This article is taken from in its entirety from the hCG Diet Workbook you can get the digital version (downloadable PDF) that you can print or use on your device over and over here, or you can buy a hardcopy version of the workbook on Amazon here.
I decided to take this article out of it and publish it free here for you all because its a major concern that comes up ALL the time. Like literally, ALL. And it makes sense because obviously, we all want to lose weight as fast as humanly possible. And this desire combined with what we hear/read online a lot, has been the cause for a LOT of distress over pace of weight loss and results in both cheating and giving up and feeling like your body is failing you, when in actuality, if you look at the science/logic of it all, most of the time, your body was doing exactly the right thing, at exactly the right place. So basically all the turmoil was needless.
While Im not a science buff, I do have a few pointers that I believe make logical sense to help us all get a sane perspective on what to expect or rather, how to not over-expect.
SOME will lose 40 lbs in 40 days. But the vast majority of us will not, and its not because youre doing something wrong or because the diet isnt working. Theres a logical reason that it makes sense.
Expectation postponed makes the heart sick. Proverbs 12:13
Weve all heard it.
Do some lose this much? Yes.But the majority do not.
First of all, no one can promise you a certain amount of weight loss. Our bodies are far too complex for that. So if someone does promise you a certain amount of pounds in a certain amount of days, my best advice is to just pretend you never heard it.
Over-expectation can cause a lot of problems, none of which will help you get to your goal.
Its easy for websites online to state this grand promise because its so astounding it sells more.
Theres a very logical, scientific reason that most people dont lose a pound a day that makes perfect sense. And theres also a logical reason why someone who is 212 lbs will lose more weight in a 40 day round than someone who starts at 160 lbs.
Id like to explain it because unrealistic expectations have led to frustration, unwise choices to try to force more weight loss, and sometimes even giving up entirely when expectations are not being met. None of these things help you arrive at your final destination and actually put you farther away from it.
Okay, so lets get to it.
There are about 3500 calories in 1 pound of fat right? Many of us are familiar with this. Okay, after further research, there doesnt appear to be a very solid basis for how this number was derived. However, we can still use this as a general guideline.
This means that while on hCG, in order to lose an entire pound of fat on the hCG diet every day, your bodys metabolism would have to be utilizing 4000 calories every single day (3500 calories for the pound of fat + the 500 calories you are eating each day on the diet).
The reality is I dont know too many women who utilize 4000 calories on a daily basis. In fact, I dont think I personally know any. The average woman appears to have a basal metabolic rate of about 1500 calories or so, you can add some calories for your various activities you do each day, and you see its not likely to be more than 2000-2500 calories or so MAX for most women. Thats just my guess. You can figure this out from thinking about how many calories the average woman is able to consume daily without gaining weight, and for most its been 1200-2200 calories. I cant eat more than 2200 calories myself without gaining weight, and thats even crossfitting 3-4 days week religiously and have a LOT more muscle mass than the average woman of my height (51).
It is said that the hCG hormone may raise metabolic rate a little, but its highly unlikely that its doubling it, wouldnt you agree?
Now in truth, some weight loss at the start of any diet is water, including hCG, and that doesnt take 3500 calories worth to lose. Its easy to drop 2-4 lbs worth of water overnight just by fasting or eating low carb. This is one reason the 1st week on the hCG protocol, in particular, is often so astounding when it comes to pounds lost.
So its not necessarily that weight loss on hCG will equate to 100 percent fat.
But this fact about the requirements it takes to lose a whole pound of fat is what helps make it clear that the likelihood of the average person losing 40 lbs in 40 days or what not, is small.
Those who do are either men, very large, or both. Men do have faster metabolisms than women and have a larger calorie expenditure on a daily basis. Those who are very heavy with a lot of weight to lose likewise have a larger amount of calories that their body expends and uses to maintain their body mass. Lastly, the heavier you are and the more poorly youve been eating, the more water weight you are likely carrying. This is another reason for sometimes seeing huge drops in weight during the first week or two of hCG for those starting at a heavier weight, something not seen as much for someone with only say 20-30 lbs to lose.
So if you eat 500 calories a day, and you burn say 1700 calories, this means 1700 calories minus the 500 calories youre eating = a 1200 calorie a day of deficit thats going on creating your weight loss this will take almost a full 3 days to add up to 1 full lb of true fat loss (1200 calorie deficit x 3 = 3600 calories) on the scale. Thus a .3-.5/lb per day average weight loss once that water weight is gone is actually scientifically going to what to expect. Does that make sense?
You can view my own losses by week from my own 5 rounds of hCG Diet Journey to give you more examples.
