HCG, or Human Chorionic Gonadotropin is called the Pregnancy Hormone as this is being processed by the body during pregnancy. HGC, comprising of 244 amino acids, is made by cells found in the placenta, which plays a vital role when it comes to nourishing the egg after it has been impregnated and becomes connected to the uterine wall. In fact, HCG is the hormone that is used as a marker to determine pregnancy in home pregnancy tests. As women get further along in pregnancy, the HCG level gets higher and higher. Also, HCG is given to women to treat infertility by helping in inducing ovulation. Despite that, when males are given much lower doses, HCG acts as a precursor to increase low testosterone levels.
However, HCG has been popular for many years not because of its role during pregnancy but owing to the fact that it has been correlated to rapid weight loss. Although it has been popular for so many year, HCG still got its own controversies which are still raging today.
Advocates said that HCG helps you suppress your hunger and triggers your body to burn fat, not muscle. With HCG injections, you lose the fat and you save the muscle. However, not everyone is convinced that HCG is the magic potion for weight loss. Some argue, the weight loss is strictly due to the dramatic limited diet of 500 kilo calories a day paired with daily injections.
In 1954, a British endocrinologist named Albert Simeons pioneered HCG as a weight loss tool. In one of his clinical practices, Dr. Simeons are treating adolescent boys who have low testosterone levels with HCG. He observed that the boys began to slim down and started to waste abnormal belly fat. Over the next decades, Simeons conducted experiments with specific amounts of HCG and particular food intake. He then, showed to be true that, when both accurate amounts of HCG and food intake were adhered to as he had outlined, then both males and females would have the ability to lose remarkable amounts of abnormal fat in short periods of time than with just dieting and exercising exclusively.
Dr. Simeons published “Pounds and Inches, a New Approach to Obesity”, for professionals and people to gain better comprehension on his discovery. However, Simeons did not secured a validation from FDA that HCG is better for weight loss rather than common dieting. Be that as it may, over the course of years, the HCG diet popularity fall off.
In 2007, HCG rises it’s new are when Kevin Trudeau released a book called “The Weight Loss Cure, What THEY Don’t Know About”, which comprises enough details about the HCG Diet. Attention stirred again and people began researching on their own and started using HCG by administering through injections.
In addition, come 2008, Homeopathic HCG began being successfully used by many Naturopathic Professionals as a substitute to HCG prescription injections. Nonetheless, in a moment thereafter, a big manufacturer of homeopathic HCG permitted lay individuals to buy the product wholesale and sell to anyone without the required professional grasp and experience needed to supervise HCG Dieters. That occurrence burst out the pervasive, unconstrained, non-regulated trafficking of homeopathic HCG products on marketing websites such as e-Bay, Amazon and the likes.
Coupled with flagrant false claims replicated from Kevin Trudeau’s book “THE WEIGHT LOSS CURE”, the HCG Diet once more generated a lot of dispute and lack of certainty. It became highly commercialized between 2010 and 2011 with websites and manufacturers merchandising bottles of homeopathic HCG without regard for Professional Healthcare staff nor their web ownership identity revealed.
Presently, the HCG Diet Council receives constant inquiries from around the world from individuals who seeks for properly trained and experienced Healthcare Professionals to help supervise their HCG Diet. To date, even though the HCG Diet is reaping popularity again, still, there is only a relatively small group of adequately trained and well-experienced Healthcare Professionals for people to work with.
HCG Diet Mechanism
HCG Diet necessitates the utilization of a carefully mapped out diet that is healthy and quality foods consisting of 500 kilocalorie diet plus HCG administered through injections, drops, or pellets. The diet originally called for a stiff protocol with few revisions and allowing only one vegetable per meal, prohibited use of oil, no exercise, and a specific list of tolerated foods. However, as time passed by, the protocol has changed. Now, the HCG Diet has developed into a number of latter-day protocols. Today’s HCG Diet calls for a low calorie diet with a broader food list, exercise variations and a well-built focus on applying healthy habits for lifelong weight maintenance.
How does HCG Diet Work?
Diet drives weight loss, HCG on the other hand, changes how you lose the weight. On a standard diet often individuals lose muscle and interfere with metabolism, HCG helps individuals to keep the weight off by retaining muscle mass. HCG changes your body composition in favor of muscle over fat. It’s more a selective fat loss and that’s what helping individual lose their weight.
A person who’s losing weight with HCG primarily lose the fats and the muscles remain intact. The weight comes off but individuals are not losing importantly too much of the muscles. Without HCG, a person who’s trying to lose weight and undergoing low calorie diet experienced fat loss at the same time muscle loss. As one loses muscles in general, an individual also lose some of the critical parts of the muscle which makes the diet fall apart. As a result, an individual tend to gain all the weight back.
According to studies, on an average, a person can lose 41% less muscle when they’re doing the diet with HCG compared to the one’s who only does dieting on their own. HCG reduces the feeling of starving allowing individual to eat in small amounts comfortably. It is believed that the existence of HCG in the bloodstream takes the appetite away. In pregnant women, HCG often cause nausea in the early stages of pregnancy.
