Pro-ana tips and tricks: how to become a miserable woman

This article is part of the Nutrition Freak project.

Yesterday I only ate two carrots, but then I swallowed from my boyfriend. Am I still in with the calories?” (from a pro ana blog) 003-skinny-model-vs-natural-beauty

The numerous women who search for the famous “pro ana tips and tricks” miss a very simple and important point: there are two kinds of beauty.

  • The first kind of beauty is the one depicted by the supermodels on the catwalks. Slim, light, ethereal, ruthless eyes. And I would add… they look a little bitchy and depressed isn’t it?
  • The second kind of beauty is in what most men search: lean BUT happy, vital women with glowing skin, bright eyes and hair, curves. In other terms: the sexy kind of beauty.

It is pretty evident to me that a woman who pursues anorexia by following the pro ana tips and tricks has chosen the first model.

Now, I am probably the least moralist person I know. I think that those who say “fat is beautiful” are very hypocriticals. It is not. Beauty, mere physical beauty, is subjective only to a certain extent. If the body type proposed by the media (and which is more frequently considered beautiful in real life) is not fat, there sure is a reason.

But the point is, if one really wants to go after physical beauty, why chosing the type of slim beauty that the “market” wants less? Why chosing the model that is not real?

Even those supermodels on the catwalks aren’t ruthless bitches in their real lifes (hopefully). They simply wear that expression because they’re told to do so by the stylist. But can you imagine them in real life situations with that attitude? Visiting their grandparents? Preparing an exam? Bringing their little brothers to school?

Unfortunately… A ruthless bitch is exactly what the pro ana tips and tricks suggest to become.

Because it is clear that we are not only talking about becoming exaggeratedly thin here. No. By checking them (I collected some in the gray squares on the sides) it is evident that there is a huge psychological component in these advice. Therefore, let’s investigate both the aspects: aesthetic and psychological.


To a certain kind of diet corresponds a certain body result. Few things have a huge and quick impact on the body as its fuel: food. 003-anorexic-model-catwalk

Now, what is the aesthetic result obtainable with the pro ana tips and tricks? Is anorexia a good stopover, that eventually leads a woman to become a “gorgeous actress” like those on tv?

The answer is a sounding NO.

Anorexia is not a stopover, it doesn’t bring anyone anywhere because it is a disease that not only makes a woman sick, it also makes her physically unappealing.

Truly beautiful women, despite slim and despite caring a lot about what they eat, never cross an important line. That line is called nutrition.

Chances are that most ladies in the show business, who are regarded as beauty models, have rigorous but very balanced and nutritient-dense diets. They would hardly follow these tips, recognizing that they have probably been written by some 15 years old girl with a lot of confused ideas.

As for the slim girls that, yes, populate the runway, a clarification is necessary. Only a fraction of them are really anorexic, and guess what? They are there because the fashion brand wanted to generate a controversy and receive media attention. The reason why they’re there is exactly that they’re anorexic, not that they’re physically attractive.


You can restrict your calorie regimen, but you can’t also let coffe, chewing gums and ice cubes be the carriers of these calories. It’s unrealistic, and if you try to do it your days will become a pain, being continuously obsessed by “evil” foods. You will, for sure, become an aesthetically miserable woman: sexually undesirable, bony, dull.

Simply avoid that.

Now, a little add-on. Without considering extreme conditions of anorexia, like the girl in the picture, I just want to state why it’s not even smart to adopt “acceptable” skinniness as beauty target.

The media, for example.

The media broadcast both the kinds of beauty that I mentioned at the beginning, indiscriminately: the skinny girl and the “hot chick”. What happens if both appear, for example, on a talk show?

Simple: you see plenty of comments on the dedicated forums in internet of horny men who say the wildest things about the hot chick, almost ignoring the other.

So, a wise person would ask “well you’re saying that the non-skinny, hot girl with curves is “lucky” because she attracts a lot of hornies who just want sex?”.

Of course not. The best I can wish to a woman is to discover that there’s so much more in life than physical beauty and that she doesn’t need to become obsessed by her image to be popular among men, women, or whosoever she wants to be popular with.

But I’ll make a step back from the “best” and follow the line “if being beautiful really counts for you, at least chose the smart way”. At least use as model a lean, juicy, healthy looking woman. Pick a sportswoman, or even one of those dollies that populate the calendars, but not the bunches of bones.

There’s not much you can do if you don’t have big curves (unless you opt for a surgeon) but there’s a lot you can do to be lean and juicy: real nutrition and workout.

