Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (hCG) And Weight Loss: Fact Or Fiction?

Over the past few years, we’ve seen a flurry of renewed interest in human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) for weight loss.

Even Dr. Oz has offered his (qualified) support for the program.

Not surprising, really.

I suspect this had something to do with Kevin Trudeau’s book, “The Weight Loss Cure ‘They’ Don’t Want You to Know About,”  which promoted a period of daily hCG injections for weight loss. The book received huge exposure and was a top seller in just about every market.

Anything Mr. Trudeau “recommends” should be approached with a great deal of skepticism. This guy is a con man with a long track record of fleecing the public of its hard earned cash.

He’s been fined by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for making false and unsubstantiated claims (apparently, he claimed his coral calcium supplement could cure cancer) and banned from making further infomercials (click here for info!).

He is now being targeted by the FTC for his “weight loss” book — for violating the previous court order that banned him for making infomercials for any other product other than books. This would be allowed provided he would not misrepresent the content of the books. The FTC claims his diet — which is advertised as “easy and simple” is anything but. Click here to read the FTC press release!

Some people believe Mr. Trudeau is the victim of some sort of conspiracy orchestrated at the behest of the pharmaceutical industry. Those folks should check out any of the over 400 customer complaints posted at Infomercialscams.com.

If he truly were the victim he claims to be, it seems unlikely he would insist on perpetuating the deceptive billing practices his customers accuse him of (most complaints are related to his “Natural Cures” publication, but I’m sure you’ll see similar ones related to his new book soon).

Before discussing human chorionic gonadotropin’s “place” in any weight loss strategy, let’s discuss what it is…

Human chorionic gonadotropin is a hormone produced during pregnancy. The hormone is present in the urine, and it’s the presence of hCG that home pregnancy kits are “checking” for when such a test is performed. In a nutshell, if hCG is present, you’re pregnant, if it’s not… you’re not.

Because it can also be created by some kinds of cancer, hCG can serve as an important tumor marker as well.

When human chorionic gonadotropin is prescribed in a medical scenario, it is either as a fertility medication (can be for both men or women), or to restore testosterone production in men.

But what about hCG’s role in weight loss?

In 1954, Dr. Albert T. Simeons, a British-physician claimed hCG injections would allow dieters to manage easily on a 500 calorie per day diet.

He claimed that hCG could suppress appetite, burn stored fat as well as redistribute fat from the hips, thighs and waist. Unfortunately, he had no clinical evidence to validate any of these claims.

But that’s not to say that hCG’s role in weight loss hasn’t been studied. It has. Quite extensively.

And guess what?

Not a single study indicates hCG has any benefit for weight loss (see JAMA 236:2495–2497, 1976, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 29:940–948, 1976, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 12:230–234, 1963, S Afr Med J. 1990 Feb 17;77(4):185-9, West Journal of Medicine 127:461–463, 1977, Archives of Internal Medicine 137:151-155, 1977).

Well, that’s not entirely true.

One study, the Asher-Harper study (performed in 1973), found that the combination of the 500 calorie per day diet and hCG injections offered a significant benefit to dieters, offering increased weight loss and a decrease in hunger.

It is this study that many of the advocates of the hCG protocol regularly cite when promoting this diet.

What they don’t do however, is cite this study (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol 29, 940-948), which was designed to…

“… retest the hypothesis of the efficacy of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) on weight reduction in obese women in a clinic setting. We sought to duplicate the Asher-Harper study (1973) which had found that the combination of 500 cal diet and HCG had a statistically significant benefit…”

In other words, these researchers attempted to duplicate the results of the Asher-Harper study. The result of their findings?

“HCG does not appear to enhance the effectiveness of a rigidly imposed regimen for weight reduction.”

A more recent study echoed this conclusion. “The effect of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in the treatment of obesity by means of the Simeons therapy: a criteria-based meta-analysis” (see Br J Clin Pharmacol. 1995 Sep;40(3):237-43) concluded…

“… that there is no scientific evidence that hCG is effective in the treatment of obesity; it does not bring about weight-loss of fat-redistribution, nor does it reduce hunger or induce a feeling of well-being.”

This seems to be the general consensus for hCG’s role in weight loss—taking it simply makes no difference. Some go further—like Dr. Stephen Barret of Diet Scam Watch, who calls hCG “worthless as a weight loss aid.”

It’s important to note, however, that hCG is administered under the supervision of a physician (hCG is considered a drug and requires a prescription) along with a Very Low Calorie Diet (a diet providing 800 or less calories per day—also known as a “VLCD”). It is often accompanied by intensive one-to-one support.

This is often referred to as the “hCG protocol.”

We received a lot of angry comments from people (over at Real-Customer-Comments.com) who had used the hCG protocol to what they felt was a positive effect (these led to some interesting blog posts, viewable here, and here!). They felt we were “bashing” hCG, neglecting to recognize its role in weight loss.

Not so.

When hCG was tested, it was compared to a placebo which included the Very Low Calorie Diet. And yes, VLCDs work. You will lose weight on one.

Guidance and support can also be very helpful for weight loss; that’s why programs like Weight Watchers have regular meetings and weigh ins. Frankly, if you have to be accountable to someone for your successes and failures, you tend to be a little more serious about making an effort.

But what the clinical data shows is that when you compare the results of people on a medically-supervised VLCD and those on a VLCD and hCG, there is no perceptible difference—in weight loss, in perceived hunger, in anything (while this may come as a surprise to many people, VLCDs themselves have appetite-suppressing effects).

In other words, it is the low calorie diet, possibly in conjunction with the regular support and guidance, that is responsible for the weight loss.

Not the hCG shots.

And that’s not the only problem…

In the old days, hCG was difficult to obtain, and prohibitively expensive. Now, hCG clinics are popping up all over the place. It is becoming relatively easy to obtain.

In fact, it’s very likely desperate individuals will have no qualms about turning to their credit cards to finance the protocol, figuring it is worth any price if it works.

But the hCG protocol is not a “quick fix” solution for weight loss. Even physicians who actively prescribe the protocol (like Dr. Ben Gonzalez, with whom our scientific and technical advisor Elissa had an interesting and spirited discussion here!) are quick to point this out.

Nonetheless, it is in danger of becoming so, especially as more and more people see the amount of money that can be made from exploiting a desperate segment of the population.

If you’re reading this review because you are considering the hCG protocol, we would strongly recommend doing some research on the better “conventional diets, especially if you have less than 50 pounds to lose (the top online diet programs are reviewed here, and we have an entire section dedicated to diets here!).

It’s very likely there is a practical solution our there that does meet your needs—perhaps you just haven’t come across it yet?

In the end, keeping the weight off requires significant lifestyle changes. This is why we prefer these programs… we feel they are far better solutions for long-term fat loss, health, and well-being.

Given what we know about the hCG protocol to date, there is no valid reason to recommend experimenting with it.

Related articles: hCG Diet Drops For Weight Loss

HCG Summary
 
  • Most people will lose weight on the protocol.
  • Protocol offers support and reinforcement.
 
  • Results due to VLCD – there is no proof that HCG is better than placebo.
  • Quality of clinics (and clinicians) vary.
  • Like other “quick fix” programs, prospects for long-term maintenance are murky.
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123 Comments

  1. It is my understanding that the HCG injections are there to preserve the muscle so that a VLCD (very low calorie diet) can be followed effectively, utilizing highly nutritious but very low fat foods.

    The diet is key to the program, as it encourages the body fat to be used as fuel. Under a doctor’s care, an appetite suppressant is also prescribed so that a VLCD can be tolerated long term.

    This program is done in 8-week intervals, with three weeks off between cycles. Exercise is encouraged. I started five weeks ago with about 100 lb. to lose, and in that time have lost 17 lb. so far.

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  2. Having taken mood stabilizers and antidepressants for about 3 years now, my metabolism has changed rapidly, considering I eat healthy and instruct and coach 13 intense muscle strengthening programs per week! I gained 18kg in this period of time – and no, I did not eat more than usual, no lies.

    I became desperate and completely adament to discover a cure for this. So I found the Dr. Simeons Manuscript and yes, for the first time in my life ever, I went on a diet.

    I injected myself everyday, except Sundays, for 40 days and did exactly as Dr Simeons suggested, and I LOST EXACTLY AS HE SAID ONE WOULD. What an incredibly mind blowing experience, the fat melted away. It was phenomenal. But, I will add, it is only for those who REALLY WANT TO LOSE FAT.

    You only do what is really important to you and this was. How can a healthy person who gets others to lose weight successfully, just gain weight? – it’s bizarre.

    I practice what I preach and for some reason I felt extremely punished and cursed. I just couldn’t lose weight and I new that it was simply ludicrous to add more exercise to such a hectic training schedule.

    If you do the program, exactly as Dr Simeons (NOT TRUDUEA) prescribed, you’ll have success. Read the entire document, and please, don’t try to follow other methods. Dr Simeons spent his life researching and succesfully curing people of their lament. DO AS HE SAYS – YOU WON’T REGRET IT.

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  3. I went on the HCG injections for 10 weeks, and I did lose about 20 1bs — maybe because i am older 56) and less active.

    I have found with HCG that you mostly lose in inches than pounds. The only drawback with this program is,you may as well lay on the couch the first two weeks as you are too weak to exercise.

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  4. I have been on hCG injections for the previous past 2 months (Jan. & Feb.) and lost 35 lbs. consuming 800 – 1000 calories a day, and no simple carbs. I also walked most days.

    My Dr. stopped giving hCG this mo (March), and I have found it very hard to even stay on my diet this mo. Amazingly – I have not gained any weight, even though I have overate.

    I miss the content and full feeling that the hCG gave me. I will be finding another Dr. who gives hCG. I have 35 more lbs. to go before my target weight.

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  5. HCG? It helps! It supports! It works! It is not the cure-all, but it is a tool to help you accomplish a very difficult task. Is it easy? No. But nothing is… Happy Living to you!

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  6. I recently started the HCG injections 7 days ago and was following the 500-800 calorie intake and gained 3lbs. I was very discouraged, so I did a little research on low calorie diets vs low carb diets and was amazed that low carb diets are so much healthier for you.

    The huge intake of carbs is responsible for my additional weight gain, so check out the foods your consuming and look at the the carbs!

    On such a low cal intake you’re losing muscle mass. I will continue to use the HCG as it promotes fatigue and helps burn fat and promotes good sleep. Please do your research.

    My initial weight gain problem is because I abused carbs. So why do I want to take in a high level of them, my Dr. who is promoting this diet had no answers for me.

    Wish me luck and good luck to you all.

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  7. I have just finished my first week of HCG shots and lost 6 pounds. In the past I’ve tried everything, including starving myself – nothing has worked as this has. The first few days are rough, I must admit, but as of yesterday, no hunger pains, loads of energy and I have followed Dr. Simeons plan to the T.

    I am not one to rule out Placebo effect but if it works more power to me! Phase 3 of the plan seems to make sense, looks healthy and pretty easy to follow.

    Compared to all the diet junk that’s out there including the weight loss programs that scam you into buying their products and the hundreds of dollars you can dish out, I think HCG ( and I paid 100.00 through my doctor)is a small price to pay.

    On the other hand I would never go through some one like Kevin Trudeau to pay for something like this, His prices are crazy! He is definitely making a huge profit.

    My advice is to find a “real” doctor who will support you in this.

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  8. If you do this EXACTLY as prescribed, including the load on the first 2 days, it works! I, like most other single moms in my late 30’s have that spare tire thing and I just got sick of it! I have been on this diet and the injections for one week and I have lost 10 pounds. I am sleeping all night, I am not tired and after the first two days, the hunger went away. Low fat and low carbs (what this diet basically is)and reading labels will help you lose weight anyway, but from my understanding, you would never make it on 500 cals a day without the HCG. Believe it or not, I am actually full after a meal. I can’t even eat it all and always save my fruit for a snack. It is not expensive to try the protocol. I have invested less than $100 and am doing it myself, not at a clinic. I talked with my OB first and he couldn’t find any negatives, aside from the usual internet bad-mouthing from folks who have never tried it or tried it and did it wrong!!
    My suggestion? Just print the Simeon’s protocol-Trudeau adds too much stuff, and try it. If it doesn’t work, you probably have wasted no more money or time than you would have on any other diet :)

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  9. I’ve gotten through my third day of HCG dieting. My mom and I have been using the sublinqual method (not injections). Just as Simeon promised, I’m losing 1 pound a day.

    When you see the results on the scale, that alone motivates you. 500 cal per day is hard but the HCG has to be curbing my appetite or I would be a crazy woman.

    My wonderful mom helped me prepare for the diet. I’m a 10 hr/day manager with a husband and 6 y/o so she knew it was going to be tough for me to make it happen.

    She prepared menus with the calories already counted. We weighed and prepared a lot of my meat ahead of time and froze it so I could just grab it for lunch and go.

    Would highly recommend this strategy. Best of luck to the other dieters.

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  10. I’ve used HCG before and I lost about 100 lbs from it. I swear by it. I found a doctor around my area who at the time was giving the injections for a reasonable price and at the time I honestly didn’t know that this was illegal for weight loss purposes in the US.

    I had been over weight my whole life. I can remember being 5 and being a “fat girl” ever since I went to this doctor and took HCG.

    I lost 18 pounds in the first 2 weeks I took it and it only took me 3 months to loose 77 lbs.

    Unfortunately the doctor who was giving these shots to me and many others, got in serious trouble for distributing this HCG to his patients. He was taken to court by one patient of his and had to give up his license and eventually he decided to retire.

    This broke my heart that a man who brought me to life and made me more healthy and happy, had to give up what he loved to do – helping people loose weight and live happy lives.

    Its been about 7 years since I last went to that doctor for the HCG injections.

    I cannot understand why they distribute all these other “weight loss” pills and diets and even some of these surgeries, claiming that you will loose so much weight and keep it off. None of it works but the FDA won’t approve HCG for weight loss.

    I can’t wait for this to finally get approved.
    I myself will be undergoing weight loss surgery and I don’t even think that’s as effective as the HCG.

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  11. I took HCG shots, through my doctor, only once a week. Made sure to get 30g protein within the 1st 3 hours of waking up, (she also added phentermine to help curb appetite for the 1st month or so).

    I followed a 800-1000 calorie diet for 2 weeks then went 1000-1200 calories for one week. In 3 months I lost almost 40 lbs. I found my miracle.

    I have hypothyroid (very low) and could not lose those last 50 lbs since having my 3rd baby (at 38 years old) I definitely lost more inches than lbs.

    I am 6’2″ and weigh 195 lbs, but wear a size 12 and am very happy with that. Even at 180lbs (15 years ago, I was a size 14) I can’t take the phentermine any more since I just quit working. I stopped the shots for 3 months, to “test” if I would gain the weight back. Only gained 3lbs so started the shots again over a month ago. Lost the 3 lbs, but nothing like when I first started the program. Can’t complain.

    I haven’t weighed below this in 15 years, so it really worked great for me! SO many of my friends are doing excellent with it too! (40-80lbs in <6 months) Feel like I'm 20 again!

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  12. I love the HCG this has been the only thing that has worked for me, I cant believe it. My first week I lost 7 pounds.

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  13. I am planning to try the HCG diet next week. I am trying to find out more about how HCG is extracted from the urine or the placenta and what risks that may include – similar to blood transfusions?

    I assume it is important that there are no medical issues going on for the donor. Has anyone else been concerned about this? What have you found out?

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  14. I am on my 2nd round, but only 23 days this time. I lost 18 pounds the first time back in October. I have a small heart issue so I cannot take “diet drugs”. I figure if my female body made the HCG during my pregnancy, what the heck…can’t hurt to try it.

    This has been the best thing I could have done!! I have not weighed under 180 in 10 years. I have stayed within a couple of pounds of my ideal weight, but doughnuts and chips will make you fat!

    My fault for not weighing daily after phase 3, and for eating doughnuts.

    I sleep better, I am awake and alert (not the “speedy jittery” alert!), and after the first few days the hunger goes away.

    In fact, after the first couple of weeks it is hard to stomach all the calories in a day. I have never felt better.

    It has been a great learning experience-you will learn to read everything you buy and become more aware of what kind of JUNK is in a lot of food. My family eats most things now that are all natural with no preservatives.

    My only suggestion to anybody who wants to try it is to find some recipes on the internet… the actual diet food is very boring. The shipping is usually a bit slow on the meds, so start early with that part!

    Do your research-the positive feedback on this FAR outweighs the negative.

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  15. I am currently on my fourth day of 500 calories with the HCG injections. The first 2 days were so tough, I almost quit every hour. My third day went a lot smoother – I started feeling alert and full of energy. The only reason I haven’t quit as yet is due to the rapid weight loss.

    The past 1 and a half months have been incredibly busy at work, and as a result I stopped exercising and the weight just piled on. Add to this mixture the affects of winter and wanting more comfort foods, I couldn’t keep the weight off. I felt terrible about letting myself go.

    So, I decided to try the HCG after my mom and sister had successfully lost weight on it, and amazingly kept it off even after following their previous eating patterns.

    After the 2 days of gorging, I weighed in at 65.4 kgs the Monday morning. Tuesday morning I weighed in at 64.7 kgs. Wednesday I weighed 63.9 kgs. I have to add, I had such a craving for coffee, and even though you are permitted coffee, milk is not allowed and I get nauseous from drinking black coffee. SO Wednesday I decided to have one cup of coffee with low fat milk and sweetener – and couldn’t wait to see what affect it would have on my weight today, Thursday.

    Today I weighed in at 63 kg’s. Feels good. Had another coffee with milk today, so I’ll have to see again tomorrow if this has an affect on my weight loss.

