What is HCG and how does it work?
-HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin) is a natural hormone produced by our bodies. In addition to being the Pregnancy hormone, it has many functions. HCG allows the body to burn Fat as the primary source of energy. When HCG is combined with a Very low calorie diet (VLCD) the body uses Fat as the primary energy source, causing significant Fat loss while conserving Muscle. Therefore, the HCG diet is also called as the ” Pounds and Inches Diet “
How do Adipex / Belviq /Qysmia compare to HCG for weight loss?
-Adipex/Beliviq/Qysmia are controlled, prescription medications that work as appetite suppressants. These medications can have dangerous side effects including but not limited to Heart palpitations, anxiety, tremors, sweating. When used in combination with Diet and exercise, these medications can only cause about 10% weight loss. HCG on the other hand has no side effects. Patients who have gone through our HCG weight loss program lose significant amounts of body fat while conserving muscle.”
Is HCG Safe? And are there any side effects?
-Absolutely! HCG is extremely safe.
HCG is a natural hormone produced by the body in both Women and Men.
HCG helps the Uterus maintain a normal Pregnancy. During Pregnancy, HCG is produced by the Placenta with levels ranging from 7500 mIU/ml to 285,000 mIU/ml without any adverse effects.
HCG Injections have been used safely for Inducing Ovulation and Infertility in females and to boost Testosterone in young Males for many years. Women receive injections of 5000 to 10000 units for Infertility treatment with any major side-effects.
During the HCG diet, patients only take 250 IU to 500 IU per day. Most patients do not report any side effects. However, as with any diet program, we strongly recommend that our patients coordinate with their primary care physician regarding their weight loss goals, along with the appropriate implementation of the HCG protocol. If you experience any side effects including but not limited to Rash, Chest pain, Shortness of breath, Dizziness, please seek medical attention immediately.
Who is a candidate for the HCG Diet?
-Any woman or man, who is concerned about being Overweight or Obese, is a candidate for our HCG weight loss program.
In our experience, many patients who have done the HCG weight loss program have seen significant improvement in their medical conditions which include:
- Hypertension (High BP)
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea
- Cardiovascular disease
- Degenerative arthritis in Back and Knee
- Improved physical conditioning and exercise performance
Is the HCG Diet program safe for men?
-Yes! HCG is a natural hormone that is present in every tissue of the human bodies of both Men and Women (Pregnant and Non-Pregnant). In fact, Men get faster and better fat loss results than women, probably due to higher baseline levels of Testosterone.
What is the hypothalamus?
-The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that controls the Pituitary (Master Endocrine) gland and the Autonomic nervous system. Therefore the Hypothalamus moderates the thyroid, adrenal gland, fat storage and controls body temperature, hunger, satiety (fullness of stomach), thirst, emotional activity and sleep. HCG is thought to regulate the balance between hunger and satiety.
How do I take HCG?
-HCG is available in the form of Injections, Sublingual Tablets, Sublingual Drops and Nasal spray. At Ageless Integrated Medicine, we prescribe either Injections or Sublingual tablets or drops. HCG Injections are to be given subcutaneously (under the skin) on the Abdominal wall (Stomach area), alternating sides on consecutive days. HCG sublingual tablets or drops are to be placed under the tongue or the Cheek daily.
Why should Homeopathic HCG or Herbal HCG, which is available over the counter or on the internet, not to be used?
-Homeopathic HCG has very little HCG in it if at all. The very foundational principle of Homeopathy is based on “dilution until very minimal amounts of the principle are present” Herbal HCG is supposed to be plant based. However, HCG is a hormone and hence cannot be obtained from plants. Dr Simeon’s successful protocol used pharmaceutical grade HCG extracted from the urine of pregnant women.
At Ageless Integrated Medicine, we only use pharmaceutical grade HCG of the highest quality. Even though HCG plays a major role in burning fat, following the protocol under Physician supervision is critical to the success of the program. Our Physician and staff have the knowledge and experience to deal with any issues that may arise during the weight loss program. We are committed to help you maximize your success both during the program and thereafter by educating you with strategies that help you keep your weight off long term.
Do patients experience headaches during the first week of the HCG diet?
-During the HCG diet, the body is primed to burn fat as the primary energy source. Fat gets broken down into Ketone bodies which dilate the blood vessels of the brain thereby causing a Headache. This is usually seen in the first few days and then goes away. An excellent way of avoiding headaches is to drink at least 10 to 12 glasses of water a day. This will help flush the Ketone bodies and reduce the chances of getting a Headache. If the headache is intolerable, it is OK to take Motrin, Aspirin or Tylenol as long as they not sugar coated.
Is it true that staying on a Very Low-Calorie Diet (VLCD) will slow down my metabolism?
-The HCG is priming the body to use Fat as the primary source of energy. In our experience, most patients who are on the HCG diet, report that they are having more energy and feel active. This is probably because HCG increases endogenous Testosterone levels and all the abnormal fat stores are being utilized as energy.