The average total weight loss for most women by the end of a long 40-ish day round is usually about .5 lb/day. If you are heavier (with say 60-100 lbs to lose), the average may end up being as high as .75-.80 lb per day, and if you dont have that much to lose (like 15-20 lbs), your average may be more like .3 lb/day.
So you may lose anywhere between 15 and 32 lbs during a 40 day round. I realize that is a big range! 32 lbs is more than twice as much as the low end of 15 lbs. What factors which number you get and is there anything you can do to make your numbers better? Well talk about that in just a minute!
I want to clarify quickly the pattern of weight loss. When I say an average of .5 lb/day, I dont mean you will lose a half pound every day on the diet. This is more how it transpires:
Some days youll lose a lot more. Ahh those divine 1-3 lb weight loss days. Revel in those. However, obviously, for the overall weight loss to average out to the .3 lb-.75 lb range, there will be some compensatory lower loss days. So you will see plenty of .2s and .4s and even big fat zero days. That is what gives you the average for the whole round, and this is completely normal.
You might just want to skim right past this part ladies. Its just going to make you mad. Men simply lose faster. So if youre a man reading this, congrats!
It actually is common to have an average 1 lb/day weight loss. I still say you shouldnt expect it, because it certainly cant be counted on for every round for every man, but such results are indeed fairly typical.
Im not going to claim to know the exact science behind the reason, because I dont, but a few things Ive gleaned in my research are this:
More of a mans total weight is muscle than for women. What I mean by this is, if there is a man and woman and each of them weighs 180 lbs, the mans 180 lbs will usually have a much higher ratio of muscle to fat, and the woman will have more of her 180 lbs as fat. This is significant because the larger amount of muscle equates to a higher metabolism. This is just a natural fact of life. Its not because they do more squats or push-ups than you, its part of their genetic makeup.Men have higher metabolisms, again in part due to having a large amount of fat-free mass.
Testosterone levels. We all know guys have way more.
Watch James Full Interview here
Shorter Rounds = Higher Weight Loss Average (but dont let this make you think you lost more weight)
Short rounds (3 weeks) typically experience a higher average weight loss than long rounds (6 weeks) in part because the larger losses from the first week or two that includes more water weight than normal is averaged out over a shorter period of time. From what Ive seen though, the pace of actual fat loss on hCG during short and long rounds are about the same.
Any modifications you make to the protocol like the one-week pre-hCG diet and low carb loading I mention may make your overall weight loss appear lower compared to others because you likely will have already lost water weight prior to starting hCG with these other methods. That weight normally would have come off during your first week on hCG. But obviously, this hasnt changed your actual fat loss on the diet itself.
Lastly, when people report their weight loss online, we often have no idea if this number includes their loading gain and just how much loading weight it was. Its not uncommon for me to hear of traditional loaders (allowing sugar and carbs during the loading phase) on their 3rd or 4th round gaining 8-10 lbs during a 2 day dirty load. You can see the discrepancy there. If someone lost 30 lbs on a 40 day round, but 8 of it was loading weight, their true net loss is 22 lbs. Say you only lost 23 lbs in a 40 day round, but your loading weight was 1 lb because you loaded clean. Turns out your net weight loss is exactly the same as the person who seemed to have lost a lot more than you.
Some women will lose 30-35 lbs in 40 days on the diet, but this is almost always a woman with a lot of weight to lose, and from what I have seen, is not the norm, and we already discussed why earlier.
I have another post that discusses this in more detail: Is Losing 1 Pound Per Day Normal on hCG?
I found learning all these details so helpful in my later rounds and it prevented me from feeling (as often anyway!) that I was doing something wrong or that my body wasnt performing on par with everyone else.
I have seen the truth of the proverb quoted at the outset of this article over and over in the hCG experience when expected results are allowed to rule the persons view of their success and subsequent happiness.
The key to feeling good about your achievement on this protocol for each round you do is to stop expecting and to be pleasantly surprised with your results, whatever they may be. Each pound gone is a big achievement for your body.
When you really think about it, can someone else truly dictate for you what your body will do, in advance? You cant even do that and its your body!
This is why its a pitfall to put too much faith in the numbers that are thrown out there. Especially when its not backed by any sort of logic.
Every round for you will likely be different when it comes both to total weight loss and even the pattern of weight loss.
Additionally, you might discover some things along the way that slow you down, warranting the need to make corrective adjustments here and there. It could be easy to be frustrated by this process, viewing it as lost time. However, this is just another aspect of the venture. There is a lot of good information out now about the hCG protocol that does make it possible to get the best out of a round, but there are still unknowns that cant always be discovered until youre actually in the trenches, doing the protocol. Some trial and error ends up being unavoidable at times. If you accept this philosophically now, you will cope and move past any seeming rough patches more quickly.