    The restrictive nature of this diet is truly tiresome. I know its not desirable, but I might not stay on it for much longer, and rather follow the traditional route of healthy, balanced eating and exercise. I feel like I’m punishing myself right now.

    But heck, the weight loss feels good, but I don’t really approve of the instant gratification, don’t know if this is psychologically a good approach in the long run…..

    Editor’s Comments: A 500 calorie diet is more than restrictive – it can hardly be considered either a “safe” or “practical” approach to weight loss (the minimum “safe” caloric limit for women is around 800-1200 calories, depending on a few factors).

    Additionally, a large percentage of weight loss will be comprised of muscle mass. This is not desirable, since muscle is metabolically active tissue and contributes to an elevated metabolism. This makes it more likely the weight will come back faster than ever when you go off this diet… which you must at some point.

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  16. I am going to start doing HCG treatment soon. I watched four people do it with amazing results. They have all kept the weight off. They have changed their diets, but it has been amazing to watch them shrink.

    My sister was 187 and lost 42 pounds in just eight weeks. She was following the manuscripts but was only in taking 300 calories a day.

    My mom followed the same diet and lost 35 pounds and is about to start her second cycle. I have no clue how the FDA can say this treatment does not work. I would not suggest lowering your calorie intake to that level but they both only experienced a little hunger that was satisfied by drinkig water.

    Editor’s Comments: 300 calories a day? Of course you’re going to lose weight… but how much of that is going to lean muscle — tissue that always burns calories and elevates the metabolism? How could you possibly cover your basic nutritional needs at that level? Franky, we think this sounds highly unsafe, and possibly dangerous.

    By the way, it’s not the FDA that says HCG doesn’t work, it’s a whole number of peer-reviewed clinical studies. Fact is, if you only consume 300 calories per day, you will lose weight — with or without HCG.

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  17. The guy who says it doesn’t work and to save your money does not know what he’s talking about and I’ll bet he never tried hCG.

    My wife and I both went on the Semiens Protocol for six months and I lost 67 pounds and she lost 45 pounds.

    Over the course of 18 months I’ve lost 90 pounds on the Protocol and kept it off!

    I truly believe that it works.

    Editor’s comments: Any HCG diet we reviewed will work simply because of the massive caloric restriction. Existing clinical data does not support the claim that HCG aids in weight loss (see the full review for more details).

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  18. I really could care less about all the negative “studies” regarding hcg. For those of us who are experiencing the weight loss, that is what matters!

    I have a multitude of chronic health problems-severe chronic fatigue syndrome, mal-absorption syndrome, chronic back/leg pain from an injury/surgery, to name a few. I had gained a huge amount of weight, and had no luck losing it. Tried the hcg and lost 12.6# in 22 days. From the forum I visited, this was on the low end- but I was 3 for 3 in regards to the things that make hcg not work quite as well- female, long hx of taking thyroid medication, and long hx of prescription medications.

    I know that it wasn’t just the 500 calorie diet, because I had no hunger while on the shots. And for the past 3 weeks I have eaten as much as I want, including fat, as long as I stayed away from sugar and starch. I not only haven’t gained any weight back, but have continued to lose a little. I’m not a Kevin Trudeau fan for many reasons, but this has been used around the world successfully, and I personally have communicated with enough people in the past 7 weeks to know it isn’t a fluke.

    Editor’s comments: Margie, we’d suggest clinical studies are important. In large part, they prevent well-established crooks like Mr. Trudeau from continuing to pull the wool over the eyes of consumers. As we’ve stated, anyone consuming 500 calories per day is going to lose weight. The studies show that HCG makes no difference over a placebo (in other words, individuals taking a placebo and sticking to a 500 calorie attain exactly the same benefits). One study states…

    “Injections of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) have been claimed to aid in weight reduction by reducing hunger, and affecting mood as well as aiding in localized (spot) reduction. We have tested these claims in a double-blind randomized trial using injections of HCG or placebo. Weight loss was identical between the two groups, and there was no evidence for differential effects on hunger, mood or localized body measurements. Placebo injections, therefore, appear to be as effective as HCG in the treatment of obesity.”

    The fact that you’ve haven’t gained anything back is no validation of HCG effectiveness either; you’ve indicated that you’ve implemented an Atkins-style diet (no carbs or sweets) which is actually very good for weight maintenance. While we’re happy you’ve lost the weight you wanted, your experience is not a clinical validation of the effectiveness of HCG.

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  19. I tried the HCG Diet, and documented everything on my blog. I documented all the numbers, including fat loss vs. lean body mass.

    http://fatlosschronicles.blogspot.com

    In short, I did drop weight very quickly. However, 41% of the weight was lean body mass! This diet does not target just fat, as claimed. Become educated about what HCG will do to your body before trying it!

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  20. I have struggled with my weight for over 20 years and since I was a child ~ I have lost over 100 pounds with this protocol!!! It’s simply been a blessing and miracle for me. It is possible to not lose weight on such a low calorie diet itself because the body goes into starvation mode.

    It’s also important to note that although you are only taking in 500 calories a day, your body it utilizing much more than that via the abnormally stored fat. Also, Dr. Simeons DID do studies, and he worked on this protocol for many, many years ~ his manuscript is “Pounds & Inches”.

    Also, if you’ve lost lean muscle ( I did at first), then you need to add a bit more protein throughout the day, so the blood sugars do not yo-yo & go up and down so much ~ When Dr. Simeons did the studies, there was not the epidemic and issue of diabetes/hormone issues that there is today.

    To the editor: You mentioned “Injections of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) have been claimed to aid in weight reduction by reducing hunger, and affecting mood as well as aiding in localized (spot) reduction. We have tested these claims in a double-blind randomized trial using injections of HCG or placebo. Weight loss was identical between the two groups, and there was no evidence for differential effects on hunger, mood or localized body measurements. Placebo injections, therefore, appear to be as effective as HCG in the treatment of obesity.”

    I would appreciate the knowledge of where I can find information and specifics on this study. The statement you gave says nothing of the specific dosing or specific diet of the study. And what is reported of “clinical trials/studies” is often VERY deceiving!

    Editor’s comments: The statement we gave is an except of a study, which we linked to – you can find it here. It’s the conclusion of the study. You may need to pay for the full thing. You may also want to check out “The effect of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) in the treatment of obesity by means of the Simeons therapy: a criteria-based meta-analysis“, which concludes…

    “…there is no scientific evidence that HCG is effective in the treatment of obesity; it does not bring about weight-loss of fat-redistribution, nor does it reduce hunger or induce a feeling of well-being.”

    (End of editor’s comments).

    Again, I have battled with my weight since I was 8 ~ I’m now 31! From August to March I lost over 100 pounds!!! (with a few breaks in there) The HCG protocol really works IF you follow it. I consider myself my own personal ‘clinical study’ with all of the things I’ve done over the years, and in my results, this HCG protocol is the “winner!”

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  21. Well, I am posting this risking professional ridicule (but not afraid). Why do I say that? Because I am a traditionally trained, board certified MD physician who, when I first heard about the hCG protocol for weight loss used the words “stupid, dumb fad diet, unsafe, gross negligence” in describing my initial response to the HCG protocol to a family member who wanted me to prescribe hCG to them for the purpose of losing weight. Then they told me they already did it once, lost 35 lbs in 39 days, kept the weight off, felt good doing it, and wanted to lose more. And felt great doing the VLC protocol. So I looked into it. After I did I still thought the same thoughts concerning the “diet.” Why? Because I made the same mistake every other traditionally trained health professional does when looking at the protocol. I looked at it from a narrow minded view. “It’s not FDA approved, anyone can lose weight on 500 Kcalories a day, there are no studies proving it, you can’t live on 500 calories, anecdotal reports are worthless, etc.” First thing you see when you google hcg weight loss are either scam marketing ads for it or traditional reviews with negative responses. Of course you would think this is a “bad fad diet.” Until I kept looking.

    And I spoke with individuals who succeeded and those who didn’t and I looked closer to the reasons why. I also stepped away from my own traditional bias and tried to open my mind to the protocol. I read the studies. Some legitimate, others not so much. All small and old. And yes, the Kevin Trudeau book and marketing push is one big scam to make money off of things not related to the protocol. That does not make the protocol unsafe or ineffective. Then I supervised actual patients with strict adherence to the original Dr Simeon’s protocol. And guess what, I found success in small numbers. Remarkable success. And I do not mean in just weight loss. In fact, it turns out it is not the weight loss that is the success of the protocol, rather the ability to be self aware in keeping the weight off. Yes, all anecdotal. Over 200 patients and counting.

    Yes, there are failures. I can count them on one hand. Yes, anyone can lose weight on 500 calories, but can anyone actually do 500 calories for 39 days and feel great? A myth concerning this protocol is that you live off 500 calories. Actuality is that you live off the 500 calories you ingest PLUS the calories you burn from your fat and the nutrition that is released from the fat you burn. Another myth: Fat only stores fat soluble vitamins. Nope. Fat stores many other minerals and hormones and in fact, is part of the endocrine system in making certain hormones. So as you burn fat it releases nutrition that your body uses for metabolism. Another fact ignored: Did you know the hCG hormone is similar to thyroid hormone and acts to stimulate the thyroid? This is a generalization but an accurate one. I do not know exactly how this relates to weight loss and I do not think anyone does. However, I am willing to bet this is part of the reason why it works in this protocol.

    I am traditionally trained, extremely skeptical but not cynical, healthy in my skepticism of all medicine whether FDA approved or not (remember Vioxx, Sledane. Baycol, Zelnorm, Fen-Phen?). I find it interesting that the FDA will approve a procedure that has a 300 plus people a year death rate (gastric bypass) not to mention a very high co-morbidity (associated problems) rate and physicians who will approve of this procedure. Yet, place a “black box” on hCG saying no approval for weight loss when there has been ZERO noted issues in over 50 years in hCG use in weight loss. The “extensive studies” that are cited on both sides of the argument are very small studies (Greenway, etc.) and old and are equivocal when they are all looked at together. No study follows up on long term weight loss. Another interesting note is it is well documented that hCG is safe at 100 times the amount used for weight loss. Why no large studies? Because there is no money to be made in a generic medication. Why don’t I do a large study? Because it costs money and I am unable to get a grant to do so. No pharmaceutical will give money for a large study again, because there is no money to be made. If I found/developed a synthetic and patentable hCG then money would be available.

    Another commonly stated argument against the hCG Protocol: Kevin Trudeau. Unfortunately this is a flawed argument. Just because Kevin Trudeau has been fined and is a scam artist does not make the hCG protocol ineffective. The hCG protocol is not his. It was not developed by him. He just found it, wrote a book and sells unrelated items that he says is “required for the diet to work” but has nothing to do with the protocol. That is the scam. By the way. On this Ultimatefatburner.com negative review page there are multiple links to purchasing hCG for weight loss and to find hCG weight loss clinics. Does this make this review a scam or invalid? No. (Note to the editors, practice what you preach).

    Editor’s note: Dr. Gonzalez, I’m sure you’re well aware of the difference between editorial copy and advertising. Until publishers in any medium are exempted from paying rent, for clothing, food, and so on, there will always appear to be an apparent conflict of interest between the material presented and advertising. Fact is, it occurs in every publishing industry, and is an unfortunate, yet necessary part of life. Please recognize the difference. (End of editor’s comments.)

    The hCG is not for everybody. It is not a “weight loss cure” and it must be physician directed and supervised. It cannot be applied to the general public as many diets are. A full health evaluation is imperative prior to beginning such a diet. I have saved many from gastric bypass, been able to get diabetics off their medications, get patients off blood pressure meds, antidepression meds, and cholesterol meds because of this protocol. Anecdotal? Yes. Ineffective? No. Need larger studies? Yes.

    As a side note, my clinic is not an hCG only weight loss clinic but I do use hCG for weight loss in a very selective patient population to help them avoid gastric bypass or other unsafe weight loss substitutes.

    Ben Gonzalez, MD
    Medical Director
    Atlantis Medical Wellness Center

    Editor’s comments: Thank you very much for your comments, Dr. Gonzalez. We always appreciate it when a qualified professional weighs in with his (or her) opinion. Regarding the studies cited; they may be old (not all are small – like this one, for instance), but they are the only ones we have. Our job here is to balance the advertising claims with the evidence – and to date, published evidence does not show HCG in a great light. When you consider that the supplement industry had a long and sordid history of making unsubstantiated claims in order to fleece consumers, we are highly skeptical of those who make arguments contrary to what is borne out by existing evidence. Especially when they have a huge financial incentive to do so, no real scientific evidence to base that argument upon, and occasionally, a shady background (case in point, Mr Kevin Trudeau).

    That does not mean that new, larger scale studies on HCG will show different, more beneficial results. And we’ll be happy to revise our conclusion on HCG… but only when we have some peer-reviewed data to base that revision on. But until then, we have to rely on the only evidence we have.

    It would be fantastic if you used your own clinic as a “testing ground”, and wrote up and published your results in a qualified peer-reviewed journal.

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  22. Dear Editor,

    You are correct concerning the general motives of the supplemental industry. And you are certainly correct concerning the ability of that industry to “fleece” consumers (selling DHEA and other supplements that are not bioavailable , all the ‘must have vitamins to prolong life’ ads that exist, high anti-oxidant drinks that cost $60 a bottle, ect.). The FDA, much needed and useful as it is, does not have a perfect record of review. Not anywhere near perfect. True balance needs to be impartial and truly objective. Your reviews seem skewed. Example of that is the persistent citation of Trudeau as a scam artist as a reason for hCG ineffectiveness in your reviews and in your response to my comments. He is most definitely a scam artist. However, that is independent of the hCG protocol. The published data to date concerning hCG is not only small and old (I agree, that doesn’t mean it is invalid), but truly equivocal. It does not establish the effectiveness or lack thereof concerning the hCG protocol. And just because it is published doesn’t mean it is truth. The Vioxx fiasco is the best recent example (still reading about it in today’s news).

    I want to make it clear, I do not believe the claims made by “hCG Weight Loss Centers” are valid. Especially the ones using oral hCG. Nor do I believe the hCG protocol is for the general population. It is not. It can be for a select few and it MUST be medically supervised. In my very small population I have found amazing success in individuals who have tried multiple mainstream protocols and have failed. I have saved individuals from gastric bypasses (an FDA approved procedure with published data, a death rate and significant co-morbidity) and been able to get long term diabetics off their medications solely due to the hCG protocol. Most definitely anecdotal. It is my overall belief that the hCG protocol does not work for the general population. That it is effective in a select population that has underlying sub acute endocrine issues (I am being very general here because this is not the forum for detailed physiologic discussion) that prevent traditional approach to weight loss. None of the old literature addresses what I have mentioned. I am building data but my hCG population is too small to be effective anytime soon.

    Just a few more comments: Those individuals who have found success in the hCG protocol in my opinion, likely have an underlying metabolic or endocrine issue that is unrecognized. These individuals truly find success where other diets (this is NOT a diet, rather a protocol) and protocols have failed. There must be a full evaluation of the endocrine system along with all the other usual labs obtained in a regular physical exam. Then those results must be evaluated by a physician who understands how to interpret beyond the “normal ranges” reported by the labs.

    Weight loss is a struggle for many, the hCG protocol is for few of those many. There is a need for not just one study, but a few in order to determine if the hCG protocol is effective and for exactly what population it is effective. As I mentioned in a previous post, there is no money for a good large study anytime soon. For now, I do not recommend this protocol for the general population.

    Overall, your editorial is very good and useful to the general public and I appreciate your comments. You can contact me through the clinic anytime if you come across other providers who may want to put an objective study together. Please keep at it!

    Ben Gonzalez, MD
    Medical Director
    Atlantis Medical Wellness Center
    http://www.atlantismedispa.com

    Editor’s comments: Thanks once more for your comments, Dr Gonzalez. However, we do take issue with this comment; “True balance needs to be impartial and truly objective. Your reviews seem skewed.” If you read the full review of HCG here, you’ll find that our view of HCG is not based on Mr Trudeau’s character (as you say, the HCG protocol did not originate with him), but with the lack of clinical data validating HCG’s effectiveness over a placebo (you can check all the referenced published data in the full review). And ALL the studies are conclusive; it showed no benefit.

    We aren’t running a weight loss clinic and using HCG on clients, so we’re not privy to the sort of insights with HCG that perhaps you have. Our job is to look at the existing data, compare it to the claims, and report on the results. That’s exactly what we did here. Looking at the published data, how could you come to any other conclusion? As you say yourself, even the positive results you have obtained are anecdotal. In other words, even you have no real evidence.

    Dr Gonzalez, two last comments; first, this forum really is meant for folks to leave comments and feedback on various products. If you have any other comments, please do contact us directly. Second, we’ve integrated your follow up comments into this post for convenience.

    Post a Reply
  23. Dear Editor,

    A couple of quick notes:

    “Dr Gonzalez, two last comments; first, this forum really is meant for folks to leave comments and feedback on various product.”

    hCG is not just an over-the-counter product and I felt a physician’s perspective was warranted. It is a prescribed medication. This is one of the reasons why I felt compelled to comment. Also, the “full review” you refer to has a very large and highlighted part concerning Trudeau. A patient of mine brought this to my attention and stated to me that is the reason why he felt the hCG protocol was not safe. This is how your review came to my attention. This large and highlighted part of your review is a common thread in many blogs and reviews. This is what people many focus on. And that is why many individuals who have looked at this review fell it is skewed. The Trudeua highlight seems a large part of the reason for the review’s dissent. Just wanted to point that out.

