Original email for context: I came across a few videos on YouTube of people sharing they regained all the weight back and more. Is this something that happens frequently? I just started this round and am a little freaked out now. I am scared to lose a bunch of weight and then regain it all back. Of course I would stick to good eating habits after the diet is over but just scared that I will be essentially messing with my metabolism or putting my body into fat storage mode due to thinking it is in starvation.
This is a very real concern. I have a little input here.
Let me give you a positive story first though to counteract the scary stuff you are seeing. My own story- I have been maintaining my hCG weight loss, with no further dieting, since late 2012. That’s over 6 years at the time of this writing. I’m still the same size today, size 4, that I was at the end of the hCG diet. You can see my own weight loss story and updates here.
But let’s talk about the concern. I think the likelihood of weight regain from any diet- whether hCG, atkins, low carb, keto, or something else, is pretty much the same.
I remember looking up the percentage of people who gain back when after weight loss online just in general with all dieting, and it was a very discouraging high number- the kind that makes you not want to even try and give up before you even start. So from the perspective of does the hCG protocol itself cause people to gain weight back more easily than other dies, I’m rather doubtful of. I think it’s possible that you might regain weight more quickly than other diets- meaning that those doing other diets may gain their weight back more slowly but they will still gain it back – a high number according to statistics. So if you are planning on doing a diet either way, don’t let that idea about weight regain be a deciding factor on whether you do this diet or another diet.
But let me share with you the very fixable reason I personally think there’s such a high rate of weight regain after all diets- that there is a concrete solution for, right now.
Here’s the problem:
There is no after-diet structure for almost any diet out there.
There is ALL this detail for the losing weight portion of any diet. And then when it comes time to figure out how to eat for maintenance, no longer losing weight, it’s like “try adding in some starches and see how it goes” or “just keep eating low carb, just more food”.
There is a complete lack of any structured detailed guidance that shows a person what eating for maintenance actually looks like. How to eat, how much, what to eat. How to make room for eating out or wine or how to fix little blunders we all make before it becomes a problem we have to diet again for.
I really do believe this is the main reason. The 2nd reason is that people do over time tend to be more loose and go back to old eating habits and so the weight gradually comes back on. Typically it’s vacations and holiday time periods that starts this process and then by the time people get back on track, they are 20-30lbs up.
The solution: A structured program that helps you stabilize your weight loss and shows you what eating for maintenance is like.
That’s what I made for the hCG diet. The ladies who follow my program for P3, called P3toLife, stabilize. They maintain.
The concern about metabolism. I have a post discussing this that you might find helpful:
While I don’t think judicious use of the hCG protocol causes thyroid or metabolism problems, as I testify to in that post above, I do think that many women have already, prior to even starting hCG, thyroid or adrenal problems, which was preventing them from losing weight in the first place. If these continue on unfixed, this definitely does make it harder to maintain weight long term because you have to eat less calories than a person with a healthy metabolism in order to maintain, and that’s just hard day in and day out.
The fixes for this are:
- Thyroid medication
- Weight lifting
I have been on thyroid medication since 2011 and while my dosing has varied, I still need it to this day. I do imagine maintaining would be harder without it and I might lose such a battle because I like to eat a fair amount of food. Having a healthy metabolism, even if it’s partially happening because of medication, makes that possible. If you are already on synthroid, or you had lab testing done that said your thyroid levels were normal, but you feel fatigued a lot- I highly encourage you to not stop there. There is info you don’t know about. The best website on the entire internet for education about what you really need to know, is here:
I have oversimplified things here. Other hormone imbalances can cause weight problems too, not just thyroid- too high cortisol levels from stress, progesterone, testosterone or estrogen imbalances- for help on resources for researching these problems go here:
When these get address in the right away, maintaining is much more possible.
Weight lifting. I know many women are afraid of this, but I am certain that crossfit and specifically lifting heavy weights has really changed my metabolism for the better, which allows me to eat more food on a daily basis without gaining weight. This just makes it easy to maintain. I highly recommend looking into a crossfit gym or some other place that has HEAVY weightlifting. They will train how to use them and you start light so you are not doing anything dangerous. And I kid you not, this is way more valuable to your metabolism than running on a treadmill, and it takes less time.
I hope this helps. What I really want to conclude with here is that, even IF you had a hormone imbalance, following a structured program for eating still seems to work most of the time for stabilizing! I am simply amazed at how reliably women who follow my P3toLife program do. They maintain- they just do. Because everything is laid out in a way that makes nutritional sense, and feel satisfying as well so it’s something they are happy eating long term.
So essentially, please don’t be afraid. All these stories of weight regain? It’s because they didn’t have a structured plan to follow, that’s all. They just needed more guidance to help them. Now you have it.