Well. I found out it has to do with math, which has never been my strong suit. Actually, thats not true- I can do it and I got As in school, but I just dont care about it. But moving on, math is going to shed some light for us on weight loss. Lets use a fictitious person named Fancy Pants.
Que: is that probable?
As you can see with this example above, that would actually be the case if you continued to lose the same number of pounds every successive round as you got smaller. I never thought about it this way until I ran the numbers. If you lost 30 lbs in 6 weeks at 200 lbs, thats 15% of your body weight. If you lost 30 lbs in 6 weeks at 150 lbs, thats now 20% of your bodyweight.
Why is this not going to be the norm?
Your percentage of weight loss most likely wont stay the same but will actually decrease to some degree because the metabolic rate of a heavier person is higher than a thinner person in general.
Why? Say it aint so!
It takes more energy (and thus calories) for a heavier body to do all the same movements a thinner person does, whether its sweating in the garden or simply putting the forks away from the dishwasher.
The upside? When you are physically smaller, there is less surface area on your body, so smaller weight changes actually have greater effects on how you shrink visibly. Ie. a 5 lb weight loss may not be noticeable at all on a 190 lb clothed frame, but on a 130 lb frame would be quite noticeable.
Why Does 1/2 lb Make Sense?
Remember, its never this straightforward, but the following 2 estimates help us see why its so unlikely for most women to lose an entire pound a day on any protocol. Those who do are likely carrying larger amounts of water weight than the average person.
Showing here on the opposite page are 2 charts with estimated BMR (basal metabolic rate) at various weights and ages for both a 51 and 56 woman. Take a second at look at it right now if you will.
What is basal metabolic rate? Its basically the number of calories your body burns in a day to keep you alive when at complete rest. Since most of us are not vegetables, we all burn more calories than our BMR each day, but how much more varies a lot based on our lifestyle and activity level.
Why does estimated BMR help us though?
It gives us a baseline and helps us to estimate a range of calories we actually do utilize on a daily basis with our unique lifestyle, whether were at a desk job 40 hours a week, how much we exercise each week, if we walk around a lot, etc. So if your BMR is 1300 calories, your actual calories used each day once you factor in grocery shopping, digesting, walking around, exercise, etc., may be closer to 2000 calories.
These charts help us to see there can be a pretty large difference in how many calories a woman uses each day depending on her age, her weight, and even her height.
Based on this, it seems to reasonable to conclude that,
1). Women of various heights/weights/ages will vary in the amount of weight they lose and,
2). ultimately, we can see that to lose an entire pound of fat on any diet (barring weight loss from water weight etc.) will require more than just one day in most cases.
You might be starting to see now why blanket statements that everyone can and should be able to lose 40 lbs in 40 days, regardless of current weight, height, age, sex, or health level dont make no kinda sense people!
My 3-year-old son once said something rather inspired when I tried to explain logically something he didnt want to accept.
Me: Does that make sense son?
My 3-year-old little boy says:
mmm.it makes too much sense.
Sometimes a 3-year-old can speak to the heart of the matter in a way no adult can! It makes sense, but we dont want to accept it.
This is just that basal or bottom-layer thing. From my research, it looks like BMR is typically about 60-70% of your actual daily calorie expenditure. So what this means is, the calories you burn total each day is likely 30-40% higher than your basal metabolic rate. So if your BMR was 1400 calories for instance, then 30% more (420 more calories) would be a total daily calorie burn of 1820 calories.
But it could be more than 40% too! This is just an example. How many calories individuals burn each day greatly varies. It depends on your activity level and the nature of your daily life. My husband is a gardener and probably walks about eight miles a day while mowing lawns and chopping down trees, so he is obviously utilizing a LOT more calories in a day than someone who works at a desk.
When you start tweaking with everything under the sun, my concern is that if the modifications made arent wise, extra weight loss could be coming from muscle.
We cant even begin to understand the complexities of how our bodies utilize calories (or lack of them!) really.
I believe wholeheartedly in how well this protocol can work, within the principles of how its designed. Once you go outside those principles though, there is a higher margin for negative effects.
Whats difficult is that simply losing more pounds on a scale doesnt tell you what you are losing.
So just keep this aspect in the back of your mind when deciding whether or not to try something different on this protocol.
Remember what your true aim is and what is a reasonable amount of weight loss to expect based on what weve discussed.
