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DASH Diet thread

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  • margbarcomargbarco Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
    Welcome!!

    Thanks!
  • azkunkazkunk Posts: 120Member Member Posts: 120Member Member
    Hi all. I have high blood pressure and recently had some episodes where I get super dizzy and my heart starts racing. I am in the middle of a full cardiac workout up but I need to make a commitment to my diet and I like that DASH was recommended by the NIH. I bought the DASH Diet for weight loss book and that seems totally different. More like a low carb diet which seems the opposite to me of what I read on the NIH.

    I have a couple of questions. Are you all following the NIH version? The only thing I’m concerned about is that it seems low in protein. For a 1200 calorie diet, it recommends 3oz or less per day. Am I reading that right?
  • zeejane03zeejane03 Posts: 521Member Member Posts: 521Member Member
    azkunk wrote: »
    Hi all. I have high blood pressure and recently had some episodes where I get super dizzy and my heart starts racing. I am in the middle of a full cardiac workout up but I need to make a commitment to my diet and I like that DASH was recommended by the NIH. I bought the DASH Diet for weight loss book and that seems totally different. More like a low carb diet which seems the opposite to me of what I read on the NIH.

    I have a couple of questions. Are you all following the NIH version? The only thing I’m concerned about is that it seems low in protein. For a 1200 calorie diet, it recommends 3oz or less per day. Am I reading that right?

    Welcome to the group :)

    I think we're all following the NIH version, or a version of it (there's a higher fat NIH version that lemurecat is doing I believe?).

    As far as protein goes-when I'm track I'm consistently hitting over my protein goals. Besides the 3oz of meat (in my case fish/shrimp), there's also the dairy category and then you also get protein from whole grains etc. For example-I get 6g of protein from two slices of the whole grains bread I eat every morning (which I toast and then spread with two triangles of light cheese spread, which is another 4g of protein).

    Beans/lentils are another higher protein source, a couple of us have started includ these in the Grains section, because we eat them more frequently and they're a good fiber source, like grains are

    One of my tracking days last week I was over 80g of protein (which is higher than my recommended amount), and I only had 3oz of shrimp factored into that. The rest came from non-meat sources. That day I was at around 1,350 calories.
    edited February 10
  • azkunkazkunk Posts: 120Member Member Posts: 120Member Member
    Thank you @zeejane03. This will be a big change from how I currently eat. I eat a lot of convenience food/ frozen meals. It would be a big change for me to switch over to a more whole food diet and it’s a bit overwhelming. I did find an app that I think will help me keep track (Tally for iOS). I have a bunch of those frozen meals to finish up while I learn and plan. For now, I think I will focus on adding more whole foods... especially fruits and veggies which I really am not getting now.
  • zeejane03zeejane03 Posts: 521Member Member Posts: 521Member Member
    azkunk wrote: »
    Thank you @zeejane03. This will be a big change from how I currently eat. I eat a lot of convenience food/ frozen meals. It would be a big change for me to switch over to a more whole food diet and it’s a bit overwhelming. I did find an app that I think will help me keep track (Tally for iOS). I have a bunch of those frozen meals to finish up while I learn and plan. For now, I think I will focus on adding more whole foods... especially fruits and veggies which I really am not getting now.

    Just take it one step at a time, adding an extra serving of vegetables or fruit to your day is a great place to start!

    eta: also, I used to eat a lot of frozen dinners (especially Lean Cuisines). You can add a bag of steamer veggies to them to make them more filling and that gets several servings of veggies in :)
    edited February 10
  • emmamcgarityemmamcgarity Posts: 603Member Member Posts: 603Member Member
    Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.

    My sister’s doctor emphasized the low-fat dairy and increasing fruit and veggies as a place to start.

    What calorie goal dies myfitnesspal give you for weight loss? DASH is scaleable to fit your calorie goal. My calories are set to 1200 but I also exercise. So I have been scaling the 1600 calorie spreadsheet from the Oregon sheets. I’ve also been playing with adding more potassium rich foods to my diet. I still struggle with added sugar, but as I add in more of the DASH goals I am craving it a little less.
  • azkunkazkunk Posts: 120Member Member Posts: 120Member Member
    @zeejane03 steamers are a great idea!

