HCG Diet & Urinary Problems

The HCG diet is a fad diet that requires you to consume about 500 calories per day along with taking human chorionic gonadotropin, also known as the pregnancy hormone. Proponents claim that you can lose, on average, 1 pound per day on the HCG diet. Data to support this claim are lacking. The HCG diet has the potential to compromise your kidney function, which can cause urinary problems. Consult your doctor before starting the HCG diet.


Most healthcare professionals believe that the HCG diet is ineffective for weight loss. Any weight reduction that you might experience is more than likely the result of consuming very low calories. A 500-calorie diet fails to provide enough carbohydrates, which can result in ketosis, according to a July 2010 article in "The Seattle Times." Ketosis occurs when your body runs out of stored energy and uses fat for fuel. Over an extended period, ketosis can impact your kidney function.

Kidney Problems

Some people following the HCG diet have reported experiencing kidney stones and kidney pain. Your kidneys act as your body's filtration system, removing waste and extra water from your blood. Your kidneys filter about 200 quarts of blood each day, which is excreted as urine. Problems with your kidneys can result in urinary problems. You might experience excess urination or the urge to urinate, yet only a small amount is excreted.


Consult your doctor and discontinue the HCG diet if you experience urinary problems. Your doctor can perform urine and blood tests to help determine the cause. A urinary tract infection, kidney stones and bladder issues are potential culprits. If your urinary issues started after beginning the HCG diet, then there might be a connection.


It is best to avoid the HCG diet if you have an existing urinary problem, since it has the capacity to complicate your condition. In addition, the HCG diet increases your risk for gallstones, electrolyte imbalance and irregular heartbeat. Electrolytes help maintain the fluid balance in your body. The HCG diet is considered controversial, and The American Society of Bariatric Physicians discourages its use 1.