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DASH diet

The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet can help you control your blood pressure. The DASH diet — which has been clinically proved to reduce blood pressure — is rich in grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products. It limits fat, saturated fat and cholesterol and provides plenty of fiber, potassium, calcium and magnesium.


Here are the types and amounts of foods recommended in the DASH diet, along with specific examples of serving sizes. Use these details as you plan your own menu.

 Food group

Servings for a 2,000-calorie-a-day diet

Servings for a 1,600-calorie-a-day diet

Serving samples

Grains and grain products

(Whole grains recommended)

6 to 8 a day

6 a day

1 slice whole-wheat bread
1 ounce (oz.) dry cereal
1/2 cup cooked cereal
1/2 cup cooked rice or pasta
1/2 English muffin

1/2 small (2 oz.) bagel


4 to 5 a day

4 a day

4 oz. 100 percent fruit juice
1 medium fruit
1/2 cup fresh, frozen fruit

1/2 canned fruit
1/4 cup dried fruit


4 to 5 a day

3 to 4 a day

4 oz. low-sodium vegetable juice
1 cup raw leafy green vegetables
1/2 cup cooked or raw vegetables

Dairy foods (low-fat or fat-free)

2 to 3 a day

2 to 3 a day

1 cup skim or 1% milk
1 cup yogurt
1 1/2 oz. low-fat or fat-free cheese

Meats, poultry and fish

6 or less a day

3 to 6 a day

1 oz. cooked skinless poultry, seafood or lean meat

Nuts, seeds and dry beans

4 to 5 a week

3 a week

1/3 cup nuts
2 tablespoons (1/2 oz.) seeds
1/2 cup cooked beans or peas

Fats and oils

2 to 3 a day

2 a day

1 teaspoon healthy spread
1 tablespoon low-fat mayonnaise
2 tablespoons light salad dressing
1 teaspoon vegetable oil


2 or less a day


1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon jelly or jam
1/2 oz. sorbet, jello
8 oz. lemonade

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