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EFFICACY OF THE DASH DIET TO MANAGE BLOOD PRESSURE AMONG ADOLESCENTS: CASE STUDY FINDINGS

by LATTIN, BARBARA

Abstract (Summary)
Background: Hypertension is the most commonly diagnosed and treated health problem in the United States1. It is a recognized risk factor for heart failure, kidney disease, and premature death. Current recommendations for the prevention and treatment of high blood pressure emphasize lifestyle modifications. The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet is currently considered one of the most effective non-pharmacological treatments for controlling blood pressure in adults. The Task Force on High Blood Pressure in Children and Adolescents suggests as many as five percent of the pediatric population has high blood pressure. The current treatment recommendation for children and adolescents diagnosed with elevated blood pressure is lifestyle change, including a low sodium diet, increased physical activity, weight loss, and the DASH diet. To date, the effectiveness of the DASH diet for children and adolescents has not been determined. Methods: After an extensive literature review, it was determined an age-appropriate curriculum was needed. The DASH-4-Teens curriculum was developed based on the DASH principals (tailored to the dietary requirements of adolescents) and the Social Cognitive Theory, which has proven to be effective in guiding adolescents to change unhealthy dietary behaviors. The intervention includes a telephone and mail-based behavior modification component that can be easily added into the standard clinic-based treatment protocol. Results: A clinical trial designed by the Department of Nutritional Science at the University of Cincinnati and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Hypertension Center is ongoing. The four adolescents that have completed the DASH-4-Teens intervention have experienced blood pressure reductions (10mmHg/systolic, 2 mmHg/diastolic)consistent with reductions (11mmHg/systolic, 5mmHg/diastolic) in adults that participated in the DASH feeding trials and the reductions (2mmHg/systolic; 7.4mmHg/diastolic) found in free-living adults participating in the PREMIER Trial. Conclusions: The results to date support the efficacy of the DASH-4-Teens curriculum developed for this study in managing blood pressure among adolescents.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:University of Cincinnati

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:blood pressure adolescents dash diet

ISBN:

Date of Publication:01/01/2004

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