    @emmamcgarity the free version of the app I downloaded only let’s you pick 3 things to track. I picked dairy, fruits and veggies. Glad I am on the right track. I think I can start with this. It doesn’t seem too overwhelming if I break it down.

    Thanks for the advice!
  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 1,330Member Member Posts: 1,330Member Member
    zeejane03 wrote: »
    azkunk wrote: »
    Hi all. I have high blood pressure and recently had some episodes where I get super dizzy and my heart starts racing. I am in the middle of a full cardiac workout up but I need to make a commitment to my diet and I like that DASH was recommended by the NIH. I bought the DASH Diet for weight loss book and that seems totally different. More like a low carb diet which seems the opposite to me of what I read on the NIH.

    I have a couple of questions. Are you all following the NIH version? The only thing I’m concerned about is that it seems low in protein. For a 1200 calorie diet, it recommends 3oz or less per day. Am I reading that right?

    Welcome to the group :)

    I think we're all following the NIH version, or a version of it (there's a higher fat NIH version that lemurecat is doing I believe?).

    Yes, there are a few different variations, including on sodium level. For HBP, I'd think that the classic version with the lower sodium option (1500) is a good call, and I'd recommend eating more than the required veg.
    As far as protein goes-when I'm track I'm consistently hitting over my protein goals. Besides the 3oz of meat (in my case fish/shrimp), there's also the dairy category and then you also get protein from whole grains etc. For example-I get 6g of protein from two slices of the whole grains bread I eat every morning (which I toast and then spread with two triangles of light cheese spread, which is another 4g of protein).

    Beans/lentils are another higher protein source, a couple of us have started includ these in the Grains section, because we eat them more frequently and they're a good fiber source, like grains are

    One of my tracking days last week I was over 80g of protein (which is higher than my recommended amount), and I only had 3oz of shrimp factored into that. The rest came from non-meat sources. That day I was at around 1,350 calories.

    Agree with all this. The tracker I found had more meat permitted (4-6 servings) but I've been trying to limit meat to one meal (although I will have 4 oz) and make it seafood as often as not, and occasionally have eggs (which count as one serving per egg) either for that meal or in a second meal.

    But even if I'm 100% vegetarian that day, I find with all the protein from various veg, from dairy (low fat greek yogurt is a great source, and so is low fat cottage cheese if you can find a low sodium, but it might not taste as good sadly), from beans and lentils, I'm good.

    I think zeejane and I both decided it made sense to group beans/lentils with grains rather than the more limited amounts in the NIH, and eat them more often.
  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 1,330Member Member Posts: 1,330Member Member
    Also agree with not feeling like it has to be all or nothing right away. Increasing fruit and veg (if the amounts are an increase for you) and adding in the low fat dairy and watching the sodium (eating whole foods/cooking from scratch is one of the easiest ways to do this) and tracking and seeing where you are and what it would make sense to adjust works best.

    To add to what I said above, my approach with meat is to have it at one meal (usually dinner, sometimes lunch, as I often have dinner leftovers for lunch), and to occasionally have all vegetarian days. I think it balances out over time.
  • emmamcgarityemmamcgarity Posts: 603Member Member Posts: 603Member Member
    Fruit 2
    Veggie 4
    Whole grain 0
    Dairy 2
    Meat 6
    Added sugar yes yes yes

    Today was my son’s birthday and that meant birthday cake and favorite foods for him. I tried to be mindful of choices and select DASH when possible. Today could have been much worse food wise. I’m only a couple hundred calories over and hit most of the food groups. So I’m satisfied with the choices I made.
  • trisH_7183trisH_7183 Posts: 1,420Member Member Posts: 1,420Member Member
    Finding whole grains a hard thing to track. A lot of pkgs say “Whole Grain”.....but no info on how much per serving.MFP doesn’t list whole grains in tracking. A lot to learn,so just becoming more aware,but not even close to tracking.

