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Like many struggling with health and weight, HCG sounds as promising as it does unbelievable.  30 pounds in 30 days? Uh, yeah.  But ... well, 30 pounds in 30 days?  I guess I haven't been able to disengage my skepticism either.  If it sounds too good to be true....

HCG's opponents are at least as skeptical, if not more.  Of course people lose weight - who wouldn't on 500 calories a day? is among their most common of refrains.  Then again, that pat answer just doesn't cover it, does it?  Any scientist knows that the math driving that refrain simply doesn't work.

So, here we are, my and my "thick" friends, scratching our heads (not with our chips hand, mind you) and wondering:  now what? Hm.  For me, 'now what,' meant it was time to do my own "study." It's on.  I am going to do a full 42-day phase on HCG, and collect data critical to both sides of the debate.  I figure that between the math, the physics, the calories, something will have to cast a deciding vote.

A basic precept of data collection and analysis is consistency.  Given this, I will operate in keeping with four static components while on the plan.

First:  the plan.  I am using prescription sublingual drops, taken twice a day.  I am following the Pounds and Inches (download) protocol introduced by Dr. A.T.W. Simeons.  I point you to a scanned copy of Dr. Simeon's original  manuscript, not the viral retype,  but follow his plan as simplified here.  I am also taking Phentermine HCl 37.5mg and Lexapro daily to help control my hunger.

Next: the external influences.  I wear makeup and use face cream and lotion.  You can find a list of the face and skin products I use daily here (see Wk2, below, for this to make even a lick of sense).

Third: the data.  I will collect six variables every day for 42 days:  weight, drops, water, food, exercise, and ketosis.  Then:
  • I will report what I eat, and when, in my JOURNAL so that 'pro-HCGers' can pinpoint procedural flaws. 
  • I will keep a running comparison in my DAILY CHARTS on how much I actually lose versus should lose per my weight, caloric intake, and activity levels, so that 'con-HCGers' can poke their holes too - share the love.  
  • I will maintain a list formulas I use, with sources, in MATRICES to make scrutiny by either side easier.  
  • And, IF I work up the courage to post the weekly pictures I take, you'll find them in my PHOTOS.
Finally:  the behavior rules.  I am researching six HCG-related rules, one for each week of my VLCD Phase.  I discuss my findings in my Posts.  I will focus on why certain HCG diet rules exist in the first place.  They are:
  • WK1 - NO EXERCISE:  To Spin or Not to Spin - You Decide
  • WK2 - NO OIL-BASED LOTION or MAKEUP:  What's Up with the Crust-or-Bust Rule? 
  • WK3 - NO VITAMINS:  Uhhhhh Why?
  • WK4 - NO SPLENDA:  It Has NO Calories!  How on God's Green Earth is This A Problem????
  • WK5 - 42 DAYS MAX:  Is 42 Days of HCG per Round A Real Limit?
  • WK6 - PEE ON A STICK:  Keto Sticks and Pregnancy Tests:  Two Tests That Have Both HCG and Your Urine In Common

The Limits of My "Study"

Three things are important here.  First, you should know that I'm not an scientist.  My data is clean, sure.  But I didn't confirm whether the AMA vouched  for my BMR formula, or whether Self Magazine really did get its caloric values from the USDA.  That's ok, though:  I'm just looking for consistency, not the Lasker award. 

Next, I'm not in business.  At all.  So, I don't have a vested interest in making the data say what I want it to say, either way. 

Finally, I'm not an expert.  While I am happy to share my experiences, it would be imprudent of me to give advice, answer "how to" questions, and the like.  Trust me: LOTS of other people can do it better!

That's It

I will put my experience out there, for everyone to see.  Then, I (and others) will know whether I am following the HCG diet protocol.  I can pinpoint the reason for my success or failure, HGC or otherwise.  What I hope is, at the end of a seven week review, I will be able to answer a simple question for the skeptic in me: that is, does HCG as a weight loss aide really work?