In a new study, researchers found that the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet, a diet for managing high blood pressure, has a new health benefit.
They found this famous diet may reduce the risk of heart failure in people under age 75.
The research was led by a team at Wake Forest School of Medicine.
The DASH diet is high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, poultry, fish, and low-fat dairy products.
It reduces the consumption of salt, red meat, sweets, and sugar-sweetened beverages. It is similar to the Mediterranean diet but differs in recommending low-fat dairy products and excluding alcoholic beverages.
Previous studies have examined how the DASH diet could influence the incidence of heart failure, but they have shown conflicting results.
In the study, the team reviewed heart health records over 13 years of 4,478 men and women who were between ages 45 and 84.
They found that people under 75 who most closely adhered to the DASH diet had a much lower risk of heart failure.
The researchers suggest that following the DASH diet could reduce the risk of heart failure by almost half, and the effect is better than any medicine.
For people older than 75, the effect of diets was not strong.
The team suggests that heart failure is a frequent cause of hospitalization in older adults and is linked to high health care costs.
The current study provides valuable information for further exploration of the DASH diet as an effective tool in the prevention of heart failure.
The lead author of the study is Claudia L. Campos, M.D., associate professor of general internal medicine at Wake Forest School of Medicine.
The study is published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
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