Sarah Kiel, Harmons’ dietician, shares 2 recipes that are great for your heart’s health.
The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Diet
February is American Heart Month! Hypertension is an important risk factor for cardiovascular disease and affects almost one-third of the U.S. adult population.The DASH Diet has been shown to help maintain healthy blood pressure and has been voted the top overall diet of the year by health professionals seven years in a row! Bonus: The DASH Diet has also been shown to lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol!
DASH Diet Basics
The DASH Diet is low in saturated fat, cholesterol, and total fat, and emphasizes fruits, vegetables, fat-free or low-fat dairy products, whole grains, fish, poultry, and nuts. It also encourages reducing consumption of red meats, sweets, added sugars, and sugar-containing beverages. Increased potassium, magnesium, calcium, and fiber intake are also an integral and unique part of the DASH diet.
Other Actions You Can Take to Help Reduce Blood Pressure
- Be physically active most days of the week
- Attain or maintain a healthy weight
- If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation
- Take blood pressure medication as prescribed by your doctor
Naan with Asparagus & White Bean Spread: Adapted from the Love and Lemons Cookbook
Yields 4 Flatbreads
- Store-bought whole wheat flatbread, pita, or naan, or Naan Bread Recipe (this will make leftovers for snacking later!)
- 1 bunch asparagus, tough ends removed
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- White Bean Puree:
- 1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- Small bunch of fresh mint
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- Zest of one lemon
- Freshly ground pepper
Naan Bread: Adapted from a recipe by Chef Aaron Ballard
Yield: Makes 10 to 12 flatbreads
- 4 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 cups of plain yogurt
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- Olive oil for brushing
- Mix all ingredients in a mixer with dough hook or by hand until the dough comes together in a soft ball. Coat dough lightly with olive oil, and let rest for 30 minutes.
- Divide dough into golf ball sized portions. Coat with flour and roll to about 1/8″ thickness. Preheat a cast iron skillet or grill with no oil on high heat. Place bread on hot skillet or grill and bake until bread starts to bubble, about 1-2 minutes. Flip and bake for about 30 seconds more. Remove from heat and brush with olive oil.
Puree, Asparagus, and Toppings
- Toss asparagus in 1 teaspoon olive oil to coat, and add to hot skillet or grill. Turn asparagus until lightly browned on all sides, remove from heat.
- In a food processor, combine cannellini beans, 2 tablespoons olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt.
- Spread the white bean puree onto the naan and top with asparagus, cheese, mint, pine nuts, lemon zest, and pepper.