How HCG Saved My Life

OK, so many of you have responded that I’ll try to make this as broad as possible, with the relevant specifics.

First and foremost, let me assure you there are no judgements here.  The road I’ve travelled on my own weight loss odyssey was blighted with potholes – craters, in fact – u-turns, wrong ways, and detours.  My own experience and my extensive research over these past several years has taught me several things that you need to keep in mind:

1.  Americans are not obese because they’ve become gluttons.

2.  Americans are not obese because they’ve become lazy couch potatoes.

3.  Americans are not obese because they lack self-control.

1975 VS. 2013

I’d like those of you in the over-40 category to compare and contrast our society’s eating and health habits today versus, say, in 1975.  Today, paradoxically, we are fatter than we’ve ever been, but we have also never been more health-conscious about our foods; there’s a universe of diet beverages, Lean Cuisines, protein bars, protein shakes, lowfat this, organic that, etc.  Also, contrary to what we’re always being told about the “sedentary” American lifestyle, we’re really no more sedentary than we were in 1975, and in fact, have turned into a nation of gym rats and jogging bunnies.  Gym memberships in this country are at a record high (and yes, most of those people are actually going to the gym – did you ever wonder why that poor guy or gal carrying 40 extra pounds, sweating it out on the treadmill, month after month, year after year, never seems to lose any weight?  I’ll get to that a bit later, but I assure you, it’s not because he or she is pigging out on peanut butter cups when they get home!).

Now think back to 1975 – or even earlier.  Diet beverages were relatively rare (and regular sodas were still sweetened with sugar, as opposed to chemicals, which as I’ll explain later made a big difference in how our bodies metabolized fat).  “Lowfat” was a term still yet to be coined.  Meat and dairy were all locally raised.  We were beginning to see “processed” foods, to be sure, but not yet with the chemicals that have pervaded our food supply today.  We ate hamburgers (not soy burgers) … ice cream (not frozen yogurt) … cake made with real eggs, butter, and sugar (not Entenmann’s lowfat desserts) … peanut butter and jelly on white Wonder or Town Talk bread (not “whole wheat” or “whole grain”).  And look at the pictures of us back then.  EVERYBODY WAS SKINNY!!!  When I look at pictures of myself as a boy – and if you’ve known me that long, you’ll remember I was a bit of a butterball growing up – I’m startled.  I remember being “fat”, and believe me, there wasn’t a day that went by when I didn’t FEEL fat.  But what startles me about those old pictures of me is that compared to kids today, I was quite lean!  Oh I was certainly overweight – but only compared to nearly all the other kids in 1975 (’76, ’77, ’78, ’79, ’80, etc.) who were all basically skinny beanpoles!

Consider also, in the ‘70s, how many of us went to the gym.  Think hard.  Do you remember your parents, aunts, uncles, or friends of your parents “working out” on a regular basis?  Hell no!  The only adults I remember “working out” were those who were in training for something like a marathon.  I don’t even remember any “gyms” being in existence in my hometown when I was growing up, except the YMCA.

So what changed?  We had an entire population of skinny people eating whatever they damn well pleased, WHENEVER they pleased, and never touching a dumbbell or treadmill.  And yet today, in our gym rat nation, TWO THIRDS of the country is overweight!  ONE THIRD of the country is clinically obese (roughly speaking, for men, that’s at least 35 pounds overweight, and for women, 25 pounds).  And we’re dieting like crazy and killing ourselves at the gym.

Clearly, even the common sense of a six-year-old can tell you we’re not getting fatter because we’ve become a nation of lazy gluttons.

My weight problem climaxed in 2008 with a sudden gain in weight that more than anything else had to do with my body breaking down after 20-odd years of sleep deprivation, working every imaginable shift of overnight/late night/early morning.  At the time, I did not know this was the root cause; after all, I had been working insane hours at a demanding career for two decades with perfect success.  Why the weight gain all of a sudden?

