HCG For Weight Loss Might Be The Worst Idea Ever
“If doctors can prescribe it, then it must be safe and effective.”
The weight loss diet of the day combines a 500-calorie-a-day meal plan with injections of hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) – an FDA-approved hormone for infertility that’s legal for doctors to prescribe for weight loss.
According to this article, doctors all over the country (especially in New York City) are raking in the dough based on claims that this hormone tricks the body into a state of pregnancy and burns stored fat from unwanted areas so the imaginary fetus can get enough fuel. AND, hCG also apparently protects muscle and makes you not feel hungry while you starve yourself.
Sounds almost as good as that drug in Limitless – sign me up!
500 calories a day. That’s like one serving of corned beef and cabbage washed down with a Guinness.
And that’s about three servings right there. Big surprise that people lose weight!
But much like the traditional diet of my Irish relations (Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you all!), the hCG diet isn’t exactly healthy. Aside from the dangerously low calorie intake, there are some pretty clear reasons why you shouldn’t get hCG injections for weight loss:
1. hCG is derived from the urine of pregnant women, and that’s just gross.
2. The hormone carries risks of cardiovascular troubles like blood clots; at least one patient on the diet has already had a pulmonary embolism.
3. Injections can cost upwards of $1,000.
4. The hormone has not actually been shown to increase weight loss, cause a more attractive distribution of fat or decrease hunger and discomfort from low-calorie diets.
Some doctors say it’s plausible that hCG creates a more “toned” (cringe…) body because it can induce the production of male hormones that increase muscle mass.
Putting aside for a second all the potential problems that can arise from screwing with hormones, I say no matter how many male hormones you have circulating in your body, you ain’t gaining any muscle on 500 calories a day. Period.
Bottom line: Save your money and your health. Don’t do hCG.