I’ve never really been on a diet before. I’ve tried to watch what I eat in the past (only to say “To hell with it” a few weeks later) because I never really felt like I could commit to a full-on diet. I always looked at them as too restricting, too confining; the moment I feel like my solidarity as a person is taken away I immediately feel the need to rebel. After all, they don’t call them guilty pleasures for no reason.
But I decided to change my tune last month. A family member lost thirty pounds on the HCG diet in a little less than three months and it seemed like it wouldn’t be too difficult. Plus, I liked the thought of dropping alot of weight in a short amount of time.
I am a week so far into the diet and I can tell you it is working so far. The first two days aren’t so bad, mostly because you can eat whatever you want but the first day of the 500 calorie part is a huge adjustment. “The protocol” (the list of guidelines laid out by Dr. Simeons, the proponent of this new diet) warns you that mild hunger is normal during the first week while your body makes adjustments, especially if you didn’t eat enough during the first two days (which I don’t think I did). After a while though, the hunger pains do disappear. But the thought of everything you’re missing out on doesn’t.
For the last week, I’ve had a never-ending stream of chocolate cupcakes, white chocolate-covered strawberries, raspberry tiramisu and cheesecake running through my head. The cupcakes are the main thing; the funny part is, I don’t normally like cupcakes all that much. Watching (and smelling) everyone enjoy their 4th of July barbeques or pizza and wings after Friday night volleyball games gets to be a little wearisome while I chew on a piece of celery or an apple dipped in lime juice (which is surprisingly delicious, I must say). Sometimes when I’m bored, I can recreate the taste of the hot wings or the In N Out fries I’ve watched people eat throughout the week. I’ll be honest- the cravings have been so bad this past week that I even resorted to licking and sniffing a chocolate chip cookie.
But watching the ticker on the scale go down every day keeps me from taking a bite out of a toffee square or buying a Caramel Frappucino. Also, the fact that cheating just once on this diet can make you can five to seven pounds in a day and stop your progress for almost a week keeps the cravings from taking over. The protocol also prohibits gum chewing, but I’ve found that it keeps away the mild hunger feeling that still lingers from time to time. Drinking more water can help also as well as taking vitamins. The most important thing, however, is to keep your mind focused and on other things. Trust me, it’s easier said than done, but the losses that are incurred on this diet thus far easily outweigh the gains (no pun intended).
After this part of the diet is over, I’m not sure that I want to go back to eating all that other stuff. They say your appetite is supposed to change after being on this diet, so that could be the reason I’ve been thinking also about vegan desserts. I’ve been reading the famous vegan bakery BabyCakes NYC’s website non-stop for ideas on making healthier cupcakes (I’ve even entertained the idea of ordering some) and looking for places where I can buy vegan-style ice cream. I’m not thinking of going vegan by any means (I could never give up cheese), but I think as far as guilty pleasures go, this might not be such a bad alternative.