As weight loss becomes an obsession for thousands of people across the globe, they look for effective ways to lose weight fast and keep it off for long. While the efficacy and sustainability of weight loss are the factors that are considered as really important, safety is another key consideration for evaluating any weight loss measure. Over the years, HCG diet has come ahead as a popular weight loss measure. In fact, thousands of weight watchers around the world vouch for its efficacy, sustainability and safety. What more, most say that it is easy to follow and brings results amazingly fast, with people successfully shedding as much as 1-2 pounds on a daily basis! Before exploring the unlimited potential of HCG diet, let us unravel it completely and see how it actually works.
What is the HCG diet protocol?
What is the HCG diet programme? This is the first question that every new dieter would ask. To begin with, the history of HCG diet is to be explored. The concept of HCG diet was first ideated by a physician Albert Simeons in the 1950’s. He considered the role of HCG as a pregnancy hormone, which is synthesized in greater quantities as the embryo undergoes implantation during pregnancy. Dr. Simeons’ found out that HCG regulates the hypothalamus, the part of the brain which is responsible for controlling hunger, thirst, tiredness and body temperature. He interpreted that HCG injections could be used to trick the hypothalamus for increasing the metabolism and inducing the loss of stored fat. Combined with consumption of very few calories, HCG could stimulate the hypothalamus to use up stored fat for energy, thus promoting effective weight loss.
Over the years, the HCG diet plan has become popular as dieters have found it to be safe and effective for losing weight. The best part of this program is that it does not put the body into “starvation mode”, which means that weight loss happens due to loss of fat and not lean muscle. While Simeons used HCG injections to induce weight loss, today the hormone is available in varied forms such as drops, pills and sprays. Drops are being used more these days because they are easy to use, effective and pain-free. Around 8-10 drops taken thrice a day along with a low-calorie diet restricted to 500 calories a day brings amazing weight loss benefits for the dieters. Moreover, it metabolizes the subcutaneous fat which is otherwise hard to remove.
What to eat and what not to eat on the plan?
As it has been said, HCG diet requires the dieter to limit the calorie consumption to only 500 calories a day during the core phase, which forms a major part of the protocol. The intake can however be increased to 800-1000 calories a day during the maintenance phase. This is the last phase of the diet when the body is made to adapt for sustaining weight loss even after HCG is discontinued. But it is not only about calorie restriction as you need to know about the foods that you can eat and the ones you need to avoid. After all, eating the right kind of foods is the mainstay of any diet plan and HCG diet is no exception. The 500 calorie mark includes two meals made of a serving each of a protein, bread, vegetable and fruit. The foods that are permitted include:
- Non-starchy Vegetables such as celery, cabbage, lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes and onions
- Fruits such as apples, oranges, strawberries, and red grapefruit
- Lean Meat including lean ground beef, chicken breast, white fish, shrimp and lobster
- Water, tea and coffee can be taken without any restriction
The foods to be avoided while following the HCG diet are:
- Fatty Foods such as nuts, fatty fish and meat, and anything made with oil and fat
- Starchy Vegetables such as potatoes and sweet potatoes
- Added Sugar is not permitted in any form
How does HCG diet actually work to result in effective weight loss?
Basically, HCG hormone stimulates the metabolism, which directly results in weight loss. As the second component of the protocol, the dieter has to limit his calorie intake to 500 calories a day. At the same time, the HCG drugs speeds up the metabolic rate to accelerate the calorie burning process. The dieter burns as many as 3000-4000 calories a day which is much more than the daily intake. As a result, the body starts burning up the accumulated fat to bridge the calorie gap and reach the 3000-4000 calorie mark. In this way, the protocol results in effective and rapid loss of accumulated fat, leaving the dieter leaner and fitter.
Talking about the sustainability of weight loss, the HCG diet is highly effective in bringing about sustainable weight loss. The Phase 3 or maintenance phase of the protocol is designed to adapt the body to keep the weight off despite the discontinuation of the drug. In this phase, the dieter still has to limit the daily calorie intake to 800-1000 calories. At the same time, the HCG dosage is halted. After the rigorous core phase of the protocol, this phase allows the body to come back to normal yet continue the weight loss on the basis of the momentum set by the diet. The dieter can sustain the weight loss without much effort, with just some exercise and diet control to take care. Also, HCG diet is considered completely safe even if repeated time and again to lose more weight in the future.
Thousands of people across the globe have lost unbelievable amounts of weight with the HCG diet protocol and they advocate its efficacy and safety. Most of them admit that it brings about rapid weight loss without leading you to starvation. While 500 calories a day seems a very small amount for a person’s need, the diet does not make you feel deprived at all. Rather, it is all about resetting your metabolic system so that you keep losing weight or at least maintain the weight loss even after the end of the protocol.