Kevin Trudeau wrote a book entitled “The Cure for Obesity” promoting the “beneifts” of HCG. Internet salesman Joe Vitale promotes it as well as a number of other people, medically-trained and not. What is it and does it work?
hCG or Human chorionic gonadotropin is a hormone produced during pregnancy that prmotes progesterone release, which is critical for continued pregnancy. In the 1950s, a British endocrinologist named Albert Simeons promoted the use of this hormone along with an extremely low calorie diet as a weight loss method, calling it a “cure” for obesity.
Dr. Simeons’ theory of hCG use was based on observations of Indian women on low calorie diets who maintained muscle mass during their pregnancy. Over the decades, this diet has come and gone in popularity.
Does it work?
A meta-analysis (which is basically a study or review of all of the studies done on the given subject) of 24 major studies published in the late 1990s found that hCG did NOT promote weight loss, and that dramatic decreases in body weight were entirely due to the low calorie diet. The AMA warned that hCG is dangerous and not effective for weight loss.
Please note that the low calorie diet consisted of a grand total of 500 calories per day.
Doc Wellness Notes: I have had a number of patients come to me before, during and after this hCG diet and to a person, all suffered significant problems with their adrenal glands, thyroid and blood levels. It took on average, approximately 6-8 weeks to normalize their systems. Over time, virtually all gained back the weight they lost.
Yes all lost weight. How can you not, eating only 500 calories a day. Initially, weight loss was water. Afterwards, muscle was catabolized and finally fat loss was noted. The one thing that struck me was that over time, the overall body fat percentage did not go down nearly as much as anticipated; that is, there was often significant weight loss, just not significant fat loss.
Individuals who promote this such as Mr. Trudeau use what I call the “Freud logic” when called on to defend their promotion of this. Among his many theories, Freud proposed the following – If you are falling in a dream, you will always wake up before you hit the ground. If you actually hit the ground in your dream, you will die.
Of course, this type of thinking cannot be disproven. If you hit the ground in your dream and if Freud was correct, you would die and of course, cannot relay your information. If you wake up (like everyone does), it is “fake” proof that his theory is correct.
When asked what should a patient do if their doctor does not approve of such a procedure, Trudeau replied, “Find a new doctor.” Same type of fake advise.
hCG does not work for weight loss. A solid exercise program, coupled with a diet that features a reduction in calories by about 10% will work. 1-3 pounds of fat will be lost and over time, this will amount to real effective weight loss and body shape restructuring. Add some nutrition such as Hgh Plus, Chromium picolinate and Green Tea extract to the mix and you have a basic program that you can adjust to your needs, guaranteed both to work and to preserve your adrenals, thyroid and blood levels.