The hCG Diet was developed in the 1950’s by Dr. Andrew T.W. Simeons. It is based on a hormone (hCG) that is found in a pregnant woman’s body.
Dr. Simeons believed that using low-dose hCG would result in fat loss, rather than lean tissue (muscle) loss. The daily hormone injections are used in conjunction with an extremely low calorie (500 cal/day) diet.
Simeons also claimed the hCG would eliminate the major hunger pangs that you would experience on a 500 calorie diet.
The hCG diet is supposed to help you lose a pound a day or more. Daily injections are given on 23 days of a 26 day cycle. Treatments could last up to 40 days, with no more than 4 total treatments allowed. The treatment is stopped when either 34 lbs.
have been lost or 40 injections have been given. A six week break is prescribed between treatment cycles. Proponents of the hCG diet maintain that while you’re only using the hormone in short term cycles, the purpose of the diet is to break unhealthy eating behaviors and food addictions
What Do You Eat? Not much. A 500 calorie a day diet is a starvation level of calories. The food that is recommended should be high protein and low in carbs and high fat foods. Alcohol is not allowed. Tea, coffee, plain water, or mineral water (2 liters of water per day is recommended) are the only drinks allowed.
Reviews The FDA has stated that hCG is fraudulent and ineffective for weight loss. The FDA doesn't approve hCG use for any other reason other than for fertility. Even with it not being approved, people get access to it from finding a doctor willing to write a prescription for it. There are lots of weight loss clinics more than willing to provide hCG.
Most studies show no difference in weight loss between 2 groups on the same low calorie diet, with one receiving the hCG and the other receiving a placebo. There is also no evidence of a reduction of hunger pangs while using hCG, or is fat loss more likely as opposed to muscle loss.
Both the Journal of the American Medical Association and the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that warn that hCG is neither safe, nor effective as a weight-loss aid. There have been few reports of health problems as a result of using the hCG diet.
Bottom Line Any diet that restricts calories below 1,000 and claims you can lose a pound a day should be immediately rejected. Of course you’ll lose weight eating only 500 calories a day.
Using the hGC has nothing to do with it, as the studies showed. The calorie restriction is what leads to any weight loss. You could take just about any substance and combine it with a 500 calorie/day diet and you would lose weight.
Restricting calories that much is extremely unhealthy. You’ll definitely lose muscle and your metabolism will slow down because your body thinks it’s starving....which it is! The diet doesn't train you how to eat properly, with portions that will allow you to maintain a healthy weight.
The rebound effect would be huge when coming off this diet. You’ll gain all the weight back and more because it is so extreme.
The hGC diet is the latest in a long line of fad diets. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts when it comes to losing weight. Only hard work, discipline, and moderation gets results that can last.