Leave anorexia alone, that is dumb beauty. It is a misinterpretation of what men like.

Now, a little bit of psychology.


Anorexia is a secret. 003-top-model-attitude

This is how a lot of women (who suffer from it) consider it.

  • “Bring frequently chips or biscuits up to your room, throw them away and leave the empty bags around.”
  • “Get out, tell your parents you’re gonna eat at your friend’s house, and when you arrive at your friend’s house say that you already ate at home.”
  • Delete your web history so nobody can discover that you read ana blogs.

Anorexia is usually considered something to hide from others. Relatives. Friends. Why? Because they would not understand it, they would fight it.

It is based on the assumption, coming from the ego, that “I am right and they are wrong”. “They would fight it because they don’t understand it.”

But really… what is there to understand?

That your trying to become a human wreck? Of course they would fight such an attempt, if they love you.

Anorexia is polarized towards hate, hate on the body, hate on life. This is why it tries to run away from love, to lie to it, to elude it.

But it is just a giant illusion, it brings no real benefits but harms the psyche as much as it makes the body ugly and non functional.

It must be noticed that anorexia has a lot of appeal on teenage girls, because it makes them feel part of a sort of “special club”. A desire which is very strong in that period of life.

This is why some blogs with a bunch a crazy, harmful tips have become a meeting point for confused girls who exchange experiences and feed each other’s negative emotions.

Their thought patterns are repetitive, monotonous, the only concern is losing weight.

Again, making a step back to more practical arguments, I want to clarify that no man wants beside him a human wreck who spends her whole days counting calories, feeling “superior”, and using all her brain-power to find ways to escape from food.

That kind of psyche, that the pro ana tips and tricks promote, is definitely “out of market”: there is no demand from men in real life for it. It’s surely not smart trying to supply such a product. There is only a little demand from the fashion estabilishment, but that is the case I cited above. The case where the lead actress of the story is not your beauty but your anorexia.

It is her that walks on the catwalk, it is her that generates clamor.


In my country there is a very nice proverb that I think suits very well the topic. It says:

Men like blondes, but marry the brunettes“.

In our case, the blonde is the anorexic, bony model that walks through the calwalk generating a peak of attention for few minutes of life (and then goes back to her life of sadness), and most of that attention is shock for her skinniness.

The brunette is the “real woman”, the one who has a really nutrition-wise diet, who practice sport and is fit, who is vital, with a funny sense of humor and who is focused on all the aspects of life, not just her reflection in the mirror.

A woman who doesn’t live her life just to be perfect and ethereal for few minutes, but she swims through life everyday, in every moment, with personality and talent.

I say: be the brunette. You can do it!


1. “Low self esteem motivates you. Wear baggy clothes to make you feel fatter than you actually are, and hate every reflection you see.

2. “Get your tongue pierced, so you won’t be able to eat while it’s healing.

3. “Insult yourself. If you eat, call yourself a weak fatass in your mind. It works. It makes you feel worthless for eating.

4. “Think of how you’ll be superior to everyone else in your grade when you have your perfect little body.

5. “Drink something hot like green tea or bullion cubes, it confuses your tummy and makes you think you’re full.

6. “If you get a really bad craving, turn on the tv. It’s most likely that there will be some program with lots of gorgeous, skinny actresses on it. It’s a definite way to curb an appetite.

7. “Eat with the opposite hand.

8. “If you don’t do it already, drink diet soda instead of regular soda.

9. “Spoil your food: put too much salt, pepper, sauce on it. That way you won’t want to eat it.”

10. “Thinspiration is your best friend. You think you’ve lost weight? Trust me, you haven’t. Just check out the models and you’ll see you haven’t.”

11. “Clean something gross, like the cat’s litter, the toilet, your boyfriend’s closet, and you’ll lose your appetite.”

12. “Eat just the minimun necessary until your tummy cramps will be over.

13. “Feel the emotion of total fasting, the effect of glasses of vinegar or lemon juice in your empty stomach, and run until you faint.

14. “If you really have to eat, eat negative calories foods only.

15. “Eat using chopsticks.

16. “Punch yourself in the stomach.

17. “If your friends start to become suspicious, claim that you became vegetarian or vegan.”

18. “Leave dishes in the sink, leave evidence that you have eaten something, even if you haven’t.”

19. “Say that you have your period and if don’t feel like eating anything.”