My “regular” doctor told me my bloodwork was fine, and that I must not be “disciplined” enough.  I’m sure he’d seen more than his share of patients who, out of vanity, insisted they have good eating habits, but really didn’t.  In my case, however, I really did, and it frustrated the hell out of me that he refused to help me further.  At my heaviest, I was 235 pounds, a vegan, and a 6-day-a-week gym rat, doing punishing 90-minute workouts that comprised both cardio and weight lifting.  What was I doing wrong?  As I’ll explain shortly – EVERTHING.

DIETS DON’T WORK!

The fact of the matter is, dieting doesn’t work.  Period.  And for weight loss, exercising doesn’t work, either (although it of course is still essential for overall good health!).  Whether the diet is lowfat, low-carb, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, Atkins, South Beach, whatever … it’s ultimately about some form of calorie restriction.  And as long as you’re restricting calories (or worse, cutting out entire categories of food), you are certain, believe it or not, regardless of your short-term weight loss successes, to GAIN FAT.

Why is this?  It’s because the human body is engineered to survive at all costs, using a multitude of mechanisms.  It takes roughly 50,000 years for the human body to evolve to biologically adapt to significant changes in its environment, including its diet.  The problem is, 10,000 years ago we were largely still a “hunting/gathering” nomadic species that hadn’t yet developed an organized agrarian lifestyle that shifted our primary source of food from meat and berries to refined grains and plants.

It may be 2013, but we’re still running the 48,000 B.C. human body model.  And back then, because we were nomadic, meals were not regular and routine.  One might go for days at a time without significant nourishment.  So the human body developed a survival mechanism that ensured a ready supply of energy, no matter how infrequent the meals.  It’s called “fat”.  And it manages its fat stores simply and elegantly, reducing its stores when it’s properly nourished, and increasing its stores when caloric intake runs low.

That’s right.  You will shed fat when you’re eating at full capacity, and you will GAIN fat when you start restricting calories.  The reason, of course, is simple:  the body thinks its starving, so it switches into “starvation mode” by lowering its metabolism and converting a higher percentage of what calories it IS taking in, in the form of FAT, as an energy stockpile for when things really start getting lean.  Of course, your circa-45,000 B.C. endocrine system doesn’t realize that you’re not trying to survive on an arid African savannah, but rather have a fully-stocked Giant Eagle or Whole Foods just down the street, open 24/7.  All it “knows” is that it’s starving, and it needs to plan its energy consumption and storage accordingly.

It’s true, however, that when you continue your calorie-restrictive dieting, you will lose some fat early on.  But the body, like a tight-clawed squirrel stashing nuts for the long winter, stubbornly refuses to give up any more fat than it absolutely has to, in the face of what it thinks is a famine.  So what happens instead?  The body actually cannibalizes its own muscle.  Which is why most serious dieters look more like concentration camp victims; they’ve lost so much of what the body (in its “starvation” mode) considers “non-essential” muscle.  Arms and legs are now a skinny shadow of what they once were.  Faces are sunken in.  And yet, frustratingly enough, that potbelly is still there.

Think you’ll combat the muscle-wasting by dieting AND exercising?  Good luck with that.  Wait until you hear how the body reacts when it’s starving AND over-exerting itself.  But more on that in a moment.

WHAT I WAS DOING WRONG

It was in 2008 that I was led to a couple of progressive-minded doctors in Colorado Springs, who took a much more holistic approach to health.  They did a full-panel blood scan, and the results were so shocking that their first consultation with me was staged as an intervention!  They wanted me to be “honest” with them about my apparent “substance abuse problem”!!

Long story short, at age 39, I had the bloodwork of an 85-year-old man; virtually all of my systems were shutting down.  My thyroid was barely functioning.  I had less testosterone in my system than most post-menopausal women.  I was pre-diabetic, and my entire body was in what they called a “pre-cancerous” state.  My entire endocrine system was nearly shut down – my hormone levels were all barely registering – with one very major exception.  One hormone in particular was literally spiking off the charts:  CORTISOL.

