The hCG diet uses a combination of hormone injections and a very low calorie diet, or VLCD, to promote rapid weight loss. Typically, VLCDs restrict calorie intake to 800 calories daily, according to the Weight-Control Information Network. The hCG diet restricts this number even further, recommending only 500 calories per day. Most diet courses last from a few weeks to 40 days. If you want to quit the hCG diet early, there are some rules to follow to avoid regaining weight rapidly.
Tell your doctor that you are quitting. He will help you wean off of the hCG injections as needed. Ask about stopping the supplements, as well, if they were prescribed during the course of the diet.
Calculate your daily caloric needs with a simple formula or an online calculator. Multiply your body weight in pounds by 11 for women and 12 for men to get a quick estimate of your daily calorie requirement.
Continue a low-carbohydrate diet, similar to the hCG diet, with avoidance of starchy foods for three weeks following the hCG diet. Weight gain is common following VLCDs, according to the Weight-Control Information Network. Restricting carbohydrates may help you avoid unwanted weight gain. After three weeks you can add whole grains and healthy carbohydrates, such as whole wheat pasta, back into your diet.
Increase portion size slowly. You will not have to measure and count every gram of food anymore, but it is important to remember portion sizes for weight control. Your protein, or meat, choice should be the same size as a bar of soap; eat a baseball-size serving of vegetables and a tennis ball-size serving of fruit.
Start exercising, which is prohibited on the hCG diet, but vital to your overall health. Begin with a 10-minute walk each day and work up to the recommended 30 minutes per day. Add strength training twice a week to increase lean muscle mass and calories burned naturally.
- HCG Diet Info; HCG Diet Protocol: 500 Calorie a Day Diet; Dr. A.T.W. Simeons
- HCG Weight Loss: Weight Maintenance After hCG Diet Protocol
- Weight-Control Information Network: Very Low Calorie Diets
- MayoClinic.com; Fitness; Exercise: How Much Do I Need Every Day?; Edward R. Laskowski, M.D.; February 2011
- American Cancer Society: Controlling Portion Sizes