20. “Being sick is gold, you can stay all day in the house and eat nothing, and your parents will not know because they will be at work.”

21. “Talk about food like if you’re in love with it when you’re around family and friends. Talk about the greak cake your mother made, talk about how great are McDonalds fries.

22. “Use any kind of excuse not to eat: I’m allergic, I already ate, I don’t have money, I am in love and lost the appetite.


Diet related diseases

While I always say that “there is only one diet”, people who had poor nutritional habits for years develop diseases that require changes to the way they eat. The awareness of the population about how much their foods are responsible for health issues is nowhere near I feel it should. diet-related-diseases

It is generally considered inevitable to be sick once in awhile, to have flu in winter, colds, headaches, migraines. Not to mention more severe conditions, that are developed after years of inadequate diet. It is a tribute to the adaptability of humans that we are able to endure so much time eating crap before reaching a breaking point.

Today, some diseases are commonly known for being strongly impacted by the diet. For example obesity and heart strokes. But how many other diet related diseases are there?

A lot! There is an almost 1:1 relation between diet and many modern diseases. The proof is that diseases like diabetes, ibs, diverticulitis etc exploded only in recent times. They were rare some generations ago. Yes, they had other kinds of problems due to malnutrition, scarce hygiene in the preparation of the food, but we “modern people” have been so fool to replace those problems with new ones. Especially in the rich countries, where there is abundance of everything and the virtual possibility to have a fantastic diet.

From an historical point of view now.

We evolved over millions of years to depend on a specific range of nutrients. After all this evolution, our body accepts some foods and rejects other foods as toxic. The problem is that the way we eat has never changed so drastically and rapidly as it did in the past decades. And our body didn’t have enough time to adapt.

Imagine, it didn’t have time to adapt to gluten and lactose, these were introduced in our diet ~8000 years ago with the agriculture and animal husbandry. How is it supposed to adapt to all the crazy stuff with which we have been feeding it recently? McDonalds? Coca Cola? Doritos?

In the last years, what changed more in our diet is:

  • The whites: the addition of enormous amounts of sugar, salt, refined white flour. Everywhere.
  • The cooking: almost everything is cooked today, even things that could be eaten raw easily.
  • The processing: a considerable part of the food is industrial today

This third point is particularly significant here.

The food industry is responsible, directly or indirectly, for many of the diet related diseases we have today. Entrepreneurs enter the food industry for a reason: money. And while pursuing money they usually don’t care of what’s the best for their customers health.

Low quality ingredients can be hidden by altering the taste and look of food using chemicals (sweeteners, artificial flavors, dyes). The life of the products can be prolonged to years (preservatives). Animals can be fed with cheap flours, sometimes illegally made by other animals (see mad cow disease). Vegetables can be protected from insects with pesticides. They can be turned to GMO for higher yields and reduced costs.

Unfortunately, all these “can” are so profitable for entrepreneurs that they usually become “do”. If an ingredient has low quality, but high enough to pass the minimum imposed by law, it will be used. I think that the laws about food are too permissive, and that’s because they are frequently made by people with inadequate nutrition knowledge.

Beside this machine of industrial production there is a huge machine of marketing.

Television and other media bomb us with messages that highlight the positive sides of these processed foods (usually having fake relevance) and don’t say a word about the negatives (that have strong impacts on our health).

This makes me think to my sad personal story with sweets. Here in Italy there is a very popular food company that produces sugary snacks, and I remember seeing plenty of their commercials when I was a child, as many other kids of my generation. My mother saw a lot of TV too, and unfortunately she raised me with plenty of these snacks. As result, now I have almost all of my teeth with fillings.

It’s amazing how even a minor issue like caries is considered a sort of thing that “happens”. Like if it’s normal during time to cure caries here and there at the dentist.

But caries are a small problem compared to many other diseases. In some cases, a doctor that solves everything with few sessions and few hundreds of dollars is a quick fix that is not available. And that does not work.

The only thing that works is a natural diet made of real food. Grown in the fields, not in the industries.

5 Homemade energy drinks

There are several good reasons to opt for homemade energy drinks and leave the commercial ones in the grocery shelves. To name a few:

  • energy comes from nutrients, like minerals and vitamines, not stimulants like caffeine. You can use a variety of whole foods to get all the nutrients you need.
  • you get “quality sugar” from the whole package (fructose + fiber) rather than the harmful refined sugar of those metal cans.
  • you can save money. I’ll propose three cheap options (but also a couple of more expensive ones)
  • the effect is gonna last more (not just a hormone/stimulant induced energy peak)

Making energy drinks at home is wise because it me004-homemade-energy-drinkans thinking of your body needs in advance. Not like those casual athletes that “oh… I crave some sugary liquid. Let’s get something at the vending machine.”