Cortisol, as you may be aware, is the stress hormone.  It’s the fight-or-flight hormone released by the adrenal gland during periods of extreme crisis.  From about 50,000 years ago until about the time Reagan was elected president, those “extreme crises” that triggered a cortisol release ranged from running from lions to more modern extreme stressors like the death of a loved one or a job loss.  Cortisol works hand-in-hand with the rest of the endocrine system, so if the body is already under some sort of stress, cortisol will crank up that fat-saving mechanism by another few notches, because clearly (as the body senses) not only are you “starving” but now you’re running for your life!  God only knows – the body is thinking to itself – where or when that next meal will come from!  So it hangs on to an even higher percentage of those calories in the form of fat.

In our modern society, however, we’re not often running from lions.  Most of us live in relative safety and abundance, so we don’t often get those large bursts of cortisol.  But rather than extreme but infrequent stressors, most of us today are living with low-grade but chronic stress, in one form or another.  Constant financial worries, job stress, familial stress, lack of sleep, etc. are all ensuring that virtually every one of us is now constantly producing this stress hormone that was really only intended for extreme crises – albeit at lower levels. But in the long run, it’s infinitely more damaging to the body.

Think of your car’s temperature gauge; usually it’s squarely in the “cool” zone.  If you were chased by fire-throwing Libyan terrorists, for instance, and you punched the gas to the floor, going uphill, for miles at a time, the gauge would certainly nearly max out in the red zone.  But once you headed off those terrorists, things would cool down.  Now as long as you didn’t do that every day, your engine would be just fine.  However, what we’re really doing today is akin to constantly running our engines just a touch into the red zone.  All the time.  Which, as any mechanic will tell you, will do more to shorten the life of your car than the occasional sprint from terrorists.

This was MY “perfect storm” of cortisol, as the doctors explained to me.  It turns out I was doing everything completely wrong.

First of all, I was on-again, off-again dieting, and as a vegan, was eliminating entire food groups from my diet (meat and dairy).  Strike one:  body is malnourished.  Body thinks it’s starving.  Body produces cortisol.  Body builds up fat stores.

Second, I was chronically sleep-deprived.  Oh, I made sure I got my “core” 5 hours of sleep during the day, with a few naps here and there (if I was lucky).  But here’s the problem: the body, in its infinite biological wisdom, only allows itself to be unguarded enough to fall into its deepest levels of sleep at night, when it instinctively knows that predators are asleep.  If you try to get your sleep during the day, even with blackout shades, earplugs, and a mask, the body will still not allow itself to go completely to sleep, because it instinctively knows it’s still daytime, that predators are afoot during the day, and you may need to get up and boogie in a hurry.

An interesting study several years ago bears this out.  A group of people were taken into underground bunkers for a number of months.  They were given daily tasks and routine bedtimes, but half were put on a “daylight” schedule, and half on an “overnight” schedule.  Despite the fact that no one saw sunlight the entire time, the overnight group developed more health problems than the daylight group.  The reason:  the body is in tune with the earth’s natural circadian rhythm.  Which is why working overnight shifts for any length of time is unnatural and ultimately unhealthy.  I had essentially been sleep-deprived for more than 20 years.  So in my case … Strike two:  body is sleep-deprived.  Body thinks it’s on the run from a predator.  Body produces even more cortisol.  Body builds up fat stores.

And here’s the wild card:  my gym workouts.  I was working out like an athlete, at least 5 days a week.  But when you work out a sleep-deprived body, it creates yet another layer of stress.  Strike three:  Sleep-deprived body is routinely physically exerted.  Body produces yet even MORE cortisol.

So despite my vegan dieting, my workouts, and what I thought was a good amount of sleep (most Americans are only averaging about 6 hours of sleep a night), my body was doing exactly what it was supposed to do:  sacrifice muscle, lower its metabolism, and pack on the fat.

OK, I’ve just given you quite a bit of background information.  Now let’s look at why your average Joe Fabitz who lives down the street and works out religiously at the local gym, after years diligent and exhaustive workouts and eating “right” (according to his doctors and the USDA), continues to actually GAIN weight.

FOOD

It’s not how much we’re eating, but what we’re eating.  60 years ago, virtually all produce, meat, and dairy Americans ate was naturally “organic”.  These days, however, we have to go out of our way to avoid genetically modified foods, pesticides, antibiotics, and growth hormones injected into the animals we eat.