    As far as ‘published data,” you are correct. However, the studies are way too small and limited for absolute conclusions. As I mentioned, I agree with your final overall conclusions. I just want to clarify that the hCG protocol when selective and followed by a physician can be very effective and very safe. Safer than many alternatives such as gastric bypasses and more effective than many over the counter “diet pills and fads.” As you mentioned, this requires much more detailed discussion for another forum. Again, keep up the good work overall.

    DrG

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  24. i have used hcg a number of times, once being after having a baby and twice since. I understand and have read Dr.Simeon’s write up as well as Kevin’s book. I know there is a lot of controversy about it, but it has completely worked.

    5 other people i know who have also done it, and without fail, they have results just as promised. I do feel extremely well when on it, it takes away my back pain from the result of a car accident, the late day tiredness where I would normally need to drink a coke, or take a nap. I feel satisfied, but you do miss eating what you want, and sometimes I crave things, but that doesn’t mean to say I am hungry.

    I have recommended it to many people who have tried alternative weight loss and haven’t had success. It is very difficult and if you don’t have will power – don’t even try because it is very hard, but very very rewarding. I lost 20lbs the first time I did it in a 3 week program. I never gained any back. This is my body’s normal healthy body weight.

    I have since gone on it, where I tried to lose all the “abnormal fat” I have. I lost another 11 lbs.

    I have since gained that back due to unhealthy eating habits, and not following phase 4 of Kevin’s rules. I am happy to go on the diet once a year before summer to shed the last 10-15lbs. It has been the best thing I have ever found! My weight watcher and exercise freak friends who have bad eating habits and can’t kick the weight are jealous! I say to them “all you need to do is get some will power and you can look like me too” I LOVE HCG!

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  25. I have successfully used HCG to lose 100lbs in a 7 month period and have other friends who have lost between 25 and 80lbs while following the protocol. It is challenging to some but once those challenges are over come it is smooth sailing all the way to fat freedom. I continue to recommend HCG to anyone fighting the battle of the bulge.

    HCG has also helped friends fighting gout, lupus, diabetes and high blood pressure. There are so many benefits to using it that it would put the drug companies out of business. Once you are able to cure a majority of the illnesses born from obesity then there is no need for them.

    Editor’s comments: hCG IS considered a prescription drug, administered under the guidance of a licensed physician. How does using it put the drug companies out of business? That aside, did you realize that more and more, alternative herbal products are being manufactured by the “drug companies” you have so little respect for?

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  26. IM NOT HAVING ANY SUCSESS WITH THIS PRODUCT, AND I’M FOLLOWING THE PROTOCOL STRICTLY. THE FIRST COUPLE OF INJECTIONS, I LOSE 2 OR 3 POUNDS, AND THEN IT STOPS. WHAT AM I DOING WRONG? IS THERE ANYONE ELSE OUT THERE HAVING THE SAME PROBLEM? ANY SUGGESTIONS WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED.

    Editor’s comments: Have you read the review of the hCG protocol, Lisa? It’s not that you’re doing anything wrong; clinical data shows it to be ineffective for weight loss.

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  27. I am researching the sublingual form of HCG. I have problems understanding why, theoretically, HCG, if it does indeed preserve lean muscle mass as claimed, can’t do that at a higher calorie level, say 1000 to 1500 cals per day?

    Also, I want to know if anyone on the protocol had their lean muscle mass measured before and after the protocol and what the results were of those measurements. And (finally!), I already have hair loss (I’m a 54 yo hypothyroidal, postmenopausal woman) and I want to know if anyone experienced hair loss from following this very low calorie diet. Thank you to anyone who can help me with information.

    Editor’s comments: Anna, we hate to keep stepping in and raining on everyone’s parade, but the benefits attributed to hCG have not been demonstrated in any clinical study. Even worse, the evidence suggests otherwise. So regarding your question; there’s no evidence hCG protects lean mass. For more information, please see our full review.

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  28. I choose to disregard all of the editor’s comments, as they are repetitious and anemic. A low calorie eating regimine plus the HCG injections seem to work for the vast majority of people who have availed themselves of this particular weight loss method, much to the chagrin of the naysayers, even amid their findings that may say otherwise.

    Editor’s comments: David, you need to read this blog post. We’d also be curious to find out what evidence you base the statement, “seems to work for the vast majority of people who have availed themselves of this particular weight loss method”? The feedback on this web site?

    The fact is – as we pointed out in the review – low calorie diets DO work. This issue is that the evidence shows very low calorie diets + hCG do not outperform the low calorie diets on their own.

    David, we run a consumer advocate site. Our job is to evaluate the evidence and report on that. There’s no evidence hCG “works” at all, although the hCG protocol (hCG + very low calorie diet + one on one personal monitoring) will definitely work – if only for the diet and personal accountability element. You are free to ignore our comments as you wish; it’s YOUR money. Our job is to report on the facts, and we’ve done that.

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  29. I have been taking HCG. I received from a naturopath and in 20 days I have lost 14 lbs. It was 2 lbs a day until I started eating some sugar. I don’t feel hungry. It is work to eat like this, but it is working.

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  30. Hi, I have been on HCG diet for 11 day and lost 11 lbs. It does work!! It is teaching me portion control. I have followed the protocol exactly as Dr. S. prescribed. My injections were issued under a doctor also in my area. I think there is so much bad publicity about this eating plan because the diet industry in this nation is raking in huge profits. No pun intended here. :)

    For the price of HCG and its results, you can’t go wrong. I have spent many dollars on other diet plans and never succeeded. I always say, “Walk in another man’s shoes before judging him/her.” Maybe the editor should try it for him/herself for 10 days before writing any negativity about the plan.

    Editor’s comments: Stella, are you actually “hearing” what we’re saying? First of all, those prescribing the hCG protocol ARE part of the diet industry. Second, your comments are anecdotal, and do not constitute evidence – neither would ours, if we were to try it. Third, the very low calorie diet (VLCD) that accompanies the hCG protocol will and does work. You WILL lose weight with the hCG protocol. The point is that the clinical evidence does not show that those who used hCG and the VLCD experienced any greater results than those on the VLCD alone.

    In other words, the hCG injections do not provide any additional effects. You don’t have to like this, but it is what is. That’s what the evidence shows-check the full review for references, and this blog post for a more in depth discussion regarding the “controversy” surrounding the hCG protocol.

    Editor’s follow up: Stella, regarding your follow up message and “challenge” to try the VLCD diet for 15 days with or without the hCG: you’re missing the point. Personal comments are anecdotal. They do not constitute evidence (did you read this post?). In other words, even if we did try it, and did, or did not obtain the same results as you, it would make no difference. It’s still not evidence, sorry. Secondly, we’re a consumer advocate site. We’re not dumping on hCG because we have an alternate mandate (if you had read the article I linked to earlier, you’d understand that). We weigh the existing clinical data against the claims and make our report. In this case, the evidence doesn’t support the claims – regardless of your own personal experiences. That’s it, that’s all.

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  31. I have tried the hCG/Simeon’s protocol and in fact have had great success and losses as well as maintaining my weight.

    I am still 10 lbs from goal. My first round was via a naturopathic doctor. I do not know the dose as they mixed it and did not tell me. My second round I obtained and mixed myself with even better more consistent results. I have done other VLCD plans in the past without success. I did not research this before trying so I really had no preconceived notions of whether or not it would work. Only that sometimes it was used in conjunction with dieting.

    I am a believer as I have lost 32 lbs in 4 months, without exercise, hunger, looking or feeling poorly. My cravings for bad foods are gone and I have maintained my weight during interruptions from the protocol even when eating close to 2000 calories a day.

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  32. I have not tried the HCG protocol….yet. The reason I am here is to get as much information both pro and con before making a decision.

    What I’ve noticed about this forum is that pretty much every post by someone who is pro-HCG is met with the same, tired response by the editor. It’s as if you have some personal ax to grind against it! I’m hearing the large percentage of people say they have had great success with the program, but you come back time after time and quote your “clinical studies”. Well, perhaps the HCG in and of itself hasn’t shown to contribute to the weight loss between the real thing and the placebo, but maybe, just maybe the patient is seeing results because they want to lose the weight and the usage of HCG is a mental motivator!

    In any case, whether that be true or not, you do yourself a disservice by continually blasting the use of HCG with the same old tired argument and data you keep referring to.

    Editor’s comments: Papi, to begin with, this forum is reserved for people who have tried the hCG protocol. Maybe you missed that. Now, to address your points…

    Yes, you will see us make the same points several times here. The reason for that is simple; online people tend to “scan and scroll” rather than read every word. So many of them miss the points the first time.

    Regarding an “axe to grind” – you obviously haven’t taken any time to learn what we do or who we are. And you certainly haven’t read this post, or this one. And yes, we hate to keep referring to “the same old tired proof” to make our points. Unfortunately, anyone who makes a countering argument for hCG doesn’t have any proof of any sort to base their argument. Sorry, but we prefer to base our reviews on published clinical data, not anecdotal commentary.

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  33. Anecdotal or not…Losing 15 pounds in 2 weeks on HCG is amazing. I am consuming 600 calories a day only(500 being very strict Simeon Protocol and 100 of liquid whey protein(42 gram test tubes in a divided consumption) to compensate for my large muscle mass frame) i go to a gym and get tested every 5 days and to date for the last 16 days i have only lost .3 lbs of lean muscle tissue!! This diet is not for everyone. I am now 230 with 174lbs of lean muscle tissue with 35 more to go! It works…just not for everyone. Say what you want that a VLCD will make anyone lose weight, yes this is correct. However My alteration of the diet for my body type comes from a Masters in nutrition and a degree in culinary arts from Le Cordon bleu. I may post again if it is something not negative in response.

    However to the rest on the HCG protocol…GOOD LUCK!!

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  34. I did the protocol as did my wife, brother, 2 neices, best friend (2 of them) and many others. We loved it. Lost weight without being tired or hungry and felt amazing. No joke.

    And the study that was done was not done per the Simeon’s Protocol. They did not gorge for 2 days, nor did they eat the proper foods, just 500 calories. Simeons suggest exact foods. Look, it works. Period.

    Editor’s comments: Paul, we have removed your promotional link; this web site is for product feedback only, and not for individuals to promote their hCG related services.

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  35. This article and some of the reviewers have bashed Kevin Trudeau and according to some of the information I understand fully why you would. Although, not everything he’s written is a scam.His weight loss book was beyond effective for me. From the age of 10 ten 14 I tried everything to lose weight, which isn’t healthy for a child. At 11 I was eating no carbs and by 15 I was on the verge of an eating disorder. At 15 was when I found his book and lost 50 lbs. It saved my years of high school and made me feel like a normal, sexy, woman. I am now eighteen and have not gained a pound back. I did not try the hCG shots but did make all the other changes he suggested. So please, do not call the man a con and a fraud. He knows some truth and is in so much trouble with the government because he’s basically putting all of the real diet scams to shame. He saved my life, gave me confidence, and made me love me.

    Editor’s comments: Kaitlyn, some of what Kevin Trudeau preaches in his weight loss publication is no-nonsense, common sense stuff that will work. But he is not “in so much trouble with the government” because he knows too much; he’s in trouble because he’s a con man who screws his customers out of their hard earned cash. Check out some of the complaints on Rip Off Report; does this look like the actions of a honorable, ethical guy who’s fighting for the little guy? Fact is, Kevin Trudeau is interested in two things only… Kevin Trudeau, and Kevin Trudeau’s bank account.

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  36. I have tried many, many diets over the years and the HGC protocol has been the most successful. What I found difficult was doing a second and third round. Although I lost 30 lbs the first time, I have cheated during the 2nd and third rounds and bounced up and down the 10 lb. ladder. THats MY fault, not the protocol’s. My first HCG round was over a year ago and I have yet to lose the last 10, but I have not gained the 30 back either. I guess its time to hit the gym!

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  37. I have been on the HcG Diet for approximately 2 weeks. I am following Dr. Simeons protocol with the injections. I have lost aprox. 15 pounds.

    I did read in one comment in where one person stated that they felt weak for the first 2 weeks and I would agree with that statement. Actually I encountered weaknesses within the first 5 days and then I seemed to stabilize after that. My blood sugar levels fluctutated within that initial time period.

    I am not a fan of Kevin Trudeau, but as I stated I am not following any guidelines from his book, but by Dr. A.T.W. Simeons Pounds and Inches Protocol. I have read the 1963 study (Which Dr. Simeons Protocol was not followed at all i.e. allowing a baked potato to be eaten), 1973 study (of which both controlled groups did lose weight, but the HcG Controlled group did lose at twice the rate)and I believe the 1995 study which did find HcG could aid in weight loss.

    I do believe in HcG regardless of other people or organizations view points. Also, in the article that states Dr. Simeons did not have any studies supporting his claims is not entirely accurate. It is true that he did not use controlled groups to validate his theory, but he does site his success rate of about 60-70%.

    I do believe that 30-40% of people entering this diet will fail. Then again what are the staistics for Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Dr. Atkins, South Beach and other numerous diets failure percentage. Honestly, I do not know the percentage rates for these other weight loss programs, but would be very interesting to see. This statement is certainly not to attack these other weight loss procedures as they certainly do have evidence of success and I have met many people who have done well with them.

    In conclusion, yes this diet is definetly not for everyone. While this diet calls for a lifestyle change and strict discipline, it should be noted that any type of true weight loss will require the same changes. The difference with this diet is that you can lose weight at a more rapid pace then other things on the market.

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  38. After gaining and losing the same 30-50 lbs over and over again on other “diets” – my last of 3 thirty day protocol rounds over a year ago – over 65 lbs lost and kept off.

    You state this is a forum “reserved for people who’ve actually TRIED the protocol” – yet you constantly feel the need to post negative editorial comments, having no experience YOURSELVES. (so make up your mind, is this JUST for people with actual experience, or for you to bash hCG?)

    You also falsely stated there were no positive studies – and later edited the UFB post to include Asher Harper. Obviously not very thorough with your work, you also failed to mention the positive Lebon study, and apparently aren’t aware of it existing, as you previously weren’t aware of the AH study.

    You injected a personal opinion that “a large percentage of weight loss will be comprised of muscle mass” when you have no evidence to support that claim. DO try and hold yourselves to the same guidelines you hold everyone else to.

    Your “rain on your parade” comment about no evidence of hCG’s muscle sparing effect is just laughable… you must know hCG has andro effects & is used to increase natural testosterone production – wreckless to then totally decouple that FACT from hCG when used in weight loss.

    From this month’s issue of Journal of Endo Metabolism: “In addition, hCG stimulated the proliferation of…smooth muscle cells.”

    hCG is also used for Prader-Willi syndrome – “During hCG therapy, testosterone levels and lean mass significantly increased”.

    hCG has been used in Europe for about a decade to prevent muscle wasting and proliferation of the virus in AIDS patients & is also used in localized treatment of KS lesions.

    As far as the “negative” studies you continually refer to as to bolster your view on hCG – maybe you could take half the effort you do blasting hCG – to actually READ some of them.

    The “negative” Stein et.al. Study – the mean loss in 4 weeks was 9.5% of starting weight. You know anyone who wouldn’t want that kind of loss in a month ?

    The “negative” Franks study. You’ve said time and again “anyone can lose weight on a VLCD” – yet somehow MIRACULOUSLY patient D.H. male, 32 years old started at 308 lbs, only lost 4 lbs after 54 days on Franks protocol of 1030 cals per day.

    If ole DH was 5 ft tall and never got out of bed (presumed negative biased for lower BMR calc) his caloric deficit over 54 days would have been approx 75,000 cals, divide by 3500 = 21 lbs lost, yet he only dropped 4 lbs.

    Statistically, 46% of the Frank study couldn’t possibly have lost the scant amounts reported if they actually stuck to Frank’s dietary restrictions – which were over twice the cals, twice the carbs and half the protein Simeons protocol called for. To wit: they cheated their chubby little behinds off.

    The rest of the HCG Group: 33% were inline with caloric deficit, 21% lost significantly more than deficit would indicate, of those the mean ADDITIONAL LOSS was 64% more than caloric deficit alone would suggest.

    For the record – in court documents from 1974 when Simeons management was sued by the FTC – the US govt stated in writing they never claimed hCG was unsafe or ineffective for weight loss.

    You mention “properly conducted clinical trials”. I’d submit none exist as none did any of the testing that is relevant. Metabolic rate, changes in blood chemistry, body scans to determine where the weight loss came from (fat/water/muscle) PEER review means very little, most seem to just read the abstract, didn’t bother to delve into the data to find questionable results as those I pointed out above.

    Throwing out all studies to date would leave just anecdotal results – and what results they are. Those of us that lost 10% of our mass in a month and kept it off couldn’t care less how that stacks up with a placebo group.

    3 pharma cos have “diet drugs” in late stage clinical trials which the FDA most likely WILL approve. The trials included the drug, altered diet and exercise.

    Their % loss in over a year? 5%, 8% and 15% (the last uses an amphetamine in combo with a diabetic med, and approx 40% of the group dropped out prior to completion.) The amphetamine? Phentermine of FenPhen fame.. though I’m sure it won’t end up killing people like the last combo did, right ? Simeons protocol has been around for over 50 years, with nary a death linked to it.

    Editor’s comments: First, the Asher Harper study was not included in the original review, since the follow up study (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol 29, 940-948) designed to duplicate its results indicated what all the other studies indicate – that hCG has no positive effect on weight loss. We noticed you never mention THAT study.

    Perhaps a mistake on our part, so we revised the review. Our bad.

    We also notice you suggest that we have no personal experience with hCG. That’s true, but even if we did, that would not constitute evidence. It’s an anecdotal experience. It s not evidence. Nether is your experience, whether you care to admit it or not.

