4 Exercises to Pair with the Dash Diet

The DASH Diet, which stands for the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, aims to help individuals lower their blood pressure through a reduction of sodium intake and a low-calorie meal plan. The creators of this diet state that it will help dieters lower their blood pressure in as few as 14 days. Meal plans on the DASH Diet range from 1,600 calories a day to 3,100 calories a day. Dieters on the DASH Diet should aim to exercise, 30 minutes a day, three times a week. While the diet does not describe any exact exercise plan, dieters who have combined the low calorie Dash meal plan with exercise have experienced the must overall health improvements.  Below are several exercises that you can complete while on the DASH diet.

Exercise #1: Hamstring Roll

Utilizing an exercise ball, lie flat on the floor with the heels of your feet resting on the top of the ball. Extend your arms out beside you with palms flat on the ground. Lift your torso off the floor, allowing for your body to create a straight line from your toes through your abdominals. Using your hamstrings, pull the ball towards you. Work to keep your upper body still and straight. Return the ball to the starting position. Compete 10 repetitions.

Exercise #2: Diagonal Front Raises

Holding a dumbbell in each hand, stand with your feet hip-width apart. Let your arms hang down by your sides. Palms should be facing back. Slowly raise your arms up and out to the sides at the same time. Stop when your arms reach shoulder height. Your arms should be in the shape of the letter V out in front of your body. Slowly return to the start. Complete 2 sets of 10 repetitions. You should avoid this exercise if you have any chronic shoulder injury.  

Exercise #3: Lateral Raises

In this exercise, stand straight with your feet slightly further than hip-width apart. Slightly bend your knees. Holding a dumbbell in each hand, with palms facing inwards, hang your arms down your sides. Take a deep breath and slowly lift your arms straight out to shoulder height. Your body should form the letter T. Slowly return to the starting position. Complete two sets of 12 repetitions.

Exercise #4: Bicycle

Begin by lying on the floor with your hands behind your head. Your whole body should be in a straight line. Lift up your legs together at least twelve inches off the ground. Lift your right shoulder blade off the mat and crunch forward as you bring your left knee towards your elbow. Rotate your entire upper body to allow for your right elbow to touch your left knee. Return to center and repeat on the other side. Complete 15 repetitions.

For individuals on the DASH diet, incorporating exercise, either strength training or cardiovascular on most days of the week, will help accelerate weight loss and other positive health benefits.

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