Even the “bad” foods back then look like health foods compared to today.  An Oreo back in 1970 had only a handful of ingredients: flour, butter, sugar, eggs, cocoa, vanilla, baking soda.  Most of our foods back then – even processed foods (Nabisco had a bakery in virtually every city) – were grown and processed locally, so a long shelf life was not an issue.

Today, however, with our centralized food production system, Oreos (and everything else) need to have a shelf life of years, not just days or even weeks, so they can be shipped to all corners of the Earth.  As a result, virtually every ingredient organic (and prone to quick decomposition)  has been removed and replaced with a chemical.  Today’s Oreos are loaded with artificial flavors, artificial colors, hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, and other nasty chemicals so they can taste just as fresh whether enjoyed in Nebraska or Nepal.

When the body consumes non-food chemicals (despite the FDA calling them “safe” for consumption), they stress the liver and the endocrine system.  High fructose corn syrup in particular freaks out the digestive system.

We’ve all seen the “I Love Lucy” episode where Lucy works at the chocolate factory.  As the conveyer belt speeds up, she can’t handle the influx of chocolates, so she gets creative and just starts stuffing them in her mouth and her blouse, because she can fill those candy boxes only so fast.

That’s how your digestive system reacts to high fructose corn syrup; it knows exactly how to process sugar, but it doesn’t know how to process a chemical like high fructose corn syrup (and as I explained earlier, about how the human body takes 50,000 years to evolve to adapt, given that HFCS was first developed in the 1970s, we as a species have another 49,960 years to go before the body can seamlessly handle it).  So what it does instead is it sets it aside “temporarily” to process later, while it gets to the other food coming down the conveyer belt.  It sets it aside in the form of fat.  The problem is, most Americans are eating a steady stream of high fructose corn syrup; it’s in nearly every processed food.  So the body ends up NEVER getting back to that “temporarily” stored fat, and in fact continues to add to those fat stores with every single meal.

SOY

This “food” needs its own category because it also is in nearly everything we eat today.  And it’s one of the worst things we could possibly eat.  But wait – what about those Asians, who’ve been eating soy for a billion years?  Not really.  Asians historically never ate processed soy, and usually consumed soy only in fermented form (soy sauce) as a CONDIMENT.  They certainly never used it as a protein replacement, the way Americans have perversely done (think of Asians all of a sudden replacing all of their protein with mustard!).

The fact is, tofu and other soy-based Asian protein dishes are relatively new, were largely imported from America, and Asians are now packing on the pounds just like we are.

Why is soy so bad?  Soy disrupts the thyroid, and its estrogenic effects in men are particularly damaging.  There’s a growing problem among males today, both young and old, growing “man boobs”, particularly among health-conscious men who consume protein bars (most of that protein is in the form of soy), protein shakes, soy milk, etc.  And many of their mothers unwittingly started the problem by feeding them soy-based formula as infants.

For women, soy disrupts not only the thyroid, but its estrogenic effects create an even bigger hazard:  higher cancer rates have been linked to an overabundance of estrogen.

WHEAT

Cardiologist Dr. William Davis, in an effort to find out why 80% of his patients were either diabetic or pre-diabetic, stumbled upon a startling finding:  wheat.  The bottom line:  we’re eating WAY too much of it.

From his blog:  “In an effort to reduce blood sugar, I asked patients to remove all wheat products from their diet based on the simple fact that, with few exceptions, foods made of wheat flour raise blood sugar levels higher than nearly all foods.  Yes, that’s true even for whole grains.  More than table sugar, more than a Snickers bar.  Organic, multigrain, sprouted – it makes no difference.”

Dr. Davis outlines the science of it all in his new groundbreaking book, “Wheat Belly”.  I highly recommend you get your hands on it.

SLEEP

If there’s one thing you take away from all of this, it’s the importance of sleep in maintaining a healthy weight.

At the turn of the last century, Americans averaged a whopping nine and a half hours of sleep a night (and nearly all of them WERE sleeping at night!).  Today, however, it’s 6 hours … and dropping fast.