    However, Delmem, for all your derogatory comments, you still haven’t provided one iota of clinical proof that hCG helps with weight loss over a placebo. That’s what we’re talking about here; not other possible benefits, which may or may not exist. For instance, “The effect of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) in the treatment of obesity by means of the Simeons therapy: a criteria-based meta-analysis“, concluded…

    “…there is no scientific evidence that HCG is effective in the treatment of obesity; it does not bring about weight-loss of fat-redistribution, nor does it reduce hunger or induce a feeling of well-being.”

    Despite your condescending and authoritarian tone, Delmem, you haven’t provided ANY proof. You know, the peer-reviewed published stuff like WE use. The conclusions are unanimous.

    What is “wreckless”, Delmem, is making recommendations for hCG when the VAST MAJORITY of evidence does not support such a recommendation. We have no vested interest in showing either a “pro” or “con” side to hCG; we look at the existing data, and make our decisions on that. If you had taken two seconds to read some of the referenced links in this discussion – like this one here for instance – you’d understand that. You seem to be happy to dismiss ANY study that delivers ANY data that contradicts what you believe about hCG. It’s old, the methodology is flawed, the peer-reviewed process sucks, yada, yada, yada (interesting how this only applies when the results contradict your belief). Well, here’s the newsflash Delmem – “old” doesn’t mean “wrong.” And yes, the peer-reviewed process isn’t perfect. But it’s the best we have. And yes, it is possible that new studies will show hCG is beneficial for weight loss. When those studies are published, you can expect our review to be revised.

    The point is, at this time, there is NO evidence to support your theory. Evidence Delmem. Facts. If we don’t base our reviews on facts, what would you have us use? Tarot cards?

    You don’t really seem to be that interested in the facts, which makes us wonder if you have some sort of vested financial interest in the promotion of hCG. Do you? Would you care to reveal it? And please… we’d love to discuss hCG with you, if you can be bothered to discuss it in a CIVIL manner. But please use the contact form; as you noticed – but failed to heed – that this discussion is for users to share their experiences with the diet.

    Oh yes, and here’s another inconvenient fact; medically-supervised VLCDs work quite nicely, and accomplish much the same results as you’re claiming are unique to hCG.

    One more comment Delmem…

    If you don’t like this forum, don’t read it. We moderate this forum to add value, and to ensure our audience understands the facts behind any of the products featured here. When someone blatantly contradicts the evidence we provide, yet does not provide any evidence themselves, it is our duty to point this out to our audience, who may be vulnerable to claims of “miracles.” We simply won’t allow anyone to say whatever they want without providing evidence. That’s what makes this site different.

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  39. Delmem: We’ve deleted your post; as indicated in our last follow up; this site is for people discussing the use of hCG and their experiences with it. If you’d like to continue the discussion, how about adding your comments to the relevant articles on the blog – here, and here! Thanks!

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  40. I’m a published scientist and have conducted and supervised many (primarily quantitative) research studies. None of them on weight loss, I’m afraid; however, I do teach research design and have served on Institutional Review Boards. One thing I understand very well is that the same monied interests that control the media also control Big Pharma and granting purse strings. I always review research with a critical eye and the only valid conclusion one can come to with regard to research on hCG is that there is a dearth of methodologically sound clinical trials.

    Thankfully, that did not stop me from trying hCG myself. I could not find a significant downside to giving it a try other than it might be a waste of time and a small amount of money (I followed Simeon’s protocol and did it on my own). I’d never dieted before (my weight gain was fairly recent), but the anecdotal testimony was overwhelming. That spoke volumes to me in spite of the poor methodology of the few early studies. Anyone who dismisses anecdotal testimony is turning a blind eye to an excellent source of information. After all, much research is comprised of the aggregate presentation of individual cases. Dr. Simeon’s protocol seems to work for just about everyone who tries it and sticks with it and complaints or ill effects are minimal.

    It’s hard work, but I’ve been on hCG and the 500 calorie diet for nearly two weeks and have lost an average of a bit over a pound per day. This will probably slow as women average closer to .6 or so by the time they complete the weight loss round. That’s fine. The diet is a challenge (boring and I miss food!) but I feel fine and appreciate the chance this program gives the dieter to restructure their eating habits and reset their metabolism.

    The thing that inspires all of us on the diet and sticking with it is the incredible success that hCG has had for those who have tried it. There are several excellent support forums that are easy to find. If you are thinking about trying it, just look for one of them and get started :)

    Editor’s comments: Laney, as consumer advocates, our duties here are to address the best interests of our visitors – occasionally by questioning the comments of our visitors, as well meaning as they may be. So please keep that in mind as we address your comments. In regards to them…

    1) You use your stature as a published scientist obviously to add credibility to your comments. There are two problems here; one, you have not provided any way for us to authenticate who you are (which means your claim is meaningless) and two, even if you did, being a research scientist in one area does not translate to competency in others.

    2) You have obviously been swayed by the positive testimonials for the hCG protocol. As a research scientist, you should be well aware that none of these invalidate the “hCG functions as a placebo” argument.

    3) We have a bit of trouble understanding how a established research scientist, well versed in the scientific method, would be so quick to attribute weight loss results to hCG, when they are entirely consistent with those attained with VLCDs (Very Low Calorie Diets), which are already established to work, and are an essential part of the hCG protocol.

    4) Flawed methodology aside, the existing body of evidence is almost 100% unanimous in its conclusion; hCG does not outperform a placebo. In all our arguments with advocates of this protocol – even physicians who prescribe it themselves – not one person has been able to present anything remotely resembling evidence that hCG works.

    5) Hinting at some “big pharma” conspiracy to perhaps shed doubt on the credibility of the study results, is, in the absence of such evidence, irresponsible. Especially when there’s a much simpler explanation available; the results attained on the hCG protocol are entirely attributable to the Very Low Calorie diet that accompanies it.

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  41. I am on day 4 and lost 4 lbs. I have a girlfriend who I have known for 20 years. We both have dieted and gained, lost and always gained back weight. She did the HCG diet for 3 weeks and lost 20 lbs. I was waiting for her to gain it back and decided to exercize hard instead. I lost a few pounds, but gained it back.

    She has kept it off for 5 months and looks great. So that is why I decided to try it. The two meals and apples between is enough. It is only for a 3-4 week period and then go back to eating normal, more aware this time around, less carbs and junk food. I only paid $19.00 for the HCG drops. Not much profit for big corporate America. Get it?

    Editor’s comments: Karena, “real” hCG requires a prescription and is administered via intramuscular injection. If you bought drops, you didn’t get real hCG. No profit for corporate America, but no hCG for you either.

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  42. In the past ten years, I continually gained weight, lost it, and then regained it over and over again. I tried everything… I tried pills, I tried exercise programs, I tried joining the gym and going every day, I tried Atkins, Zone diet, South Beach… everything. It was all getting quite ridiculous, so I found some information on Dr. Joel Fuhrman, who promotes fasting.

    Fasting, as defined on dictionary.com, ” to abstain from all food.
    2. to eat only sparingly or of certain kinds of food, esp. as a religious observance.
    –verb (used with object) 3. to cause to abstain entirely from or limit food; put on a fast: to fast a patient for a day before surgery.”

    It is something the human body is made to do to survive… someone with a decent muscle mass can do this without harm for about 40 days, according to Dr. Fuhrman’s book on fasting.

    Just watch those people on the show Survivor… they are eating maybe 500 calories a day. MAYBE. And they are surviving… but they are miserable and hungry.

    So… I tried it. I was miserable… I was weak and a little mentally loopy and stopped after two weeks. It was so stressful on my body, it took a month to recover fully to be able to go back to exercise.

    In the meantime, yes, I had lost 10 pounds in those two weeks… but guess what. I gained them back in that month of recovery, and that’s even sticking with the diets in Dr. Fuhrman’s “Eat for Life” book.

    Look at those people on Survivor. They lose all that weight during the show, then at the finale, you see how they all gained that weight right back.

    So… I was resigned to just being 50lbs overweight for the rest of my life, and possibly more in the future.

    Then a friend of mine at work tried the Dr. Simeon protocol. Truly… I thought she was insane, remembering my experience with fasting, but I was curious… it was something I hadn’t tried yet.

    I researched the hcg diet up and down… I wasn’t about to inject just anything in me.

    Yes… there are risks involved… but they are the same risks as the same people who use the hcg for a different issue (like fertility) with higher dosages that IS approved by the FDA. The FDA approved those same risks, so what’s the problem with this?

    Dr. Simeon mentions in his “Pounds and Inches” text about how pregnant women in third world countries barely have anything to eat and they are skinny to the bone, yet they produce a healthy fat baby. Yes… anecdotal, but something to keep in the back of your mind.

    Hcg is found where cancer is found, both in men and women. Who’s to say that hcg is the creator of cancer? Then why haven’t all the pregnant women in the world been diagnosed with cancer? Why was there that study (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090420170752.htm and the most recent one from November http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091124140949.htm) that was featured on Fox News that women who get pregnant before the age of twenty are between 30% and 50% less likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer or ovarian cancer (which is a close relative)?

    My own uneducated hypothesis about hcg is that hcg is the body’s own mechanism for fighting cancer. My reason is this: the body’s primary goal is the make that baby survive, so it produces a hormone that not only makes all fats readily available for consumption in case of famine, but also kills tumors and cancers. Yes, sometimes the hcg will not succeed in defending the person from cancer… but I could say it would be an interesting study to see the effect of injected hcg into a cancer patient to see what happens.

    So I did it… I figured, what have I got to lose? A few pounds? If I felt crappy, I would stop. I am healthy as a horse. The only thing I had a was a moderate case of fibrocystic breast disease (made your breasts very sore prior to menstral flow, and in severe cases, will create non-cancerous lumps in your breasts) which wasn’t treated… I just dealt with it.

    It was great. My first 35 day round, I lost 23 pounds. I wasn’t miserable, I wasn’t hungry, yes… I could not exercise, otherwise it was like my body would shut down. I gained a “glow” about me… my face filled out from being gaunt from other yo-yo dieting… it was incredible.

    And… while my breasts were super sore for the first couple weeks on the diet, the soreness went away… and I haven’t had any trouble since. Maybe the hcg took it away?

    So I did it again a couple months later. Lost another 15 pounds.

    In total, I lost 27.25 inches. Went from a size 14 to a size 8.

    As far as muscle loss… I have a muscular build… I’m a heavy girl with a slim frame. 5’8″ 150 pounds… size 8. I did not lose my muscle mass, or at least, not even an 1/8 of what I lost in those two weeks that I fasted.

    Because of my own experience with fasting, (which 500 calories is considered fasting) one cannot convince me that the hcg diet does not help with going down to that VLCD.

    I’ve been there… and it sucks when you don’t have the hcg.

    Anecdotal… but that is my experience, and people should know.

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  43. I started my diet on Friday, and by Tuesday I had lost 5 lbs. The first couple days are hard, then it get’s better. I also picked up some appetite suppressants at the health store with no caffeine. Really helped a lot. I feel great! I can’t wait to weigh myself daily. I’ve noticed a change.

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  44. I have been doing the hcg shots for 1 week now. I have lost the weight but I have to say that I am still hungry and have no energy most days and feel very tired. I have lost 6 lbs. in 1 week and I have stuck very close to the 500 calories. I miss food. What you get to eat gets very boring very quick. I broke the diet one night when my husband took me out.

    I can understand the fact that the hunger subsides over time and this is due to the stomach shrinking from lack of food. I have wondered how the body can survive on such a small amount of food without eating its muscle.

    I do like the weight loss and I need to loose quite a bit but I have seriously thought of quitting every day due to hunger and lack of energy. I think it is awesome for people who don’t experience this. Maybe I will see if I can get ahold of an appetite suppresant as well then I will do better.

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  45. I don’t know why people are picking on the editor. I love this site because it gives both his review and regular people’s opinions. He is doing what he is supposed to be doing by stating facts and publications about the product as people put their opinions on here.

    I do agree with editor, tho. If you eat only 500 calories whether is it Simeon’s protocol or not, you will eventually lose weight. Check out the anorexics (sound familiar). Now whether the Hcg helps with hunger and cravings? Who knows, it may, or it may just be the little psychological push you need to stick to such a hard diet. Either way, the majority of the people have success, and kudos to you, especially for sticking to a strict regimen. Losing weight is hard no matter what you do. But don’t get irritated at the editor for doing his job, you are on his site posting your comments.

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  46. I am currently taking the HCG injection and it is fantastic. I did my research and even though I was very skeptical of what it claimed to do, thinking back on everything I’ve done in the past I realized it wouldn’t hurt.

    I have tried cutting calories, fat and stress nothing seemed to work. I have always been small but as I’m getting older my weight is skyrocketing.

    I’m on day 10 and no side affects – down 8lbs (yes, I’ve cheated), in a better mood; and yes it has targeted my most fatty areas.

    I love it, it works, and I am glad that I tried it.

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  47. I am a scientist, by trade, in the medical field. When I FINALLY had an underlying medical problem correctly diagnosed and treated, I was ready to lose the excess weight I had accumulated over the previous 21 years. I knew my situation was serious and I couldn’t do it alone. I went to a physician for help. This physician was actually a Medical Doctor (MD) who specialized in cardiology. I had no idea what to expect from him……I was thinking I’d get B12 shots or a liquid diet. While he did offer those options, after listing to my history, he thought I’d have the best success with the HCG protocol.

    I left after my consultation intrigued and concerned. I did the research myself. I saw the “negative” studies. Thankfully I could pick out the flaws in many of the studies and evaluate them like they should be. Still, I found nothing to convince me either…no research supporting the protocol. It seemed like a toss-up.

    So, the only thing I had to go by was anectdotal evidence from strangers (not something that I usually listen to) and the in-house data that the physician had provided me. They had been tracking the progress of their own patients. I did like what I saw.

    So, on a leap of faith, I signed up and began Round 1 treatment on October 18, 2009. Today, Feb. 28, 2010 I am on my last day of my second round (phase 2), 44 pounds lighter and 56 inches smaller. I am EXTREMELY pleased with my success!!! When I started I was OBESE according to my BMI, now I am in a healthy BMI range.

    OK…so, was it the HCG??? I don’t really know. I do know, that when I took the HCG, I was not as hungry while on my strict diet. That may be the very key. Very low calorie diets are so hard to stick to because of the intense hunger, I believe, from my personal experience that the HCG abates most, if not all, the feelings of hunger so that the very low calorie diet can be followed.

    Also, what I do know from my own personal experience is that my muscle mass was spared. A bariatric scale provided such measurements. So, the weight loss was water and fat, not muscle, that is a VERY GOOD thing!!!

    If anyone out there is considering this method, I would recommend finding a competent professional to administer the protocol. Yes, you may save money by ordering off the internet, but do you really know what you are getting? I spent about $750.00 for my first round. For that I paid my registration fee, got medically cleared, had ECG readings, had intensive counseling, and was checked during my treatment by the physician. Subsequent rounds are cheaper because you don’t have to pay the registration fee, be medically cleared, and have less counseling.

    REMEMBER a very low calorie diet can be VERY dangerous. I really do cringe when I hear people buying HCG through the mail (without a prescription) from wherever!! Sorry, but of course I have to say it, NEVER, EVER reuse needles…even for yourself!!!!!

    Tips:
    HCG does not work orally. Any diet product claiming to have HCG in it “just take 2 capsules and lose 2 pounds a day”..is a sham. Do not waster your money.

    HCG can be administered sublingually, but rates and amount of absorbtion are difficult to estimate. People that start off with sublingual usually change to injections because the hunger is too much to handle with the sublingual.

    The hardest days are the first week of the protocol. Your body is really going through a lot of changes. Don’t give up!! Struggle through that….it will get easier!!!

    I never cheated during my two rounds, but some people do and still lost weight. Don’t beat yourself up if you slip…just keep going. I found it hard to have a very restricted diet at Halloween, Thanksgiving, my birthday, and Valentines day. My sacrifices were worth it, but if you cannot stick with the diet during those times, well, do your best and keep going.

    Side Effects:
    I had some. They warned about the hair loss. It happened. Thankfully I have a ton of hair and never missed it….just noticed it in the drain and on my brush!

    pH changes. They didn’t warn me about this one and were suspicious when I suggested it. During the first week of round one, I had a yeast infection…yuck! Coming off of phase two, I started reacting with my 14K gold jewelry (black residue). Another sign of pH changes. Caution to anyone with a history of kidney stones!!!

    Leg Cramps: Leg cramps can be caused from a lack of several different chemicals. Most likely culprits: Calcium, Magnesium, and Potassium. I took a calcium + magnesium supplement, and the leg cramping stopped.

    I think that is it….good luck to all!

    Editor’s comments: Great feedback! Thanks for sharing!

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  48. First, HCG is not an easy weight loss program. It is still very hard to stick to a certain (VLCD) restricted plan of intake, when I’m so conditioned to over eating.

    Second, I’m experiencing other benefits to the HCH protocol. These are, increased energy, better sleep, less fatigue (I’ve been diagnosed with low testerone, high blood sugar, hypoactive thyroid), and being able to feel satisfied with small meals, which have previously left me feeling completely STARVED.

    I had a complete physical before I started. I’m keeping a journal, and will have another complete physical after completing this protocol. But after 4 days of the protocol, I’ve lost about 8 pounds, and can see that this trend will continue, as long as I keep my discipline.

    I have tried very restrictive diets before, and as I said, HCG seems to allow me to feel fuller, after eating less. I’m satisfied much more quickly.

    As a Licensed Psychologist, I’m very skeptical of weight loss “cures” in general. But I watched this plan work with other allied health professionals. I’m looking forward to more time to see what the end results are.

    Thanks for letting me share.

    sb

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  49. Hi,
    I really appreciate this site! It is nice to hear from “real” people.

