Weight loss on the HCG diet is generally half a pound to a pound and a half a day, and mostly sheds off in the first week of the diet. This can be a double-edged sword; for one it's a good thing, as people tend to need the most encouragement when they are starting the diet, but it also leads to a bit of a slowdown in weight loss a week or two into the diet. This can be discouraging as the great success you see early fades into a steadier decline than before, which can cause some people to panic or become irritated, and possibly even forgo finishing the diet.
The biggest misconception about HCG is that it works as a weight loss pill or fat burner, when it really doesn't. HCG is prescribed alongside a diet of extreme caloric restriction, which is where the weight loss comes form. The reason HCG is used alongside this diet is because the hormone can prevent the normal drawbacks that are seen with so few calories consumed a day, such as intense hunger pains and slowed weight loss as your body tries to fight and maintain every pound it can. Some people even claim to lose fat and muscle in a more favorable ratio while on the HCG diet. While this claim isn't clinically proven, several studies do suggest that HCG is helpful for stimulating hormone production. Example: an increase in HCG in male or female patience results in an increase of testosterone production, which is well known as a hormone that produces more muscle mass and a lower BMI.
Another stimulated production is that of FSH, a follicle-stimulating hormone that is elevated in women when HCG is present and key to the growth and reproductive processes in the body. In one study, it showed that regardless of age women with higher levels of FSH had more lean muscle mass.
But back to the point of stalling. One of the biggest reasons, though nobody wants to admit it, that people stall while using HCG is dietary cheating, with a night off once or twice through the cycle. Another error common to dieters is not taking into account calories from vitamins, or any added supplements like fish oil.
Not everyone who reaches a plateau has cheated or made an error. And when this happens, it is marked by a period of four to six days that result in no weight loss. And within the community of HCG dieters, there are a few methods widely accepted as plateau breakers.
The first is the apple day, which starts at one day's lunch and ends the next, and the dieter who has stalled is to eat six large apples whenever they feel the desire, though six is the most allowed. No other food or drink outside of plain water is allowed on apple day.
The second is steak day. On steak day, nothing is to be eaten throughout the day, though make sure to stay hydrated, until your dinner. And at dinner, eating a large lean cut of red meat with a minimal amount of salt will serve as your only meal until a few hours later, where a medium size tomato or apple can be eaten.
The fasting period during these days is generally useful for flushing out anything that is in your body that may not be facilitating weight loss as it should.
While people do stall on the diet, before trying an apple or steak day make sure to take into account any cheat days or extra calories from vitamins that you take, only then should you attempt either of the fasting solutions.