Over two thirds of the population are estimated to be overweight. This means that there are a lot of people trying to lose weight. Although doctors recommend eating more healthily and exercising more as the best way to shift the excess pounds, many people struggle to stick to a diet. Therefore, some people are looking for quick solutions such as using HCG for weight loss.
HCG (human chorionic gondatropin) is a hormone which supposedly helps to burn more fat, while also suppressing the appetite. However, the FDA categorically does not support the use of HCG for weight loss purposes. Medical professionals are also concerned that many diet plans which promote the use of HCG injections or drops recommend restricting the daily calorie intake to just 500 calories.
Does Taking HCG Work For Weight Loss?
Despite the disapproval from the medical profession, it is natural for many people who struggle with their weight to wonder if taking HCG works. This has been studied in several clinical investigations, and the conclusion in all of them was that injecting HCG had little or no impact on the amount of weight which was lost, when other factors were taken into account.
Is It Dangerous To Take HCG For Weight Loss?
Not only is taking HCG ineffective for weight loss, it can pose a risk to your health too. The side effects include:
- Stomach and pelvic pain
- Nausea or vomiting
- Swelling of the hands
- Respiratory problems
- Problems urinating
Not only does the hormone itself carry a risk, there is also great concern about the dietry recommendations that normally accompany it. The companies which sell HCG injections or serum drops for weight loss usually recommend severely restricting calorie intake for around 30 days, claiming that it will kick start the metabolism. However, it is extremely difficult to maintain good health on so few calories. You will not be getting the protein, fats or carbohydrates you need for energy and cell repair, and you could end up with a serious vitamin deficiency.
If you do want to restrict you calorie intake for a short period, this should be done with the advice and supervision of your doctor. Depending on your gender, height and age the minimum calorie requirement is between 1,200 and 1,500 per day. Any less than this and your body will start to burn not only fat, but essential muscle as well. This will have a detrimental impact on your weight loss in the long term because healthy muscle mass contributes to a well functioning metabolism. Once you increase your calorie intake, you will be left with less musculature and more fat deposits than before.
What Is The Best Way To Lose Weight?
The HCG diet is both expensive and ineffective, not to mention potentially dangerous. It is much more effective to make lifestyle improvements that you can maintain in the long term, such as taking a short walk several times a week. Weight which is lost slowly and consistently is more likely to stay off.