If the HCG diet is so great, why won’t I try it? I’ve tried just about every diet on the planet as part of my “five days on a diet” experiment. But even the diet diva is not up for the HCG diet fad.
HCG stands for Human chorionic gonadotropin, the hormone that appears in a woman’s urine when she is pregnant and takes a pregnancy test.
A close friend of mine is currently on the hCG diet. While I’m curious to see how she does, I also know curiosity killed the cat.
The controversial HCG diet is based on the 1950s research of doctor, A.T.W. Simeons and thus, people often say they are following the “Simeons” protocol. Simeons suggests a very specific low-calorie diet. He stumbled on hCG as a diet aid when studying boys with underdeveloped glands. They were able to lose weight without hunger on a low-calorie diet while being treated with hCG.
If that’s not enough of a deterrent, here are my seven reasons for avoiding HCG:
No. 1: I hate shots. People used to take injections of hCG, but nowadays a lot of hCG fans are taking sublingual drops (under the tongue). Even with the new “delivery” system, I still won’t take HCG.
No. 2: HCG is approved as a medication for fertility and to promote the production of testosterone in males. At this time, HCG is not approved by the FDA as a medication for weight loss. Just because the FDA has not approved it, does not sway me one way or another – so even if they one day approve it, I still won’t try the HCG diet.
No. 3: The role of HCG in a pregnant woman’s body is to make sure the developing baby receives calories and nutrients to survive. It’s not natural to take HCG when you aren’t actually pregnant. And you may have an unintentional pregnancy since HCG is a fertility drug.
No. 4: The hCG diet is promoted by Kevin Trudeau – the info-commercial king with books such as “Nature Cures: ‘They’ Don’t Want You To Know About.” Sorry, Kevin, but your Mega Memory tapes did not give me super power memory – but enough of a memory to know not to trust the diets you endorse.
No. 5: As part of the diet, people eat only 500 calories a day. Supposedly your body is going to release stored fat to feed the non-existent baby that your body thinks it is carrying. The calorie count has to be low so your body has a reason to release the fat to protect the “baby.” Some people say you aren’t losing muscle, but I don’t believe it. You will lose weight on 500 calories a day – but it won’t last.
No. 6: Side effects to HCG include irritability, headaches, water retention, depression. Some severe side effects in females include ovarian hyper stimulation. Look for pelvis pain, abdominal pain, difficulty breathing, nausea, weight gain, diarrhea, vomiting and swelling of the hands, feet and legs. Seek a physician.
No. 7: You can’t exercise while on the HCG program. I can’t live without working out!
Some people stay on the HCG treatments for 26 days while others choose a 43 day routine. Some just use it on their own with their own “protocol.”
Bottom line: There are plenty of healthy, fit, lean people who got there by exercising and eating right. Don’t waste your time on starvation, fad diets. HCG is not a miracle solution. It’s a scam.
If my close friend ends up losing mainly body fat, keeps the fat off for more than a year and remains in peak health, I may give it a try — but I wouldn’t bet the family farm on it!