Original email for context: Some folks have given me a list of free food like: 2 tbl skim milk a day, 2 tbl cottage cheese, 2 tbl onion for cooking, or even the small oil you make cook with or 1/2 cup broth to cook with. Are these really not to be counted in your calories? If not, why not? I don’t get it?
Anything that we eat during P2 is actually counted in our daily calorie intake especially if you are following the original protocol. There are many variations of the hCG diet and even with these that have higher calories like 700 or 800, or more variety of foods allowed, we still always count the calories in the foods.
When we give you the calories in the P2 hCG Diet recipes on the hcgchicarecipes site, we do use small amounts of some things like you mention – 2 tbs of minced onion or chicken broth etc, but we always count these calories in the final tally for the recipe.
I think what maybe some people meant they say they are “free” foods is not that we don’t count calories but that they are allowed – because the original protocol is very strict in what it says as far as it’s basically just twice a day only:
From the approved food list:
- 1 fruit
- 1 protein
- 1 veggie
- 1 grissini breadstick or melba
Then: 1 tbs milk total for day, juice of 1/2 lemon.
Original protocol didn’t even allow mixing of vegetables.
So by “free” foods, this is more of a modification where you are allowing for a little bit of other mixing and utilizing of various ingredients, while still counting the calories for these items though. (Ie. the 2 tbs. of minced onion is being considered a “spice” here and not as mixing vegetables when you have it with your chosen P2 Celery veggie for a meal, etc.)
Every person is different in what they feel comfortable with- some choose to adhere VERY strictly to the original Dr. Simeons protocol, just as he wrote it back in the 1950’s, while others are utilizing the many newer alternative protocols that allow either more calories, more ingredients, or both. What I have found is that many modifications are okay for people, but you have to kind of experiment and see what’s best for you. Even some strict protocol foods sometimes seem to cause stalls for people (cabbage, tomatoes, and beef are common culprits of this) while other alternate protocol ingredients may present no problem- so it’s definitely individual.