During the latter part of the program, some patients may experience a slowing down of their metabolism. This is especially true in the last 4 to 5 days of the program. Continued use of HCG prevents the body from going into a Starvation mode. Adequate hydration ensures continued burning of fat and is thus critical throughout the Diet.
Does HCG interfere with any Medications that I am taking especially (Diabetes medications, BP medications, Birth control pills, Nexplanon implant, Depo-Provera shot)?
-HCG is a natural hormone produced by every tissue in the human body. It does not interfere with ANY medications. Since Fat is not allowed during the Diet, we recommend that for the duration of the Diet, the patient stop taking Vitamin D3 (Vitamin D3 has to be taken with fat).
What supplements should I take during the Diet? Are there any supplements I shouldn’t take?
-In patients who have a history of Constipation, it is recommended to take Magnesium daily. Although not necessary, a good water soluble Multivitamin tablet that has no fats or oils in it can be taken. If patients experience fatigue during the Diet, we recommend getting Injections of Vitamin B12 for boosting energy and Metabolism. If a patient is experiencing Leg cramps, a Potassium supplement can be prescribed by the physician.
How long will I need to be on the diet?
-According to Dr Simeon’s protocol:
The minimum number of days on the diet should be 23 because it takes at least 23 days for conditioning the brain
Maximum number of days is 40 because, after 40 days, the brain becomes resistant to the effects of HCG
How much weight can I expect to lose on this program?
-The amount of weight loss depends on several factors, including your initial weight. On an average, most Women lose about 0.5 to 0.75 pounds a day, and most Men will lose about 0.75 to1 pounds a day. Most people whose initial weight is higher, tend to lose more weight. Average weight loss on a 40-day protocol is about 15 to 20 pounds in Women and about 20 to 30 pounds in Men.
Can I lose more weight if I continue the HCG after 42 days?
-No. Dr Simeons observed that the Brain becomes resistant to the effects of HCG after 42 days. In fact it can be detrimental to use HCG beyond 42 days, because patients can start losing precious Muscle. Resistance to HCG can be overcome by waiting for 6 weeks. Therefore, for patients who need more than one round of HCG to achieve their Ideal body weight, it is recommended to wait 6 weeks before they can start the next round
The HCG diet is very low in calories! Won’t I get hungry?
-It is possible to feel hungry during the first 3 to 4 days of the HCG Diet. Such hunger is usually gone by the second week. Drinking lots of green tea can naturally suppress your appetite and also give energy. HCG primes the body to use stored fat as the primary energy source. However, most patients, report that they don’t feel hungry at all! In fact, a lot of patients report that they feel good, energetic and have a tough time eating even the 500 calories. It is however very important to eat the 500 calories, especially protein to ensure that no Muscle is lost.
I am eating only 500 calories! I would probably lose weight anyway. How is the HCG diet different from a Starvation Diet?
-When HCG is combined with a Very Low-Calorie Diet (VLCD), the body uses Fat as the primary source of energy sparing Muscle. So the majority of the weight lost is fat. In addition, there is a significant reduction of visceral fat which reduces the risk of metabolic syndrome, Heart Attacks and Stroke.
Can I skip a meal or protein meal? What happens if I miss a meal? What can I do to correct it?
-It is very important that you stick to the Diet protocol and eat the 500 calories, the way it is advised per protocol. Skipping meals will essentially utilize Muscle for energy leading to Muscle loss. Also not eating the 500 calories will slow your metabolism, which could potentially stall your weight loss. It is always a good idea to carry a protein drink with you. If it is impossible to eat the Meal due to unavoidable circumstances, get back to the Diet as soon as you can and follow up with our physician to discuss what can be done.
Is Alcohol allowed on the HCG Diet?
-Alcohol behaves metabolically as a Carbohydrate. So it gives empty calories that can interfere with the HCG Diet. In addition, certain alcohols like wine have high sugar content which can also interfere with the HCG Diet. Most patients who successfully finish the HCG diet lose their cravings for alcohol possibly through the action of the Hypothalamus which controls emotions.
Am I allowed to exercise during the Diet? Won’t Exercise enhance weight loss?
-If you are accustomed to doing exercise on a daily basis, then you can continue exercising as long as it doesn’t interfere with staying on the diet. We don’t recommend that you start a new exercise program while on the HCG Diet. The HCG is mobilizing your abnormal fat stores and burning fat preferentially. Vigorous exercise can be counterproductive, as it can turn your body into starvation mode. Also, intense exercise can make you feel more hungry, dizzy or lightheaded. We do however recommend that you start a good exercise program incorporating both Aerobics and weight lifting once you enter the Stabilization phase of the HCG diet.
What do I do if my weight loss plateaus?