The problem is America’s macho attitude about making do on as little sleep as possible.  For more than two decades I was able to function – at a very highly creative level – on just five hours of sleep – working overnights, no less.  But eventually it caught up with me in a very bad way.

Adult humans need 8 hours of sleep, regardless of who you are, what you do for a living, how busy you are, or in which ZIP code you reside.  SEVEN hours at an absolute minimum – but EIGHT for optimal health, both physical and mental.  Each hour of sleep has a very specific function.  I won’t go into the different cycles of sleep, but in terms of body weight I can tell you this:  HGH – Human Growth Hormone – is the hormone the body produces every night to repair cells, rejuvenate muscle and other tissue, and kick-start (rev up, if you will), our metabolism for the next day, so that a higher percentage of the calories we eat the following day are burned, rather than stored as fat.  Sounds great, right?  It is.  But here’s the catch:  The body releases HGH only during the SEVENTH *consecutive* hour of sleep.  If you get up and *stay* up before that crucial seventh hour of sleep (and I’m not talking about getting up to use the bathroom and crawling right back into bed), you are robbing your body of the very hormone it produces that helps to keep you slim!

And of course, as I explained earlier, if you then do a strenuous gym workout that day after robbing your body of a full night’s sleep, not only will you not get the benefits of HGH, but your stressed-out body will produce cortisol – the hormone that forces it to SLOW DOWN your metabolism and store more of your calories in the form of fat.

So if the choice comes down to getting up early to hit the gym, or getting an extra hour of sleep … get the sleep.  It’ll do much more for your body than that hour of working out, stolen from your sleep.

By the way, the sleep deprivation effect is even worse for children and their developing bodies.  Kids through elementary school need at least 11 hours a night.  Junior high and high schoolers need at least 10 hours.  No excuses.  Band, ballet, soccer, football, after-school jobs, homework – it’s all too much if they’re not getting at least 10 hours of sleep.

And I count myself in this category – I was that Type A student, starting in junior high school, averaging at best 6-7 hours of sleep a night, setting me up for a very unhealthy adulthood.  The doctors, going over my history (confirmed, incidentally, independently by a chiropractor with a bone x-ray), figured I’d been “severely” sleep deprived since about 1981!

THE BIG SOLUTION

I’ve spent pages now describing what has set us all up for obesity, and the healthy steps I’ve taken to avoid weight gain, and encourage weight loss.

But what really lost the weight for me was HCG.  Specifically, the Simeons HCG Protocol.  I know you’ve done quite a bit of reading up to this point, but I urge you to read Dr. Simeon’s “Pounds and Inches” (http://www.thehcgdiet.com/pdf/pounds-and-inches-by-dr-a-t-w-simeons.pdf)

Written by Dr. A.T.W. Simeons back in the 1950s, “Pounds and Inches” is a groundbreaking guide to how you can induce your body to literally burn its own fat, and “reset” your metabolism.  It was highly controversial in the ‘50s – people had to travel to Italy and Germany to be treated by Dr. Simeons.  And unfortunately, in 2013, it’s even more controversial, because we now have Western Medical establishment and multi-billion dollar diet industry so heavily invested in all of us being *chronically* fat.  It would be a disaster if people could easily and permanently lose their weight, without surgery and without an expensive, patented drug.  Which is why, of course, the FDA strictly prohibits the use of HCG for weight reduction.

Do not, however, let this frighten you off.  Since the 1950s, hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people have safely and successfully used HCG to lose weight permanently.  And I am one of them.

Briefly, HCG is a hormone produced by pregnant women to regulate their metabolism as they carry a baby.  Dr. Simeons found, however, that when non-pregnant people (women AND men) take HCG in regular, daily low doses, it forces the body to burn its own fat.

You see, there are two types of fat stores in our bodies:  regular, and abnormal.  “Regular” fat stores are where we need fat: around our joints, in our eye sockets, our cheeks, etc.  “Abnormal” fat deposits, however, are where we don’t need (or want!) fat:  tummy … ass … thighs … etc.  As I explained earlier, when we do simple calorie restriction, the body does everything it can to hang onto those “abnormal” deposits, because it thinks it’s in starvation mode.

