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Doctor's care needed when using hormones

HCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin, is a hormone secreted in the body of a pregnant woman. For over 40 years it has been used as a weight loss aid. Some authorities feel that the HCG, given by injection, drops or lozenge and combined with a 500 calorie per day diet, is nothing but a dangerous placebo and can only result in poor results or even death in some cases. I agree that 500 calories per day is dangerous and nothing under 800 calories a day is safe.

There seems to be some benefit in using real HCG because a lot of women seem to tolerate the lower calorie diet better and stay on the program longer and with better results. A patient should be careful about where she gets the product. It is against the law for anyone other than an MD or DO to prescribe the real HCG. The doctor must write a prescription for the patient, who then receives the HCG directly from a compounding pharmacist, whether in drop, lozenge or injection form.

There is a lot of false and fraudulent HCG being sold by health food stores, chiropractors, lay-run "clinics" and the internet. They sell homeopathic forms of what they call "hcg," but which contain almost none of the hormone. It is basically, according to a Food and Drug Administration warning in January 2011, nothing but "fraudulent and illegal if they claim weight loss powers." Consumers are paying over $40.00 for a dropper bottle with a few ounces of plain water inside.

Some "clinics" are giving what they claim are "HCG" shots, but which could likely be nothing but saline injections. To repeat: the only legitimate injections, drops or lozenges are those prescribed by an MD or DO and produced by a compounding pharmacy and sent directly to the patient.

There are some claims that a woman can lose a pound a day on the 500 calorie diet, but at that level of calories the fat loss is minimal and all that is lost is water and vital proteins that the body needs. This type of ultralow calorie diet can KILL YOU! You lose more actual fat on a diet of 800 to 1200 calories and avoid the tremendous risk of a lower calorie diet.

If you are interested in the safe form of the HCG diet, see your physician and he or she can give you an honest summary of how the diet works. It seems that the lozenge form of HCG is just as effective as the shots or drops and costs a lot less. Some fly by night places are charging as much as $1,000 for a short course of shots. Don't be cheated or endangered by going to anyone but a licensed physician.