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Dr. Oz Takes New Look at HCG Diet Plan

Whitney | February 15th, 2013

HCG Diet PlanDr. Mehmet Oz, host of the Dr. Oz Show, recently stated that new data on the HCG diet plan makes this program worth a serious look by dieters and doctors. Last year, Dr. Oz challenged the medical community that subscribes to the HCG diet to come up with more evidence that HCG is an effective weight loss tool. After weighing some of the new data that has been compiled during the past year, Dr. Oz has announced on his program that HCG for weight loss may be a good option for some dieters.

HCG diet plan may work, but how?

Dr. Oz told WFAA that while there is still much to learn about how the HCG diet plan works, in his opinion the results show this to be an effective program for many people. Dr. Oz added that the original HCG diet has been modified for better results overall. For example, doses of HCG, which used to be a standard amount for all patients, are now customized to a patient’s specific needs. The amount of HCG administered also tends to be much higher than in the past.

Dr. Oz also explains that HCG does not directly cause weight loss, though he believes it affects how dieters shed pounds. The hormone, which is typically only present in the female body during pregnancy, appears to preserve lean muscle mass during the weight loss process. This is beneficial to dieters, because it supposedly helps them keep the weight off during a longer period of time.

HCG injections supported by evidence?

Although Dr. Oz has offered support to HCG injections, he warns that there is still no evidence that HCG droplets directly lead to weight loss. He has also warned of HCG diet dangers, questioning the extremely low calorie count of the HCG diet, with allows for just 500 calories per day. Dr. Oz warns that few people should consider dropping below 1,200 calories daily, unless under the regular care of an experienced professional in the weight loss field.

Despite Dr. Oz’s apparent endorsement of the HCG diet plan for some individuals, many physicians have expressed serious concerns about HCG diet dangers associated with the program. The diet has been linked to numerous side effects, specifically due to the low calorie count. The Mayo Clinic cites some of the possible side effects of a 500-calorie diet, including the formation of gallstones, an imbalance of electrolytes, and heartbeat irregularities.

HCG diet reviews: medical experts are still skeptical

Dr. Michael Kaplan, founder and chief medical officer for the Center for Medical Weight Loss, has also voiced concern about the dangers of the HCG diet plan.

“It is true that people on HCG diet programs do lose weight, but what the ads don’t say is that along with HCG injections, drops, pills, pellets and sprays, people follow a very restrictive and nutritionally unsound 500-calorie-a-day diet plan,” Dr. Kaplan stated. “No wonder they lose weight! But it’s not because of the HCG, it’s because of the extremely low caloric intake.”

Dr. Kaplan goes on to explain that a physician-guided weight loss program that combines a healthy low-calorie diet, exercise, and personalized counseling is often the best choice for dieters. The programs offered at the Center for Medical Weight Loss have solid evidence to back up their effectiveness. Studies published in major medical journals show the average patient who initially weighs 250 pounds loses 28 pounds in just 12 weeks—people who begin at a higher weight can expect to lose even more. Over 95% also keep that weight off for one year or more.

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  1. Weight Loss/Dieting. http://health.nih.gov/topic/WeightLossDieting

  2. Does the HCG diet work — and is it safe? http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/hcg-diet/an02091