So, I don't know what kind of feedback I will get from this question but has anyone done the HCG diet before/after going Paleo? What are your thoughts on the HCG diet in general?
asked byA__Newpage_Paleo (43)
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on June 09, 2011
at 12:14 AM
Yeah, you're gonna get slammed. I don't think HCG is too popular in these parts.
I have actually done it and have some opinions. I think the actual HCG part of the deal is ridiculous. There is simply no scientific basis for taking it. You body will release 1500 calories from fat stores without any assistance from HCG. That's what the body does. It uses the stored fat for energy when you aren't ingesting enough for it to run. I chalk it all up to placebo which isn't a bad thing. If you get results (think you aren't hungry and are burning more fat) then that's what matters I suppose.
The diet plan, on the other hand, while extreme is laid out well in the sense that the extreme part is limited and sandwiched between more moderate phases. It allows you some time to eat more normally and forced you to cook and learn new ways of preparing food that is actually food you can eat for the rest of your life. I think that plan can work well. You white knuckle it for 3 weeks then go low carb but up the calories a good bit and hold there for a bit then go back to extremes for another few weeks. While I know extreme dieting is frowned on I don't see this as much different from fasting or other extreme dietary measures that some of us use to reach our goals.
You could do phase 2 and 3 paleo by just leaving out the melba/grisini in phase 1 which I think most people do anyway and making slight adjustments to phase 3.
In the end, one has to somehow make piece with a new diet that they can do for a lifetime and that is a function of one's head not of one's diet. I think the HCG diet plan can work fine if you still make that journey of the mind and carve out a new food life for yourself while losing weight. That is the key to any weight loss diet no matter what the food strategy is.
on June 09, 2011
at 01:26 AM
HCG diet is very very interesting. It gets slammed but it has biologic plausibility to start a change. Transitioning to paleo is ideal after HCG. Make sure your paleo stays away from dairy when you come back. Strong rec there. Has to do with the mu opioid receptor because this is what HCG also effects and why it works for 5-8 weeks. Great question. I hope it stimulates discussion. Plus one!
on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM
You want to do HCG? It's great stuff to use before the end of an AAS cycle before beginning PCT. Not many folks here do that I'd imagine. It's also great for spermatogenesis and to encourage ovulation.
Since it effects LH levels and cause a temporary rise in testosterone, it can help with fat loss, but if one wants to use drugs for that...there are better ones that are more effective...
With that said...the hcg diet is a scam.
1> HCG is a prescription drug. The drops you put under your tongue contain NO hcg whatsoever...test it for yourself...spend 3 bux on an ept test... if it's negative then you got scammed for your HCG.
The diet is simply another starvation diet. You'd probably end up healthier if you did either the Kekwick fat fast or the Atkin's fat fast.
Best of all... eat animal proteins (including the fat), green vegetables, (very limited nuts and seeds), wait for the fruit until you've reached your goals. But don't do it as a diet, do it as a way of life. Count your calories, eat 10-15/lb of LBM , make sure you get 1g protein per lb of LBM, then gradually increase the cals by eating more starchy veggies and fruits until you have reached your maintenance level.
on September 13, 2011
at 11:08 PM
You have probably gotten the answers you hoped for, and perhaps some you didn't bargain for, but I thought I'd weigh in.
I did the HCG diet and was pleased with the results. Not going to go into great detail, because it is a multifaceted subject and I made a few customizations to the Simeons protocol.
The main thing I want to address is your question as to before/after paleo. I was aware of the paleo lifestyle prior to HCG, but I had not yet fully decided to go paleo/primal prior to beginning the HCG regimen. It was during the diet that I spent time delving into the science behind paleo eating, which did the trick for me. I "went paleo" to the point that I didn't bother with the allowed fruit and melba toast for the remainder of the regimen.
Looking back, I have only appreciation for the sense in which the HCG diet was my de facto transition to the paleo world. I realize it's only one way of many into a "transition" to paleo, and I am certainly not convinced the HCG diet is anything like the most efficacious way to get into paleo. VLC diets can be tricky business, with or without HCG. By the way, I am not a "dieter." I don't "do diets" in the way that so many people seem to. I have never had a weight problem per se, I simply was drawn to the proposition (should I say "the claim") that HCG acts to mobilize fat stores in a manner that preserves lean tissue on a 500-calorie per day diet. I cannot make an authoritative claim about whether HCG acts to do that. But I can say with certainty that I did preserve significant muscle mass while on the regimen. Lost the pounds and inches I wanted to, of fat, kept my lean tissue intact. Hunger? Not a problem. What this may say about leptin signaling, is a topic for another day. Also, y energy levels were quite good most of the time. I was in fact "amazed" to feel so robust and mentally clear, given 500 calories per day.
Would I have had the same results on the same diet without the HCH injections? I have no way to know. That's what controlled, double-blind experiments are for. (I am told there have been studies that do not bear out the Simeons claim. I strongly suspect that there is a strong mental component ??? aka placebo effect ??? in many HCG success stories. There's probably a sense in which expectancy of success with the diet, fosters a calm and sense of assurance, which in turn has positive physical effects. I freely admit that it is possible to feel "calm" and "confidant" while doing absolutely nutty things in life. So if I had to say yes or no to whether the HCG did in fact mobilize stored fat, I would say yes. But I wouldn't care to argue for the point, it doesn't really matter to me, for reasons suggested already.)
