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hCG Diet

hCG Diet Review (UPDATED 2024): Don't Buy Before You Read This!

A controversial diet that calls for hormone injections.

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What is it?

The hCG Diet is a weight loss plan offering a hormone that is said to reset metabolism during a very low calorie diet. The actual hCG hormone is only available via prescription, but different brands will offer a supplement version as well.

The same basic principles exist for whatever company that sells this hormone, one has to limit calories to just 500 a day. Often the hCG hormone is made available via a vial, which can be drank or injected. It claims to offer fast and effective weight loss. Our experts have reviewed countless diets and found the 18Shake Diet offers the best all-around weight loss solution. It’s made up of a natural weight loss diet pill and a meal replacement. They combine to offer hours of appetite suppression as well as fat burning. Discover more information on the 18Shake Diet via the link provided here.

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hCGDiet Ingredients and Side Effects

The actual hormone used stands for human chorionic gonadotropin, a hormone made by the embryo. Often companies will make an animal or synthetic version of this. It is created during pregnancy when a fetus needs protection.

It’s also been used to regulate normal testosterone function, and it has since been banned by many sports organizations.

The official diet was created by an endocrinologist named Albert T.W. Simeons, who believed that a 500 calorie diet alongside this hormone would result in weight loss without there being muscle loss. The American Society of BariatricPhysicians had this to say:

“There is no scientific evidence that HCG is effective in the treatment of obesity”

“insufficient evidence supporting the claims that HCG is effective in altering fat-distribution, hunger reduction, or in inducing a feeling of well-being”

For a comprehensive list of the top 10 ranked diet plans click on the link here.

The FDA have also banned it, in an open letter to consumers they said:

“steer clear of these “homeopathic” human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) weight-loss products”

“have not been approved by the FDA, and that make unsupported claims”

The FDA also commented on the low amount of calories suggested:

“Living on 500 calorie a  day is not only unhealthy,- it’s hazardous”

“ Very low calorie diets are sometimes prescribed by health careprofessionals… medical supervision is needed to ensure that side effects are not life threatening”

The dangers of such as diet are:

“may not be getting enough vitamins, minerals, and- most critically- protein”

Since using this hormone for weight loss is no longer an accepted medical reason by the FDA, any sites which sell a homeopathic version will often add unrelated ingredients. The original hCG however has the banned ingredient which has not been proven to be an effective solution for weight loss.The link here has a comprehensive top 10 list of  the highest ranked diets.

EDITOR’S TIP: Combine this diet with a proven meal replacement such as 18 Shake for better results.

hCGDiet Qualityof Ingredients

The sole active ingredient is a growth hormone that the FDA has banned due to safety concerns. The 500 calorie limit a day diet is also not recommended, as health organizations do not consider than a safe weight loss solution. It will likely reduce weight since one is receiving so few calories, but this can lead to side effects and a loss of muscle. It’s also highly likely that which such a low of calories allowed, that there will be nutritional deficiencies.

Since you cannot receive the actual hormone for weight loss, it’s no longer accepted as a solution for weight loss. It’s also only available via prescription, and only to treat fertility issues but not for weight loss. Using them for other reasons not specific can be potentially dangerous, especially when using the 500 calorie a day diet. Web MD has this to say:

“uncomfortable to live on just 500 calories a day, it can be dangerous”

“It’s impossible to meet all your nutritional needs on so few calories”

One would have to supplement with some sort of vitamin and mineral complex to help support the body. Still, restricting calories this much is often only advised for people under strict watch of a medical professional.

Any type of extreme calorie reduction will likely result in some sort of weight loss benefit, but it’s not considered a safe or long term solution.

The Price and Quality of hCG Diet

The hormone is no longer available for prescription use, and any brands selling it are distributing an illegal product not recognized by the FDA.

It’s unknown what the price is as sales of it are meant only for women with fertility issues. The FDA has since sent at least 6 warning letters to companies who sell and market this hormone for weight loss. There are some companies that use the same name of hCG, but instead offer a mix of amino acids which are legal but not same. However, these businesses are using the popularity of this name to promote their own products.