    After much research, and seeing the huge success of two people I know, (one losing 150 pounds), I decided to give it a try. I did not have the money to go to a clinic, so decided to do the homeopatic drops. If I could, I would probably opt for a clinic, because of the support and convenience.

    I started the HCG drops on March 6, 2010.
    As of today, March 23rd, I have lost 15 pounds! If feel pretty good. I am not hungry, but at times it is hard not to taste some of the dinners I have to make for my family. It really comes down to mind over matter!!

    The food I am eating is healty, so that is a big plus. I am taking a multi-vitamin, sublingual B-12, and potassium-magnesium.

    Am I full of energy? No. Do I feel exhausted? No. Am I sleeping good? Yes. Do I ever feel like I am starving? No. Overall, I feel fine. If I am expending a lot of energy doing something, I will eat a little extra, but that has only happened twice.

    Another HUGE key to success is drinking A LOT of fluids!! If I feel a little hungry, I drink. I feel very hydrated, which is a good thing. I can have coffee, which I love, and tea too.

    I have another 50-60 pounds to lose, and I think I can do it by summer.

    One last thing…this is NOT a diet for the faint of heart. It is HARD! It really has to come from inner strength to stick to it. Good luck to all folks on this diet!!

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  50. I am a 65 year old post menopause girl. I am diabetic, (not insulin dependent) but otherwise very healthy. Not too fat but definitely in need of losing 35 lbs. I purchased a bottle of oral drops. I took 10 drops 3 times a day. As suggested on the bottle. The 3rd day I felt horrible. I did lose 2 lbs. I wondered if I should have taken less drops per dose. Like 5 maybe. All my glands, neck, ovaries began to hurt, and I developed a big headache. I did eat reasonably, and didn’t starve myself at all. It wasn’t a pleasant experience but I am still interested in it. Any suggestions?

    Editor’s comments: Real hCG is only available by prescription and is given by intra-muscular injection. If you were taking drops, we have no idea what they could contain. It’s probably good idea to quit taking the product altogether.

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  51. Hi! I have been on the hCG protocal for 7 days and have lost 8.4 pounds. I notice it in my clothing too!

    I am having struggles though…I eat EXACTLY as the diet states NOT MORE THAN 500 calories from the “approved food” list I was given. However, I have been getting dizzy, light headed, and sweaty. Today I nearly passed out at a store. My husband took me to a food place and made me shove “real” food in my mouth so I wouldn’t be so queezy.

    I am thinking this is NOT normal…are these “possible” side effects to the hCG? What on earth is going on?

    I loved that I was loosing weight. I am horribly hungry, but I was going to ask my Dr. to help me with that my next appt.

    Any one know of similar side effects?

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  52. worked for me! I worked just like I thought it would. It was easy enough and I just want others to know when something works.

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  53. I cant believe what I am reading about HCG. This is sooo crazy. I did it and lost 25 pounds in 3 weeks. My mother has been on it for 3 days and has lost 6 pounds already. She is never hungry either. I was a little hungry at times but so what!!! A lot of it was emotional/mental hunger anyways. This worked when NO other diet would. Tell me what other diet method in the entire world where you can lose this weight with 0 exercise and without feeling extreme hunger. There is no such thing.

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  54. I watched a co-worker for the last 6 months get thinner and thinner and then found out they were using HCG. I researched this fully and even talked to my MD about it. Although he wasn’t exactly thrilled and positive, he also said he found nothing that said it would hurt me.

    I am on the 12th day and have lost 19.4 pounds. I follow Dr. Simeons protocol and have not strained. In addition, I have changed all the products I use on my skin to ensure they do not contain fats or anything that would interfer with my loss.

    Previously I lost 100 pounds through another program, which went bancrupt. I then had health issues and gained 50 pounds back. I was devastated!

    When they reopened I rejoined, spent $1,000 and then they changed their hours and left me high and dry. I decided to give hCG a try and am glad I did.

    Anecdotal or not, it is working for me and I am talking to several who have used it and have kept their weight off. I know it will be a while before I know for sure, but it was this or gastric bypass, and I saw nothing wrong with giving this a try before going that route.

    Almost 20 pounds in less than 2 weeks isn’t bad and I am not hungry, I sleep better than I have in years, and I have energy to spare. I continue to take a sublingual B-Total suppliment as well as Magnesium-Potassium.

    Next week I am going to see if Whey Protein works for me or not as a substitute for one protein. If I gain or my weight loss slows down, I’ll go back to strict protocol.

    When you are 100 lbs overweight, why not encourage someone to try whatever is out there, as long as it doesn’t hurt?

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  55. I’m on the HCG diet and it’s working, I mean the pounds are coming off, but mentally, it’s not fun. I’m hungry even with drinking lots of water and I’m obsessing about food which I never did before. Probably because I’m not allowed to eat it, so I constantly think about it. I paid some $$ to do it so I don’t want to quit, but I wonder if it’s really necessary if I don’t have a large amount of weight to lose.

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  56. I have done the HCG diet right (followed protocol exactly) 2 times. I found it extremely hard but rewarding and exciting because I actually lost weight rapidly, and as most overweight people know that is a major factor, if you aren’t losing weight fast it is so easy to go off of a diet plan. I do feel unsatisfied and miss eating food with my family, but I got myself into this shape so I guess there is no EASY way out. All and all I would recommend this diet because it does actually work and work fast compared to others I have tried. Unfortuanately, I didn’t change my eating habits, so I am about to go again.

    TO THE EDITOR: The problem that I have with what you are saying is that VLCDs work. I have lost weight on them in the beginning but after the first week it then takes so long between each pound loss I hit many plateaus along the way. I proceed to lose my will power and I start gaining the weight back immediately. They don’t work because of my body going into starvation mode. I understand that you are saying that there is no proof that HCG causes our bodies to mostly burn fat and not muscle, but having done both, I can definitely tell the difference in the speed and steadiness of weight loss. I don’t feel as if I’m going into starvation mode on HCG.

    You might again say this is not a formal study and of course it is not, but I trust my own feelings and knowledge that I have about my own body more than I would trust any formally funded study, because either way it is in someone’s best financial interest. With HCG Protocol the weight loss is steady, there are no plateaus, at least in my experience, and I don’t feel AS hungry or weak. I don’t need a formal study.

    Maybe you are not overweight and do not have the understanding that many overweight people do. The mental stress that goes along with being overweight is very unhealthy, the physical problems that many people have from being overweight, I think far outweigh the fact that HCG is not approved by the FDA.

    Editor’s comments: We understand your position completely. But remember, it’s not us that say VLCD’s work as well as the hCG protocol, it’s the current experts and science – our job is to report on that. And that’s what we do. :-) Also, as much as you have every right to trust your own body and the results you have obtained on the protocol, your experiences are still anecdotal.

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  57. Sorry, but I believe Kevin Trudeau over the FEDERAL Trade Commission. I have been on hCG drops for a month and I have lost 15 lbs, which for me is incredible. I NEVER lose weight, even when I starve myself. The drops totally wipe out my appetite unlike anything that I have ever tried before. I have to force myself to eat 500 calories every day. I have no other side effects!

    Editor’s comments: Aside from the actions of the FTC, Mr. Trudeau has a well-established record of ripping off everyday people like you and I – take a look at the over 200 complaints logged at Ripoff Report.com.

    Mr Trudeau relies on people’s distrust of big government and a willingness to accept wild conspiracy theories to stay in business. It’s unfortunate that he can do so – he should be stopped.

    And incidentally, whatever was in those drops, it wasn’t hCG, which is available by prescription and delivered via intramuscular injection.

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  58. I am a 69 year old man who works 40 hours a week loading lumber, concrete, and cement block. I have tried a few other diets with limited success. I started taking the drops 3 times a day and in 22 days have lost 25#. I have not been hungry during this time. I have not lost any strength and continue to throw 80# bags of concrete. I’ve gone from 260# to 235# and will stay on this diet until I lose 40# total or 40 days have elasped.

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  59. Before I ever even heard of HCG being a possible weight loss tool, I was going through fertility treatments and given HCG shots to induce ovulation. Without changing a thing about my eating or exercising habits, I was losing weight. I was concerned about it and asked my doctor. He told me that was a common effect of the HCG injections. I lost over 20 pounds in about 2 months without even trying, and without knowing what was causing it.

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  60. Well, I posted earlier in this comments thread and came back because I wanted you all to know how I did! I lost 60 lbs in 3 rounds over 6 months and am keeping it off. The results speak for themselves. hCG is life-changing – thank you, Dr. Simeons and Kevin Trudeau :)

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  61. I printed out and read “Pounds and Inches” by Dr. Simeon. I’ve read more blogs than I can guess and looked at hundreds of internet pages trying to sell hCg.

    In the past I have tried a 1 hour per day vigorous work out program combined with a balanced and restricted calorie intake of about 1400c. I lost about 12 pounds over 8 months that way. I felt good. It was hard work but I was at the point that I enjoyed the exercise. Then I hurt my knee and the gym membership became a financial burden and predictably, within 6 months I’d gained about 25 pounds.

    I’ve done weight watchers, lost 36 pounds the first month and spent the next 18 months on the program, documenting everything I ate and did – only to gain it all back plus 2 pounds. So I stopped paying WW 15 bucks a week to weigh me.

    Then I tried something odd. To avoid my body thinking it was starving I tried fasting one day, and eating whatever I liked the next. I lost 36 pounds over 6 months. Then I had a doctor (an endocrinologist) tell me I might have PCOS and I should stop the fasting “diet” that I’d made up. She gave me metformin and said it would make me lose weight. I gained all I’d lost and then some.

    Which brings us up to date. Last week I got blood work from my doctor and everything is fine, except my weight has gone up, again. 280. An all time high. I expect that unless I can get control of the situation, I will be one of those people that will need to be buried in a piano.

    I’m on disability for heart arrhythmia. I’m on a fixed income with a child to raise alone. My husband died and his SS would be less than mine so my daughter doesn’t get it or anything from his benefits. Or child support. This is all to say, injections seem out of reach financially.

    Sorting out all the homeopathic HCG is impossible. I have no idea which if any are real hCg. Or if it matters. I’m desperate.

    I finally ordered a bottle of homeopathic drops for $33.00 (which contain alcohol-and that concerns me). I began the protocol strictly adhering to Dr. Simeon’s book. Here is a summary of my results so far:

    June 2010 – Weights-Ins
    275 Gorge Day 1 Looking forward to all the sinful delights.

    Gorge Day 2 Not as much fun as I’d thought it would be.

    279 Stage 2 – 500C Hungry but I managed.

    273 S2D4 Wow, No chance I will cheat with numbers like that. -Hunger still bad today. I find I am beginning to think like I might not define my life by the size of my body soon. Like this might work. And I’m afraid to be disappointed again because of that hope.

    271 S2D5 What a great surprise! Fingers crossed for an easy day. Hungry and Irritable in the PM.

    269 S2D6 Started to worry about hCg being real, did some research. concerned about having a homeopathic brand that uses alcohol – still having hunger. However, another two pounds down. If the numbers keep going down like this, who needs food?

    So here I am, 10 or 6 pounds down in 5 days, depending which weight you chose as a start weight.

    I’m hearing the drops I am using can’t be working, but I am having results that I have never experienced before, even with fasting and/or exercise.

    I would like to know how to obtain injections that are affordable and also, if my regular doctor prescribes them to me, would he be doing something illegal? If so, why are weight-loss clinics able to prescribe them?

    Editor’s comments: Deborah, we don’t know what’s in your homeopathic hCG drops, but we highly doubt its hCG, which needs to be prescribed and injected. The fact that your losing weight is because you are on a VLCD (very low calorie diet). The fact that your hunger is subsiding is also entirely consistent with the VLCD as well.

    To our knowledge, it would not be illegal for your physician to prescribe this to you (we’re not experts in this matter, however) and most “bona fide” hCG clinics are run by physicians who can legally prescribe the drug.

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  62. I have been on the HcG diet for 14 days now and have lost 9 pounds. I am not following the 500 calorie regimen, I am getting about 700-750 calories a day. I do not feel hungry, and as far as energy goes, some days I don’t get off the sofa and some days I fly around like a crazy person. All in all I really do recommend the diet and HcG injections.
    I plan to finish my 11 days (25 day total) then go on maintainance for a month, and then do another 25 day protocal. Wish me luck!

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  63. Hi HCG ROCKS I started on Wednesday so Wed and Thurs was my LOAD Days anyways today is Father Day 2010 and I started at 215.8 today (father’s day) I’m 208 even yeah me. All I do is try to drink 14 bottles of water a day and and for breakfast I have a green apple or 5 strawberries and a cup of hot green tea, lucnh and dinner is 100grams of chicken breast and handfull of spinach, and a half of orange or grapefruit, with more water or coffee or green tea. You have to stick to it for it to work. No Cheating PPL.

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  64. Oh lets not forget to take some B-12 and I give HCG 5***** Stars*****

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  65. It sounds good, but I’m not sure about the 500 calorie diet. Also, one would loose weight without the HCG by just consuming 500 calories a day… so the question I have, is it the 500 calorie per day intake that is causing the weightloss or is the HCG actually helping?

    Editor’s comments: Check out the full review of hCG here; there is no evidence that hCG outperforms a placebo when it comes to weight loss. Evidence shows identical results come from a VLCD (very low calorie diet).

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  66. Put anyone on a 500 calorie diet and they’ll lose weight. I have yet to see a study done that came in favor of the Hcg diet. Weight loss is one thing, FAT LOSS is entirely different. The hcg diet makes the body burn anything in can in order to survive living on 500 calories. That means muscle gone.

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  67. I am a 45 year old woman who has been overweight her whole life. I have tried every diet out there with only initial success then gained everything back and more. I was on a protein shake diet under a physicians supervision until he accused me of cheating because I was losing weight so slowly (30 pounds in 9 months). I did not cheat and actually found the diet very easy as I did not have to think about food; just my shake four times a day. Needless to say, I gave it up (and gained 60 pounds back). Due to some of my mother’s friends success on Hcg, I decided to give it a try. I did use the sublingual drops and lost 60 pounds in 2-1/2 months. What was so different about this diet was I lost inches in places I never did before. My waist and hips have always about the same in inches. Even at my lowest weight I always had a very wide waist. All of a sudden I had a waist 8 inches smaller than my hips! Also, with every other diet, the place I lost was in my breasts. I would go from a cup size of C to A. With hcg I am a full B. I am now 180 pounds at 5 feet 8 inches but the jeans I had when I was 150 pounds are too big. It is like my whole body shape is different. I used to always describe myself as an apple on 2 sticks. My legs have always been skinny but I haven’t lost more in my legs, just in my stomach, hips, back, neck and arms. It has been 6 months since I completed the diet. I have kept it off and of course feel great. Though I did lose weight in my face, I never got that gaunt look I did with other diets. As a matter of fact, I look 10 years younger. I did not experience any of the side effects I have read about while on the diet other than occasional hunger which I think was more emotional than actual hunger. I also did not exercise on the diet though I do now which I think has helped keep the weight off. I now have a knock-out figure, energy, and excellent health. Well worth the 400 dollars I paid!!

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  68. Wow…I just don’t understand if this is actual comments from people who have tried it why the editor keeps chiming in. Try the diet and see for yourself. Your probably a 130lb person with high metabolism who don’t even need to lose weight.

    My personal experience. I am 38 with 3 kids and struggled with weight loss since 9th grade. Normally low carbs/low fat always helped me but the past 2 years i’ve steadily gained weight and low carb and excercise did not help. I got the shot on thur and I’ve been doing the low cal no excercise but walking since my job does not allow me much time in my day to excercise.

    I’m very pleased with the shot. How I KNOW it works is because I tried the same diet the week before for 6 days and did not lose a lb. Which led me to drastic measures of going to a weight loss clinic and glad I did. So I know it works. I compared the diet without the shot and with the shot and it works.

    Editor’s comments: Smileygirl, READ our comments. If you do, you’ll recognize that if we did try it ourselves and we did lose weight, that would not constitute proof of effectiveness. Only properly conducted peer-reviewed studies can demonstrate that. And to date, all the published data indicates hCG works no better than a placebo.

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  69. I am 28 years old, and I need to lose 20 pounds. Today is my first day and I am crossing my finger that hCG drops are gonna work for me. Wish me luck.

    Editor’s comments: The “real” hCG is a prescription drug administered by injection. We do not know what hCG drops contain… but they do not contain hCG. You’ve been had, sorry.

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  70. This is a complete scam! They sent the product stating it was a free 10 day trial. My card was billed $99. on the 11th day when I had the product only 2 days! Then when I called to return the product (so that I would not be billed) the only thing you can do is leave a message and they do not return your call. There is only 1 phone number to call to get service and you get some little jerk who snidley refuses to do anything to help. He says there is no other person to contact about the problem, he’s it. Oh, by the way- you then begin getting $29. a month for who knows what- It’s a bit hard to get the charge removed because you can’t reach anyone- just leave a message. I ended up closing my account an startin a new one to stop the billing. In addition, FYI- the constraints of the diet are ridiculous, if I could eat only 500 calories a day I wouldn’t have tried this product in the first place! Stay away!

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  71. I am a 49 year old female who has suffered insulin resistance since puberty now suffering Type 2 Diabetes. My weight really not changing much over the last fifteen years (needing to loose 20-25 pounds), then having a full hysterectomy three years ago which I believe triggered full blown Type 2 Diabetes. I started the HCG Injections AND Diet (43 day program) 27 days ago to loose 25 pounds and more importantly to hopefully get my diabetes under control.