-It is important to ensure that daily weights (Naked body weight) are being recorded first thing in the morning after emptying your Bowels and Urinary Bladder. A digital scale should be used and the weight should be recorded in pounds and ounces. It is common sometimes for the weight to stall for 1 to 2 days.
If this happens frequently the following strategies can be utilized:
- Consume unlimited amounts of green tea. Green tea can boost metabolism and help in weight loss
- Increase water consumption from 64 Ounces per day to 128 Ounces per day
- Make sure you are not mixing vegetables
- Check your food dairy to make sure, no fatty foods were consumed by mistake
- Check to see if any foods that were not permitted were consumed by mistake
- Make sure you haven’t touched any fat, or haven’t used any moisturizer, body lotions or soap with fat in it
- Cut the amount of fruits consumed in half
- Check any Condiments or foods consumed for hidden fats, Sugars or Sugar alcohols
- Check to see if any foods that you ate have MSG (Mono sodium glutamate)
- If you have not had a good Bowel movement in 2 or 3 days, use Magnesium up to 750mg twice a day
- If weight loss stalls for 3 days in a row, you need to do an “APPLE DAY”
Please call our office to discuss other strategies with our Physician & staff.
Are there any restrictions on the types of Soaps, Moisturizers, or Cosmetics during the Diet?
-YES. The simplest principle is to avoid any external application that has animal fats or any other kind of fat. HCG renders the body to be extremely sensitive to any absorption of fat, even if it is through the skin. The introduction of the fat through the skin disrupts the hormone signal between the abnormal fats and the Hypothalamus, thereby stopping fat loss. Therefore, it is extremely important to use fat-free lotions, moisturizers or liquid make-ups that have oil or fat. Fat-free moisturizers/Hand lotions and mineral oil can be used for skin moisture. Mineral makeup, Oil-free foundations and pressed powders are allowed for makeup. Please check with our Office Staff/Physician before you use any products that you aren’t sure of
How can I maintain my weight loss in a sustained manner?
-Each person’s weight loss goals are unique, depending on their baseline weight, Body fat percentage, associated medical conditions and other factors. At Ageless Integrated Medicine, our Physician and staff will impact strategies that are required to not only successfully achieve your weight loss goals, but how to maintain them on a long term basis.
Some common strategies include good lifestyle and behavior modifications. Our Physician will discuss your eating habits, cravings and concerns and provide healthy eating strategies that can lead to successful behavior modification. Our physician will also address how to alter Macronutrient ratios for sustained weight loss maintenance.
Will HCG affect my ability to become pregnant?
-The maximum amount of HCG that a patient takes is 500 units a day. This amount of HCG is not enough to produce any significant changes in the Ovaries or Uterus. This amount of HCG does not affect the ability to get pregnant, nor does it increase the chances of becoming pregnant.
Will HCG alter my periods? Should I take HCG during my periods? Will I experience any changes in my menstrual cycle taking HCG?
-During menstruation, a lot of LH (Luteinizing hormone) is released. Since the α subunit of HCG resembles LH, the surge in LH may simulate HCG. Dr Simeons recommends that patients stop HCG for 3 to 4 days while on their periods, but continue the 500 calorie diet. If you are currently on your menstrual cycle or about to start your cycle in a few days, it may be advisable to start the diet after completing the menstrual cycle, to avoid any fluctuations in weight.
Why do pregnant women gain weight if HCG burns fat?
-HCG primes the body to use Fat as a source of energy ONLY when combined with a Very Low Calorie Diet (VLCD). In fact during his initial observation, Dr Simeons had noted a loss of Body fat in pregnant females in India who were on a Calorie deficient diet.
Can pregnant women go on HCG diet?
-During Pregnancy, the placenta naturally produces abundant amounts of HCG. Therefore, pregnant females should not take HCG. If you are on the HCG diet and discover that you became pregnant, stop taking HCG and follow up with your Obstetrician / Gynecologist
How is our Weight Loss Program Unique?
- At Ageless Integrated Medicine, we are personally committed to help you successfully attain your weight loss goals and achieve Ideal health & wellness. Our Physician is passionate and truly committed to help our patients make the dietary and lifestyle changes needed to achieve their weight loss goals.
- We do a thorough initial evaluation including measurement of Blood markers for Diabetes, High Cholesterol, and Metabolic Syndrome.
- We measure Body fat percentage accurately, before starting the Diet using the INBODY 770 machine.
- We only use Pharmaceutical Grade HCG either in the form of Injections or Sublingual Tablets. We NEVER use Homeopathic HCG which has been known to have Inferior quality and give poor results.
- Our Physician supervised program is truly Physician supervised. During the Program, we provide FOUR, in-person appointments with our Physician.
- We provide unlimited Phone support as part of the Weight loss program.
- We provide recipes and Meal plans on a Spreadsheet which makes it very easy for our patients to follow the Diet program.
- Upon completion the program, we repeat the In body 770 Body Composition analysis to compare & quantify both Subcutaneous and Visceral Fat loss.