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Hypertension. 2003 Jul;42(1):8-13. Epub 2003 May 19.

Effects of the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet on the pressure-natriuresis relationship.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine and Pathophysiology, Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Mizuho-cho, Mizuho-ku, Nagoya 467-8601, Japan.


Blood pressure-lowering mechanisms of the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, rich in fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy foods, were analyzed based on the pressure-natriuresis relationship. Participants (n=375) were randomly assigned to control or DASH diet groups by using a parallel-group design. They then ate their assigned diet for 3 consecutive 30-day intervention feeding periods, during which sodium intake varied among 3 levels by a randomly assigned sequence. Urinary sodium excretion rate and mean arterial pressure were measured at the end of each sodium intake level. Mean arterial pressure and urinary sodium excretion were plotted on x and y axes, respectively, for participants eating control and DASH diets and were modeled as linear relationships for simplicity to allow the estimation of the extrapolated x-intercept and slope of the relationships. The DASH diet steepened the slope of the relationship (29.5+/-3.4 vs 64.9+/-13.1 [mmol/d]/mm Hg, P=0.0002) without significantly shifting the x-intercept (94.1+/-0.5 vs 93.2+/-0.6 mm Hg, NS) of the relationship. These data suggest a natriuretic action of the DASH diet.

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