You prepare your drink and put it in a sports bottle, then you can bring it directly to the gym or you can store it in the fridge. It’s going to last for some days, contrarily to those cans with infinite shelf life. Ok, let’s see the 5 natural homemade energy drinks:

1. The first is based on a nutritional wonder: coconut water.

Coconut water is a great electrolyte replacement, and it’s particularly useful when you workout for long or you work outside. 004-energy-drink-coconut-water-avocado

The electrolyte content (sodium and particularly potassium) challenges that of the commercial products, with an amount of carbohydrates which is significantly lower (there is not all that added sugar).

It is super hydrating and natural.

By adding some cubes of avocado pulp and mixing, you will obtain a pale green liquid like mine, shown here.

Avocado is rich in monounsaturated fats, it has significant quantities of vitamins C, E, K, folate, panthotenic acid, magnesium, potassium, copper, manganese. Definitely a fruit that you want in your diet. The taste is very soft and delicate. In case you want to add some sparkle, simply add few drops of lime juice.

2. This is the simplest and the quickest

This drink requires virtually zero time to be made, in fact you just put the ingredients in the bottle, shake and that’s it. Water, lemon, honey, mint. 004-homemade-energy-drink-lemonwater-honey-mint

Lemon water, a liquid that you obtain by simply squeezing a -possibly organic and ripe- lemon into water, is a magnificent and refreshing energy drink by itself.

High in vitamin C and potassium, with good amounts of calcium and phosphorus, lemons have an alkalizing effect, contrarily to caffeine which is acid forming.

Add just a tip of honey, possibly raw (the one on the grocery shelves is frequently pastorized and heated to improve preservation and prevent crystallization, but that kills useful nutrients).

Honey sugar is better than table sugar (but keep in mind that it’s still sugar, so don’t exaggerate), and it is absorbed more slowly by the organism. In other terms, honey has a lower glycemic index than table sugar.

Optionally you can add some chopped peppermint leaves (I would, since I love the scent) that are going to add some flavour (and vitamin A). It’s not easy to find fresh mint in the groceries, this is why it could be a good move to grow your own plant in a vase.

3. This is a smoothie that contains green fuits and vegetables

Mine came out quite dense, but it does its job. After all, who decided that an energy drink must be a transparent liquid? A fruit smoothie gives the boost you need and fits the sports bottle as well. 004-homemade-energy-drink-kiwi-green-leaves

With a little bit of pure water as base, you can obtain roughly a glass of this by mixing: two kiwis, half banana, celery, parsley, some chard leaves and few drops of lemon juice.

It’s looks a little bit like broth, but I can ensure that the taste is great (I just had one glass) and even more important, it’s full of useful elements.

In particular the green leaves contain plenty of phytochemicals, thanks to the exposition to the sun.

4. This is a homemade version of the ACE juice that you can see at the grocery store, just much better

Primarily, that ace is usually very diluted with water (a typical composition contains water and only 20% orange, 5% carrot, 5% lemon) while your version can use little or no water at all. 004-homemade-energy-drink-ace

The more fruit you add, the more nutrients you get, the more energy you’re going to have.

Vitamins A, C and E are just few of the numerous vitamins present in the three fruits.

Possibly choose organic ingredients, especially the carrots.

Since carrot are roots, they’re immersed in the soil. They’re totally in contact with it. Non organic carrots are frequently immersed sandy soils full of chemicals and pesticides.

With one orange, one carrot and half lemon you should obtain a big glass of this.

5. The star of this last homemade energy drink is spirulina

With the purpose of producing half liter of liquid (approximately 18 fl oz) star004-homemade-energy-drink-apple-spirulina-mangot from two fingers of pure water and add to idd a spirulina tablet or half teaspoon of spirulina powder.

Spirulina is a rising star in human nutrition: it has a significant amount of proteins (~60%) and contains all the essential aminoacids. It has vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B9, A, C, D, E, a pletora of minerals, alpha-linoleic acid, a lot of bioavailable pigments.

To build the body of this drink we’re gonna use two ingredients that are much more common: an apple and half mango.

Again, I highly suggest to use organic apples. In this way you can juice the fruit using the skin too (that is the best part that contains fiber and phytoelements), otherwise it’s better to peel them. In fact, in non-organic apples the pesticides are more concentrated on the external, on the skin.