For what it's worth, I think the sheer weight loss goals of the HCG diet can probably be met by upping the levels of fat consumption while keeping the carbs very low and keeping the protein moderate. One of my concerns about the HCG diet's legacy, so to speak, is the sense in which the low-fat component simply fuels the fat-phobia that's already rampant. Even so, the very low carb component of the diet had the thoroughly salutary effect, I would say, of transitioning my metabolism from sugar-burning to fat-burning. By the way, I experimented with upping my calories to 700-800, and doing more exercise. This proved useful; I suspect, by keeping my metabolism, um, "on its toes," not quite knowing what Keith was going to do next.
on August 12, 2011
at 07:32 PM
Ashley asked: "What are your thoughts on the HCG diet in general?"
I'm sorry to be late to this party, but I just found this site (great, btw!). If you want the scientific answer and don't mind doing a fair bit of reading -- hopefully helpful -- head on over to http://www.sugarfreegoodies.wordpress.com
I'm SugarFree, and that's my blog. As a former science and medical researcher who suffered from the triple whammy of Leptin, Thyroid Hormone and Insulin Resistance I did years of specialty research on those issues as well as nutrition, obesity and diabetes. I even tried HCG with dismal results, though I didn't know why at the time.
During my search for cures for the triple whammy, I ended up going back to Pounds & Inches and realized that although some in the science and medical professions dismissed it outright, and some lay people swore Hgc "worked" -- no one had done a truly scientific analysis of it for good and bad.
I have now done so, and along the way did the following:
- Proved conclusively that Hcg does absolutely nothing whatsoever for hunger abatement or for "liberating" excess fat from adipose fat cells. In fact, based on a well-respected peer-reviewed 2007 study (link on the blog), it appears that evolution designed Hcg for a specific species-survival purpose: to create additional adipose fat cells in pregnant women to help them survive pregnancy and nursing through lean times.
The implications of this study for women who have injected Hcg are pretty dismal. Every single blood tests results of our experiment participants (and scores of other readers who have sent me their own test results) shows the same pattern: hyperinsulinemia and/or thyroid hormone hypothyroidism, specifically enormous Reverse T3/Liver problems.
Discovered that the real "active factor" for hunger abatement and "liberating" fat is lipolysis, which only operates in the absence of insulin. Thus, to the extent to which you are more or less insulin resistant when you follow Simeons' Protocol precisely, is the extent to which you are more or less hungry no matter how much Hcg you take.
Created a new Protocol that crosses some of Simeons' ideas with those of Dr. Jan Kwasneiwski, and ran a real-time Experiment (still ongoing) with volunteer participants to test if it is possible to actually heal the metabolism and lose a LOT of pounds and inches (especially around the waist) without Hcg and without hunger of any kind.
It was the initial stages of the experiment (which women still injecting Hcg) that showed the complete ineffectiveness of the product despite the fact that they continued to eat only 500 calories a day. The new Protocol, which lasts only 2 weeks at a time, has 50% more calories on average, and includes a fair bit of animal fat as well.
I'm happy to report that this anti-Hcg Protocol -- even for women with PCOS or others who have tried Paleo, Atkins, and even Kwasniewski successfully for a time, but who then stalled out -- allows for fat and pound loss even faster than on Simeons'. And the Maintenance phase prevents so much as an ounce from returning, even while eating large high levels of calories and animal fat.
Best of all, it is clear from the ever-improving blood sugar readings of the participants, and their increasing ability to add modest amounts of starch carbs and berries without spiking their blood sugars, that Protocol followers are lessening insulin resistance and increasing insulin sensitivity. The facts speak for themselves, and I'm really happy they do. No one need ever take Hcg again to lose pounds and fat fast, safely, sanely, and without having to worry about ever regaining it again. :)
on June 09, 2011
at 02:22 PM
One word of warning about the HCG: the oral version is denatured by your stomach acid and is never absorbed. My wife tried HCG (I thought it was stupid) The diet was too extreme and she was never able to stick to it. She paid for the HCG "drops" but they were pointless. Just a huge waste of money. If you do decide to go with HCG, make sure its in shot form.
Eat 500 cal per day, and you will lose weight. You could eat 500 cal worth of HFC or candy if you want to and you will still lose weight, because thats what happens when you starve. Adding HCG just makes it more expensive.
on December 28, 2011
at 08:17 AM
I have been on paleo after being on HCG and can say it worked for me. I did the diet under the supervision of my Naturopath using injections as the dosing is more reliable than using the drops. I lost 23 pounds by the time I started on the maintenance phase. My dexa scans before and after showed i had lost significant amount of body fat but very little muscle mass. I did modify it slightly by adding more protein in the form of whey protein isolate (unflavored) and decreasing my fruit intake. When I did have fruit it was always paired with some protein to limit my insulin from elevating too much. I never bothered with the breadsticks the indicate as I don't tolerate gluten well. Overall my calorie intake was around 800 calories a day.
