Two overall reasons - Safety (keeping you healthy) and Efficacy (getting to your weight loss goal). Most patients are not comfortable with the 500 calories per day on the Original Hcg Diet. The risk was too much acidosis from dieting – and side effects of headaches, dizziness, and low potassium levels. The changes to the original Hcg Diet allows 20-40% more calories per day – at 600-700 calories per day my patients feel better, have better hunger control, and are able to stay on the diet until they reach their weight loss goal. We also emphasize the need to spread those calories out over the day.
The calorie allowance of 600-700 calories per day is called the Low Calorie Diet(LCD for short). You will have enough energy to function at home and work, including mild levels of exercise. And you will still lose weight rapidly – an average of 15-20 pounds per month is shed on the new Hcg Diet. Although we do see some people lose 30 pounds in 30 days – this is not typical. It may occur in individuals who start at a higher weight (such as 300 pounds).
As you read about the changes that have been made, you will see there are more food choices, and fewer rules.
Here are the Key Changes that make the new Hcg Diet better:
Food Choices and Frozen Foods – The original Hcg Diet was based on a very limited selection of food items that were commonly available in Italy in the 1950?s when Dr. Simeons was in practice. Additional food selections have been added in all four categories of meats, vegetables,. fruits and beverages. We have also seen tremendous advancements in frozen foods, which can be safely incorporated into a modern protocol.
Sugar Substitutes – The patient is permitted the use of all sugar substitutes that are calorie free. Sugar substitutes are commonly used in soft drinks, iced teas and chewing gum. Use of these sugar-free products represents food behaviors that are often well established by participants before they ever start the new Hcg Diet. For the purposes of compliance with the new Hcg Diet, the use of sugar substitutes is permitted. Physicians do point out that, in the long run, feel we should limit our use of these products.
Caffeine – Caffeine is permitted on the new Hcg Diet and is often consumed in tea, coffee or soft drinks. Caffeine can increase, decrease or have no effect on appetite. It varies by the individual. Many participants on the new Hcg Diet were using caffeine beverages before starting the diet and do not want to give them up. As a means of helping them succeed on the new HCG Diet, we now permit the use of caffeine. Stopping caffeine and starting a LCD can trigger problems with headaches in the first week of the program.
Low Calorie Diet (LCD) – As mentioned, there is an allowance of a range of 600-700 calories per day. With the LCD modification, patients feel better, and have fewer effects from the acidosis of dieting and are therefore more likely to continue on the diet.
Hcg Immunity – Simeons believed that patients would develop immunity to Hcg. He advised the use of Hcg for only 6 days per week and required intervals of time to be off Hcg before restarting additional cycles. There is no evidence to support the belief the immunity exists for the vast majority of participants. With the new Hcg Diet, we advise participants to use Hcg daily for steady benefit and consistent results.
Continuous Monthly Cycles – Since we are not concerned about immunity and we now permit a higher intake of calories, we are able to offer monthly cycles of continuous Hcg use. We see an average monthly weight loss of 15 pounds for women and 20 pounds for men. Patients are safely permitted to continue monthly cycles “back to back” until they reach their weight loss goal. The momentum of successful weight loss is continued and patients learn to maintain lifelong behavioral changes towards healthier eating. This leads to permanent weight loss.
Vitamins and Supplements - The new Hcg Diet is, by its very nature, low in food sources of calcium and supplementation with calcium is needed for most participants. We also discuss the importance of B-Complex and Potassium. Some people also benefit from the addition of fiber, melatonin and B-12 shots.
Creams, Oils and Cosmetics – The use of body creams, oils, lotions and cosmetics do not, in my experience, interfere with weight loss on the new Hcg Diet. They are permitted and this change from the Simeons Protocol is greatly appreciated!
Menses – When women are menstruating, their hunger is frequently increased. We can find no logical explanation to withhold Hcg based on the menstrual cycle of women. Daily use of Hcg is encouraged, including during the menstrual period.
Fat is Fat - Dr. Simeons talked about “three kinds of fat”, and theorized that during dieting the body chooses certain fats to burn first. We do not follow that logic and pur observation is that all fat stores are used as people are on the new Hcg Diet program.
No Speculation about how Hcg works – Dr. Simeons had theories about how low dose Hcg works. Since they remain unproven theories, we do not speculate on the mode of action of Hcg. What is more important to me is our observation that Hcg does appear to help people lose weight on the new Hcg Diet.
No more Apple Days or Steak Days – We define a weight loss plateau as “no weight loss for a full two weeks despite complete adherence to the program”. Dr. Simeons attempted to break plateaus with either an “apple day” or a “steak day”. I have attempted to use these ideas with patients, and found them to be ineffective, misleading and counterintuitive. The best advice that one can offer is to “Stay committed and look at the total accumulated weight loss”. Plateaus cannot continue, due to the sheer arithmetic of following a LCD.
Salt Restriction – Dr. Simeons placed no restriction on the use of salt, but today we know better. The excessive use of salt carries definite health risks. In a healthy individual, I permit the use of salt. If you have hypertension, coronary artery disease or heart failure, salt use should be limited.
Constipation – Constipation is a common challenge that we face with a LCD despite the high fiber content of the vegetables and fruit that you will be consuming. Dr. Simeons did not intervene if patients only had a bowel movement every 3-4 days. Our experience has been that constipation of 3-4 days duration leads to retained weight, bloating, fatigue and the risk of hemorrhoids. We prefer to advise the use of fiber to ensure a bowel pattern of once daily to every other day.
Massage – Massage is permitted, as there is no logical reason to withhold use of this very helpful service.
No More Phases – Dr. Simeons referred to “phases” during the original Hcg Diet. We have found this terminology to be confusing. The new Hcg Diet has 3 parts: fat loading, low-calorie diet and maintenance.