Does HCG work?Posted: May 08 in Fad Diets, Weight loss by Dr. Lazarus
If only it were this easy. The short answer to this question is “No.” A better answer can be found on the American Society of Bariatric Physicians (ASBP) web site. I’ve included a link to this on the physician resources tab mentioned above. HCG is a hormone normally secreted by the placenta during pregnancy. In 1954, Dr. Simeons developed a 500 cal/day meal plan and administered it in conjunction with 125 units of HCG injected 6 days per week for 8 weeks. The protocol became popular in the 1970s. Several studies done later concluded with a meta-analysis finding insufficient evidence to support the claims that HCG is effective in altering fat-distribution, hunger reduction or in inducing a feeling of well-being. The authors concluded that “the use of HCG should be regarded as an inappropriate therapy for weight reduction.”
The current body of evidence suggests that this is not a helpful treatment alternative, and has unknown risks. Physicians employing the HCG or the diet recommended by Simeons may expose themselves to criticism from other physicians, from insurers, or from government bodies. It is my practice NOT to recommend HCG to our patients at CNC, or to manage patients currently on HCG.
Therefore, the American Society of Bariatric Physicians has adopted the following policy statements:
1. The Simeons method for weight loss is not recommended.
2. The Simeons diet is not recommended
3. The use of HCG for weight loss is not recommended.