The best diet for 2014

The DASH diet claims to be a “healthy way of eating and is easy to use, flexible enough for most lifestyles and contains the food preferences of most people.” But what diet doesn’t boast about that? They don’t advertise the downsides, like its all pre-packaged foods and high in sodium (or substituted with sweeteners), or if you don’t eat dairy and eggs (don’t use our diet) cause you will not get enough nutrients. So how is this diet different?

Named #1 Diet for 2014

Recently, the U.S. News and World Report publication awarded the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, the healthiest diet on the market (2014). But it does more than the name implies and maybe the answer for you. 

Benefits of the DASH Diet

Developed by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the diet was specifically designed to lower blood pressure without medication, but it is also great for weight-loss. Benefits include: reducing cholesterol, improves insulin sensitivity, and lowers blood pressure and the risks of heart disease including diabetes, cancer, stroke and cholesterol.

What You Can Eat

Basically, there’s very little that is truly “off the plate” on this one and the guidelines are very flexible; it doesn’t restrict any one food group either. Also, there are free recipes online to get you started.

Elements of the Diet (based on a 2000 calorie diet):

Grains and grain products (7-8 servings daily)

Vegetables, fruits (4-5 servings daily)

Low fat or nonfat dairy foods (2-3 servings daily)

Nuts, seeds, legumes (4-5 servings per WEEK)

Lean meats, fish and poultry (2 or less daily)

Fats and sweets (limited)

Downside: According to the experts, because it is a well-rounded diet there are no known health-risks associated with it.However, giving up the fatty, sugary, salty foods may take some adjustment, and foods maybe bland in the beginning (but you can use herbs and spices). Also, produce and fresh foods cost more. Alcohol consumption isn’t recommended but the diet does allow for vegan, gluten-free and vegetarians for example.

Resources: The DASH Diet Action Plan book, The DASH Diet Weight-loss Solution, The Everyday DASH Diet Cookbook.

A journalist by trade, Corinne has written for both the military and civilian populations. She has a Master's in Writing and Bachelor's in English. She is also a military spouse and her family is currently stationed at Fort Hood.

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