I cant go into all the details on this here, first of all because Im really not educated enough to put it in book form, but also because it would take one fat book to contain it all!
However, I feel its so important to mention because I have seen first hand just how drastically our balance of hormones can affect both ability to lose weight and to maintain weight loss. There may indeed be times when it does appear that your body is not responding well to your responsible efforts.
What Id like to do is give you my absolute favorite online resources and current books to aid you in your personal research in finding answers to the conundrums in your own body.
These are some of the main hormones that have a huge bearing on weight and how your body utilizes calories:
Use those as keywords to do your google searching.Both too much and too little of these various hormones can cause weight gain even when you have an otherwise healthy lifestyle.The following are what I feel to be the most useful resources to me in learning how to fix and tweak whats wrong in my body when it comes to hormones.
You can get quick links to the following resources by going to hcgchica.com/hormonelinks(also I keep the above link updated with new resources).
The two questions to ask here are
Before I leave this topic can I pretty please plead with you not to end your search without first making sure you have unturned multiple stones.
Just to give you an idea of what I mean, so many end up suffering for much longer than necessary because one unhelpful test was run that showed their thyroid levels were normal when in actuality, if the right testing had been done, a hypothyroid condition would have been uncovered.
I had no idea that the general thyroid panels commonly done rarely uncover anything. More specific testing panels that are better able to pinpoint real thyroid issues are available. However, the caveat is its very uncommon to be given these tests unless you specifically ask for them. There are so many medical advancements going on, and not all medical personnel are up to speed yet, so it really pays to do your own research and share with them what you need.
Ill give you an example. The TSH test is a general thyroid test often done. The normal reference range for TSH lab values was re-evaluated several years ago by whoever makes the guidelines for this in the medical industry. Thousands who were considered to have a normal thyroid under the old reference range for so many years prior, who were no doubt being tested and told they were normal even though they felt awful, would now be considered hypothyroid and get treatment. Thats why we can only put so much faith in testing. Symptoms must be part of the decision making process.
I had symptoms for years, all the while my thyroid levels were normal. Finally, my condition got so bad that my hypothyroid issue finally did show up on the standard issued testing.
But I can put two and two together. The symptoms I had all along when the generic testing said my thyroid was normal were exactly the same (just not quite as severe) as when the testing finally revealed something being sorely wrong. The symptoms were not caused by two different conditions. I could have been treated much sooner had I known about the other testing because it would most likely have revealed a problem much earlier. The websites and books I have mentioned here will help you learn specifically what testing to ask for.
The only way to find out about this stuff and get help now instead of 15 years from now is by making it your personal responsibility.
Another example. My saliva cortisol levels on my lab test looked fairly normal. They were a bit low-ish but still in the reference range and would be considered normal enough by a medical office to do nothing about it. I did have adrenal fatigue symptoms however.
How did I happen to realize that I did indeed need adrenal support? Yes, reading an article online. I found the experience of a woman on stopthethyroidmadness.com who shared her saliva cortisol lab values, which were almost exactly the same as mine and she expressed how she felt much better after adding in a physiological dose of cortisol (even though such values were technically in the reference range = she was healthy enough) and that she was able to optimize her thyroid medication after doing this as well and described great symptom improvement over a sustained period of time.I decided to follow her example and did the same. I too experienced significant improvement in my symptoms over several months. Additionally, during this time I lost about 3-4 pounds of fat and gained about 3 pounds of muscle (results gathered from hydrostatic body fat testing), even though my actual lifestyle didnt change whatsoever. It appears my body was sorely needing that cortisol.
While I understand there can be hype online and that you cant put your ultimate faith in every single word written on the internet, I feel it has donepeople like me a lot more good than harm from the truths that I would never otherwise have uncovered on my own and that some medical personnel are not aware of yet at this time.
Im collecting resources for finding doctors who are up to speed with current hormone testing and treatment methods that you can work with on these types of issues (and if you are such a doctor, please contact me! [emailprotected]):
I think its wise to get lab testing, but do that research to discover just what types of testing you need to request, do research to help interpret those lab results, then do more research on the best current treatments for those conditions.
When you care, you will do whatever it takes to get to the bottom of whats wrong in your body. No one else is going to care as much you will not your doctor, not your endocrinologist. They can help, and you may need them, but when solutions are not being found, when standby treatments are not working, the only person who will care enough and have the circumstances to spend six hours researching thyroid issues and iodine till three a.m. will be you, because youre the only person who has to live with the symptoms every moment of your life. This is not a criticism of others. Its just a truth that we have to take that responsibility for our health at a core level if we want to get the best treatment for ourselves.
See original here:
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