The DASH Diet: FAQ

Get all the answers to your DASH Diet questions today!

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A Day on the DASH Diet (3:29)

The DASH Diet was originally designed for people with high blood pressure, but it can help anyone lose weight! Rated #1 by diet experts time and time again, this diet should help you see results within about two weeks, but can be used as an effective tool for long-term weight loss if you keep it up! Before you start, check out these frequently asked questions to make sure the DASH Diet is right for you.

What does DASH even stand for?

DASH is an acronym for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. Promoted by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, the DASH Diet was initially designed to help reduce hypertension (also known as high blood pressure).

I don’t have high blood pressure. Can I still go on the DASH Diet?

Yes! The DASH Diet was originally designed for those with high blood pressure. However, its focus on healthy foods makes it a great option even if you don’t have high blood pressure.

When will I see results?

The DASH Diet works quickly – you may see results in the first two weeks! Effective for both short-term and long-term weight loss, if you stick with it, you’ll continue dropping those pounds.

How long should I stay on this diet?

This diet is designed to be a lifelong change to your eating habits. It’s super easy to incorporate into any lifestyle because it teaches important eating and cooking skills and even allows you the occasional indulgence.

What should I drink while on this diet?

Water is always the best option for any diet because it is hydrating and doesn’t come with any extra calories or sodium.

Can I have caffeine? What about alcohol?

While caffeine and alcohol are allowed on the DASH Diet, you generally want to limit the amount you are having. Try only having caffeine with meals and don’t have more than two alcoholic beverages per day for men, or one alcoholic beverage per day for women.

I’m a vegetarian. Can I be on the DASH Diet?

The DASH Diet allows you to eat six or fewer servings of lean meat per day, but you don’t have to! It is perfectly okay to substitute beans, chickpeas, and other protein-rich vegetables instead.

What’s the deal with sodium?

Sodium plays an important role in blood pressure and the DASH Diet was primarily designed as a diet to control blood pressure. As such, you should make sure you’re limiting yourself to no more than 2,300mg of sodium per day. If you can get your levels below 1,500mg per day, that’s even better!

I’m taking medications. Could this diet affect how they work?

Certain medications, like blood thinners or medications for diabetes, can have an interaction with the foods you eat. If you’re on medications, discuss with your doctor whether dramatically changing your diet will affect how your medications work before starting the diet.

I’ve been doing this diet for a few days, but I’m starting to feel sick. What should I do?

If you start to notice changes in your health as a result of the diet, go back to your regular diet and consult a doctor immediately. If your symptoms are serious, call 911.

Related:

The DASH Diet

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