The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Eating Pattern in Special Populations
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The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) trial showed that a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy products with reduced total and saturated fat, cholesterol, and sugar-sweetened products effectively lowers blood pressure in individuals with prehypertension and stage I hypertension. Limited evidence is available on the safety and efficacy of the DASH eating pattern in special patient populations that were excluded from the trial. Caution should be exercised before initiating the DASH diet in patients with chronic kidney disease, chronic liver disease, and those who are prescribed renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system antagonist, but these conditions are not strict contraindications to DASH. Modifications to the DASH diet may be necessary to facilitate its use in patients with chronic heart failure, uncontrolled diabetes mellitus type II, lactose intolerance, and celiac disease. In general, the DASH diet can be adopted by most patient populations and initiated simultaneously with medication therapy and other lifestyle interventions.