Think of it like this:  “normal” fat deposits are your body’s “checking account”, and “abnormal” fat deposits are your body’s “savings account”.  The body will readily deplete everything it has in checking before touching even one ounce of what it has stashed away in savings – even at the expense of cutting into muscle (the concentration camp victim look, still with the pot belly).

But HCG short-circuits all of that, essentially shutting down the body’s hypothalamus (the master gland that controls metabolism), and allowing the body to instead burn ONLY the ABNORMAL fat deposits.  Up to a pound a day – literally – for 40 days.  After 40 days the body builds up a resistance to the HCG, and you have to stop, let the body take a breather for a few weeks, and resume again (if you have more than 40 pounds to lose).

But here’s the real beauty of HCG over traditional calorie-restrictive diets:  it literally “resets” your body’s metabolism, and recognizes your body’s new weight as it’s “normal” or default weight.  With traditional calorie-restrictive dieting, the body believes it has been starved, so once you’re off the diet, it does its best to get back up to that old weight (which the hypothalamus recognizes as its “normal” weight).  This is why 90% of all “successful” dieters gain back all their lost weight – and then some – within a year.  Another 5% gain it back within 3 years.

But HCG essentially puts the hypothalamus to “sleep” during those 40 days.  When you stop taking the HCG, it “wakes up”, having been “reset” to your new body weight.  You may now resume eating normally (and at the end of all this I’ll describe what’s really “normal” eating), and your body will now work in harmony with you in maintaining your new lower weight.

It’s safe.  It’s natural.  It’s permanent.  I’m living proof.  I’m part of a support group of others who are living proof – including at least one “diet” doctor who USED to perform stomach-stapling surgeries – who himself lost eight inches from his waistline, and has since changed his practice exclusively (yet clandestinely, given the FDA prohibition) to treating patients with HCG.

HOW DO I GET HCG?

When I lost all my weight using HCG, it was still only available via prescription, and only in injectible form.  Since then, quite a few labs have developed homeopathic drops and sprays, some better and many worse than others.  My doctors’ lab is among the best; they’ve perfected homeopathic HCG in a spray form (three short sprays under your tongue twice a day), as well as adhering to the letter to Dr. Simeons’ original and highly successful protocol.

Here is the exact website address to find the HCG:

http://www.bodysolutionsrx.com/oral-hcg-weight-loss-program-pricing.htm

For FDA legal purposes, they’ve had to rename it “PRIME Appetite and Weight Reduction” (even though it’s not really an appetite suppressant, as I’ve explained the science of it above).

Choose the two 1-ounce bottles.  That should be more than enough for one 40-day round.  The price I’m seeing on the website today is $169.00.

Rather than ordering over the website, I highly recommend just calling them (and using my name).  They know who I am and will give you a discount.  Just tell them you want the oral HCG for the traditional Simeons HCG Protocol.  Their number is (719) 228-9035.

Dr. James Abernathy is the doctor I’ve been working with the whole time.  He’s making himself available to people I refer.  Feel free to call him with questions at (719) 432-8135.

GOING FORWARD:  “PHASE 1”

Because this is a protocol rather than a diet, you cannot cheat on this.  You must follow the protocol to the letter.  Absolutely no substitutions; it’s not about calories, it’s about the chemical composition of these foods carefully chosen, through 40 years of trial and error by Dr. Simeons.

The “loading” or “gorging” days are particularly important when starting the HCG Protocol.  Your body is getting used to an infusion of a hormone it doesn’t know what to do with, so you must take in as much rich and “fattening” food as you can during that initial 48 hour period.  Make every bite count.  Yes, you will gain a couple pounds from this, but you’ll quickly lose it all during the protocol anyway.  This initial influx of fats and sugars over the first 48 hours will also prevent hunger during the next 40 days of the VLC (Very Low Calorie) protocol.

