Reasons to Try the DASH Diet

By Sarah Samaan, Rosanne Rust, Cynthia Kleckner

The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet addresses the widespread problem of hypertension, which affects people of all ages, shapes, sizes, colors, and nationalities. If you don’t have hypertension, chances are your parents, siblings, or friends do. And you may too one day because the prevalence of hypertension increases with age. If you live long enough, you have a 90 percent probability of hypertension.

Although some cases of hypertension are due purely to genetics, many times the problem can be prevented or lessened by simple lifestyle changes. That means you may have more control than you realize. Around the world, access to fast food, processed food, and convenience food, along with an increasingly sedentary way of life, means that more people are becoming hypertensive every year.

In fact, it’s estimated that if things keep going along the way they are, a jaw-dropping 60 percent of adults around the world will be hypertensive.

Many medications exist that are effective at treating hypertension, and the average person with hypertension requires at least two to three of these medications to really get the problem under control. But due to costs, side effects, and complications, many people never achieve normal blood pressure numbers. Why not save yourself some hassle and prevent hypertension in the first place by following the DASH diet?