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What Does Hcg Do

what does hcg do

What Is HCG?

Human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) is a natural hormone that doctors prescribe as an injectable drug with the brand names Pregnyl and Novarel, and in a related form called Ovidrel.

HCG improves fertility by increasing sperm production in men and encouraging egg release in women.

It also helps treat sex hormone-linked conditions, such as undescended testes in young men and undeveloped sexual traits in girls.

Depending on its use, HCG is considered to be either an endocrine drug or a fertility drug. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) first approved HCG in 1974.

Does HCG Help You Lose Weight?

Proponents of the HCG diet claim that it boosts metabolism and helps you lose large amounts of fat — all without feeling hungry.

Various theories attempt to explain HCG’s weight loss mechanisms.

However, multiple studies have concluded that weight loss achieved by the HCG diet is due to ultra-low-calorie intake alone and has nothing to do with the HCG hormone .

These studies compared the effects of HCG and placebo injections given to individuals on a calorie-restricted diet.

Weight loss was identical or nearly identical between the two groups.

Furthermore, these studies determined that the HCG hormone did not significantly reduce hunger.

How the Diet Is Prescribed

The HCG diet is a very low-fat, very low-calorie diet.

It is generally divided into three phases:

  1. Loading phase: Start taking HCG and eat plenty of high-fat, high-calorie foods for two days.
  2. Weight loss phase: Continue taking HCG and eat only 500 calories per day for 3–6 weeks.
  3. Maintenance phase: Stop taking HCG. Gradually increase food intake but avoid sugar and starch for three weeks.

While people seeking minimal weight loss may spend three weeks on the middle phase, those seeking significant weight loss may be advised to follow the diet for six weeks — and even repeat all phases of the cycle several times.

During the weight loss phase, you're only allowed to eat two meals per day — usually lunch and dinner.

HCG meal plans generally suggest that each meal should contain one portion of lean protein, a vegetable, a piece of bread and a fruit.

You may also get a list of approved foods to select from in specific amounts.

Butter, oils and sugar should be avoided, but you're encouraged to drink a lot of water. Mineral water, coffee and tea are allowed as well.

The Role of HCG in Pregnancy

The abbreviation hCG is short for human chorionic gonadotropin. It is a hormone produced by a developing embryo during pregnancy. The hormone has an important role in both the detection and the maintenance of pregnancy. Pregnant women have very high hCG levels, but nonpregnant women and men do not have the hormone in their bloodstreams.

 

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