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The DASH Diet Action Plan: Based on the National Institutes of Health Research: Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension Paperback – March 20, 2007
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There are no razzle-dazzle gimmicks surrounding this book. . . . the author, a registered dietitian, notes on the first page. She promises "no conflicting information, no magic combinations, no forbidden foods." What she provides is a back-to-basics guide to the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension). - Time Magazine
The DASH diet is based on studies funded by the NIH. Dietitian Heller presents the plan that will help readers who suffer from hypertension, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes. Her plan supports eating a variety of good food--especially fruits, vegetables, and whole grains--to result in weight loss and benefit one's arteries. - Library Journal
Chosen by U.S. News & World Report as the best diet, healthiest diet, & best diabetes diet. Even if your blood pressure and cholesterol are perfect and weight isn't a concern, following DASH makes sense. Heller offers an excellent introduction, meal plans, recipes, strategies for exercise & weight loss. - Today's Diet & Nutrition
"One of the top 50 life-changing health books." - Huffington Post
About the Author
Marla Heller is a Registered Dietitian, holding a Master of Science in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) where she completed course work towards a PhD in Behavior Sciences and Health Promotion. She is experienced in a wide variety of nutrition counseling specialties. She has been an adjunct clinical instructor in the Department of Human Nutrition and Dietetics at UIC, and also taught at Dominican University, National-Louis University, and the Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago. In addition to The DASH Diet Action Plan, Marla contributed the 4-week menu plan for Win the Weight Game by Sarah, the Duchess of York, and wrote the healthy eating chapter in "I Always Start My Diet on Mondays!" by Janice Alpert. She has been a spokesperson for the Greater Midwest Affiliate of the American Heart Association and is a Past-President of the Illinois Dietetic Association.
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This diet is recommended by all of the major health associations, (heart, kidney, cancer, diabetic) look it up on the health site, the only one I might add. I am shocked that I was able to cut sugar cold, as well as in just about one week, food I previously ate regularly tasted so salty, I could not possibly eat it because it was so over salted. Those two things were a big surprise to me, and maybe the biggest benefit of the diet.
This is a life style change if you do not currently eat purely healthy food in proper quantities and no junk food as well as exercise regularly now. It is great if you have the self control required to make it work long term. I have lost 30 pounds and have 15 to go, I have never felt so good. My goal is to reach my target weigh in a couple months and stay withing 5 pounds of my goal 2 years plus from now.
I'm actually enjoying being on this diet. I don't feel deprived. I'm eating a lot of good food and am rarely hungry. As a matter of fact, I usually have trouble eating all of the food that is on the day's menu because I am full before the end of the meal.
I like the DASH diet because I don't have to count calories or points or anything else. The book provides 28 days of meal plans using real food that I cook myself, not special pre-prepared food from the freezer section of the grocery store. The menus are easy to follow and have good food on them (including an occasional chocolate chip cookie.) I haven't followed the menus exactly, but that is OK. The book gives suggestions as to how to substitute appropriate foods for the menu items. The emphasis is on lean protein (fish, chicken, pork, some beef, egg whites, etc.), lots of fruits and vegitables, fiber and low sodium.
One key change that has made this diet successful is portion control. I bought a kitchen scale (to weigh food, not me) and use it, along with my measuring cups and spoons, every meal. For breakfast today, I had 1/2 cup scrambled egg whites on a whole wheat tortilla topped with avocado and 2 tablespoons of salsa, 6 ounces of pineapple, 6 ounces of orange juice and 8 ounces of milk. That is a lot of tasty food! I have no idea how many calories it was, but by measuring each item, I am confident that I ate a well balanced, healthy meal and I am on track for another successful day.
I've tried lots of diets in the past. This is the first one that I would gladly follow for the rest of my life.
Get the book.
My only criticism is that some of the plans and recipes require refinement or review. For example, I love scalloped potatoes and they appear on a menu, but no one is going to prepare only one cup of potatoes for four people. It is not realistic to cook such a small amount. Another recipe calls for cooking four pieces of chicken breast, but the recipe is for five servings. How do you divide that up?
All in all a great book and very useful.