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The popular and controversial HCG weight loss technique has drawn plenty of enthusiasm as well as suspicion from different sectors of the weight loss industry and the medical community. Many people who have tried out the HCG diet claimed to have obtained results agreeing with the established goals of the HCG weight loss method, and these people have became ardent promoters of HCG weight loss since then. There are some, however, who became dissatisfied with the outcome of their HCG program, partially because the results did not come out as expected, but most likely because of sudden weight gain, and thus became its chief critics. The medical community at large is unanimously turned against these weight reduction methods; they believe that the HCG diet is a fad diet, and that overuse of HCG may have unexpected adverse effects, although there are still doctors who prescribe the HCG weight loss diet to some of their patients and even testify to the diet's effectiveness. HCG weight loss methods fundamentally claim that through a few applications (usually injections) of a hormone called HCG, it is easy for a person to maintain weight as long as he or she doesn't eat more than the maximum limit. That explains the market for different varieties of HCG weight loss products, like HCG injections and HCG diet drops (homeopathic drops just taken off the market). A cascade of HCG diet protocols, all sporting the HCG label, has emerged in plenty of HCG websites. HCG diet techniques often advertise themselves as a fast weight loss technique, with an average weight loss of 30 pounds a month, with some even pushing the limit to 40 pounds for obese people. The acronym HCG means human chorionic gonadototropin, a hormone produced in the pituitary gland, and abundant in pregnant women. Pregnancy tests still base greatly on HCG levels found in the urine, and tests for HCG levels are used, along with many other tests to estimate the chances of potential birth defects. Its most well-known function is to ensure that the fetus inside a pregnant woman's body receives sufficient nourishment during its development. HCG does it by accelerating the release of fat in the hips, abdomen, thighs, and buttocks of the pregnant woman. That way, the fat can be channelled to the fetus, and with the fat, the fetus can survive until full term, even if the mother doesn't take in adequate nutrient. HCG draws fat only from the body areas mentioned; structural fats, such as fat on the face or subcutaneous fat is unaffected. HCG also has other uses, including genital maturation (especially for adolescent boys who cannot produce HCG in their body because of defective pituitary glands) and apoptosis (programmed cell death). This brings to focus the purpose of HCG weight loss programs. HCG draws fat away from problematic areas of the body back into circulation. Weight loss involving HCG has been tried

already since the 1950s by a renowned endocrinologist, Dr. A. T. W. Simeons. He observed that boys who were undergoing HCG treatment because of immature sex organs lost some weight without feeling hungry. After that, Simeons became interested in applying HCG to weight loss, and thus published a paper touting the potential of HCG weight reduction in the future. Many of Simeons' recommendations about the HCG diet are still followed faithfully in many weight reduction programs. One round of treatment may last as low as 26 days (the minimum), where HCG injections must be injected daily on 23 of these days. Sometimes 43 days of the HCG Diet program (amounting to daily HCG injections on 40 of these days) is required for obese patients, unless the patient has lost 34-40 pounds already before the 43 days has ended. There is a three-day discrepancy between the length of an weight reduction program and the number of days injections are offered because patients should not receive HCG for the last three days, for standing HCG must be excreted out of the body before the person can revert to his or her regular diet again. Once the HCG weight loss regimen is stopped, and the patient wants another round of HCG weight loss treatment, Simeons recommends a six-week break between successive rounds, to prevent HCG immunity. Simeons also places a four-round cap (with breaks) on HCG diet treatment. The shocker, however, is this: In all HCG weight loss programs, a strict 500-calorie daily intake limit is imposed. Simeons believes that for HCG weight loss methods to be effective, the patient must ingest no more than 500 calories a day, because the body can receive energy from fats that HCG removes from problematic areas and cycles back to the bloodstream, and an intake of more than 500 calories may reduce the methods' effectiveness. Foods consistently making the cut in any HCG diet protocol are the following: protein-packed foods like beef, chicken breast, crab meat, striped bass, halibut, lobster, white fish, skim milk (no fat), eggs, protein powder; vegetables like asparagus, celery, cabbage, cauliflower, onion, radish, spinach, and tomato; fluids like water, green tea, coffee; and specific carbohydrate-rich foods like Melba toast or grissino sticks. All other foods are to be shirked off. The 500-calorie limit per day is the most stringent imposition an HCG diet program has; it has also been the most criticized part, with some medical sectors stating that the 500-calorie limit in any HCG weight loss program is unrealistic, unnecessary, or even hazardous.

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How to choose HCG for weight loss  

Overview on the HCG program for weight loss and whether this is the right program for you.