A DASH Diet Approved Grocery List
Excess sodium raises blood pressure, which is why the DASH diet recommends limiting sodium consumption to between 1,500 and 2,300 milligrams per day for ultimate blood pressure control. But how are you supposed to know which foods are the most heart-friendly when you’re at the grocery store? Easy! Just reference the following chart, which breaks down the foods that are higher-sodium choices, those that are more moderate options, and those that are better choices. Try to make as many better choices as you can.
|Type of Food||Not So Much||Okay||Better Choice|
|Meats||Deli meats||Low-sodium deli meats||Fresh-cooked meat|
|Beans||Regular canned beans, drained||No-salt-added or low-sodium, rinsed canned beans||Dry beans, homemade|
|Vegetables||Regular canned vegetables, drained||50% less salt canned vegetables, drained||No-salt-added canned vegetables, rinsed
|Cheese||Dry, aged cheese
Parmesan, Romano, blue
|Fresh natural cheese
Cheddar, brie, gouda, colby-jack, mozzarella
|Swiss, low-sodium varieties|
|Bread||Canned biscuits, corn bread||English muffins||Regular bread|
|Mixed nuts||Salted||Lightly salted||Unsalted|
|Peanut butter||Light or reduced-fat||Regular||Very low-sodium|
|Garlic powder||Salt-free seasonings; fresh garlic|
Always read labels. Often, reduced-fat items, while lower in fat, are higher in sodium and sugar. This exchange makes the fat reduction insignificant in the bigger picture. In addition, bread can be a major contributor of sodium, so compare different brands and varieties for the best choice.