2. Eating plan

The DASH diet is flexible. It does not require any special foods, and you can eat a variety of foods from different food groups. Foods that are allowed:

  • A lot of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables
  • Low-fat or fat-free dairy products
  • Fish, poultry, beans, nuts, vegetable oils

Foods to avoid:

  • Full-fat dairy products
  • Red meat and fatty meats
  • Tropical oils: coconut oil, palm kernel, and palm oils
  • Sweets and sugary beverages
  • Processed foods

Foods should be:

  • Low in saturated and trans fats
  • Rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, fiber, and protein
  • Low in sodium

The following table shows the recommended eating plan for a 2,000-calorie diet.

Type of food

Servings on a 2,000-calorie diet

Grains and grain products (at least three whole grain foods per day)






Low-fat or non-fat dairy foods


Lean meats, fish, poultry

2 or less

Nuts, seeds, and legumes

4-5 per week

Fats and sweets



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