    I don’t have a medical background BUT I am a very observant person and have had my own issues with metabolic problems since puberty! My past metabolic problems were a precursor of what was to come… I have struggled with insulin resistance since early teenage years… now known as Metabolic Syndrome (formerly called Syndrome X). Struggled with gestational diabetes and subsequent major blood sugar problems worsening after a full hysterectomy three years ago. My most recent A1C was 8.5 which is considered Type 2 Diabetic!

    After three years of trying traditional treatment, including numerous medication therapies that really made me worse and exercise that caused outrageous increase in appetite, I had to try something totally different with hopes that a nontraditional approach might work. Thankfully a friend and some of her friends (both men and women) did this HCG Diet this past summer and she gave me the info about it! I think she saved my life!!!

    Now onto the results of being on the HCG Injections and the very low calorie diet! I have been on the very low calorie phase (STAGE 2) of the program for 25 days, and have already seen drastic reductions in my blood sugar and 18 pounds of weight GONE!!! My blood sugar has drastically dropped from an extremely high morning average of 200 dropping daily since day 7 and now averaging low 90’s! Also my daytime sugars stable in the low 90’s every day…. The weight I have LOST is truly from stored fats! It’s like it is melting away! Most impressive is how GREAT I feel!

    Although I am on this very low calorie diet, which at first seems scary to anyone that hears how little I am consuming (500 calories a day), my body is actually burning an additional 1500 calories per day from stored fat because of the daily HCG injection . Next I will go on the 6 week maintenance program (Phase 3) with the prescribed goal to not gain or lose anymore weight so I will effectively reset my metabolism…. another great benefit of the HCG! Then it’s onto the rest of my life! Eating whole foods, very limited sugars and processed foods, and the goal to never having to fight TYPE 2 Diabetes and insulin resistance again! THE HCG DIET AND INJECTIONS HAVE WORKED FOR ME!!!

    HOW DO I KNOW THE HCG INJECTIONS COMBINED WITH THE DIET ARE WORKING AND THAT IT IS NOT JUST THE DIET? Because I made an error in leaving the HCG out of the refrigerator for a few hours a few days ago…. I kept using the HCG anyway because I didn’t think it could possibly go bad that quickly. Well three days into the “bad” HCG I started to notice a severe change (reduction) in the great energy I was feeling, my face was looking drawn and not healthy like before, and although I was still losing a pound to half pound a day, it didn’t seem to be coming from my stored fat…. my clothes weren’t getting looser like before and I just wasn’t feeling right. SO being the person who is very observant and knows when something isn’t right (like I mentioned above….), I called my doctor and told him I wasn’t feeling well… When I went to see him that day, which he didn’t even hesitate a minute to have me come in, we went over a few things and then I mentioned about my error in leaving the HCG out of the refrigerator for a few hours. HE IMMEDIATELY knew I needed a replacement prescription! I started the new bottle of HCG and within 24 hours was back to FEELING GREAT, LOOKING GREAT, AND BACK ON TRACK! I think this was more than enough evidence that the HCG INJECTIONS COMBINED with the Diet (which I have never cheated on) had cured my outrageous blood sugar issues, DROPPED THE 18 POUNDS OF WEIGHT and put me on the path to long term great health!

    IT’S ALMOST TO GOOD TO BE TRUE BUT IT REALLY DOES WORK!

    To THE EDITOR OF THIS SITE….. I really WONDER what YOU are selling??? Your opinions do NOT seem genuine! READ ALL of the POSITIVE COMMENTS ABOUT THE HCG DIET AND INJECTIONS AND TELL ME HOW YOU CAN IGNORE THEM!

    An important note… There isn’t a diet that wouldn’t require a change in lifestyle to keep the weight off, and Dr Simeone’s manuscript clearly states you must change your ways! BUT there also ISN’T a DIET that is going to motivate you, give you the power to succeed, and CHANGE your life forever like the HCG Diet will do!

    FUNNY… I call it my LIV-IT!!! I am going to live because of it!

    I have NO reason (monetary or otherwise) to support this diet other than I hope it helps other people like me who have suffered Type 2 Diabetes or insulin resistance! NO OTHER REASON AT ALL!!!

    I would love to know if other Type 2 Diabetics have had similar results??? Hope to hear from you… WOULDN’T it be great if this cured Type 2 Diabetes… a current EPIDEMIC! HOW would the pharmaceutical companies feel about THAT? Just saying!

    Editor’s comments: Andrea, we can see you’ve spent a ZERO time thinking carefully about our comments. You see, it’s not us that says hCG does not outperform a placebo, but the peer-reviewed, published clinical data on the subject. ALL of it is conclusive. hCG does not provide any benefit. If you don’t like the results, take it up with the studies’ authors or lobby for a new study.

    Yes, you’re having great results. Good for you. But your experience is anecdotal. It is not evidence. Nor would our experience be, should we try it. Have you ever heard of the placebo effect? In some cases, if a patient believes they are receiving a powerful drug, they will have powerful results, even if they are only receiving a sugar pill. That’s one of the reasons why personal experience is NOT considered evidence.

    Oh and Andrea, I’m sure the pharmaceutical industry would be thrilled if hCG cured diabetes; after all hCG is a prescription drug and THEY manufacture it. If you want to promote some bogus pharmaceutical conspiracy theory, you might at least want to try getting your facts straight first.

    And no Andrea, we don’t sell anything. Not a thing. You would have found that out too, had you actually done a little reading about who we are and what we do. It’s funny that you seem to think that some sort of financial conflict of interest is preventing us from telling the truth about hCG, but that same conflict doesn’t seem to be extended to the people who are actually making money from YOU; the folks selling you the hCG.

    Sheesh.

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  72. I told my story so other diabetics would see the results I had from the HCG Diet and injections versus the standard diabetic drugs that almost killed me. Pancreatitis from one I won’t mention and severe increases in my blood sugar from others meant to lower it… strange but true! So yes I have some issues with the standard treatments especially when the pharmaceutical companies were so reluctant to document my negative side effects and not listen …. sorry for getting off track and I shouldn’t have… just frustration with traditional diabetic treatments

    What I attempted to demonstrate was my reluctance to try other medications that led me to a nontraditional treatment which has worked wonders for me…. anecdotal yes but definently working and yes needing further study as you suggested… which I plan to get involved in….

    You mentioned I should lobby for further study…. The good news for me and maybe others is that I am affiliated with a very large research group that currently studies cardiovascular disease and diabetes and I plan to share my story with them (as well as the many others here) to encourage further study into HCG. So maybe in the end we will find the scientific answers….

    As for this site, I appreciate your encouraging people to share their experience, however I don’t think you really give people a fair chance to state their experience without the need to fully discount what they are telling you, especially when it is a favorable comment about their HCG results. Guess this confuses me most. If you really want the input from the “general public” and you want to hear their experience, why debate their results and why not just let us share our story? We are just sharing our experience as you asked… again sorry for getting off track but hoping you get on track too…. That being said, I rated the site a one because I feel it doesn’t meet the goal that it intends… a place to share your OWN experience with HCG… if you wouldn’t debate everyone’s favorable experience I would say it meets its intended goal and would have rated it much higher….

    Again I will state the reasons why I felt compelled to share my story… so other Type 2 diabetics will have the opportunity to learn of something else that MIGHT work for them too… just sharing my experience as you requested and now staying on track….

    Editor’s comments: You are welcome to share your story, we have no problem with that. But as consumer advocates, part of our responsibility is to ensure visitors do not confuse cause and effect, and are fully aware of the data that does – or in the case of hCG – does not support the effective use of the product.

    This is not the same thing as “debating their results.” This is education. Plain and simple. And it protects the consumer from the ones who have the most to gain financially from promoting hCG as a weight loss miracle when no evidence exists to support that assertion.

    Additionally, when a visitor questions our motives, call our credibility into question or make comments that are not in the spirit of civil discourse, you can bet we are going to call them on it, as we did with you.

    Remember too that online, it’s very difficult to determine which comments are genuine or not; it’s very possible some of the most positive experiences are posted by people who are affiliated with companies that sell hCG and it’s in their best interest to make sure hCG appears to be very effective. So we’re going to call anyone on comments that may be “too good to be true.”

    Frankly, this site is about sharing experiences – positive and negative – but ultimately, it’s also about the education of our visitors. Like it or not, that is our mandate. Most sites do not do this – and that’s why we are different.

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  73. Found this paper.

    Research regarding HCG injections and weight loss is nearly all negative. In other words, most trials where patients received either HCG injections or placebo and followed identical VLC diets, show no difference in amount of weight lost, type of weight lost, hunger level, or mood.

    Read more: http://www.articlesbase.com/weight-loss-articles/hcg-injections-and-a-low-calorie-diet-for-weight-loss-a-summary-of-the-research-2748252.html#ixzz11b0BkJGX
    Under Creative Commons License: Attribution

    Editor’s comments: These are all the same comments we make in our review.

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  74. I am currently on a 40 day program using Hcg injections (which I ordered over the internet). All I can say is that it is working for me. As of day 26 I have released 26 pounds…I never want it back! Much more energy, sleeping thru the night, my achy joints no longer ache, etc. are some of the positive results. Negatives: planning ahead in case I will be away from home during meal time. I have a long way to go (124 more lbs to release). I will say that nothing tastes as good as being skinnier feels. I’m rapidly approaching 50 and even though I have totally neglected my health, I am now putting myself first. This Hcg protocol seems to be a perfect choice for me. Anyone out there have words of wisdom?

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  75. Hello to all HCG users, my success story is 187lbs to 169lbs in 33 days on the drops. I had planned to get to 150lbs by Jan.2011, but took alittle longer break, going on my second round of HCG on Nov.6th for 21 days….why 21 days, I only need to loose 15 lbs to get to my goal weight…so wish me success one more time…I don’t receive negative comments to well, so the editors comments are not for me…always look to uplift people, especially people who have struggled with there weight for soooooo long. Thks

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  76. After losing more than 60lbs with hcg injections and the vlcd protocol of Dr. Simeons, I believe this is a legitimate ray of hope for a lot of lifer-dieters out there.

    A lot has been made in previous posts of the lack of supporting clinical trials, and while that is true and all of these supporting posts here are “antecdotal” in nature, lets not forget that “real-world” data and feedback” are often just as important as clinical studies.

    An editorial review of a book here on this site actually phrases the value of that antecdotal evidence better than I can.

    “There’s great value in the way Will uses “real-world” data and feedback in conjunction with clinical studies to deliver “here’s what to REALLY expect” conclusions.

    I’ve always felt this was an important aspect missing from even the most impartial reviews. I don’t know how many times I’ve tried products that have some decent scientific data behind them only to find they did little more than lighten my wallet.”

    So the scientific data may say one thing, but the “real-world” data and feedback” say another in this case. I would posit then that it would also be likely that if this is a true statement then the inverse of this may be true as well. The LACK of decent (supporting) scientific data coupled with POSITIVE “real-world” data and feedback can also lead one to believe what to REALLY expect, and I think the sheer number of posts here claiming success, as well as Dr. G’s early post indicating his success must cause one to at least entertain the idea that the clinical trials may have some flaw or oversight which is as of yet undiscovered. In any case it is enough to at least open the possibility that it may in fact be the hcg working DESPITE the clinical evidence to the contrary, as when the clinical evidence points to a positive outcome and yet the rel world evidence and experience is the opposite.

    I don’t believe that hcg is for everyone. Number one, anyone considering this protocol has to educate him/herself on everything hcg, read the many studies linked to above, read every positive and negative review above, watch the hcg vlogs on youtube and type hcg in your browser to read the positives and negatives before even considering this protocol. Make sure you understand what 500 calories of chicken and veggies look like on your plate and make sure you can psychologically commit to this protocol before even considering it.

    Or don’t, I mean its a few hundred dollars investment and your time. If you are like me, you have thrown that much away a hundred times over on other diet crap in the past that didn’t work right? And the truth is that not one study I have seen so far (Not saying that I couldn’t possibly have missed something) actually links any real HARMFUL long term effects to the use of hcg. Worst case scenario, it doesn’t work for you and you throw your money away on yet another failed weight loss attempt.

    Don’t buy hcg “drops”. Whether you get hcg from a legit online pharmacy or through your doctor, get them from a pharmacy. If you did your homework as noted above, you will learn how to figure that out, but if you are thinking of just throwing $19.99 (or more) at something on Amazon or ebay, don’t, that is a scam.

    I am no scientist, but here is my little hypothesis, I think there is a good likelihood that there is a strong endicrine connection variable which is missing here. I think that “somehow” the hcg is effective upon that particular defect and until it is identified there CAN be no clinical studies. Huge generalization here, but it is the story of finding the treatment before finding the disease. Obesity is merely a symptom of the underlying condition that the hcg is treating. At least that what I’m thinking….. :-)

    Best of luck everyone on your journey!!!

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  77. I signed up at BKI Weight Loss clinics in the Dallas area, the clinic office I went to closed down shortly after my second phase of the program. Noboday at BKI called to let me know where to follow up at a different office or ensure I was monitored by a new councelor.

    For $1500 i received the HCG, but no follow up from BKI. Very disappointing. I should have lost at least 30 lbs. in 42 days, but only lost 10, and I never received the ‘maintenance plan program’ for when you are done with the injections.

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  78. HI, IM ON DAY 6 RIGHT NOW, I HAD A ROUGH START. I HAVE CONGESTION AND WAS TAKING MUSINEX. BAD THING WAS MUCUS WAS DRAINING INTO MY STOMACH THAT WAS MOSTLY EMPTY FROM THE DIET AND I WAS GETTING DIARRHEA AND VOMITING. MY ELECTROLYTES GOT SO LOW I WAS LETHARGIC AND WEAK. I WAS LOOSING WEIGHT BUT AT WHAT COST.

    I STARTED DRINKING GATORADE TO REPLACE WHAT I WAS LOSING IN ELECTROLYTES,WAY TOO MUCH SUGAR AND 9 OF THE 17 LBS I LOST IN 4 DAYS CAME BACK. DO NOT USE GATORADE USE POWERADE (NO SUGAR) KEEP POTASSIUM, GINGER ROOT, CALCIUM MAGNESIUM AND A VERY GOOD ANTACID AROUND. DRINK LOTS AND LOTS OF WATER AND ICE TEA WITH TRUVIA. WALDEN FARMS HAS GREAT DRESSING FOR VEGGIES NO FAT OR SUGARS. GOOD LUCK AND BE PREPARED, GET YOUR FOOD SCALE OUT. I PUT 5 BOTTLES OF WATER A DAY ON MY COUNTER AND KNOW THEY HAVE TO BE GONE WHEN I GO TO BED.
    HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE..SCHELLE

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  79. To the editor that says all studies have shown that HCG is no more then a placebo effect. When ppl generally go on a starvation type or very low calorie diet they may lose weight right at first, then they stop because the bodys natural reaction is to go into starvation mode and horde everything that is eaten and the weight loss will stop. This is the truth plain and simple. This however does not happen with HCG, the weight loss continues, muscle is not wasted, and most have extra energy which is not seen in a starvation diet. Ergo the drops are obviously not placebos.

    Clinical trials can be skewed to make it read any way you desire. Note all the meds the FDA have deemed “safe” and then have had to recall due to ppl becoming ill or dying. Remember, those all had “extensive” clinical trials. I prefer to take my advice from the thousands of others who have had great results from HCG. I have lost 35 lbs total, am in day 6 of my second round of the drops and have 30 more lbs to go. I’m staying on the 43 day trial (did the 21 day the first time around) and I will have lost all of it at the end. This product is a godsend for people who, although eat right and exercise just cannot lose weight. I was one of those and whether you believe or not this is true for many especially after the age of 40. I feel fantastic and it’s so great getting up in the morning and seeing the numbers on the scale going down. It does take will power. we all have cravings and the first 2-3 days are the hardest but seeing the weight come off is a great incentive to stay on the diet. I encourage all to read Dr. Simeons manuscript (the diets inventor) which can be found online. It answers a lot of questions. Oh and my daughter has lost 40 lbs and my friend at work who introduced me to HCG lost over 75 lbs. If you follow the diet, no cheating, it does work.

    Editor’s comments: Yes, clinical trials can be skewed. Are you saying you have some proof that every single independently conducted study that showed hCG did not outperform a placebo was tainted? How can you assume to know that those people performing the trials were unethical? And if they were, how can you assume to know their mandate was to disprove hCG; there would be more money in it to confirm it works.

    Remember… your experiences, however convincing, are not evidence. Our job – despite the way it looks – is not to rain on anyone’s parade, but to report on the facts.

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  80. True you will loose significant weight on any 500 calorie diet. For me, thats not even the point.
    I’m 50 years old and have yo-yo’d my weight all of my life. I have tried traditional medically approved diets and some really extreme and possibly dangerous diets. I have a problem starting diets (tomorrow) but once I do start I stick with them and I haven’t been on one diet that didn’t take weight off. I always regained every pound and some extra before I could bring myself to diet again.
    Then came the “crazy” HCG diet that my sister talked me into. It worked for me as promised. I lost 38 lbs. in 40 days. Even lost a few more during the maintenance phase. I had given up on ever controlling my weight problem. I fully expected to gain the weight back but I wanted to loose as much as possible before my daughter’s wedding. That was in June. Now it’s January.
    The point for me is that I didn’t diet for the rest of the year. I ate what I wanted. I just didn’t crave fried or sugary foods any more so my non-diet diet improved dramatically. I did not gain any of the weight back at all even though I did occasionally overeat…until the Christmas holidays, when I did start eating to many of the holiday treats like everyone else. And I only gained 4 lbs. I’m pretty sure that would have come back off also since my diet went back to normal after New Years.
    I decided to go back on the HCG as I still have another 40-50 lbs to loose. This will be the first time that I have repeated a diet. I was never going to diet again. I had resigned myself to the fact that I was just going to be fat.
    So I don’t really care if HCG helps you loose more wieght or faster than any other very low calorie diet. The fact that I can live and eat healthy comfortably after the diet is long over is why I’m sticking with HCG!