  • azkunkazkunk Posts: 120Member Member Posts: 120Member Member
    Veggies 3
    Fruit 3
    Dairy 2
    Workout (week) 2

    Hit all my numbers and stayed 100 calories below target. I’m going to start reading the DASH for weight loss and see what “phase 2” is about. I’m not feeling the “phase 1”, it’s a 2 week detox. I’m feeling more full eating all of the fruits and veggies. Had to for force myself to eat something to get over 1000 calories
  • emmamcgarityemmamcgarity Posts: 603Member Member Posts: 603Member Member
    trisH_7183 wrote: »
    Finding whole grains a hard thing to track. A lot of pkgs say “Whole Grain”.....but no info on how much per serving.MFP doesn’t list whole grains in tracking. A lot to learn,so just becoming more aware,but not even close to tracking.

    Here is what I am seeing on the Oregon DASH tracking sheet to describe whole grains.

    One OZ portion =
    1 OZ slice bread 1⁄2 cup cooked rice or pasta
    1⁄2 -11⁄4 cup dry cereal*
    *check Nutrition Facts label

    I generally count a cup of Cheerios as one serving of whole grain or a half cup of cooked oatmeal. I don’t often eat rice or pasta since they are more calorie dense. I also have been counting a granola bar as a serving of it states that it is whole grain.
  • emmamcgarityemmamcgarity Posts: 603Member Member Posts: 603Member Member
    Fruit 5
    Veggie 3
    Whole grain 3
    Dairy 2
    Meat 4
    Added sugar yes

  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 1,330Member Member Posts: 1,330Member Member
    trisH_7183 wrote: »
    Finding whole grains a hard thing to track. A lot of pkgs say “Whole Grain”.....but no info on how much per serving.MFP doesn’t list whole grains in tracking. A lot to learn,so just becoming more aware,but not even close to tracking.

    Here is what I am seeing on the Oregon DASH tracking sheet to describe whole grains.

    One OZ portion =
    1 OZ slice bread 1⁄2 cup cooked rice or pasta
    1⁄2 -11⁄4 cup dry cereal*
    *check Nutrition Facts label

    I generally count a cup of Cheerios as one serving of whole grain or a half cup of cooked oatmeal. I don’t often eat rice or pasta since they are more calorie dense. I also have been counting a granola bar as a serving of it states that it is whole grain.

    I think with grains the Oregon DASH is trying to make it easy with 1 oz = 1 serving. 1/2 cup cooked = about 1 oz dry (traditional serving is 2 oz, so this can be confusing). Once again I think the "serving size" thing is intended to be easier than just counting grams, but I find the opposite. (Although today I did not log, so went with servings!)

    Anyway, today:

    Breakfast smoothie: 3 servings fruit (avocado, strawberries, rhubarb), one serving dairy (yogurt), one serving almonds, 3 servings veg (spinach and fennel).

    Lunch: bean based chili with vegetables and corn, plus some fruit on the side (mango). 2 servings fruit, 2 servings beans, 1 serving grains (corn), 3 servings veg (celery, onions, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini).

    Dinner: chicken with green beans and spinach. 4 oz chicken, 4 servings of veg.

    Total:

    Meat -- 4 oz (okay)
    Dairy -- 1 serving (bit low)
    Nuts -- 1 serving (on point)
    Fruit -- 5 servings (fine with me, higher than normal)
    Veg -- 10 servings (on point)
    Grains/Legumes/Tubers -- 3 (I'm okay with it).
  • zeejane03zeejane03 Posts: 521Member Member Posts: 521Member Member
    trisH_7183 wrote: »
    Finding whole grains a hard thing to track. A lot of pkgs say “Whole Grain”.....but no info on how much per serving.MFP doesn’t list whole grains in tracking. A lot to learn,so just becoming more aware,but not even close to tracking.

