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April 18, 2017

The DASH Diet, 20 Years Later

Author Affiliations
  • 1Duke Global Digital Health Science Center, Duke Global Health Institute, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina
  • 2Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina
  • 3Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina
JAMA. 2017;317(15):1529-1530. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.1628

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the publication showing the blood pressure–lowering effects of the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet.1 The DASH diet is considered an important advance in nutritional science. It emphasizes foods rich in protein, fiber, potassium, magnesium, and calcium, such as fruits and vegetables, beans, nuts, whole grains, and low-fat dairy. It also limits foods high in saturated fat and sugar.1 DASH is not a reduced-sodium diet, but its effect is enhanced by also lowering sodium intake.1 Since the creation of DASH 20 years ago, numerous trials have demonstrated that it consistently lowers blood pressure across a diverse range of patients with hypertension and prehypertension.

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