The U.S. adult obesity rate stands at a worrying 42.54%, with an upward trajectory. Researchers link obesity to multiple health issues like heart problems, diabetes, hypertension, and some cancers. You can keep obesity at bay by exercising regularly and watching what you eat.
If losing weight is among your new year’s resolutions, then maybe the HCG diet can work for you. The HCG diet is gaining traction in the country because of how fast it helps people lose weight, with some people losing up-to one pound a day.
So, how does the HCG diet work, and what are its purported benefits?
Today, we’ll be looking at everything you need to know about the HCG diet, starting from what it is, how it works, and how you can get on the HCG diet. Keep reading to learn more.
What Is the HCG Diet and How Does the HCG Diet Work?
The HCG diet roots trace back to the 1950s when Albert Simeons, an endocrinologist from Britain, discovered the HCG hormone could be a weight-loss aid. This was after he noticed malnourished women in India deliver perfectly healthy babies. He concluded that the hormone transformed fat into energy for their growing babies in the womb.
He theorized that the hormone could also help accelerate weight loss in anyone and created a diet based on two protocols, which were:
- Limiting calories intake to just 500 every day over lunch and dinner
- Daily 125 IUs HCG hormone injection
HCG is short for Human Chorionic Gonadotropin. This is a protein-based hormone that women produce during pregnancy. In fact, it’s one of the many pregnancy indicators and facilitates the production of progesterone which helps maintain pregnancy.
HCG hormone is available as an injection, pellets, oral drops, and sprays. Scientists attribute weight gain to certain hormone deficiencies. That’s why people with thyroid complications gain a lot of weight
The HCG hormone helps maintain hormone balance and thus reverses weight gain from thyroid complications, menopause, and andropause. The hormone also triggers the conversion of fat into energy. Regular administration of this hormone and restricting calorie intake can help you lose between 0.5 to 1 pound a day.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that the HCH hormone suppresses appetite. This makes it easier to restrict calorie intake because you won’t feel too hungry.
What to and What Not to Eat on an HCG Diet
As mentioned earlier, calorie restriction plays a central role in the HCG diet. Like any other diet, the HCG diet requires you to watch what you eat. That means you should keep all the fast food and sugary treats at bay.
For your HCG diet to be effective, you need to eat fruits like oranges, apples, strawberries, and the likes. Also, eat lots of vegetables, especially non-starchy vegetables like cucumber, cabbage, and celery. For meat, only consume lean white meat like shrimp, white fish, lobster, and chicken breasts.
Keep away from fatty foods like fries and potato chips. Avoid fried food because the diet centers on low-fat consumption as much as it does on the hormone.
HCG Diet for Body Builders
If your goal is to build muscle, then you should give the HCG diet a whirl. That’s because the HCG hormone helps prevent muscle loss throughout the dieting period. HCG promotes the release of testosterone, which enhances muscle growth.
This makes the HCG diet unique from other diets because most people on diets that restrict calorie intake lose lots of muscle. Muscle is heavier than fat, and sometimes most of the weight you lose is actually muscle mass and not fat.
Losing muscle ruins your metabolism, which makes you burn fat slower, counteracting the progress of your diet. What’s more, you’ll have to work harder to regain the lost muscle. Consider the HCG diet if you want to maintain muscle while losing fat.
Benefits of the HCG Diet
Although most nutritionists wouldn’t recommend the HCG diet, most people have achieved their weight loss goals through the program. Here are a few HCG benefits.
It Controls Your Appetite
If you find yourself gobbling down a lot of food every day, then maybe you should consider the HCG diet. As mentioned above, HCG is an appetite suppressant that helps maintain your appetite. This can help you lose weight faster because you don’t eat as much.
Keeps Your Calorie Consumption in Check
Calorie restriction is at the core of the HCG diet. Maintaining a strict HCG diet means limiting consumption to only 500 calories each day. This won’t be such a difficult fete considering the HCG hormone is an appetite suppressant.
Keeps You Energized
The HCG diet helps you maintain high levels of energy throughout the day. This is because the HCG hormone promotes the conversion of fat into energy. This makes you more active, which in turn helps you lose weight further.
Doesn’t Burn Muscle
As mentioned above, the HCG diet is one of the few diets that allow you to retain muscle mass while losing fat. This makes it an excellent diet for bodybuilders, especially during the shredding part. The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolic rate, which means you’ll lose weight faster.
These are just a few of the many HCG diet benefits. However, note that you can only experience these benefits if you are consistent and maintain food discipline.
HCG Diet Tips
If you’re looking to jump on the HCG diet bandwagon, then now is the perfect time to start. Here are a few HCG diet tips to get you off on the right foot.
- Use a weight loss tracker or journal to help keep track of your progress
- Have realistic goals to keep you focused and motivated
- Forgive yourself when you falter but get right back on track
- Celebrate every milestone
These few tips are enough for the first few weeks of the HCG diet. Make sure you regularly review instructions on HCG dieting to confirm you’re doing the right thing.
Start Your HCG Diet Today
The question, “How does the HCG diet work?” is one you should now comfortably answer. You don’t have time to waste, so the best time to start your HCG diet is today. Ensure you consult with your doctor before starting the diet to know whether it’s a good idea.
For more informative content, be sure you check out the other articles on the site.