A list of the highest ranked top 10 diet plans is made available in the link here.

The Mayo Clinic also adds:

“Side effects have also been reported with the HCG diet and include fatigue, irritability, restlessness, depression, fluid buildup, and swelling of the breasts”

It’s because of this that they say:

“there are safer ways to lose weight”

The overall risks make this a very low quality weight loss strategy. As you’ll read in the “Customer Opinions of hCG Diet”, many people who used it for weight loss have described it as a poor solution.

Business of hCG Diet

Any businesses that sell this diet plan are in violation of the FDA’s policies for safe products. It’s not considered to be a useful hormone for weight loss. Medpage Today adds that business who still sold this were in violation and that:

“the FDA and FTC threatened to forcibly halt their operations”

A spokesperson for the FDA added:

“is not FDA approved, it cannot be sold legally”

Any business one might find that market this diet plan are illegally selling a potentially harmful product. There’s far too much at risk, and any sales of this will often only be for fertility, not for weight loss. Any recommendations made for weight loss are illegal, and should be of concern as this can result in a fine.

EDITOR’S TIP: The top 10 list of the best diets is available here.

Customer Opinions of hCG Diet

There are very few reviews available since this diet plan has been banned since 2024 by the FDA. Here are some select quotes from some users:

“My blood pressure shot up, flushed skin… very scary”

“I felt terrible: headaches daily, weakness, dizziness, nauseated”

“Would not recommend this to anyone”

“have horrible leg cramps and I’m hungry all the time”

There were people who mentioned that they didn’t notice any reliable weight loss, and that they had to quit the diet early due to side effects. This includes symptoms such as headaches, restlessness, fatigue, mood swings, inability to relax, migraines, flushed skin, dizziness, stomach pain, nausea, and much more.

Many of the listed side effects are common in people who use very low calorie diets. People often mentioned that it was unsustainable, and they couldn’t live on this diet for a long time. The comprehensive top 10 ranked diets list is featured via the link here.

There were some that did see a change in weight, but they also add how they quickly regained it as soon as a regular diet was consumed. People were also concerned with the 500 calorie limit, since there was no additional support on how to maintain this extreme limit. This is why it will often require medical support for those reducing calories to 1,000 or less.

Conclusion - Does hCG Diet  Work?

The hCG Diet is a now defunct solution for weight loss that has since been banned by the FDA. It’s made up of a hormone and it suggests reducing calories to just 500 a day. There are studies which have shown even when it was legal, that using  this plan was not effective and potentially unsafe. This is why it is now banned and seen as a potentially dangerous weight loss diet. The majority of users that tried it before the FDA 2024 ban did mention it was poor, and that it left them hungry, with side effects, and without any weight loss.

Our experts have found that the most overall effective solution for weight loss is the 18Shake Diet. It’s made up of a meal replacement shake and a stimulant free diet pill. The benefits include appetite suppression, increased metabolism, boosted fat burning, improved mood, and many other benefits. Customers often say it’s a potent formula, and testimonials and reviews are available on their official website.  There are no added fillers, stimulants, binders, artificial colors, artificial flavors, or cheap ingredients added to either the meal replacement or diet pill.

The 18Shake Diet is also supported by a full 30 day money back return policy. This risk free return is offered with no questions asked for the entire 30 days. To learn more information about the 18Shake Diet click the link here.

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User Feedback

(Page 6 of 25, 489 total comments)

kim goodwin


I lost 20 pounds in 26 days. I am so excited and you lose in places that you don't nomally lose in too. I went from a 14 to 1 10 a loose 14 to most 10's. I feel so much better about myself i 26 days. I am a dairy carb lover but this made me crave nothing and I wasn't hungry. It had such great success so fast that it kept you motivated to follow it fully. You can't mess up on this diet or you will gain so fast so follow it and you will be amazed.

posted Sep 9th, 2011 12:57 pm


My sister did this diet, and it put her in the emergency room. It is nothing but dangerous malnutrition wrapped up in a bunch of fake science.