Also, HCG is a pro-hormone which assists the body in making more hormones. Since hormone deficiency or imbalance is usually part of the reason for weight gain, HCG hormone offers help. By lifting up hormone levels in the body, together with testosterone, the HCG hormone produces an anabolic state in the form of muscle-building which thwarts the catabolic state also known as, muscle-breakdown. There are hormone receptors on muscle fibers that answer to the growing hormone levels in individuals taking the HCG.
HCG Diet Protocol
Through different studies conducted, there are tons of different ways available online on how you can succeed with HCG Diet. However, it appears that Dr. Simeons’ plan has revealed the best course of action.
As designed by Dr. Simeons, following a strict 500 kilocalorie diet is one of the key. Followed by an in depth understanding of the whole diet plan itself. The daily dosage for shot should be 150-200 iu for 40 days. However, for women who’s on their menstrual cycle, it is advised that you stop your shots until your cycle is done. A Very Low Calorie Diet (VLCD) approach only allows limited and selected food list. The diet may consist of the following:
Individual is allowed to drink tea and coffee however, you are not allowed to use any sugar unless it’s saccharin or Stevia. A tablespoon of milk is also allowed as long as it will be consumed within 24 hours and of course, water.
Lunchtime is one of the most important meal of the day for HCG dieter as this is when you’re going to get your protein. A 100 grams of lean meat sources such as beef, veal, chicken breast, fresh white fish, lobster, shrimp, or crab may be part of your diet. No salmon, tuna, herring, or any dried and/or pickled fish is permitted. Only you have to take note of some do’s and don’t’s like removing all the visible fat on your protein source and by preparing the meat only through boiling or grilling without the use of any extra fat.
Also, lunchtime is when you can have wide range of food options. This is when you can choose from varieties of vegetables that would go well with your meat. You may choose to eat green salad, spinach, green beets, cabbage, chard, chicory, celery, red radishes, tomatoes, fennel, onions, asparagus, and cucumbers. Again, you are only allowed to eat these vegetable by following a specific cooking method such as steaming, boiling, or grilling without any extra fats.
Aside from vegetables, fruits are also allowed. In fact, you may have your fruits one for lunch and for dinner. You can choose from one apple, one orange, handful of strawberries and half of a grapefruit.
Bread may be included but only one breadstick or a piece of toasted melba.
At dinner you are allowed to have the same food choices with your lunch. Howbeit, it is recommended that you differ your lunch from your dinner as this will avoid you from finding your meals repetitive and getting used to it.
Generally, seasonings are allowed to avoid eating bland food. You may use small amounts of salt, pepper, garlic, lemon juice, basil, and other natural herbs to flavor your food. Still and all, using any type of of fats may it be olive oil, vegetable oil, and others is not allowed.
As part of the protocol, HCG diet follows three phases:
- Loading phase: Sure it is mentioned that, fat is not allowed when you are in a HCG diet. However, on the loading phase, once you start taking HCG you’ve got to eat plenty of high fat and high calorie food for 2 days that’s why it is called the loading phase.
- Weight loss phase: While you’re taking HCG continuously, this is the time when the strict 500 kilocalories protocol should be strictly followed for 3 to 6 weeks.
- Maintenance phase: After 3-6 weeks, this is the time when you’re going to stop taking in HCG. You will be allowed to gradually increase your food intake but sugar and other starchy foods is still not allowed for 3 weeks.
For an individual who has less weight to lose, 3 weeks may be enough for the weight loss phase and for those who have a bigger weight to lose, 6 weeks is recommended and is even advised to repeat all the phases if needed.
HCG Diet Downside
500 kilocalories a day is no doubt equivalent to undernourishment as the recommended minimum calories that an individual is allowed to take is 1,200 kilocalories, as per experts advise. In addition, a very low calorie diet can result to a serious bone and muscle loss, formation of gallstones, imbalance in electrolytes, and worst is death. Some says that HCG Diet is actually a crash diet
Moreover, up to now, this kind of diet is not yet approved by FDA. In fact, FDA is giving warnings on the health risks associated with this diet program. As mentioned, since this diet program only requires 500 kilocalories a day, there are a lot of health risks at hand.
Furthermore, there is no exercise accompanying this diet which would help develop muscle tissue. Into the bargain, despite of all the claims on rapid weight loss, there reveals to be very little verification that HCG can actually lend the body a hand to burn the fats away instead of the bone or muscle tissue.
In summary, the HCG diet does not promise long term and effective results. Worst, it can cause harmful effects than benefits to the body.
What to Bear in Mind About HCG Diet?
In doing the HCG diet, it is advised that you find a legal and professional health-care practitioner who deals and studies well with this diet and let him do the shots for you. Ask your doctor if you really need this diet or if he could recommend some other remedy for you to lose weight effectively as this type of diet is really sensitive and has been facing a lot of controversies. Else, be careful on choosing your HCG shots as there are many fake products that are circulating market. They may actually claim that it contains HCG when in fact, it doesn’t.
Also, do your own research. Before you enter into this, make sure that you know the risks that you are going to face. Write down the pros and cons, and from there you make your decision whether you will push through with this kind of diet or not. Furthermore, make sure that you are ready — physically and emotionally — as this diet may give you results beyond your expectations.
Lastly, bare in mind that the key to this diet is knowledge.