THE SIMEONS HCG PROTOCOL:  “PHASE 2”

After you’ve completed your first 48 hours on HCG, during which you’ve consumed as many rich calories as you can stomach, you will now follow Dr. Simeon’s VLC protocol for the next 38 days.  As you have read (or will read) in Dr. Simeon’s “Pounds and Inches” that I referenced above, you will not be losing a pound (of fat) a day for the next 38 days because you’re only consuming 500 calories each day; you’re losing a pound a day because the body is fueling itself each day on its own fat.  About a pound a day.  Which equals about 2,000 calories.  The 500 calories you’ll be consuming in the form of lean meats, vegetables, and apples are merely supplemental, to make up the balance of the daily 2500 calories the body needs to survive, as well as keeping the digestive system smooth and operational.

Dr. Simeons was also not kidding about cutting out cosmetics, body lotions, shaving creams, ointments, shower gels, etc.  Use ONLY Ivory or Dove.

Do not put anything in your mouth or on your skin that isn’t explicitly allowed in the Protocol, or set forth in “Pounds and Inches”.  This includes Chap-Stik!  I once just dabbed my lips with the stuff, and the next day, not only had I not lost my 1 pound, I actually gained a pound overnight!  (If your lips are really chapped, keep handy a jar of organic virgin coconut oil – and yes it must be both organic and virgin – with which to sparingly dab on your lips.)

Drink a LOT of water and tea (unsweetened and fresh brewed only!!!).  Listen closely to your body as you go through these 40 days.  Learn the difference between “hunger” and “cravings”.  This diet can be very bland and boring, and I guarantee you will mistake what feels like hunger for simply missing the foods you’ve always loved.

If you work out regularly, Dr. Simeons actually recommends you cut back on hitting the gym during Phase 2 (yes, this was my favorite part, too!); the only exercise you really need at this time is a good 30-minute brisk walk every day.  That’s it.  Do not overdo it, otherwise it may trigger unnecessary hunger.

And don’t buy into that old wives’ tale that if your body only craves something it “needs”.  That’s not true at all; it was dreamed up by old wives justifying indulging in their “cravings” for ice cream and potato chips.  Rest assured, no matter who you are or what your situation is, if you’re following the protocol, your body is getting all the nutrients it needs.

AFTER HCG:  “PHASE 3″

You cannot do HCG for more than 40 days at a time, because after 40 days, your body builds up a resistance to the hormone.  After the 40th day of spraying, you must remain on the VLC (Very Low Calorie) diet for another 72 hours while the hormone works its way out of your system.  After that 72 hour period, for the next 21 days you’ll be into what’s called “Phase 3”, during which you can eat as many calories as will satisfy you, and virtually any foods you want, with two exceptions:  no sugars or starches.

Yes, that’s quite broad.  In other words, you’ll be sticking with the same basic foods you’ve been eating on the VLC, only without the calorie restriction, and expanded to include more kinds of vegetables, fruits, meats, eggs, some dairy, and healthy oils.  (You can also go back to using your old favorite soaps, lotions, and cosmetics.)

During this phase, it is imperative that you continue weighing yourself every morning to ensure you don’t gain or lose more than 2 pounds.  Follow the protocol.  If you gain or lose more than 2 pounds, you must immediately do a “steak and apple day”: nothing but coffee/tea/water all day until dinner, when you eat the biggest steak you can get (or extremely lean and organic ground beef), and an apple.  This should get you back to your “finish” weight.

Phase 3 is just as important as Phase 2; during Phase 2 you lost the weight.  But now, during Phase 3, you are “waking up” your hypothalamus and getting it used to this new weight.  It’s during this 21-day period when you are actually “resetting” your metabolism to your new body weight.

THE REST OF YOUR LIFE:  “PHASE 4”

After the 21 days of Phase 3, you can then slowly start re-introducing sugars and starches into your diet.  But going forward, you really must stick to a whole new way of living, rather than going back to those old habits (and foods) that got you into trouble in the first place.

First of all, make sure you’re getting enough sleep.

