What Is The DASH Diet & Why Lowering Your Blood Pressure Matters?

metabolic diets

Is the DASH diet right for you?

We often hear of so many diets that it makes our heads spin but add one more in the DASH diet to the list. With so many out there, it is hard to imagine that they all work. However, what is important to note with diets is that not all of them work for everyone and that you need to find the right one for you. With options galore, the choice to decide on how best to tackle dieting may seem daunting, but with guides like this below, you will have a better sense of if this diet really is for you. The DASH diet is definitely an interesting one and one worth exploring.

High blood pressure, or hypertension, is debilitating and can lead to serious issues down the line. The DASH diet, which we will get into, is meant to help treat and prevent hypertension in a natural way that also has plenty of healthy benefits. We all want a diet that is flexible and allows a little wiggle room, which doesn’t necessarily entail sugar or sweets. All we mean is one where you can enjoy what you eat without feeling like you are starving yourself or missing out on anything fun.

Let’s take a look at the DASH diet and see what this is all about. With more explanation for you to absorb, you may find this is one to look into further for what it can do for all your dietary wants and needs. Or, you will get to the end and say not for me. At least you know now of just one more option that is out there to help you see whatever kinds of gains you are looking for.


What Is The Dash Diet?

The DASH diet stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension and is a great approach to dieting for those looking to eat healthy, see changes to body composition, and treat or prevent high blood pressure (hypertension) (1). By eating foods that are rich in things like potassium and calcium, and restricting foods high in sodium, sugar, and saturated fat, you better protect yourself against hypertension and work to lower your blood pressure (2).

Very similar to the Mediterranean diet, this will focus on plant-based foods, nuts, low fat dairy products, and lean meats and fish. You do get a well-rounded diet with the DASH diet and many of these foods are consistent with what bodybuilders and other strength athletes eat on a regular basis. Perfect for preventing hypertension, while also aiding in weight loss and your physique goals, the DASH diet is certainly one to look into further.

Benefits Of It

As mentioned before, the benefits of the DASH diet are to help lower your blood pressure and improve your overall quality of life. By giving you a healthy diet to choose from and the right foods to amplify your health goals, what you will find is that changes to body composition with weight loss, as well as more energy and feeling better, are nice bonuses as a result of taking your nutrition into your own hands.


What To Eat On The DASH Diet

When it comes to foods on the DASH diet, many of them will look similar to what you as a bodybuilder or athlete eat normally. Grains, vegetables (cooked or raw), fruits, and nuts and seeds are great options and are of course staples in most diets. For protein sources, you will look towards more lean meats, poultry and fish as these are clean sources of protein and nice bases for a meal.

What you will look to avoid are foods high in sodium, sugar, and saturated fat for these will cause hypertension and limit the effects of the diet (3). While we all love those foods, sometimes we have to give up a little in order to see a lot of gains to our health and fitness.


Why Lowering Your Blood Pressure Matters

Lowering your blood pressure is very important and doctors everywhere will say the exact same thing. Hypertension is sometimes referred to as the silent killer because it can have detrimental effects on your body and will yield devastating results including things like heart attack, stroke, and kidney problems, among others (4). However, by working to reduce your blood pressure and optimize your health in the best way possible, you will limit the risks associated with high blood pressure and give yourself a chance to live longer and see a healthier lifestyle overall.

Bodybuilding & The DASH Diet

The DASH diet may be something to look into as a bodybuilder for the benefits towards better health are clearly evident. The foods of this diet are very similar to those eaten by a bodybuilder or strength athlete so you aren’t necessarily cutting out something imperative to a bodybuilders average diet.

With benefits towards weight loss and the ability to provide great protein sources, what you will find is that this diet may be something to consider for those looking to especially beef up their gains and optimize their health as well. Without definitively saying that this diet is perfect your goals, it does have some pros that are definitely worth looking into further to see if this diet is right for bodybuilders.

Wrap Up

Our health matters and something like the DASH diet is perfect for seeing effective gains when it comes to optimizing our health. Lowering your blood pressure is important, athlete or not, and with a diet that focuses on this specifically, your chances to see that happen are great. While this may work for bodybuilders, it is safe to say that more research could be done to see just how effective it is towards muscle growth and overall gains.

But what you will find is that this does help with weight loss, changes in body composition, and contains similar foods that bodybuilders eat on the whole. So, the Dash diet is out there and its benefits are now known.

Let us know what you think in the comments below. Also, be sure to follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. 

*Images courtesy of Envato


  1. Challa, H.; et al. (2021). “DASH Diet To Stop Hypertension”. (source)
  2. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (2021). “The Science Behind the DASH Eating Plan”. (source)
  3. Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “Diet Review: DASH”. (source)
  4. Oparil, S.; et al. (2018). “Hypertension”. (source)
Austin Letorney
Austin Letorney is a writer, actor, and fitness enthusiast. As a former rower, he has shifted his focus to sharing his knowledge of the fitness world and strength sports with others.