriet Can Do It
Track Your Food Habits Make DASH Part of Your Life...for Life!
Step 1 Recognize Your Food Issues
Step 2 Believe You Will Succeed
Step 3 Time It Right
Step 4 One Step Leads You to the Next
Step 5 Develop a SMART Action Plan
Step 6 "Just Do It"
Step 7 Assess Your Progress
Step 8 Ask for Help If Things Aren't Going Well
And the Final Step: Celebrate Every Success, No Matter How Small!
Part 4 DASH Menu Plans and Recipes Fourteen Days on the DASH Diet
Meeting Your Calorie-Intake Requirement
How the Menu Plans Break Down
Week 1: 2,000-Calorie Menus
Week 2: 2,000-Calorie Menus
Snacking on the DASH Diet DASH Recipes
Main DishesBaked Catfish
Baked Macaroni and Cheese
BBQ Pork Chops
Blackened Beef with Greens and Red Potatoes
Chicken and Broccoli Bake
Chicken Fruity Stir-fry
Chicken with Rice
Dave's Cajun Catfish
Fettuccine with Chicken and Vegetables
Grilled Tuna
Hawaiian Chicken Sandwich
Mango and Black Bean Salad with Grilled Shrimp
New Orleans Red Beans and Rice
Northeast Gumbo
Snapper with Greens
Spicy Cod
Sweet-and-Sour Pork with Vegetables
Swiss Cheese Sandwich
Turkey Burger
Vegetarian Lasagna
Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce
Vermont Roast with Brown Mustard
Gingered Butternut Squash Soup
Tomato Bisque
Tomato-Orange Soup
Tortellini and Bean Soup
Vegetable Side Dishes
Broccoli Rabe
Green Beans with Almonds
Kale with Sesame Seeds
Limas and Spinach
Molasses-Braised Collards
Sautéed Collard Greens
Stuffed Acorn Squash
Sweet-Potato Chips