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The following information is for educational purposes only. Due to new FDA Compounding Guidelines and Telehealth Certifications,
Nu Image Medical no longer offers the HCG Weight Loss Program. GOOD NEWS! We have developed something better and easier: WAYT-less!

How to Reduce Cravings During Phase 2 of the HCG Diet

How to Reduce Cravings During Phase 2 of the HCG Diet
Phase 2 of the HCG diet is the hardest thing you will likely ever do to lose weight. This diet really works, but you have to put the effort into making it work. During phase two you are on a very low calorie diet, usually 500-700 calories per day. That isn't much, and you might find yourself feeling very hungry at first. You may also find yourself craving foods that are not on the very strict list of allowable foods while on your diet.

There are a number of ways that you can stave off these cravings and help you stay on track. You don't have to give in completely to still keep from being too hungry and stay away from foods like chocolate and ice cream. It takes willpower, but we are all weak. Use these tips to help you reduce your cravings and help you stay on track.

Tip #1 - Spread out your calorie intake

Spread out your calorie intake. If you eat all of your 500 calories in the first several hours of the day, you're going to be that much hungrier later in the day, and with nothing to do about it. You are much better off eating very small amounts throughout the day so that your stomach isn't as empty for as long.

The best way to do this is to eat something small every couple of hours. Eat an apple when you first get up, then when you have been up and moving for a while and start feeling hungry eat an actual breakfast food from the approved list. Eat a snack a couple of hours later, then a light lunch two hours after that. Follow this pattern and break up your 500 calories into five or six tiny meals. Your belly will feel less empty and you will be more likely to avoid breaking your diet or going over your calorie limit.

Tip #2 -  Eat filling foods that are lower in calories

Eat more foods that are filling with lower calories. Veggies are a great example. Some vegetables, like lettuce, are mostly water. You can eat virtually as much lettuce as you want and never go over your 500 calorie diet. Vinegar is allowed on the diet, as is onion and asparagus. Throw together a salad with tons of lettuce, a bit of onion and asparagus, and throw on some vinegar instead of salad dressing. You'll have an incredible meal that will keep you full for a long time, and never go over your calorie limit. Salad really is the key to helping you stay on this diet and not feel like you are starving.

Tip #3 - Drink extra water

Drink extra water. Water makes your belly feel full even though there isn't anything in it. If you drink extra water whenever you feel hungry you can stave off the hunger until your next meal. Drink water with every meal as well to help you get full faster and save those calories for later in the day.

Drinking lots of water will help you lose weight naturally as well. When you drink a lot of water you flush toxins and fat cells from your body. You will shed water weight and reduce bloating, all things that contribute to weight gain and loss. Drinking only 8 eight ounce glasses of water a day will not cut it when you are on this diet. Just remember that you can overdose on water, so keep it in moderation.

Tip #4 - Drink  lots of tea

Drink lots of tea when you're not drinking water. It is water, but it is also an appetite suppressant. Oo-long tea is particularly good at ending cravings and hunger, does not taste too bad, and is allowed on the HCG diet. In fact, you can have as much of it as you want. Just make sure you drink it plain. If you add anything to it, it is no longer on the approved list. No sugar, no honey.

Tip #5 - Do something to prevent yourself from eating

Do something that you would normally do that would prevent you from eating. A great example is to brush your teeth. You don't want to eat right after brushing your teeth. They are clean and your mouth smells pleasant. You don't want to go ruining that, do you? You might still feel hungry, but psychologically it will be easier to put off that meal a little while longer.

Tip #6 - Think about whether or not you're really hungry

Think about why you are hungry. Most of the time we do not eat because we are truly hungry and our bodies need food. A lot of the time we think we feel hungry because we are emotional or situational eaters. Are you bored? Think of something to do to pass the time and get your mind off of food. Are you lonely? Go out with some friends or visit a family member for the evening.

Are you stressed? Frustrated? Angry? Upset? These emotions are the ones that likely got you to the place you are today. Most people eat when they are emotional in these situations. In order to stave off cravings and stick to the phase 2 of the HCG diet you will have to make sure that you don't eat for these reasons. Think of ways to cope that don't involve food. Meditation is a great technique for many people. For others, something simple like reading a book or doing some crafting can be helpful.

Tip #7 - Eat something when you're truly hungry

When you are really, truly hungry, eat. If you stay too hungry for too long you will be more likely to binge and ruin your diet. If you feel like you are starving and you really haven't eaten much, eat something from the approved list. If you are worried about going over on your calories later in the day, make sure that whatever you eat is low calorie like the salad mentioned earlier or an apple or carrot. Even a cucumber or apple  works well. Just eat something, no matter how small and make sure that it is approved for the HCG diet, before you get to the point where you just can't take it anymore. Once you reach that point, it may be too late to avoid those cravings. It's even better to go slightly above your daily calorie limit only with approved HCG diet foods rather than binging and eating something completely off limits or cheating.

Try these strategies to control your hunger during phase 2 of the HCG diet, but if you're really struggling with it you can always contact a medical provider at Nu Image Medical to ask questions or get help at any time.

About the author

Dr. Constance Odom, MD

7 min read