Second, eat only “whole” and natural foods.  My doctors put me on what they call a “Prewar Diet” for the rest of my life; I can eat anything my grandparents ate prior to World War II.  What this basically means is absolutely no chemicals of any kind:  no artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners – especially in your beverages.  No hydrogenated oils (this includes margarines, “smart” spreads, etc.).  No high fructose corn syrup.  No meat or dairy that isn’t specifically organic (in our country, unless it’s labeled “organic”, it’s almost guaranteed to contain bovine growth hormones and antibiotics).  No soy products of any kind (including soy lecithin).

Stop reading the “Nutrition Facts” labels for calories, fat grams, etc. and read only the ingredients.  Do not eat any foods with ingredients that would not be found in any ordinary kitchen pantry.

DO eat:  As many fruits and vegetables as you want (organic whenever possible; pesticides will screw up your hypothalamus again).  Organic meats and dairy (but absolutely no processed “lunch” or “breakfast” meats).  Plenty of nuts and nut butters (only the natural stuff whose ingredients list only the nuts and maybe some salt!).  Organic butter (yes, butter is good for you!).  Plenty of organic virgin coconut oil (I love to cook my eggs in it).  REAL sugar (don’t go crazy with it, of course).  Local honey (raw is best).  The best chocolate you can buy (making sure it contains no artificial colors/flavors or soy).

I realize it sounds difficult, and on the front end, it will be.  But you’ve just gone through 60 days of essentially a major detoxification program, and now your system is fresh and clean, free of the chemicals that caused problems for you in the first place.  Now is the best time to put your best foot forward and start eating only REAL and NATURAL foods.  There’s no reason for you to feel deprived; after all, folks in 1940 didn’t feel deprived as they enjoyed their steaks, mashed potatoes, ice cream, cakes and cookies (made only with real butter and fresh milk), and fine chocolate.

You’ve probably also managed to break any sugar addiction you might have had.  I found that after I did HCG, I stopped craving cookies for snacking, and instead started craving apples and oranges!

DON’T LOSE THAT SCALE!

Make weighing yourself the first thing in the morning after using the bathroom a daily ritual for the rest of your life.  We’ve been brainwashed into thinking that the scale doesn’t matter anymore.  Look where that’s got us.  The fact is, body weight is a very good indicator of what’s going on inside the body, and whether you’re doing something wrong that’s causing weight gain.

The reason we should weigh ourselves every day (I certainly do!) is because if you don’t, you won’t notice the weight creeping up until your clothes start getting tight.  The problem with that is that by the time your clothes start getting snug, you’ve already packed on at least 10 or 15 pounds.  And now it’s a problem again.  Rather, if you track your weight daily and quickly notice a 2 or 3 pound gain, you can quickly address it with a “steak and apple” day and get that weight right back down where it should be within a day or two – before it becomes a problem.

And as far as what kind of scale to get – don’t get anything fancier than a scale that tells you how much you *weigh*.  Period.  You don’t need to know your BMI, pulse rate, etc.  Just focus on the weight.  Keep it simple.

And good luck.  This is not hard to do.  It just requires some discipline, an open mind, and a genuine willingness to change your habits for the better.

If I can do it, you can too!

FOR FURTHER REFERENCE

Dr. Simeon’s “Pounds and Inches”:  http://www.thehcgdiet.com/pdf/pounds-and-inches-by-dr-a-t-w-simeons.pdf

The book that got me started on all this, Kevin Trudeau’s “The Weight Loss Cure”:  http://www.amazon.com/Weight-Loss-Cure-They-About/dp/B0062GJPS4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1360088968&sr=8-1&keywords=kevin+trudeau+the+weight+loss+cure

“Wheat Belly” by William Davids, M.D.:  http://www.amazon.com/Wheat-Belly-Lose-Weight-Health/dp/1609611543/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1360089019&sr=1-1&keywords=wheat+belly+by+william+davis+md

My source for HCG (use my name when you call):  (Due to overwhelming response, I can’t publish anymore, but contact me and I’ll share the number)

My doctor, James Abernathy (again, use my name):  (Due to overwhelming response, I can’t publish anymore, but contact me and I’ll share the number)