Fad diets: diets that are popular and usually promise a “quick fix” to weight loss. Does the HCG diet fall into that category? It depends.
HCG, or Human chorionic gonadotropin is a hormone that is naturally produced in both men and women in small quantities. This hormone is produced more in pregnant women. It was first used for weight loss with Dr. Simeons who performed weight loss studies using the hormone. He developed a protocol for the diet which he details in his 1954 book “Pounds and Inches”. Most HCG diets today are based on the original protocol, but many vary on the details.
The problem with any diet occurs when the dieter returns to their previous habits and food choices. When this happens, the weight lost can easily be regained and sometimes even plus more. So how can HCG be different?
Quick results = motivation
With anything that’s difficult, it can be hard to continue when you don’t see progress. Take language learning for example. It’s not impossible for adults to learn to speak another language fluently, however it’s uncommon because it’s difficult to see your progress in a language when you reach a certain level. It can take years to learn and it’s a lot of effort. So naturally, we get discouraged and give up.
The same happens with weight loss. We make big changes and then don’t see immediate results. This is super discouraging! Especially if you have a lot of weight to lose. However, with the HCG diet we tend to see quick results. Some people even lose 10 lbs in just the first week. This can give you the extra boost in motivation that you need to be successful.
The key to long-term success with the HCG diet is learning the right types of foods to eat. During the HCG diet your food options will be very limited and you will be eating very clean for the duration of the diet. This means no sugar, no oils, no cheese, etc. After 30+ days of eating healthy you will be able to feel the difference! Not just in weight, but you’ll see how much better you feel when you give your body healthy foods. Sometimes you don’t realize how bad you felt until you feel better. We have lots of tips and tricks for you to stay healthy after you’re finished with the HCG diet. But you also must realize that the diet is just part of the route of a real lifestyle change.
While the quick results can be very motivating, quick weight loss is not maintainable in the long run. After that initial push and weight loss, you must realize that weight loss will slow down. Just because the weight loss is slower doesn’t mean that it isn’t progress! Having realistic expectations will help save you from disappointment down the road. There will be hard times. There will be times when you are making all the right choices and the scale doesn’t move. But the key is not getting discouraged and quitting. You have to make a commitment to yourself, and remind yourself of that when times get tough.
Support and Accountability
At Horizons, long-term success is very important to us. Part of all of our weight loss programs is support and accountability. Losing weight is hard. It’s even harder when you try to do it alone. We have a Facebook group dedicated to people participating in our programs, a dedicated personal weight loss coordinator, we’re available via live chat on our websites, and are here to cheer you on even after completing the program.
So with the proper expectations, mindset, and support the HCG diet can be a great diet to get you back on track and help you make real healthy changes in your life.