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It's easy to make mistakes on the HCG diet because of its strict and specific dietary and lifestyle requirements, but most of them are easily avoidable with the proper planning and awareness. Sometimes mistakes on the diet are unavoidable, but if you try to limit them as much as possible you'll get much better results. Below are some of the more common mistakes that you should try your best to avoid as you progress along in your diet.
Not drinking enough water is an easy mistake to make, as many of us don't drink enough water on a regular basis. On the HCG diet it's especially important to drink at least a half-gallon of water each day or more to flush toxins and ketones out of the body and to avoid weight gain from water retention. You will also need to continue to drink at least a half-gallon of water throughout Phase 3. Drinking plenty of water will decrease any water weight gain, and in general it's important for your metabolism especially when your body is in ketosis. The recommended amount is one half gallon to one gallon, and make sure that the water is either filtered or bottled.
You should only use a pharmaceutical grade HCG product under the direction of medical doctors and never make the mistake of purchasing homeopathic HCG products and trying the diet on your own without guidance. Homeopathic HCG products are illegal and they have not been proven to work for any weight loss purpose at all. They also cannot be sold over the counter due to a recent FDA ruling, so anyone who is selling them is technically breaking the law. Also you have to be careful when purchasing injections. The quality of the HCG injections can make a major difference for the diet, if they are not certified pharmaceutical grade then you should not waste your money on them.
Going out to eat during the VLCD phase is generally a bad idea unless it is a restaurant that cooks with organic foods and allows you to customize your meals to follow the HCG diet protocol. The problem with going out to eat is that you won't be able to count the calories in the meals that you get very easily, and you might get a meal with ingredients that are not approved by the diet protocol even if you request something that is very close to a HCG diet recipe that you would make at home.
During the VLCD phase you should try to eat nearly every meal at home and follow the strict guidelines of the diet guide for the best results. There are several simple HCG recipes available in our HCG diet recipe book that you can try, and even though the food choices are limited on the HCG diet there are still many acceptable spices and other ingredients that you can use to enhance the flavor of foods. If you have organic foods available for purchase nearby you should try to use them in every HCG diet meal. Non-organic foods can have pesticides, hormones, antibiotics and other potentially harmful chemicals.
You will need to carefully count your calories every day during the VLCD phase, and the best way to do this is by using a calorie counter app. It's very easy to eat too few or too many calories on any diet, and doing either will affect your weight loss. Eating too few calories will cause your body to go into starvation mode and will preserve your abnormal fat instead of burning it, in spite of the effect of HCG which would normally prevent that from happening. Too many calories will result in HCG not being as effective for burning fat.
You will need to stick to the protocol in regards to food choices to avoid metabolic changes in your body. You should not make replacements such as adding more breadsticks and reducing your fruit intake for one meal, even though the calories may still add up at the end of the day to be 500. The food choices are specifically selected by medical doctors to optimize the rate of HCG assisted fat metabolism. If you try to consume too many carbohydrates for instance, your body may not metabolize fat as quickly and it can cause your body to switch out of ketosis.
This can be easily overlooked, but you should not handle any oils, or use lotions or creams that have an oil base during the HCG diet. Oils from these products can be absorbed by your skin and interfere with HCG. Dr. Simeons found that people who use cosmetics with oil regularly can plateau with their weight loss while on the diet. Be sure that you only use acceptable condiments as recommended in the diet guide that do not contain oil, and that you never use butter, cooking oil, or margarine at any point during the diet.
The best way to cook food on the HCG diet is from raw, organic ingredients so you know exactly what you are cooking with. If cook with premade seasonings be sure to thoroughly read the ingredients and check that there is no starch, oil or sugar. If you aren't sure, the safest bet is to not use premade seasonings and pick from the list of approved seasonings and spices in the diet guide.
Exercise is a passion for many people but it will interfere with the HCG diet. The 500 calorie limit is specifically set for people who don't exercise and for people with active lifestyles, but it does not compensate for the large calorie burden that strenuous exercise will put on you. You should do your best to keep exercise to a bare minimum or just don't do it at all during the VLCD phase. As soon as you reach Phase 3 you can exercise all you want, so be patient during the VLCD phase and remember that you are burning abnormal fat and will be much leaner once you get back into your exercise routine.