Pharma Dynamics’ sixth Cooking from the Heart recipe book, the DASH Edition, was named the “Best Professional Health & Nutrition Book in the World” this past weekend at the 2023 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.

The annual event is known as the “Oscars of gastronomy” and receives entries from more than 150 countries.

Nicole Jennings, spokesperson for Pharma Dynamics, who attended this past weekend’s award ceremony in Sweden says they are thrilled at the recognition the locally authored cookbook has received.

“We never envisioned for the initiative to expand to six books, but a decade later, it is more popular than ever and has proven to be an invaluable health resource for the South African public.

The DASH edition highlights the fact that dietary intake of magnesium, calcium and potassium is increased 3-fold when following the DASH eating plan. These minerals play a central role in regulating blood pressure and for many patients, the dietary intake is sub-optimal.

As a guide to patients, the DASH book lists ingredients that deliver the highest contribution of these minerals per portion size.

DASH works best when combined with a sodium-reduced diet, and patients can access our low-salt booklet here or via a QR code in the book.

The free cookbook series was initially intended to help patients with cardiovascular disease cook and eat healthier meals, but soon after Pharma Dynamics decided to also make the books available to the public at large as a way to reduce South Africans’ risk of heart disease and stroke. Pharma Dynamics recognises that diet and an active lifestyle is a cornerstone to a healthy life. Assisting patients with getting credible and easily accessible dietary frameworks is fundamental in our efforts to improve patient outcomes, beyond supplying cost effective medication.

There are currently more than 160 recipes from which South Africans can choose – all developed food consultant and author, Heleen Meyer, who has a strong focus on healthy eating in all her work. The books were compiled alongside dieticians from the Heart and Stroke Foundation (HSFSA).

Prof Pamela Naidoo, CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation SA says the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) edition (that won the international award), is the ideal cooking resource to have in the home for those wanting to stave off heart disease, hypertension, diabetes and other metabolic conditions.

“Too many South Africans are stricken with preventable chronic diseases. By following a healthy eating plan, as set out in the Cooking from the Heart recipe books, along with regular exercise, cutting out smoking and drinking alcohol in moderation, will go a long way in stemming diseases of lifestyle.”

The Cooking from the Heart recipe book collection comprises of six books, starting with the first focusing on traditional South African recipes that have been made heart-healthy, the second includes healthy breakfasts, lunches and snacks for adults and kids, the third on diabetic-friendly meals, the fourth provides healthy braai recipe options, the fifth book highlights food that are high in salt, which should be limited and the sixth edition concentrates on the DASH diet.

The public can access all the recipes online or via a free digitally downloadable cookbook, which can be accessed here.

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