With a few other tricks I lost the weight I wanted to. The first few days after the initial gorging were hard but I did not feel hungry after that. Transitioning into paleo/ primal afterwards was easier and I have kept the weight off and even gotten a little leaner.Whether you choose paleo or HCG is totally up to you. It will depend on what your weight loss goals are. If you need to lose a lot of weight HCG may be right for you. If you only go with paleo/primal then that's okay too. But bear in mind that HCG is a diet but paleo is a lifestyle.
on April 24, 2012
at 11:31 PM
So what I would like to know is if anyone went straight from HCG to the paleo diet? I can't imagine doing the maintenance for 3 more weeks as I'm starving! I did lose 11 pds. and I'm 3 days shy of the full 21 days, just can't do it anymore. I am thrilled I've gotten off of sugar and carbs and now want to move into something that is a lifestyle. Has anyone gone from one to the other? I'm afraid I will be shocking my body too much and gain back weight.
on December 16, 2011
at 12:46 AM
HCG has done wonders for me. I was never hungry - for 40 days - doing 4 drops 3x a day. I released 32 pounds and am now doing Paleo for 6 weeks before doing another round of HCG. Both regimes fit like a glove.
on December 07, 2011
at 05:03 AM
To anyone who tries a diet or hcg or whatever....none of it works. Every diet book out there is a scam and that's why there are a million of them. If one actually worked that would be the end of the market. You can eat whatever you want but know this: To lose any weight you must be in calorie deficit at the end of the day, ie) burn more calories than you eat. It really is that simple. I work at a pharmacy and see tonnes of people trying HCG. This is what happens every time: 1. They lose 10-20 pounds per 30 day course. 2) They come in with broken hips and arms from passing out all the time (500 cal/day is not enough glucose to the brain). 3) They gain all the weight back plus a bit more. 4) They start on anti-depressants if not already on them. Here's my Rx: If you watch more than an hour of TV a day, then you have no excuse that there isn't enough time....get off your ass and go for a walk.
on September 29, 2011
at 07:25 AM
I just finished a round of HCG and was looking for coconut vinegar on Amazon. I saw some Paleo books and they piqued my interest. I downloaded them and have thoroughly enjoyed both today. I'm not going to go into the science of either, that's already here. What I will tell you is that I think the 80/10/10 diet 4 years ago coupled with peri and menopause really screwed up my body.
I have always used my body as a laboratory for every new diet and by the time menopause hit, it was worn out. At nearly 200 pounds and 5'8", I tried HCG and it worked. I'm now 173.5 and have decided that I will go Paleo beginning October 1. Why? The HCG was the perfect introduction! No alcohol, no dairy, very little gluten, no processed foods, it's a no-brainer. My body has had six weeks to adjust to lean protein, fresh vegetables and fruits in a very structured environment.
If I had read the Paleo Diet before I heard about HCG, I might have just started with Paleo, but that is water under the bridge. If Paleo works as I suspect it will, I will not need any further HCG rounds.
on June 09, 2011
at 03:16 AM
I also have an autoimmune disease and an eating disorder...so, what do you say about me personally doing hcg?
on June 09, 2011
at 01:41 AM
Hi there..and yes, HCG is not popular here I don't think. But as someone who's done it, and is about to start another round here's my input. As for no "scientific basis" I think if you read up on it, read Dr. Simeans Pounds and Inches and some other info on it you'll see that there is science behind it. But i'm not going to argue what others choose to think about it one way or the other. I like the hcg diet. It's helped me lose weight like nothing else has, including paleo. I like that it gets you OFF the dang sugar and breads and grains and I think that really helps those who do it seriously understand what it does to their bodies. I did paleo before hcg but didn't lose good weight. Perhaps my percentages were wrong, etc. But I will say, in the past when I have lost weight in other ways I would always lose it in places I didn't "need" to lose it...like my face, chest,... With hcg I find i'm losing it in places that need losing (arms, legs, belly, etc.) I've been on calorie restricted "diets" before and felt like CRAP...With hcg, only 500 cals, no fat, limited foods and I feel awesome physically...that shows me there's something to it, that it truly does work. When i'm not on hcg (and i've got about another 50 pounds to lose) I do eat paleo. I started paleo with the "whole 30 challenge" so giving up "sugar and grains" for hcg a year1/2 later was no big deal (although giving up fat is what I miss most!). That's my answer, like it or not. I'm not a doctor, or nutritionist, just someone who's got experience with actually being on hcg more than once and also knowing others who have been on it and been very successful both with the diet and maintaining. Some have shifted to stay full on paleo eating and some have brought back some carbs but are mostly lowcarbers. They won't go back to sugars and most grains because they can FEEL how crappy they make them feel and also that they gain weight when they go back to it. If nothing else, for the short time on hcg, it does teach you many things about your body, about food and portion control. As with any "diet"...even paleo (lifestyle..whatever you choose to call it) if you go back to eating crap, that's what you'll get in return. Hope this gives you an insight on hcg :) When i'm not on hcg I do eat "unprocessed". (My way of saying paleo without the label).