My advice is Don't even THINK about doing HCG!

posted Sep 2nd, 2011 4:53 pm


I am on the first day of the diet after the load. Going good so far, I have had a craving for carbs, but I hear that the first few days are the hardest. I am taking hcg pills that disolve under the tongue in a few seconds and taste like mints. I haven't had any weird side affects like feeling cracked out like I have with other "diet" pills. I'm hoping to have the same results as others who have posted. The diet is strict and cuts a lot of vegetables I eat normally such as peppers and squash. That part will probably be hard not cheat on. I get my pills from a local weight loss center.

posted Aug 24th, 2011 4:42 pm


where can i get the real hcg drops that actually works and what does the drops taste like?

posted Aug 23rd, 2011 10:39 am


Have been on hcg diet for 1 week lost 9.2 lbs. Have no cravings of carbs, sugars or salt. Eating healthy. At 5'11 was not going to submit to just 500 cal a day.so eating about 800 and still doing yoga and surfing.I look at it as a lifestyle change not just a diet.

posted Aug 22nd, 2011 3:07 pm

Gina B

I am currently on the HCG diet and it is the best thing I have ever done. I have lost a total of 16lbs in 10 days. It is a very strict diet, but believe me if I can do it anyone can. As far as the above side effects, I can tell you that I have absolutely no side effects whatsoever. I have more energy, happier and can definitely see the results.

posted Aug 22nd, 2011 12:04 pm


I would like to try this diet also. Like others, I would like to know if anyone can suggest a reputable site to purchse from.

posted Aug 21st, 2011 2:52 am

cathy k

I have been on the hcg shots and have been consuming between 600-800 calories a day for 8 days and have lost 8 lbs. You are actually eating more calories because when you count your protein calories, you have to times this by 4 then subtract that number from the calories. For example: total calorie 150, total protein 30, 30x4=120........150-120=30 TOTAL CALORIES. I have only 1/2 a thyroid and it has been so hard for me to lose weight so the fact that this has been working is incredible. I highly recommend this.

posted Aug 13th, 2011 10:21 am


I have been taking the hcg shots once a week and have been following the diet. I eat between 600-800 calories a day and work out 3x a week. I have been on the diet 8 days and have lost 8lbs. It has been so hard for me to lose weight but this diet has been working for me! I have had no side effects but get tired earlier then usual. The appetite suppresants work well to. I go to a weight loss clinic in bc to get my shots and pills.

posted Aug 12th, 2011 11:57 pm


Ive gained a good amount of weight and im NOT happy about it. Ive tried many diets and they dont work for me. So why not give this on a try?

So what my question is, whats the 411 on these drops, and WHERE can I get some that arn't a scam! HELPPPP!!!

posted Aug 12th, 2011 9:54 pm


This is WILLPOWER IN A BOTTLE. I am 49 and want to get the "baby weight" off before I go through menopause. Tried 1,000 calories a day for a month without drops and lost 6 pounds and couldn't stick to it. I'm now eating about 650 calories and AM NOT HUNGRY. I chose the Dr. that Dr. Oz had on from Miami - Dr. Lipman an endroconologist that's been working with it for 25 years. THIS WORKS. Do you research and don't knock it until you have tried it.

posted Aug 12th, 2011 12:51 pm



I lost 6 lbs. on this diet in only 3 days, which was great. That is, until the 4th day when I was feeling so weak my legs were about to give out. I felt terrible: headaches daily, weakness, dizziness, nauseated, and I was starving despite that you aren't supposed to be hungry on this diet while eating only 500 cals. per day. I felt like I had morning sickness every day just like I had while pregnant twice before. It wasn't worth it to me...plus you get sick of eating the same things everyday. Good for a short term fix for a few days but definitely not long-term success. Feeling sick everyday was not worth being skinny to me.

