The HCG diet is a weight loss program that consists of two main aspects: restriction of daily intake to between 500 and 800 calories and supplementation with the human chorionic gonadotropin hormone, also known as HCG. HCG diet supporters claim the diet can help you burn extra fat, particularly from your stomach, hips and buttocks. However, the diet is not a simple one to maintain over a long period of time; a number of tips can help you stay on track. The National Council on Strength and Fitness advises that the diet's caloric restrictions may cause nutritional deficiencies 2. Check with your health care provider before embarking on the HCG diet.
Keep Meals on Hand
The most difficult part of the HCG diet for most followers is the caloric restriction. And, as HCG Diet Direct points out, when you're hungry you are more likely to be tempted by forbidden foods and excessive calories. Avoid hunger-based food decisions by keeping foods allowed on the diet always available, from snack foods that can be eaten at a moment's notice to HCG diet-appropriate meals premade and frozen.
Drink Plenty of Water
HCG Diet Info recommends drinking plenty of water daily to help control hunger, help stimulate digestion and flush toxins out of your body tissues -- HCG Diet Journey reports that an appropriate amount is 64 ounces per day, but that you should add on an additional eight ounces of water for every 25 pounds of excess weight you need to lose. If you have trouble drinking large amounts of water, try flavoring the water with lemon juice.
According to the site HCG Diet Direct, the HCG diet allows a number of seasonings and natural flavorings for the plan's restricted calorie meals 1. Learn to use these seasonings -- from lemon juice to a wide variety of spices -- to make what would otherwise be a monotonous series of meals into a different tasting experience each time. However, check all commercial seasonings for sugars, starches or sugar alcohol compounds.
Plan Your Meals
Carefully planning your meals in advance can help you make certain you restrict yourself to the foods and recommended caloric intake suggested by the HCG diet. If you have the appropriate ingredients on hand ahead of time, you are more likely to stick to the diet's meal requirements and to have an opportunity to precisely weigh each food item so that you aren't eating more than you should.
Change Your Eating Habits
The HCG Diet Journey site recommends two eating habit alterations that can help you succeed in eating less: consume your food slowly and use a small plate for your food, not a large dinner plate.
Keep the following items on hand for times when you feel tempted to stray from your HCG diet: sugar-free Jello, sugar-free and fat-free popsicles, diet soda, ice chips and L-Glutamine supplements.
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