How the DASH Diet Can Help You Lose Weight - dummies

How the DASH Diet Can Help You Lose Weight

By Sarah Samaan, Rosanne Rust, Cynthia Kleckner

The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet wasn’t designed as a weight-loss program, but it’s perfect for the job. Why, you ask? Because a DASH diet is chock-full of green leafy vegetables and fruit, it fills you up with health-promoting foods that are low in calories and fat.

By choosing to eat the DASH way, you’ll add plenty of low-fat dairy products such as Greek yogurt. This super food is super high in hunger-squashing protein and a great source of calcium to boot. Nuts are another DASH-friendly treat that calm the hunger beast while boosting heart health.

Need more evidence? Consider the results of a 2010 study from Duke University, which evaluated the effects of a calorie-cutting DASH diet plus exercise for overweight and obese men and women.

The four-month program, designed with a weight-loss goal of one half to a full pound per week, was tested against the DASH diet without weight loss and against a typical American diet. At the end of the four months, those on the weight-loss plan were down more than 20 pounds on average.

Compared to their baseline numbers, systolic blood pressure had dropped by about 16 points, and diastolic by 10. DASH dieters without weight loss, on the other hand, lowered systolic blood pressure a respectable but not as impressive 11 points, and diastolic 7.5 points. On top of all that, those who lost weight with DASH were at lower risk for diabetes, had better lipid profiles, and could exercise for longer.