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  81. On round 1 of the hcg protocol i lost 45lbs..then went on maintence for 6 weeks and now i am on round 2 which i started 2/4/11 and so far i have lost 15 lbs and still going strong…i have had no problems,no headaches,no side effects of any kind..so to me the HCG PROGRAM is the best thing that i have found in years…i have wasted so much money on other diets and programs now i wouldn’t try anything else…I have gone from 245lbs to 197.8 so far….

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  82. I started the HCG diet on March 8, 2011 and I have already lost 9 pounds! I am so excited about this program because I have tried them and! This one I will stick with! HCG has already changed my life. :)

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  83. Today is my 8th day being on the program and I am 11lbs down!!:)

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  84. Hi guys, the HCG diet has change my life forever. I started the program on 11/24/2010 and I lost a total of 45 lbs doing two rounds. I am so happy knowing I can wear clothes that fits and look cute. Thank you HCG!!!!

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  85. This is my 6th day on the sub-lingual version of the diet and I have lost a total of 9 pounds.
    I am excited to see it work.
    I have plenty of energy and eating 500 a day is becoming easier.
    Last night for the first time, I had to force myself to finish my apple.
    Good luck to you all!

    Editor’s comments: The FDA is calling hCG drops fraudulent and illegal. We call them the “ultimate scam.”

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  86. I was interested in starting the diet, and I had already purchased the drops when one of my coworkers – a pharmacist – counseled me to do some more research.

    I went to plenty of websites, most of which gave raving reviews, but then I decided to check out medical journals. And these peer-reviewed scholarly articles are completely against it. Not only is the diet dangerous, but the drops don’t work. Virtually every study that has been published shows that the drops are not effective – what makes you lose weight is the fact that you are simply starving yourself. The 500 a day caloric diet is not healthy, and while you will certainly lose weight, it won’t just be fat. You’ll lose muscle and your body will weaken.

    Do the research – the real research – check out the medical journals written by professionals who aren’t being paid to sell or promote the product.

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  87. I had never heard about this product until this past Monday. I am on day six with the drops including a 500 calorie a day diet. I was 185 when I weighed in on Monday. Today is Sunday mothers day and I weigh 178. You tell me if it work? This product has been great.

    Editor’s comments: hCG drops are the “ultimate scam.” This hCG drops review will tell you why.

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  88. I started the HCG drops last Saturday and last Monday I started the 500 calories. So today is a week on the 500 calories/drops and I have lost 10 lbs! I’ve read the drops are not the real thing but fake or not, I’m losing the weight. It’s very hard though. This is probably the hardest diet I have ever been on.
    Yesterday, I came very close to cheating but I got online and started to read what people have written about when they cheated and it’s not worth it. Do you want ALL the sacrifices you’ve made so far to vanish for some bad food that you will be so mad at yourself for afterward? Be strong!

    I was very proud of myself that I didn’t cheat yesterday because this morning I was a pound lighter…and that was definitely worth it. :)

    Editor’s comments: We’re not surprised you’re losing the weight; 500 calories per day is a starvation diet. What we’re wondering is why you’re bothering with the drops? You’re aware they don’t work, so they’re not even providing a placebo effect.

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  89. I have used UltimateFatBurner.com as a guide for many years. I know it is an honest, reliable, and trustworthy site. In fact, I won’t buy a product without first researching it here. But I think, perhaps, a point is being missed with regard to the hCG issue, both by UFB and whomever feels the hCG diet is a scam or simply ineffective. From all I’ve read on the Web, it seems that the hCG injection is not necessarily what makes the diet work – at least not directly. The restricted calorie intake (VLC) is. However, the hCG allegedly plays a role in making the VLC possible because it seems to act as a much-needed appetite suppressant. If that’s the case, then both sides of the argument are correct: patients lose weight because of the much lower intake of calories, NOT [directly] because of the hCG; however, they likely couldn’t maintain such a low calorie diet for any length of time WITHOUT the aid of the hCG and its appetite suppressing properties, whatever they may be. Moreover, what if it IS only the placebo effect at work? So what? Right? If it improves the life and health of the patients who take it, more power to it! :) So my point is, perhaps both sides are correct and are debating unnecessarily?

    In closing, I must repeat, I’ve found the information on UltimateFatBurner.com to be very reliable, helpful, unbiased, and supported by public record and/or thorough research. It has saved me hundreds of dollars in the past, not to mention time and effort. And, if I may post a sidebar to Dr. G., the editor is correct in that there is a difference between endorsing a product and selling ad space for products you may or may not necessarily use or recommend. Gotta pay that rent. Then again, Paul, the good doctor has a point, as well…maybe UFB should “walk the walk” or, at least, reserve its ad space for other fitness-related items, such as active wear clothing, rather than products with which its published reviews might directly conflict? Just a 2¢ opinion. :)

    Editor’s comments: First, thanks so much for the kind words about UltimateFatBurner.com, we really appreciate them. 😉

    Second, about the hCG protocol; you argue that perhaps hCG “works” in that it has a powerful appetite suppressing effect, which allows participants on the Very Low Calorie Diet (VLCD) to be able to the tolerate the diet and consequently, lose weight. It’s a fine argument except there’s exactly zero evidence to support it. In fact, if you check out this UCLA document on VLCDs, you’ll find that even on extremely low calorie diet, your appetite diminishes significantly within 4 or 5 days…

    “…after four to five days the patient’s appetite has diminished and is (in most cases) no longer hungry.”

    So, to reiterate, it’s common for participants to have no hunger pains on a VLCD, with or without the use of hCG.

    Third, in regards to advertising; we respectfully disagree; the doctor is wrong. This apparent conflict between editorial and advertising exists in every single medium, and is simply one of those “necessary evils.” Check out the blog post “The Difference Between Editorial and Advertising” for clarification.

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  90. Hoping to get a few answers on here, as I can’t seem to find too much info on this part of the HCG diet. I’m starting my third week of HCG and have lost 11 pounds so far. What happens if I decide to quit early? Will I immediately gain it all back if I don’t follow the 6 week maintenance protocol first? I’d like to switch over to something like Weight Watchers (at the right time), but will this mess up my metabolism?

    Both my husband and I have been textbook on this diet and done everything exactly as said. He’s lost 22 pounds in 15 days. I have to say it works; my problem is the fatique/exhaustion I continually have, not to mention the continual hunger (which the drops haven’t helped).

    I can stay on the diet if needed to finish out the 23 days, but I hate the way I feel. Not to mention the need to go on Prilosec to alleviate all the acid created.

    I’m hoping that if I go by the HCG 1st three weeks/2nd three weeks plan, then I can start again on another diet. Or do I have to take six weeks before I can start another one again.
    So long story short, what is the best way to quit this diet early, maintain the weight, and then switch to a different diet (that might have carbs) and then lose more weight?

    Editor’s comments:
    We hate to say it but you’ve been scammed; hCG is a prescription drug that needs to be injected muscularly. We don’t know what hCG drops contain, but they don’t contain hCG. Even the FDA has called them a scam. See the hCG drops article for a full discussion on this.

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  91. 1. I agree that your constant cautionary comments can be tiring. However, based on your mission to help protect and educate consumers, your comments serve that mission well. But they are still tiring;-)
    2. My wife had -extraordinary- success with one particular oral HCG. The several others that she tried before that were completely ineffective. So yes, there is scamming going on with HCG. And probably more to come. And I imagine that if product quality is not regulated, at some point, people may begin to be hurt or killed by HCG scammers.
    3. Based on my wife’s success, our daughter and I used my wife’ HCG and we both also had extraordinary success.
    4. What is my definition of extraordinary success? I mean an average of 20lbs fat loss in 40days accompanied by increased muscle mass. Our endurance and strength actually increased throughout the 40days so we started hiking again,…. every weekend. We have regained no fat after resuming normal diet. I am no longer stop taking blood pressure meds.
    5. Background: we each lift weights 5 days/wk, run barefoot 12 miles/wk, and converted to a Raw Food diet 2 years ago. My wife and daughter each lost about 20lbs of fat in the 2 years prior to HCG and I lost 40lbs of fat all through proper nutrition and exercise. They continued to lose a little fat per month, however my fat loss slowed to a crawl. And then HCG came along and boom, it is like our clocks reset. BTW: We use a BodPod machine to track our numbers.

    6. We are about to start our 2nd and final round of HCG and will be driving 7hrs to DC every other weekend to use a DeXA machine so we also have that data in addition to the BodPod. Plus the DeXA actually shows the fat and the muscle and the bones.
    7. There is something to true HCG. It is not just the VLC diet, and it is not just a mental thing; we’ve experimented with VLC diets and lost quite a bit of muscle, and it is not mental because we already had our nutrition and exercise down to a science accompanied by frequent checkups and blood work. When it comes to our health, my family lives and breathes metrics, because we have lost so many relatives to unhealthy lifestyles.
    8. So our particular HCG is working for us. However, prior to that, my wife did spend quite a bit of money on oral HCG products that had little to no actual HCG in them and did not work. Also, most people are not as aware of their bodies and as knowedgeable on the subject of fitness as are we. Some people may have conditions that make HCG unsuitable or dangerous. Many people don’t have the willpower to do HCG properly; it was challenging even for my family who subsist on fresh organic fruits and vegetables, eat no processed or cooked foods, and exercise regularly. My main concern is that over time, greed is going to dominate the world of HCG and innocent people will suffer serious consequences.

    Editor’s comments: Online, people tend to scroll and scan rather than read every word. Some products have a LOT of feedback, which means visitors pick and choose what they read – this means the same cautionary message may be included numerous times on a single page. The fact we need to make the same point over and over again is demonstrative of the fact that many visitors aren’t “catching” these messages. So yes we agree; it may be tiresome, but reading all the comments rather than a select few is the exception, rather than the rule.

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  92. I am halfway done today (day 22) and have already lost 24lbs!!! Pretty excited to keep going, it is amazing to me that I have so much energy and have never once felt weak or unmotivated using HCG. Actually I have been exercising way more than recommended but I can’t help it…I feels so great! 35 lbs to go to hit my goal weight!!!

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  93. This has been a very interesting read!
    Around 1998, I was discussing the fact that I had no energy, couldn’t go to sleep, and was so “run down” while having lunch in the teachers’ lounge. I had a 3 and 1 yr old and a husband in med school, so I just thought it was life. Someone-and I wish I could remember who so I could ask some questions-said they were taking HCG,a pregnancy hormone that they mixed in orange juice each night and that it was like “turning back the clock” and she felt wonderful and was losing weight to boot!

    I really only NEEDED to lose about 5 pounds left over from pregnancy and weight loss was not my goal, but I wanted the other results she was experiencing. I ordered what she was using over the internet. It tasted awful. I started off mixing one tablespoon (half the dose to begin with as the bottle suggested) in a small amount of juice so I could swallow it in one gulp. About 20 minutes after I would drink it, I would feel hot and itchy for about 5 minutes. That was a side effect stated on the bottle. Within a week I felt better and was sleeping better than I had in 4 yrs. I did not change my diet. I followed no “protocol”, but at the end of the month my pants were falling off so I weighed myself. I had lost 12 pounds. Maybe it was the energy and sleep. I don’t know. When I ran out of the product, I’m not sure why I didn’t re-order. I guess I thought I was cured. Life was so stressful then, I honestly don’t remember.

    So now I am 43 and feel like I did then. I was thinking I took HGH but my husband laughed and said he was sure it was HGC because I remembered it was a pregnancy hormone. I innocently get online to look for whatever it was I took back then and WOW!!!! It’s everywhere! So after reading this and a plethora of information all over the web, I’m curious if it was HGC that I took? All the posts and info seem to be within the last 3 to 4 years so maybe it was some other form…or something else altogether?

    Also, from what I understand, the hcg that comes in drops doesn’t really contain hcg but has ingredients that stimulate your body to produce more of your own? Maybe that’s what I had? Whatever it was, it worked and I wish I could find more!

    Editor’s comments: hCG is a presciption medication that needs to be administered via intramuscular injection. hCG drops are a total scam – even the FDA has gone on record with them, calling them “illegal” (see this article on hCG drops for more information). Unfortunately, it’s impossible to know what your drops contained.

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  94. I purchased HCG drops to lose 10 pounds. Yep, only 10 pounds. It only took 1.5 weeks to lose the weight I desired then I stopped the drug. Here is the kicker. I ate whatever I wanted. I know you are supposed to follow a 500-calorie diet but I didn’t like the idea of eating too few calories. I ate healthier than ever (only eating fruit, veggies and lean meat such as chicken and fish) and I worked out like a beast.

    After the first week, I noticed my appetite decrease while my energy increased. I was pleased. The good thing is: once I stopped taking HCG, I continued to lose weight. I think it was my lifestyle change with a little boost from HCG. Now it is difficult for me to gain weight but I am not crying about that.

    I do recommend it to my friends but I recommend diet and exercise and a physician consultation too!

    Editor’s comments: Unfortunately, your weight loss has to be attributed directly to exercise and calorie restriction; hCG drops do not contain hCG. hCG – the real stuff – is a prescription drug which needs to be administered via intramuscular injection. Whatever was in those drops, it was not hCG. For more information, see the “hCG drops for weight loss” article.

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  95. From what I can tell HCG, especially while under the care of a doctor, not only works, but is safe. Probably best not to do it past 40 days and I don’t think this is customarily done. The low carb diet done after the VLCD is one done by many with success and good healthy. Fatty foods are discouraged. I think for those who have not had any luck with traditional methods and are starting to have health issues related to being overweight, HCG is a very positive and hopeful alternative.

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  96. I have been on HCG 4 different times. Each time I have been very successful and lost weight and inches. I did gain some back but lost it again quickly when I went back on the program. I now find I am still keeping it off while still taking it and not sticking to the 500 calories. I’m not saying this is the best way to do it; but this is the best weight loss program I’ve been on in my life with no side effects and lots of energy; I’ve tried 3 different kinds and they all worked great and I’m almost 62 and have been on tons of programs since I was 26. Nothing matches this.

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  97. I took HCG did the HCG diet, under a doctor’s supervision, and lost 23 pounds in 26 days. I took the injections once a day, first thing in the morning.
    At first, I did not do very well, but I figured out it was because I was not spacing my food out and my blood sugar was crashing. Also, I limited my salt, which messed up my electrolytes. Once I figured these two things out, I was ready to rock and roll.

    I was skeptical in the begining, and not actually sure I would be able to do it. I started a blog on the first day, and kept it the entire time. I helped me stick to my plan and stay honest!
    I will be doing it again in the fall and hope to lose around 25 more.

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  98. I started taking the HCG (7) days ago, the first (2) were loading up days and I gained (2) pounds. On Monday the first day of 500 cal, I ate the required meal and by Tuesday had lost the (2) pounds back. I was excited and on Wednesday, I lost (3) more pounds and then on Thursday had lost (6) more pounds and today which is Friday, when I weighed myself, I lost an additional (4) pounds. I have figured out since I didn’t know how to weigh my meat, I found out I’m eat 1/4 the size I was supposed to and was probably eating only 300 calories a day. In one week, I’m getting double take looks at work and fit into my skinny jeans this morning. I want to lose (20) more pounds in the next two weeks and I will be where I want to be since I had already been dieting for (6) months and only lost a total of (40) pounds in that time but now I am soooo close to my goal. Thank you HCG. I’m getting good sleep and am not starving.

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  99. Very interesting to revisit this site. The editors here seem to be doing a good job monitoring. Just a quick update, no new studies as of yet. No surprise there. I was unable to secure a grant for a small study because, and I quote; “The FDA has not approved hCG for weight loss and because hCG is a know hormone we feel potential harm outweighs the potential benefits….” Yep, over 50 years of hCG use with not one documented long term side effect and the old “it is a hormone so it has to be dangerous..” argument is still used. I suppose since Vitamin D is a powerful steroid hormone we should ban it as well for use. My practice remains the same. Great success with the actual protocol and hCG. I am selective and I have had patients get mad at me for saying it is not the right thing for them. Many of those same patients return after trying it online or from a franchise clinic selling the protocol with their negative side effects. The good news is that most of the side effects were due to a true starvations state (early), I tell them to eat and the side effects disappear. Unfortunately I am seeing more and more advertisements for “The hCG Diet” that are clearly scams. Even huge billboard marketing 1-800 numbers for “hCG.”

    I want to reiterate in my revisit here to all. hCG MUST be prescribed by a competent and experienced physician. hCG is NOT for everyone and its use must be monitored closely. There are negative side effects which can easily be reversed. Anecdotal stories, though can be interesting, are not the reasons to be doing the Protocol. We do not understand yet why the hCG Protocol can work in many individuals. Nor do we understand the long term effects of multiple attempts in using hCG for weight loss so I do not recommend its use for more than one or two times. Never use it to yo-yo your weight. A true plan and support for weight loss management must be in place

    Linear thought process in medicine is dangerous. Unfortunately that is how we think in general, that is how us physicians are taught in medical school then beat into us in residency. One plus one is not always 2 in medicine and the management of human physiology. Because there are no studies that support the protocol does not mean it does not have a positive impact or effect for certain individuals. A careful evaluation and approach must be made when contemplating the use of hCG for weight loss.

