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If you’re interested in losing weight fast and keeping it off permanently, the hCG diet is a great option. We’re going to discuss how you actually follow the diet plan. You’ll learn everything from what to eat, to how often to take hCG, to how many cycles you need to follow.
The hCG diet actually is followed in cycles. You’ll stay on the plan for 21-42 days depending on the desired weight loss. Then you’ll take a break and go into a maintenance phase. Later you can follow another cycle to lose more weight.
Phase One – Ramping Up the Burn
The first two days on the hCG diet are essential for ramping up your fat burning capabilities. You’ll want to follow these two days to the letter because they are going to set the stage for the amazing weight loss you’re going to have.
During this time you’ll start you hCG supplements. Whether you use injections or drops, you’ll follow the same protocol. At this time you’ll also begin following a high fat, high calorie diet. This may seem counterintuitive, but this is only for a couple of days while you begin the fat burning process.
With this program you’re actually resetting your body’s metabolism, so you’ll notice that it’s unlike anything you’ve tried before. You may have to fight your instincts at first, but realize that there’s a method to this program that will work for you.
When you’re considering what to eat, think about all those foods you’ve been forbidden to eat in the past – pork rinds, beef, chocolate cake, etc. Load up on those calories and fat for a couple of days and you’ll set the stage for the hCG diet to work its magic.
You’ll also need to start increasing your water intake. This is to allow the hCG hormone to move freely within your body and get the job of fat burning done. You’ll need to drink at least 100 ounces of water each day beginning from the first day.
It may be hard to drink that much water if you’re not used to it yet, so be prepared for the inevitable trips to the bathroom. Just plan to keep a glass or bottle of water with you at all times when you’re following this plan.
When you’ve finished with the first two days, it’s time to move on to the next phase. During this phase, you’ll eat much fewer calories and your diet will be quite restrictive. However, you’ll only have to follow this plan for 20-40 days.
Phase Two – Calorie Restriction and Power Weight Loss
After a couple of days eating a high fat diet, drinking large amounts of water, and taking hCG supplements your body is ready to begin really burning fat. Now it’s time to decrease your caloric intake.
In fact, you’ll only be eating 500 calories per day during this part of the diet. How can you live on such a low number of calories? Traditional diets have warned you that eating too few calories can trigger your body to decrease its metabolism.
But with the hCG diet, the hormone actually takes over your metabolism. You’ll begin to burn only fat stores as you decrease your calories to 500 each day. You may feel hungry for the first couple of days, but soon that feeling will subside.
You won’t feel as hungry because your body is going to use the stored fat as fuel. You won’t crave food to give your body energy. But you’ll need to continue eating food in order to keep your digestive system moving properly.
You’ll begin experiencing major weight loss during this phase. You may burn as much as 2 pounds per day. Some people burn as much as 3 pounds per day. While it seems like a drastic change, you’ll feel great when you see the results.
So what can you eat when you have only 500 calories to work with? You’ll want to focus on eating lean meats and other proteins as well as eating vegetables and fruits. For example, each day you’ll want to have:
· 1 serving of fruit, 2 times each day
· 1 serving of vegetables, 2 times each day
· 3 oz cooked lean meat, 2 time each day
· 2 melba toasts
· The juice of one lemon each day
· You can also have plenty of fresh herbs and seasonings
You’ll find that while this seems restrictive, you can actually enjoy many of your favorite flavors. You’ll want to avoid any butter, oil, or salad dressings as these add extra calories and fat.
During phase two, you want to have very little added fat – instead you want your body to used its stored fat. You’ll also want to remember to keep drinking those fluids. It’s a good idea to have ½ gallon to a gallon of water every day.
In addition to water, you can also drink coffee and tea. If you must have sweetener, use a sweetener that has no calories such as stevia. You’ll also need to forego the cream in your coffee. If you absolutely must have cream, you may have up to 1 tablespoon of milk.
In addition to staying away from fats and oils, you’ll also need to steer clear of breads and other starchy carbohydrates. Never fear, you’ll be able to have them after you begin the maintenance phase – it’s only a temporary separation.
Phase Three – Maintenance
After you’ve finished phase two, you’re ready to begin the maintenance period. Remember you’ve only been eating 500 calories a day and it will take time for your body to get used to eating larger meals again.
During this time you’ll slowly increase your caloric intake until you reach a more normal amount of calories. With most diets, this is when you begin to put weight right back on. But with the hCG diet you’re body’s metabolism will be reset.