posted Aug 12th, 2011 12:04 pm

Drew DiNardo


It's working for me. Using the shots, program was prescribed by Doctor. On it for 12 days now and have lost about 14 pounds. Don't feel hungry (still have some cravings) and do feel more alert. Have not exercised. I do have a total of 40 pounds to lose so.....

posted Aug 12th, 2011 9:06 am

Dick Gazinya

Great post. Here's a link to another HCG Diet post which I think your readers will enjoy: http://www.drbillofhealth.com/nutrition/hcg-diet-review-does-it-work-no-evidence-for-safety-and-efficacy/

posted Aug 12th, 2011 8:51 am

Ryan C

I lost 26 pounds on the HCG diet and I loved it! I could have lost more but I did not follow a strict 500 cal a day diet. I did change my eating habits though and have been able to keep the weight off. You just really need self control on this diet and a support system to not tempt you to eat whatever you want! I suggest it to anyone, and I am definitely doing round 2 after I get done with my maintenance and 4wks off. My sister and mother tried to do it to, but they couldn�??t stick with the diet. I love it and cannot wait to start my next round. HCG actually works when nothing else did!

posted Aug 11th, 2011 9:56 am


I have 4 kids all about 2yrs apart and I have tried everything to get the extra 60lbs off and have had no luck with anything, I have tried it all. After finding out I have a slow thyroid I decided to give the HCG diet drops a try after being on the diet for 4 weeks I lost 27lbs and now have lost 2 more since being off of them and I plan on doing it again and am hoping to be down to my goal by December. The HCG drops are the best thing I have ever found!

posted Aug 7th, 2011 2:35 am


This stuff really works. I have tried every diet out there and nothing worked as well or as dramatically. I lost 50 pounds in 9 weeks last year and have kept it off. I am now a size 6/8 and have hCG to thank. The diet is not easy and you cannot cheat. But with results that show every day, why would you?

posted Aug 5th, 2011 10:46 pm



It is advertised as "you will lose one pound per day". Not so. Before I started, the Naturepath said I would lose 35 lbs in 6 weeks. It was supposed to be a 6 week diet. I only lost 18 lbs. I was happy to lose that but it fell short of my goal. I would highly recommend the diet because it works but, not to the extent of all of the claims you may read. You do still have to use willpower but since you don't feel hungry most of the time, it is easy to lose a significant amount of weight.

posted Aug 4th, 2011 1:54 pm



I am going with the doctors on this one. If the hormone is produced by PREGNANT women during PREGNANCY then it has a specific purpose at that time, not to help people lose weight. Just common sense to me. I have a cousin who did this diet and shots for one month and lost 65 lbs and got extremely sick and wound up in the hospital. She only needed to lose 30#. I have had breast cancer, ya, I need to lose about 30#, but not going to screw up my metabolism or endanger my physiology by injecting myself with a hormone produced during pregnancy. Just my two cents for whoever has reservations, those who have already bought into it are probably not going to re-think it.

posted Aug 3rd, 2011 7:04 pm


I have been on hcg drops for 22 days and I have lost 16 pounds. My grandma and mom have done drops as well. They have both lost alot of wieght and keep it off. When you get off you cant go back to old habits... you need to eat healthier and start working out. I havent gotten to that point but I would think it would be commen sence. I had a day or 2 of not feeling well but that was my fault for not drinking enough water and switching up foods. The lady I got it from let me know women need eggs basically every other day and need to be consuming enough water. I found out I was prediebetic... this diet has shown me how much better I can feel with eatting better. How much all that junk food reallly effects you. I am really happy I did this.. it has taught me I wasnt that great of an eater even though I didnt eat ice cream and snickers alot. I ate out alot more then I thought ..ate foods with no nutrition what so ever!! This may not be for everyone but if you check with your doctor and follow the diet I believe you will be happy. You shouldnt gain the weight back if you make a life style change after your done with diet. Also I am one of those people that during work week (no time to eat) or weekends (would forget to eat) ( 2 bannanas, handful of almonds, and a pack of romen noodles this is what I would eat for work week) I didnt lose weight I gained weight because my body thought it was starving. So for those who says the drops dont do anything...I strongly disagree from personal expierence. Sorry for spelling etc :)

