Dash diet hypertension – what is it exactly?Speaking of hypertension, we have to first explain what is the blood pressure. It is the force of blood against artery walls. It is measured in millimeteres of mercury (mm Hg) and recorded as two numbers – systolic pressure (when the heart beats and contracts – it is the higher pressure) over diastolic pressure (when the heart relaxes between beats – it is lower, in that time our heart is loosen). For many people the issue of hypertension could be unclear. What is hypertension anyway?
Our tension changes depending on the time of the day, for example – a lot of people have lower blood pressure at the morning than in the evening. Important could be also our mood – are we stressed, depressed or happy and what we eat – too much salt could raise our blood pressure dangerously. But when high blood pressure becomes a disease? If several times in a certain period of time our blood pressure overdoes 140/90 mm Hg, it could be a sign that we have hypertension. There are also some situations, when blood pressure over 130/80 mm Hg is a malfunction – it is when those people have already had a heart attack, brain damage or they suffer from diabetes. We cannot recognize hypertension using one pressure measurement (if the person does not suffer from the diseases related with hypertension, of course).
But the DASH diet for hypertension could be useful even if our blood pressure is only slightly over the normal one. Without special food, we should only remember about the DASH eating plan – how many servings of different kinds of food we can eat daily and lower the intake of sodium. Seems to be easy, isn’t it? However, scientist proved that even if we will not eat as much salt as we used to, and we slightly modify our lifestyle and food habits, our blood pressure measurements and health condition could improve a lot.
The first experiment proved that the dash eating plan is the most effective one if it goes for lowering the blood pressure. Futhermore, the blood pressure reductions came fast – within two weeks of starting the plan. In the second experiment, the participants were parted in three different eating planes – into the three sodium levels. The results showed, that the best effects give the dash eating plan at the sodium intake of 1,5 milligrams per day. This combination is used in nowadays DASH menu and dash meal plans.