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Hcg Diet

The HCG diet is a method of losing weight that combines very little calorie intake and the use of a prescription drug called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). This diet became popular in the 1950s when a London physician speculated that the use of HCG for weight loss might help weight loss and redistribute fat from the thighs and buttocks to other parts of the body.

What is HCG?

HCG is, indeed, a naturally occurring hormone in pregnant women. In fact, it is the hormone that turns the urine pregnancy tests positive quite early after conception, when it is produced by the embryo. Later in pregnancy, HCG is made in generous amounts by the placenta. HCG plays several important roles during pregnancy. Early on, it promotes progeterone secretion from the corpus luteum (a structure that is left in the ovary after the egg is released at ovulation). Progesterone is very important in preparing the uterus for implantation of the egg and subsequent development of the fetus. Later, HCG appears to play an important role in sheltering the fetus against his mother's immune system. It has also been suggested that HCG is responsible for morning sickness. Finally, there is evidence that HCG plays a role in cellular/tissue growth.

HCG Diet Plan

The HCG diet plan combines a very low-calorie diet with the use of a prescription drug called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG). The very low-calorie diet usually restricts daily caloric intake to 500-800 calories. This severe calorie restriction can cause short-term weight loss. In the 1950s, a London physician thought that using the drug HCG with calorie restriction could increase weight loss and redistribute fat from the thighs and buttocks to different areas of the body. But studies show that HCG does not do this.

The HCG diet consists of three stages. The HCG Diet stages are:

  • Loading — 2 days of eating fatty, carb-filled foods.
  • Burning — 26 to 43 days of a 500-calorie diet, depending on your goal.
  • Maintenance — 3 weeks of a starch/sugar-free diet.

The loading stage requires that you begin taking the HCG and load with foods that are high in carbohydrates and fats. This is done so that your body will begin to adapt to the effects of the HCG.

In the burning stage you begin the VLCD (very-low calorie diet, this diet is outlined in the HCG Meal Plan section) while continuing with the drops.

The maintenance stage requires that you not eat any sugar or starches for 3 weeks.

The HCG Diet — Loading

Days 1 and 2 require that you load up on high-calorie, fatty foods. You may think this is counter-intuitive, or crazy, but it is absolutely necessary for the diet to work properly. Go ahead, go have a great meal!

The HCG Diet — Burning

You should set a goal before you begin as to the number of pounds you would like to lose. It isn't uncommon for people lose upwards of 30 pounds on a 25-day cycle of the HCG, however, your results will vary as every person's body is uniquely different.

HCG weight loss diet requires that you do the burning phase for at least 21 days and no more than 42 days. If you achieve your weight goal before the 21 days then you may bump up the number of calories you are eating, but continue with the burning phase until you have been in the burning phase for a minimum of 21 days. HCG diet plan become a very good lose weight fast diet when taken with HCG meal plans. If you do not achieve your weight goal and you have been in the burning phase for 42 days, then you must continue to the maintenance phase.

Some other things to note in this stage HCG weight loss program :

  • During your last three days in the burning phase, you should stop taking the HCG drops, but continue with the HCG Meal Plan.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Don't forget your HCG drops.
  • Follow the HCG Meal Plan

The HCG Diet — Maintenance

Before returning to a normal diet, you must follow this step to help your body adapt to other foods.

For the next three weeks, you must not eat any starches or sugars, otherwise you may begin to return to a normal diet. Your body needs this time to stabilize, so as the three weeks pass, reintroduce foods into your diet. When you near the end of the maintenance phase, slowly introduce sugars and starches into your diet.

Continue to record your weight each morning, and if you have gained more than two pounds in any given day, you should skip a meal. This helps your body regulate your appetite and weight.

Precautions

  • Anyone with health concerns should consult with a doctor before beginning any diet, including this diet.
  • Women who are menstruating should begin the diet immediately after a period, or at the very least 10 days before their next period. You should not start the HCG diet just before or during a period.
  • During the diet:
    • You should take the drops 3 times a day. Then, every 7 days, you should take no drops for that day, then continue as normal the next day.
    • You should weigh yourself every morning. This is the only weight that matters, as your weight will fluctuate during the day due to water retention.

    HCG Diet Dangers

    There are several serious reasons for concern that should give pause to anybody ready to try the HCG diet plan:

    • Very low calorie diets are unhealthy. Malnutrition/vitamin and essential nutrient deficiencies are a real risk for those trying them. It is practically impossible to meet nutritional needs with diets with less than 800 calories a day. HCG diet promoters often recommend use of vitamin and mineral supplements, and while these can help, they are not a sufficient substitute for a healthy, adequate diet. Especially for diet plans for women.
    • Very low calorie diets cause gallstones. I have seen a number of patients who developed gallstones after an aggressive diet very low in calories. Gallstone surgery is no small deal, even in the days of laparoscopic procedures.
    • HCG diets slow metabolism. These diets cause the body to go into a sort of hibernation mode, slowing down metabolic processes to a degree that is takes a lot more effort to lose weight in the future.
    • HCG diets are not sustainable. While they usually cause significant weight loss, these diets are so aggressive that they are difficult to follow even on the short-term. What I invariably see is people getting excited about the HCG diet, suffering through several weeks of semi-starvation, losing pounds usually in the double digits and boasting to everybody - including to me - about it, and then going gradually, or sometimes right away, to their old habits of unhealthy eating and sedentary life. And often before their next appointment, they have gained all the weight back, and then some. This yo-yo is not at all healthy for the human body. These people would be better off if they didn't diet at all.
    • HCG diets are expensive. Wasting money on diet fads is not news anymore, but it still stings when it happens to you...
  • Weight Loss Diet Plan