Wednesday, March 9, 2011

hCG (hormone) diet.

Sometimes it surprises me the things we do because we don't like ourselves.

Yesterday while I was in Starbucks, I glanced at the stack of NY Times for sale and stopped to read because a heading caught my attention.

Diet Plan With Hormone Has Fans and Skeptics

It was immediately disturbing to me that women could take hCG, a pregnancy hormone, and eat 500 calories a day because they believe that the hormones will help them to lose weight in the right places (i.e. stomach, thighs, etc.)

Dr. Blyer, a New York doctor, who prescribes the hormone to patients explained how it works to the Times reporter,  “[The hormone] tricks your body into a state of pregnancy; it burns off fat so the fetus can get enough calories, but it protects muscle.”

Doctors like Dr. Blyer are confidant the hormone works, however the FDA and other medical professional aren’t convinced and say that no research points to weight-loss results. And then there is the matter of whether the hCG diet “mimics anorexia.”

Here is the article. If you can, the comments are worth reading, too.

Here are the top rated ones:

E from VA wrote, “So let me get this straight. A cosmetic surgeon and an orthodontist are promoting a diet plan involving off-the-label medications, extreme calorie restrictions, and no apparent attempts to teach the patients about nutrition.
From the article it's not clear if any nutritionists, dietitians, endocrinologists, or bariatric surgeons are on board, but my guess is they are not.
This plan cannot fail. Where do I sign up?”

Sara from Cambridge, MA wrote, “The quote at the end of the article hits the nail on the head - what does this "diet" teach us about long-term healthy weight-maintenance?
Americans are so obsessed with quick fixes and bandaid solutions (e.g. I have to lose 20 pounds by April to be a bridesmaid! How quickly can I do that?) that we've neglected addressing the underlying issues of weight gain. We will settle for hormone injections, forgetting that, even if the injections did work (I'm guessing they don't), that they are not a sustainable solution, nor a healthy one. When is it finally going to occur to everyone that the only way to get to a healthy weight and stay that way is by eating a well-rounded, balanced diet and exercising on a regular basis? Oh and as a side note, at the height of her disease, my anorexic sister was eating 400-500 calories a day. This diet doesn't mimic anorexia, it IS anorexia. Just because a supposed health professional deemed it ok, doesn't mean it's an appropriate way to lose weight.”

NancyMD from Kingston, RI wrote, "For several weeks in the early 1970s I was on this program of hCG injections and strict diet. Who wouldn't lose weight on an apple and two bread sticks a day? Once, after noticing too late that the syringe contained air bubbles and persuading myself that I was about to suffer an embolism, I panicked. The diet guru being unavailable, I phoned my G.P., interrupting a dinner party. Forty years later I can still recall her exasperation and contempt. She was right of course."

RossaForbes wrote, "Both my husband and I went on the diet and yes, it works. Of course anybody eating 500 calories a day will lose weight, but the trick here is to not feel hungry and that's what the hormone does. My husband and I went skiing on 500 calories a day. We couldn't have done that without the HCG, which we took under the tongue, by the way. You don't have to inject. I was desperate to lose the 16 pounds that I had put on from using an antidepressant. It is a well known fact that certain antidepressants cause what is called metabolic weight gain. I weaned myself off the antidepressant, but the weight wouldn't budge. Neither exercise nor a conventional diet would do it. Dr. Simeons wrote a highly entertaining book called Pounds and Inches that explains the principles behind the diet. To make a long story short I lost the weight in a matter of three weeks. I have not had to diet since."

What do y’all think?

I am always interested in hearing other voices because I think of healing as a village thing.

Since late December I have struggled to lose weight—not because it’s hard or anything (ALTHOUGH it is hard) but because of my disease and how it’s a lose--gain situation every week. I feel like I'm reliving the same experiences. It’s depressing and every time I’ve regained from compulsive overeating, I consider a drastic and disordered eating plan (i.e. fasting, cleansing, eating very very little, etc.) I can do to take the weight off, even something just temporarily, anything to reach one of my little goals.

So I guess it’s my own experiences why I’m wary of any diet that signals eating disorder/disordered eating--BEEP BEEP BEEPING--to me.



