Do or Diet - The DASH Edition
Updated on 03 October 2016

Make that change! Whether you’re trying to lose weight or achieve healthier eating habits, the DASH diet is a great way to start. DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. This diet focuses on eating a variety of food, portion control and getting the right amount of nutrients. It is a lifelong approach to help prevent high blood pressure (hypertension) but has been effective in general weight loss and overall well-being.

The Breakdown

The diet places emphasis on eating more fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy products and moderate amounts of whole grains, poultry, fish and nuts. Red meat, sweets and fats can be consumed but only in small amounts. Here are the recommended servings for a 2,000-calorie-a-day plan.

Grains: 6 to 8 Servings per Day

lifeline hospital dubai

These include rice, bread, pasta, noodles, and cereal. A serving size would be 1 slice of whole-wheat bread or ½ cup of cooked rice. Opt for whole grains/wheat as they contain more fiber and nutrients.

Vegetables: 4 to 5 Servings per Day

lifeline hospital dubai

Carrots, broccoli, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, greens and other vegetables are loaded with fiber, vitamins and minerals such as potassium and magnesium. A serving size would be ½ cup of cut-up raw or cooked vegetables or 1 cup of raw leafy greens. Fresh is best but frozen or canned are fine for consumption, just make sure the labels state they are low sodium or without added salt.

Fruits: 4 to 5 Servings per Day

lifeline hospital dubai

Just like vegetables, fruits are jammed packed with fiber, potassium and magnesium. Typically they are low in fat with coconuts as an exception. A serving size would be 1 medium fruit, ½ cup of fresh, frozen or canned fruits or ½ cup of juice. Try having fruits with every meal and snack. Leave on edible peels as they contain healthy nutrients and fiber. Take note that citrus fruits like oranges/grapefruits/lemons/limes may interact with certain medications, so check with your doctor or pharmacist. If you select canned fruits or juices make sure that there is no sugar added.

Dairy: 2 to 3 Servings per Day

lifeline hospital dubai

Milk, cheese, yoghurt and other dairy products are great sources of protein, calcium and vitamin D. Opt for low-fat or fat-free options as whole fat is often saturated and can lead to a number of health issues. A serving size would be 1 cup of skim/1% milk, 1 cups of low-fat yoghurt, 1 slice of part-skim cheese. If you are lactose intolerant, look for lactose-free products or consider taking an over-the-counter product that contains the enzyme lactase which may aid with digestion. You can have regular or fat-free cheese but only in small amounts as they contain high levels of sodium.

Lean meat, poultry and fish: 0 to 6 Servings per Day

lifeline hospital dubai

Meat is a rich source of protein, iron, zinc, and B vitamins. Opt for lean varieties (less fat) and do not consume beyond 6 servings a day. A serving size would be 1 egg or a matchbox size of meat. Make sure to remove any excess fat or skin and rather than fry in fat/oil/butter, it would be better to grill, bake, roast or broil instead. Fish such as salmon, tuna and herring are high in omega-3 fatty acids which help lower cholesterol.

Fats and Oils: 2 to 3 servings per Day

lifeline hospital dubai

Yes, you still need fat. Not all fat is bad and it actually helps you absorb essential vitamins and improve your body’s immune system. It’s only when you have too much fat wherein you increase your risk of heart disease, obesity and diabetes. A serving size would be 1 teaspoon of margarine, 2 tablespoons of salad dressing or a tablespoon of mayonnaise. Avoid trans fat and limit saturated fat.

Nuts, seeds and legumes: 4 to 5 Servings per Week

lifeline hospital dubai

Beans, lentils, almonds, sunflower seeds, and other food from this family are great sources of protein, potassium, fiber, and magnesium. A serving size is about 1/3 cup of nuts, ½ cup of cooked beans, or 2 tablespoons of seeds. Consume only a few times a week as this kind of food are high in calories.

Sweets: 0 to 5 servings per Week

lifeline hospital dubai

Avoiding sweets can be difficult but you and control it. A serving size would be 1 tablespoon of sugar, jelly or jam, 1 cup of lemonade, or ½ cup of sorbet. Choose options that are fat-free or low-fat like sorbets, fruit ices, graham crackers, cookies, hard candies or jelly beans. Added sugar just means more calories without nutritional value.

Applying It to Your Life

Change gradually and find what works for you. This diet is really more of a guideline to achieve healthier eating habits. Discover new food to try out. If you’re vegetarian there are many options to make up for protein such as soy, tofu, mushrooms and nuts that can be replaced over the lean meat, poultry and fish section. You can’t expect change overnight but once you get started, keep going! Remember, healthy eating is about nutrition and variety to benefit your health. How healthy are your habits? What do you think of the DASH diet? Let us know down below!

Lifeline Healthcare Group
UAE's most innovative healthcare provider, Lifeline Health Group is constantly progressing to provide cutting-edge medical services in Dubai. 800 HOSPITAL (800 46774825) | Multiple locations
12 Things You Should Know About Movember
What is Movember and No-Shave November? Why Should You Care?
How Diabetes Can Affect Your Pregnancy
15 Red Flags for Diabetes
Fact or Fiction? – The Breast Cancer Edition
Life After Breast Cancer – How to Deal With Fatigue
Breast Cancer: 10 Top Busty Facts
Ultrasounds - Not Just For Pregnant Women
How to Survive a Heart Attack Alone
How to Act FAST When Someone is Having a Stroke
Top 10 Ways to Getting Rid of Heartburn
Heart Attack vs Cardiac Arrest - How to Tell the Difference
How to Reduce Heart Disease
5 Wholehearted Recipes to Try At Home
20 Awesome Hearty Facts You May Not Know
7 Simple Steps to Deal with Migraines
How to Ease the Pain of Travelling
How To Get Back To School Ready
How To Help Your Child Fight Obesity With Healthy Habits
3 DIY Healthy Summer Eats to Keep You Cool
How to Get Sun Kissed Skin Without the Burn
What You Can Do To Stop Bone Loss (Osteoporosis)
Respiratory Distress Syndrome (RDS) in Preterm Neonates
6 Great Nutritional Tips for Children during Ramadan
5 Ways to Ease Your Child into Fasting during Ramadan
5 Good Ways of Avoiding Asthma Triggers
Women’s Health: Essential Wellness Checkups
Workplace Wellness Programs and Health Risk Assessment
Back Pain Causes and Treatment
Why Are Regular Checkups Important and Can You Do It from Your Home or Office
Enjoy Your Stay In Dubai During Pregnancy
5 Tips for Preventing and Detecting Colorectal Cancer
How To Have A Stress Free Stay When Visiting Dubai
Share this page!
MORE FROM health
Competitions
Win full brunch package for two at McGettigan's Souk Madinat Jumeirah.
Win an LPG Endermologie skin care hamper.
Win a gift voucher worth Dhs 500 to spend at Al Futtaim ACE Dubai Festival City.
Whats On
Dubai Festival City Mall has announced a spectacular new attraction and it's wheelie cool.
If you're a closet daredevil that craves an adrenaline rush without the risk, 'Mission 828' is for you. 
Cheers to the weekend! If you've yet to make plans, we've compiled a list of the top things to do across Dubai for you!
The ultimate crush of every '90s girl, the absolute king of leather pants and the reason we all felt like we knew Spanish because we knew one lyric is coming to Dubai!
‘Be There’ at The Dubai Mall this festive season!
Read the latest issue
Latest Events
Beauty Reviews
Editors Fashion Picks
Dubai Free Vouchers
Health Guide
Latest Recipes
Dubai City Guide
Business Directory
Kids News
Jobs Vacancies
Discover Dubai