posted Aug 1st, 2011 1:56 pm


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QUICK FACTSQUICK FACTS Start the Diet Now Advertisement
  • Established: 1950s
  • Founder: Dr. A.T.W. Simeons
  • Accessibility: Injections and drops
  • Diet Type: Extremely low calorie along with hCG drops or injections
  • Gender: Male and female
  • Celebrity Endorsements: Snookie (Jersey Shore), Jenni Farley, Britney Spears

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See our interview: hCG Diet Reviewed by FullBar's Dr. Michael Snyder

A potential diet supplement administered through injections or oral drops, the hCG Diet is a very controversial weight loss method. HCG stands for the hormone Human Choriogonadotropin, which is the same hormone that is produced by women in their early stages of pregnancy.

During pregnancy, the surge of this hormone signals the hypothalamus in the brain to start moving nutrients and fat into the placenta. When used as part of a weight loss program, it is the fat-mobilization aspects of the hormone that has garnered attention for its seeming ability to help facilitate weight loss.

Even though the FDA has approved hCG shots for fertility reasons, there is no scientific evidence that shows the hCG Diet can significantly promote weight loss. Although it is used in conjunction with a very low calorie diet, any weight loss that occurs is likely to be due to the reduced caloric intake rather than the hCG shots or drops themselves.

Many side effects have been shown in those who take hCG shots for weight loss. Blood clots, depression, headaches and ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome in women have all been cited as common, and even deadly, side effects associated with hCG use. HCG drops avoid the inconveniences of a daily injection, but no clinical studies have been conducted to determine if hCG drops have any change in side effects.

Typically, the hCG Diet lasts for three weeks and is monitored by a health professional.

  • May promote weight loss when used in combination with a reduced calorie diet

  • Not considered safe
  • Weight loss is more likely to due to extremely restricted caloric intake rather than injections or drops
  • Weight loss is temporary
  • Side effects can be very serious. According to the Mayo Clinic, side affects associated with hCG include fatigue, irritability, headache and male breast enlargement.

hCG injections and drops contain the hormone Human Choriogonadotropin.


An injection of 125 iu of hCG is administered daily or a daily dose of oral drops.


Those who use hCG injections to lose weight must also follow a very strict diet that amounts to no more than 500 calories a day.

For the first two days of the injection you are allowed to eat excessively. Following the third injection, you must adhere to the 500-calorie diet until 72 hours following the last injection given. Sugars, very sweet fruits, processed foods and heavy starches are not allowed.

An hCG Diet protocol outlined by advocate Dr. A.T.W. Simeons looks like this:

  • Breakfast: Coffee or tea with artificial sweetener and one tablespoon of milk. Lunch is 100 grams of lean meat, poultry or fish in addition to one low-glycemic vegetable like spinach, celery, cucumbers or cabbage. One Melba toast and one fruit like half of a grapefruit or an apple is also allowed.
  • Dinner is the same as lunch.

In addition, shots of apple cider vinegar can be taken as a daily supplement. Products and make-up that contain any fatty substances like mineral oil or almond oil cannot be used.

Websites dedicated to promoting the hCG Diet contain recipes and additional protocol information and tips.


The hCG Diet is highly regimented and a very controversial weight loss program that involves the administration of either hormone injections or oral drops coupled with a very low-calorie diet. Popular amongst steroid users and those daring and desperate to lose weight quickly, the hCG Diet is not a weight loss program that is readily endorsed by health and medical professionals for its obvious flaws and real risks for dangerous side effects.

Common MisspellingsCommon Misspellings

HCG, hgc diet, hormone diet, pregnancy hormone diet, hcg injection diet, Human Choriogonadotropin diet

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