He Took MY Last Name said...

That is so stupid. Why would anyone want to fake a pregnancy to lose weight? I did Meridia for a while and heck yeah it worked... until I stopped eating and then got dizzy and almost fainted. Oh and then? I drank a little and became violently ill. And it only worked for about a month, and it was so expensive ($130/month for 30 pills)

I'd rather relive the same ups and downs I am now than go through that again.

Keep your chin up, A

Shannie (akaSolidice242) said...

Youtube and the Blog world have a lot of people who swear by this. I am not someone who can do something like this but I guess to each their own.

jayme @ Losing Half My Weight said...

i read that article too. i've heard about it and there's a couple bloggers who swear by the hcg thing. however, in reading that article, i was like, "well, duh! eating only 500 calories a day could make you lose a pound a day! why bother with the cost of the hcg stuff?" either way, there's something dodgy about it if you ask me....if you're going to spend that amount of money, i'd almost say get lapband surgery and be done with it.

Ro said...

I watch some people on YT that follow this HCG and like Shannie said they swear by it. I really don’t understand it enough but I do know that the 500 calorie a day diet is what’s most likely the reasons for the loss.
I find it entertaining/interesting to watch for some reason…especially when they rationalize and defend the diet.
One young woman shrunk in front of my very eyes...but she stopped taking the HCG and in 2 weeks gained about 10 lbs.....and now she’s going back on it.
So what’s the POINT???
My PERSONAL choice is to just grind it out the best way I I’m not shooting up a damn thing....and I just find that to be a bit scary for me.

Trisha said...

My mother in law, invested a good amount of money into this diet. She was doing the injections (I hear now there is a spray for your mouth) and she lost around 30 lbs. It was amazing. However, she started to cheat, and stopped doing the diet, and she gained that 30lbs back plus some so fast, her doctor was concerned. I completely disagree with this diet. I think it is amazing that people will acutally look to it as something serious to try. It's like all the diet pills for sell at the local drug store... you know they dont really work, yet they'd rather spend the 15-20 bucks to get the "miracle" drug to be skinny/fit/happy. Sad.

Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher said...

hCG is more popular than I imagined since most of you were already in the know!
It's news to me. WOW--thank you so much for weighing in everyone. In my mind, there's no way to rationalize it: 500 calories a day is self abuse. It seems to me that the hormone is what helps someone who is eating so little from lifting their head off the pillows in the mornings from eating so little.

keepitupdavid said...

Ugh - sounds scary. I'm most intrigued by the comment by RossaForbes, who said her husband also went on the diet... wait, WHAT? Her husband's body tricked him into thinking he's pregnant? I'm no scientist, but that's not right!

Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher said...

hahaha, David! Yes! Never considered that :)

MizFit said...

the more I see this and read about it the more, uh, CRAZYTOWN it sounds to me.

and I hate to use the c-word but...


Jean said...

I love the HCG diet. This is my 3rd round and I've lost 50 lbs so far. And have kept it off since last August. Today is day 8 for me and I've lost 14.3 lbs so far. Do some research and read Pounds and Inches by DR Simeons before you judge. Is the diet easy no but what diet is?? The 500 day calorie phase is only for 23 or 40 days your choice. I personally have only done the 23 day. After that you eat low carb for 3 weeks...then SLOWLY start adding carbs back in.

The diet isn't for everyone but it is for some. Just my two cents.

Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher said...

Thank you so much for sharing your experience, Jean!! Ugh, it's so easy to be on the sidelines and offer our opinions. Please don't feel like I don't believe that it took will power and hard work for you. I suppose it's my own experiences and leave me sensitive to certain diet programs. Thanks so much for stopping by. Be well :))

Jean said...

I know all to well!!! When I first heard about the diet last summer...I laughed and thought those crazies. But then I saw how much people were losing & keeping it off. I was on WW at the time but fell of the wagon so to speak and started gaining. I REFUSED to gain so jumped on the HCG bandwagon and I really like it so far. I will go back on WW for the summer...I need structure. Be well too and hope you have success in all you do!

Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher said...

Hahahaha @ "those crazies"
Really really appreciate the well wishes, Jean. Thank you.

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