What Are Some Potential Side Effects of the hCG Diet?

You may have heard about the hCG diet and how it promises rapid weight loss. hCG is a hormone that was used in weight loss programs dating back to the 1950s, according to Forbes. While it does work for some people, there are some potential side effects you should know about before trying it.

What Exactly Is the hCG Diet?

The hCG diet involves extreme calorie restriction, usually to just 500 calories per day. You also have to give yourself injections or drops of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a hormone produced during pregnancy. The premise is that hCG will help reduce your hunger levels and mobilize fat, so you can lose weight quickly on such a low-calorie diet. The diet requires you to cut out sugar and processed foods. The food that's recommended to be eaten includes tiny portions of lean protein, non-starchy veggies, some fruit, and limited fats. You have to follow this regimented plan for several weeks up to a few months.

What Kinds of Side Effects Are Possible?

Headaches and Fatigue

With such dramatic calorie cutting, you may struggle with headaches, weakness, fatigue, and dizziness as your body adjusts. These symptoms tend to be worse during the first week of the diet but may come and go throughout. Give yourself extra rest when these side effects flare up.


Because you're limiting the types of food that you're eating while on the hCG diet, your digestive biome may become temporarily upset. This also occurs when you increase the amount of fruit and vegetables you're eating. As a result, you may experience temporary diarrhea. To combat these symptoms, consider opting for vegetables that are higher in fiber while on the diet.

Other Possible Side Effects

Some other potential side effects of the hCG diet include constipation, nausea, and leg cramping. As mentioned above, these side effects are typically due to changes in your digestive system because of differences in foods you're eating. Drink plenty of water and replenish your electrolytes to counteract these issues.

The hCG diet generates fast results, but it can occasionally cause some discomfort as your body adjusts to the food you're eating and the low-calorie intake. Fortunately, these side effects are temporary. If you're struggling with weight loss and you're looking for medical wellness solutions, Keystone Medical Wellness is there for you. Contact us today for more information.

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