    A quick note to the few references to UCLA and their statements concerning the VLC Diet. Most of these are taken out of context. I know the UCLA Human Nutrition Center VLC Diet very well and the protocol they use there also include supplements that can act in and of themselves to suppress appetite. I believe a great multicenter study can be put together comparing the hCG Protocol to the UCLA VLC Diet and to a simple VLC Diet without supplementation. Would be interesting and helpful The”FDA hCG Blockade” is an unfortunate tool that seems to have a bias I do not quite understand that has inhibited hCG research. Of course no pharmaceutical will provide a grant to an inexpensive generic medication.

    UFB is a great site for practical and cautionary advice. I trust it enough to send my patients to the site. Keep up the good work. Just had a little time to kill and didn’t want to break out the books…..

    Benjamin S. Gonzalez, MD
    Atlantis Medical Wellness Center
    http://www.atlantismedispa.com

    P.S.

    If there is anyone out there who can help us find the money, a grant, for a legitimate study please do not hesitate to call us. If anyone knows of any ongoing studies on this subject please let us know.

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  100. I battled a steady weight gain for 20 years. I ate right & was physically active, but I just kept gaining. Finally a doctor diagnosed me as HYPOTHYROID based on symptoms and I started therapy. Once I did that I was able to lose weight, albeit I had to work at it constantly – monitoring what, when, how I prepared and ate my food, exercising 5 days a week, weighing every day et…It took me 18 months to lose 40lbs.
    My sister went on a doctor assisted protocol and kept saying -you gotta try this. I told her I would when I felt ready. So here I am end of week 2 (Dr assisted) and have lost 13 lbs. May not sound like much to most of you, but compared to .5 every 2 weeks (if I’m lucky) sounds darn good to me.
    I’m not hungry, I do miss certain ‘flavors’ – and eggs (I like eggs). Pre planning and keeping track of your allowable foods helps you stay on track.
    We all have to remember this forum is on a commercial website (btw- thankyou for opening up your site for this). While I know from experience that prepared & supplemental products can help in weight loss, it takes a long, long time for those of us with compromised systems and 50+ lbs to lose using these products. We also have to watch for drug interactions, so precise labeling is very important. So many products (not necessarily ones sold here) have the right stuff but so little of it – it does no good no matter what quantity you take. And some are just pure crap.
    I’m lucky – because I’ve been working successfully at losing weight on my own so when I finish this round of HCG I’ll be more prepared for Phase 3. Hopefully, with the help of the right products & food I’m confident in, I will continue my weight loss journey.

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  101. To the editors:
    You can say 1,000 times that there is no clinical evidence to substantiate the claims of the hCG protocol and that anecdotal claims are not “evidence.” But none of that really matters. It doesn’t matter to ME whether clinical studies indicate that it helps weight loss or not. All that matters to ME is that hCG helped me lose the weight when nothing else could.

    I think that most people out there care more about how much hCG actually helps them rather than the conclusions of some “clinical studies.” And that’s where you’re meeting so much resistance. People come to this site to see consumer comments, which are inherently going to contain anecdotes. It’s hypocritical that you invite people to write comments on a topic and then continuously undermine those comments by adding your notes saying their experiences don’t count since they are merely anecdotal. That kind of thing tends to irritate people. But you don’t have to listen to me; this is just another anecdote so it has no value at all.

    Editor’s comments:
    It’s not hypocritical to point this out, when the mandate of this site is as much to educate as it is a place to provide comments. Obviously, you have not bothered to take the time to discover the mandate of this site.

    Second, neither of us have any way to authenticate ANY of the comments on this site – which means they could be completely manufactured by people with a financial conflict of interest in the sale or promotion of hCG. That’s another reason why it’s important to point why the clinical data is entirely consistent in its conclusion that hCG does not outperform a placebo.

    At least you’re correct about one thing; your comments and testimonials are entirely anecdotal.

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  102. Hello I’m starting the HCG diet on Friday.

    I have been reading through the comments and see some talk about lost muscle mass.

    Does anyone know if weight training would help with that problem?

    Editor’s comments: On a 500 calorie per day diet. it’s unlikely you can do much about this, regardless of whether you weight train or not.

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  103. I’ve just finished my second course of HCG. The first time, I started at 97kg and finished on 87kg 6 weeks later. I stuck to the programme religiously and felt great. I used HCG homeopathic drops, btw.

    The second course didn’t go as well. My family and I moved from Ireland to Germany (maybe not the best time to do a weightloss programme…) and I started cheating in week3. Added another week of low cal eating, but eventually caved in completely – still lost 6kg, but it was a real struggle. My verdict: HCG is amazing, I’m the lowest I’ve been for over 10 years. BUT – you have to take it seriously and stick with it properly!! It’s a lot of hard work and dedication BUT ONLY FOR SIX WEEKS, not months!!

    Editor’s comments: Your results are attributable to the low calorie diet only; hCG drops are a scam – they do not contain any hCG, which is a prescription drug administered via intramuscular injection. See the hCG homeopathic diet drops article for more info.

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  104. I am on day 10 of taking physician prescribed HCG injections and have lost 10 pounds so far. My question is how much of that weight is actual fat vs water vs muscle loss? My goal is to lose fat but not muscle (if that is possible on the 500 cal a day diet phase). I am following the program/diet plan to the T and some days are easier for me than others. I do not feel hungry, but am somewhat sluggish at times. I don’t have a lot of energy to workout vigorously like I usually do; so I try to go for daily walks instead. I’m really hoping that at the end of my 28 day program of taking the injections, I will see signifcant weight loss in inches as well as on the scale. My ultimate goal is for my clothes to fit bigger (right now they really don’t feel that big on me) than when I started. I have a lot of muscle so I want to be able to maintain that but lose the fat. I also am very concerned about not gaining the weight back after the 28 injections are finished. Any information would be appreciative. Thanks

    Editor’s comments: There’s no set rule on this – it’s largely an individual thing. That said, you will probably lose a lot of lean muscle mass on a calorie level this low. From the body’s point of view, muscle (which is metabolically active, meaning it in needs calories to sustain it) is the greatest liability in times of starvation – which for all your body knows is what you’re enduring now.

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  105. I have successfully completed Phase 1 of the HCG Diet and lost 20 lbs with a 40 day supply of physician prescribed injections. I am so close to my goal weight, and am very nervous and concerned about going into Phase 2 of the HCG plan because I do not want to gain any of the weight back. I have read Dr. Simeons Pounds and Inches guide and he mentions that once you are in Phase 2, you should start to resume eating normally (minus sugars and starches) when hungry and that you shouldn’t try and lose more weight and restrict calories. I am just 10 pounds shy of my goal weight and I want to lose those last 10 pounds but I don’t want to hinder my new set point by limiting calories that I won’t be able to maintain in the long run. Any advice would be appreciated. I want to thank the Editor’s comments in my post above. It was very informative and I definitely agree that I probably have lost a lot of lean muscle mass, which isn’t good. Thanks

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  106. I have been doing HCG drops for the past several months, following the phases as described in the information received with the drops. At first, I bought the more expensive drops thinking they would work better, but the last time I have been on the program I have bought the less expensive drops with the same amino acids (if not more) and they work the same.

    When I first went on the diet, I stayed on it the entire 6 week period and lost 37 pounds, then did the 6 weeks maintenance required to re-target the metabolism. Now when I use the drops, I stay on them approximately 2 weeks and go back on the maintenance for the required amount of time.

    The entire diet has to be read to understand how it works. I read several of the testimonials and did not see any of them explain why the diet works. Yes, when you consume 500 calories, you will lose weight, but what the HCG does is keep your body from going into the starvation mode. When your body uses the calorie intake, it then goes into the brown fat and starts burning it, thus the continued weight loss. I have now lost a total of 47 pounds and feel and look so much better. I would still like to lose 10 more pounds and with the drops I know I can do it. It works the same for me each time I start the program.

    It seems like I have more energy when on the drops. I do have low blood sugar and realize that a low carb diet is what works best for my body, and this could be the reason for my boost of energy. The only side effect of the low caloric intake I have found is that my stamina is not very high….so I sit down a few minutes and get up and go again. Bottom line is this diet works over, and over for me.

    Editor’s comments: Real hCG is a prescription medication that is applied via intramuscular injection (and there’s no evidence that it prevents your body from going into starvation mode). hCG drops are a scam; they do NOT contain hCG – even if you could buy the drug legally in drop form, without a prescription, there’s no evidence it can be delivered effectively via sublingual administration. Sorry, but you’ve been had.

    See the article on hCG drops for more.

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  107. my third day . in breakfast i drink one of tea with one soon milk and little bit tofu. in lunch i drank tomato soup. i did not eat no snack yet but thinking to eat cottage cheese in dinner. i am vegetarian . please suggest if i am doing right or not. i am not hungary but i am feeling like eating. i am taking 15 drops three times.

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  108. I’m not a doctor or even someone that has had a weight issue all my life. Gained a few when pregnant, and over the last 20+ years have put on about a pound a year. With that being said i also had a hysterectomy last november 2011. Hormones out of whack and hotflashes like there was no tomorrow. So I tried HGC and besides the weight loss I experienced a few other AWESOME side effects:better sleep,no hot flashes (and I mean NO hatflashes), silkier skin, less hair loss,increased energy and a feeling of being balanced. Now , all I ever expected was the weightloss. I have no idea why or how it works but i wasnt hungry and the only negative side effect was when I went from a high carb diet to no carbs, for some reason i got headaches, but a melba toast later was feeling better. I think our bodies are so unique. I work at a school and i KNOW of at least 15 people at our school that have lost and kept off the weight by using the HGC protocal.being overweight is killing millions in this country, your body cant survive with this kind of weight. what I NEVER see in all of these review sites is someone stating how the loss of lean muscle is killing millions, or how ANYTHING that works for you that has so few side effects is killing millions.I spent hours and hours researching HGC and it just seems like the time,effort,side effects and results can come out to anything but a win win. I mean I can’t even eat McDonalds anymore because it just taste so bad after not eating high calorie/carbs for just a short time.Yes that is the diet not the drops but, Really,its cheaper than a gym, diet pills, weight watchers, and a plethora of other options and when you are done you are eating healthier and feel better. so I guess my question or comment would be… WHAT’S THE DOWNSIDE AGAIN? I went in for my post op appointment with a strong will to tell my doctor that i was going in the diet (just so she would know) and low and behold they were starting to prescribe it the following week. I guess i just cant see the downside to thinner healthier living, I cant expain faith,love,hate or jealousy but i know they all have lasting effects on our lives. people find what works for them. we live in a country that is riddled with pesticides and chemicals that are in EVERYTHING we eat and touch, we are an “instant” based world. This protocal calls for nitrate free protiens,fruits,vegatables,no sodas,sugars. So I’ve been had, fell for it,dooped, been ripped off, could have taken a placebo for all i know, WHO cares? I’m thirty pounds lighter,feel great, healthier than I’ve been in decades….. once again…. DOWNSIDE please?

    Editor’s comments: “…How the loss of lean muscle is killing millions.” Really? First, we’ve heard about it. Provide some clinical references to substantiate this statement, please.

    Regarding your comments on the “downsides”; apparently you think it’s OK for people to lie to you and take your money, as long as you obtain the results you were hoping for. Here’s the thing; we don’t know what’s in hCG drops, but one thing we know that is not in them is hCG. In our book, that makes the people who sell hCG drops scam artists, an no – it is not OK. And yes, the diet protocol will work just fine on its own.

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  109. I myself have used the HCG and am getting ready for round 2. When I started I was 100 pounds over weight. I now have 77 pounds to go. I have went over the plan with my doctor and he uped my callorie intake from 500 to 1200 a day only because I exercise and I need more calories then what the diet calls for. Also be careful if you are taking any othe medications. My sister is on other medications while doing the HCG diet and her hair started falling out. So her doctor had to readjust her meds and that seemed to help. She lost over 60 pounds on HCG. If she can do it anyone can

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  110. Love it . I’ve been looking for this info . Good info I’ll check back for information in regards to 1200 calorie diet.

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  111. I did one round of HCG. I lost 25 lb s. I went off HCG and gained it back just as fast. I don’t want to have to take it forever. I need a diet that you can live with not a quick fix.

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  112. today is my first day on hcg drops…i am using the homeopathic drops…i weight 164.2 and i need to be 145…i will keep updating here, i cannot stick to any diet, but will see how it works with the drops. i am prepared that its not easy but we will see

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  113. I don’t know where to begin…I have read every
    comment and loved them; disliked the editor’s comments.

    I have atrial fibrillation, HBP, and was about 50 lbs. overweight. I have tried everything.
    I went on the hcg pellets through a doctor at a
    weight loss clinic. I lost 23 pounds on the 30-day “first round” and will begin another next week.

    Best thing I have ever done. I feel wonderful,
    have been eating up to 850 cals a day (which our clinic recommended – 750-850). They pointed out that at the time Dr. Simeon was
    developing the protocal he was giving it to overweight patients who did not work during the treatment. I am a busy realtor. I do about 30 mins. housework each day — which I love and sometimes some stretches. I am not doing my bike or treadmill right now.

    I would be so hungry on a regular 1400 cal a day diet and would lose and gain back. Two of my close friends have done this plan and have kept all of their weight off for over a year.

    As I said at first, it is the BEST. Probably saved my life. I am in my late 60’s, by the way.

    My doctor is “over the moon” with my improvement but doesn’t know I did the hcg.

    One more thing: I am the most dedicated of
    “skeptics” and did not believe this would work or that I would feel well. I admit I was
    wrong.

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    • Editor’s comments: Sorry you disliked our comments, Phyllis, but we’re not here to lead a cheering section for hCG. Our job is to ensure our visitors know what the clinical evidence says for this diet. The fact that it is unequivocally unanimous in the fact that the hCG protocol does not outperform a placebo isn’t something you have to like, it simply is. And unfortunately, personal experiences to the contrary do not constitute evidence of effectiveness.

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  114. I am 33 years old and been on hcg diet and shots for 11 days, lost 2 pounds so far! Is it normal?

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  115. There are a couple of points that I would add to this, that – I believe – make the HCG protocol a more attractive prospect than a VLCD.

    1. The HCG program is “medicalized” – this is strong stuff, from the perspective of the placebo effect. Going into a clinic, seeing a clinician, getting an injection – these are incredibly reinforcing. As noted in this summary:

    “Patient expectations are important in determining the placebo effect. Treatments that are perceived as being more powerful tend to have a stronger placebo effect than those that are perceived to be less so. Thus, placebo injections have more effect than oral placebos, capsules are perceived as being stronger than tablets, bright-coloured placebos are more effective than light-coloured ones larger placebos have more effect than smaller ones, and two placebos have more effect than one. Also, the status of the treating professional is directly related to the placebo effect.”

    2. The daily nature of the injections means that patients are in regular contact with clinicians – thus, they’re given a lot of positive human reinforcement and approval. Human contact and support is vital for the success of many weight loss efforts, yet so many people go it alone. Via the HCG protocol, people are placed in a one-on-one, supportive environment, with professionals who are invested in their success. This is quite different than the usual distant/disinterested doctor-patient relationship. And it’s one that can be quite conducive to good results, as patients are motivated to meet the clinician’s expectations.

    Thus, I’m somewhat sympathetic, and can understand why certain people get defensive about our “attacks” on HCG. They feel they’ve been helped, and indeed they have. That doesn’t make it any less of a lie (or “unproven therapy” if you prefer), which is why we’re telling it like it is.

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  116. I’ve taken the hcg drops and they do work. I live in New Zealand and doctors here don’t give hcg injections. My first round I lost 10kgs and I’ve just started again to lose another 10-15kgs. The drops are effective and I have energy, motivation and although I do feel hungry sometimes, I’m not absolutely ravenous. I would highly recommend hcg to anyone who wants to lose weight and wants something that will actually do what its claimed to do.

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    • Editor’s comments: Unfortunately, the fact that you experienced positive results with hCG drops does not mean that they “work.” There are a million reasons why you may have experienced beneficial results and they have absolutely nothing to do with the amazing fat burning powers of the hCG drops. hCG drops are a scam, and quite possibly illegal. Real hCG is a prescription drug administered by intramuscular injection. So whatever it is you’re getting in the drops, it is not hCG. In addition, the fact that you have made another post on this web site in a transparent attempt to link to the provider of bogus homeopathic drops calls the authenticity of your testimonial into question.

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  117. My boyfriend is a ‘quick fix dieter.’ I lost 80 pounds in less than a year, by not changing my lifestyle drastically at all. You think he would take my advice? Nah. So I said he could pick one quick fix product without me saying anything about it for one month. After that he had to listen to me to keep it off(which I have.) He picked an hcg supplement found at as seen on tv. Right on the front it says hormone free. Then proceeds to suggest you cut down your diet to less than what an anorexic eats at a mere 400 calories. Of course you’ll lose weight. Either way hcg should be prescribed by a doctor as it is a hormone. But if you insist on spending 100 dollars, cut out the middle man n make that your grocery bill for the month.

    My story ends with my boyfriend finally figuring out that its a hormone and starting yo listen to me, being already 30 pounds lighter in 1.2 months without hating me. Thank you as seen on tv hcg for letting my boyfriend know I’m always right:).

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  118. This is the second time I have used the HCG injections. You loose inches very quickly – it seem that you quickly loose body fat in the place you carry the most fat. I don’t think anything is a miracle answer – but it’s a quick jump start and if you follow the metabolic program, they don’t tell you the HCG stops appetite. You buy a pil called Phentratrim that almost makes it difficult to eat – your not hungry at all. I lost 20 poinds and gained it back in 4 months because I didn’t follow the maintenance program! once you stop taking HCG and the appetite pill it seems like your body wants to add weight because it thinks you were starving yourself. If I Follow the mainentance program and continue taking Phentratrim – I think I will get used to eating less and maybe keep the weight off. We’ll See. Good luck to everybody trying sooo hard to loose weight.

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