The DASH Diet is best done in two stages, so the DASH Diet phase 1 is basically a low-carbohydrate diet, with no fruit and whole grains, it lasts for 14 days. Dash Diet Phase 1 is designed to reset your metabolism and boost your natural calorie burning processes. With this protein-rich, low carbohydrate and sugar period you will see an immediate and visible weight loss.
During the 14 days of Stage 1, you will learn how to satisfy your hunger and feel fuller longer. To regulate your blood sugar and help curb your cravings, avoid fruit and whole grains, which have a lot of natural sugar, and alcohol, which also contain sugars. You can enjoy 2-3 servings of low-fat dairy per day. This would include 1 cup of skim milk or low-fat yogurt. Avoid regular or even fat-free cheese because they are often high in sodium.
You can also enjoy up to 6 ounces of lean meats, fish and poultry a day. Aim for 4 to 5 servings of beans or lentils a week.
Phase One dieters will need to consume an unlimited intake of non-starchy vegetables and include some protein-rich foods, such as lean meat, fish, low-fat cheese and nuts. Proteins work to prevent snacking and work to keep blood sugar levels stable because they help dieters to feel full and satisfied. Removing starch and sugar from the food intake will reduce the body’s need for insulin, which helps us desire lighter, healthier foods. It’s important to choose the foods you like.
Avoid starchy foods with sugar, you’re helping to regulate your blood sugar and diminish cravings. Try leafy greens like lettuce and spinach or cruciferous vegetables like broccoli or cabbage. You can also eat cucumbers, squash, peppers and tomatoes.
Opt for protein-rich foods that have healthy fats, like fresh nuts and seeds, or fatty fish like salmon or mackerel. Avocados are loaded with monounsaturated fats as well as antioxidants lutein, vitamin E and beta-carotene. Toss them in a salad along with vegetable oils, especially olive, canola and nut oils, which you can use as salad dressing.
Dash Diet Stage 1 Foods you are able to eat in limited amounts
- 2 servings per day for smaller appetite, 2-3 servings per day for moderate appetite, 2-4 servings per day for large appetite
- Serving size – 8 ounces yogurt (1 per day), 1 ounce cheese, ½ cup cottage cheese
- Nuts, beans, seeds
- 1 serving per day for smaller appetite, 1-2 servings per day for moderate appetite, 1-2 servings per day for large appetite
- Serving size – ¼ cup beans, ¼ cup nuts, ¼ cup seeds
- Choose nuts in the shell to slow you down, and choose nuts that are not addictive for you
- No clear guidelines on portions of vegetarian proteins for vegetarian diets
- Lean meat, fish, poultry, eggs
- 5-6 ounces per day of cooked meat or protein for smaller appetite, 6-8 ounces per day for moderate appetite, 8-11 ounces per day for large appetite
- 3 ounces is about the size of the palm of a woman’s hand; 4 ounces is about the size of a woman’s palm and thumb; 5 ounces is about the size of a man’s palm. 1 egg = 1 ounces, 2 egg whites = 1 ounce
- Fats – heart-healthy
- 1-2 servings per day for smaller appetite, 2-3 servings per day for moderate appetite, 2-4 servings per day for large appetite
- Serving size – 1 tablespoon salad dressing, 1 teaspoon of butter or oil
Dash Diet Stage One Menu
DO NOT eat these Foods in phase 1 of The DASH Diet
- Starchy foods (other than beans)
- No foods made from flour e.g. bread, pasta
- No grains e.g. rice, etc.
- No starchy vegetables such as corn, potatoes, winter squash
- No foods fried in batter
- Alcoholic beverage
Then after you have completed Phase 1 of the Dash Diet program, it’s onto Stage 2 of the Dash Diet, this is a lifestyle stage and will continue for a healthier lifestyle choice.