Rather than putting on more weight, your body will continue to burn calories and you’ll be able to eat a normal amount of food without gaining the weight you lost. When it comes to some foods, you’ll need to take it very slowly.
For example, before adding sugars and starches back to your diet you’ll need to wait two weeks. After two or three weeks you can begin slowly adding them back. Starches and sugars include foods like:
Remember to go slowly as these foods will be a shock to your cleansed system. In order to determine how much you can add without gaining weight, you’ll want to weight yourself daily. If you find that you’ve gained more than two pounds, you’ll need to cut back on these foods.
What If I Want to Lose More Weight?
A three week course of the hCG diet will help you to lose up to 15 pounds. This is great if you’re trying to lose one or two dress sizes. A six week course will allow you to lose approximately 40 pounds. But what about people who have more to lose?
It’s possible to lose more weight with the hCG diet, but you’ll need to take a break from it. You’ll need to wait at least six weeks before going back onto the plan. After six weeks, you can begin the hCG protocol again.
This will allow you to lose even more weight than you did the first round. For people who have a great deal of weight to lose, this is particularly good news. For most people, a goal weight can be obtained within a few months.
If you’re ready to go back for a third or fourth course of the hCG diet, you’ll need to wait even longer between courses. Between the second and third course you’ll need to wait eight weeks and between a third and fourth course you’ll need to allow 12 weeks.
Between the fourth and fifth course, you’ll want to wait at least 20 weeks and if you want to finis a sixth course, you’ll need to wait six months after the fifth to begin. Expect to follow this type of plan if you have substantial weight to lose.
Adapting for Vegetarians
There are some people who have special dietary needs that can make the hCG diet a challenge. For example, people who are restricted to a vegetarian diet may find that their weight loss is much slower.
You may want to get protein through milk or cheese, but these sources will not allow your body to burn fat as quickly. In fact, vegetarians usually only lose about half as much weight as their meat-eating counterparts.
Instead, if you’re a vegetarian you’ll want to focus on sources of protein such as tofu, bean curd, and tempeh. You may also rely on legumes to help supplement your protein needs. Still, don’t be surprised if your weight loss isn’t quite as fast as it would be eating meat.
What If I Cheat?
Many people find dieting to be very difficult. While you won’t feel hungry on the hCG diet after a few days, you may have some of your psychological demons to battle. If you find that you’re feeling too restricted with the hCG diet, you may have the desire to cheat.
When you stray, even a little, from the plan you’ll find that your weight loss is substantially slowed. Doing everything you can to be prepared ahead of time will reduce your chances of cheating.
Check out Chapter 10 for some ideas of foods that seem decadent, but are within the confines of the hCG plan. Remember, you only have to follow the very low calorie diet for a maximum of six weeks and then you can begin to return to normal.
Focusing on your weight loss goal and keeping the end in mind will make it easier for you to stick to the plan. You’ll also want to celebrate the progress you’re making. Sometimes seeing the numbers go down on that scale is enough to motivate you to hold on a few more days.
Will I Keep Off the Weight?
The biggest question most people have is, “Will I maintain my weight loss?” After all, many of us have lost weight only to find it creep right back up again. With the hCG diet, most people maintain their weight loss.
During the time you are following a very low calorie diet and taking the hCG hormone, your body is making big changes. You’ll find that you aren’t as hungry, that your tastes have changed, and that you’re feeling more energetic than before.
This is a great time to institute lifestyle changes that will help you to keep off the weight for good. For many people this comes naturally as a result of following the diet plan for a course of several weeks.
You may also find that having lost weight you have more energy to exercise. When you are finished with a course of the hCG diet, you may want to add exercise to your program. In Chapter Five we’ll discuss how to handle an exercise program.
Most people who follow this plan do keep the weight off. If you’re one of the few who starts to see the scale go back up, you can always follow another course of the program and focus more on lifestyle changes as you enter the maintenance phase.
Making a Decision
As you can see, the hCG diet has a pretty strict regimen that must be followed. While some people thrive from the structure of the plan and the daily monitoring, other people find that this diet plan is too restrictive for their lifestyle.
Still other people may not want to follow the hCG plan because of health concerns and other restrictions by their physician. In the next chapter you’ll learn about who should and should not consider following this plan.
For most people, the hCG diet is a very safe method for resetting the metabolism and taking weight off for good. It’s a short protocol that has long lasting results. If you’re ready to take the next step toward your weight loss goal, read on to find out if it’s the right plan for you.