    I look for the Whole Grains seal on packaged items (bread, crackers etc). and then go by the NIH DASH serving size recommendation (1 slice of bread, 1/2 cup of pasta/brown rice etc).

    eta: there's several levels of the seal, I don't get to picky about what level something has, I figure even the basic seal item is better than something that has no seal (so a multi-grain bread vs a white bread with bleached enriched white flour etc).

    https://wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grain-stamp
    edited February 12
  • margbarcomargbarco Posts: 86Member Member Posts: 86Member Member
    Can anybody elaborate as to why the emphasis on whole grains? I understand that whole grain foods are preferable to refined white flour foods, so is this the reason? To swap out refined carbs for whole food choices? Is it for the fiber? Is it the enrichment with micronutrients like iron?

    I ask because when I started tracking on mfp I cut out white carbs and have not missed not eating pasta, bread, cookies, etc. I’m afraid if I start to incorporate whole grain products it’ll become a slippery slope for me. I do better with abstaining rather than moderating.

    But if there’s something specific about whole grains that’s important for heart health, I’d like to understand and include these foods.

    Thank you!
  • zeejane03zeejane03 Posts: 521Member Member Posts: 521Member Member
    margbarco wrote: »
    Can anybody elaborate as to why the emphasis on whole grains? I understand that whole grain foods are preferable to refined white flour foods, so is this the reason? To swap out refined carbs for whole food choices? Is it for the fiber? Is it the enrichment with micronutrients like iron?

    I ask because when I started tracking on mfp I cut out white carbs and have not missed not eating pasta, bread, cookies, etc. I’m afraid if I start to incorporate whole grain products it’ll become a slippery slope for me. I do better with abstaining rather than moderating.

    But if there’s something specific about whole grains that’s important for heart health, I’d like to understand and include these foods.

    Thank you!

    I believe it's mostly because of the fiber?

    That would match up with the new findings out from WHO, about a diet higher in fiber may having better outcomes in certain diseases prevention

    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(18)31809-9/fulltext

    I just looked up the nutrition of a slice of regular white bread (Wonder bread brand) and compared it to the whole grains bread I eat. They both have 70 calories per slice, however my bread has more fiber and protein. When you're trying to get in 30 grams or more of fiber, every bit helps :)
  • zeejane03zeejane03 Posts: 521Member Member Posts: 521Member Member
    Adding to my previous post-if things like bread and pasta aren't a good fit for you then definitely don't feel like you have to eat them! There's lots of other fiber rich options, like beans, lentils, other grains etc that you can add for the fiber.

    Today I tried one of those Minute-Made Medley grains cups (you put it in the microwave for 1 minute and it's good to go). It's a one cup serving (I mixed it with a bag of steamer veggies and teryaki sauce), the medley was 230 calories and 8g of fiber, 6g of protein. Plus some nice micros.

    https://www.walmart.com/ip/Minute-Ready-to-Serve-Multi-Grain-Rice-Medley-8-8-Ounce-Serving/20918329

    eta: the steamer bag of veggies also had around 8g of fiber in it.
    edited February 12
  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 1,330Member Member Posts: 1,330Member Member
    margbarco wrote: »
    Can anybody elaborate as to why the emphasis on whole grains? I understand that whole grain foods are preferable to refined white flour foods, so is this the reason? To swap out refined carbs for whole food choices? Is it for the fiber? Is it the enrichment with micronutrients like iron?

    I think a big part of it is that DASH is supposed to be a relatively easy change, and so they focus on swapping white for whole grains. Grains are also a common part of the US diet and whole grains have some fiber and protein (although not a whole lot).

    My personal view (and deviation from the guidelines) is that vegetables and beans/lentils are better sources of most of what is desired here (fiber, potassium, other micros) and beans have an added benefit of more protein, so I'm grouping my starches (beans/lentils, whole grains, tubers (note: potatoes are great for potassium), and pulses), and aiming to hit the "grains" goal using all of them together.

    My research didn't find anything particularly special about grains in and of themselves, so I haven't really bothered to increase them much (I am eating them a bit more).
    edited February 12
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