The HCG diet can help you lose up to 1 pound per day safely, and it is an effective way to reduce your body fat percentage and improve your health. You will likely see the most dramatic weight loss results that you have ever experienced while on the diet. Once the diet is over you might be concerned about gaining back the weight that you lost, but there are several steps you can take to ensure that you will maintain your weight and possibly lose even more weight if needed.
The maintenance phase (Phase 4) continues on after Phase 3 (stabilization) is over, and during Phase 4 you are essentially free to eat whatever you want, but it is recommended that you continue to avoid most of the unhealthy carbohydrates and artificial sweeteners that are forbidden during Phase 2 and 3. Keep in mind that you can also repeat the HCGdiet after a six week waiting period if you do end up reverting to some of your bad diet habits, and to get started with you first round of the diet or order a refill now, click here.
Focus on a successful Phase 3
A successful Phase 3 of the diet (not gaining more than two pounds and following the diet recommendations) will help you transition to Phase 4 and ensure that your metabolism is not negatively affected, and that your good eating habits are maintained. Phase 3 is often considered to be just as important if not more important than the VLCD (very low calorie diet), because it is the transitional phase between the VLCD and Phase 4. You will need to carefully introduce some of the foods that you previously ate back into your diet. You will also need to weigh yourself every day and monitor weight gains.
During Phase 3 you need to keep in mind that starches and sugars will be detrimental to your progress, and that you should avoid them. You can reintroduce other fruits and vegetables with a low glycemic index back into your diet. The glycemic index is simply a scale that was developed for clinical nutrition in order to measure how quickly blood glucose levels increase after eating a food.
Pure glucose has a glycemic index of 100; meaning that pure glucose increases your blood sugar levels at the highest level on the scale. The glycemic index of a food doesn't tell you everything about the food, but in general foods with a low glycemic index are safe to consume during Phase 3.
For example, foods like russet potatoes, rice cakes, popcorn, white bread, bagels, corn flake and cereal, and white rice have a high glycemic index of 70 or higher, so these foods are not allowed during Phase 3. There are some foods with a lower glycemic index like corn and sweet potatoes that also need to be avoided during Phase 3 because of their high starch content.
During Phase 3 you will need to increase your caloric intake throughout the three week period, and you can begin eating most of the foods you ate before. However, and this is important, you need to completely avoid starches and even vegetables like yams and corn because they are high in carbohydrates.
Focus on consuming only fruits and vegetables with a low glycemic index, and you can look up the glycemic indexes of different foods online before you buy them. Even though your food choices are still limited to low glycemic index foods, you will still have plenty of options to make great tasting meals.
You can eat outside again but be sure to order low carb meals
You can start to eat outside which will probably be a relief if you are used to dining out regularly, but when you do, be careful to pick meals that are low in carbs and are only made with low glycemic index fruits, vegetables and protein. For example you can order a marinated steak with grilled zucchini, bell peppers and onions. Just be careful about side dishes and how your protein is prepared. You can eat pretty much every kind of meat during Phase 3 and beyond, but you shouldn't eat breaded meat like breaded chicken breasts or sandwiches.
You'll have to keep the bread out if your diet for this three week period unfortunately, and it's not to punish you, it's to prevent you from "shocking" your body and reintroducing carbohydrates too soon. This can easily result in rapid weight gain because during Phase 2 you will have reset your metabolism and your body will be optimized to be fueled on low glycemic index foods. You will also need to increase your protein consumption to 6 ounces per serving.
You should strongly consider purchasing the Ultra Burn program with your HCG diet or after the diet, as it is specifically designed to maintain your metabolism during Phase 3 and help you keep your weight gain to a minimum even if you slip up. For more information on the Ultra Burn program, click here.
Make a successful transition to Phase 4
If you manage to avoid high glycemic index foods and grains/sugar during Phase 3 you'll be in good shape for Phase 4, and at this point you can begin adding some complex carbohydrates back into your diet, but you will have to be careful as to which carbohydrates you start adding back in. Don't begin start eating everything but gradually scale up the amount of carbs that you eat.
Foods that you should continue to avoid are: white bread, foods that use white flour, white rice, and most types of pasta that are not whole grain. You should focus on eating mostly whole grains if you have to eat bread. Also, continue to avoid artificial sweeteners, as they can cause metabolic syndrome, increased risks for Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and more. You should continue using stevia if you need a sweetener.
In general, if you maintain most of the dietary changes that you had to make during Phase 2 and Phase 3, you will successfully maintain a low body fat percentage as Phase 3 comes to an end. If you do end up reverting back to some of your bad habits you can definitely start another round of the HCG diet. You should wait six weeks before starting the second round which includes the 3 weeks that you spend on Phase 3.
To get a medical consultation for your first round of the HCG diet, or to start another round of the diet, please visit our HCG order page for more details.