The mango is gonna add color, taste, and a load of vitamin A and potassium.


Notes: this article is a “survivor” of my Nutrition freak project, a website that I created in the past entirely about nutrition and health. After awhile I decided to close that website, and publish my articles on nutrition and health here in my personal blog, together with the other articles on different topics.


10 Tips to eat healhty on a budget

Eating healthy on a budget is more than doable: it’s easy. In fact, nature “programmed” foods exactly to be nutritious and cheap. It’s humans who complicated everything: they turned foods into commercial products, frequently devoided of nutrients and pumped in price. 007-orange-money-bank

Go for nature. If you want to eat healthy on a budget, chose foods that arrived to your plate with a minimum human intervention. As I often say: “the less humans took part in the process of creating the food, the better it is”.

The healthiest foods are those that are basically harvested and brought to the grocery store. Fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains. Otoh, the unhealthiest foods are those that are created with long and expensive industrial processes. Think to red meat (often full of hormones and toxins) and low quality cheese (all salt and cholesterol).

To this general rule of thumb there are few exceptions. For example fish and organic products (healthy but expensive). Or sugary snacks and fast food (harmful but cheap). So a little extra judgement is needed, a judgement I used to write the following 10 tips. I hope they’ll be useful to you to save money and eat well.


Legumes are a marvellous source of proteins (other than minerals and vitamins) and much, much cheaper than meat. The cost of beans, lentils, peas, chickpeas is ridiculous. 007-cheap-legumes

I suggest you to buy the dried ones to boil at home, rather that the canned pre-cooked ones.

With a cheap bag of dried legumes you can prepare many portions of a proteic meal, with the advantage that you can boil them at moderate temperature for longer (saving more nutrients).



Nutrition is, somehow, really democratic. No matter if you’re poor or rich, the best thing you can do for your health is the same: have a diet abundant in fruits and vegetables. And fresh fruits and vegetables are generally very cheap. 007-affordable-fruit

If organic products are out of your reach, prefer fruits with thick skin (like orange, banana, melon, pineapple) or those that anyway aren’t in the “black” list for pesticides.

For example non-organic apples, peaches, apricots and grapes have frequently high levels of pesticides, while kiwi, broccoli, cabbage, onions have generally low levels of pesticides (even if non-organic).


As I wrote above, fish is generally expensive. But there are some interesting exceptions: small oily fish. That kind of fish which is caught in big amounts in the oceans (cheap) and which is full of omega3 fatty acids (healthy). 007-sardines

For example mackerel, anchovies, sardines, herrings. They are all very affordable, and their advantage over big predator fish (like tuna) is that they tend to accumulate less contaminants.





White bread, white rice and all the products based on white flour are definitely cheap. The problem here is on the health side: all these “white carbs” are unhealthy. whole-rye-bread

Ideally, you should eatbrown carbsfrom whole grains. But whole grains (grains that are more nutritious because their germ and bran were not removed) may be slightly riskier if non-organic (the external cortex is kept, and there’s where pesticides may accumulate).

So keep an extra eye open: if you find whole grain products that are organic AND even affordable take them. But if the organic version is too expensive for you, I would still prefer whole grain products (even if non organic) than any white refined product.


Key tip for eating healthy on a budget: prepare most of your own meals at home. It’s time well spent: you can use fresh ingredients, reduce the chemical additive007-homemade-egg-pastas, supervise the cooking.

When you eat outside not only you spend much more, you’re frequently vulnerable to those that I call the “big risks of the restaurant“: receive partially burnt foods (burnt spots on pizza, toasts, meat are carcinogenic), get foods with excessive amounts of salt or sugar, and eat foods cooked in (very) crappy oils.



The best thing you can do to shorten the production chain is to grow your own food. 007-home-grown-vegetables

If you have a space for gardening and have time to work on it, you can use it to grow delicious vegetables. They will cost almost zero and they will be super fresh and healthy.

If you can’t do the work by yourself, buying locally from a farmer is still a wise move.


This tip may may sound weird in this context, but it’s well know by nutritionists that a lot of people confuse thirst with hunger. 007-tap-water

What happens, is that a surprising percentage of people on the “western diet” live in a state of perennial dehydration.

They simply don’t drink enough water. The consequent thirst is often confused with hunger, and this mechanism brings to overeating. And overeating brings to addictional expenses for unhealthy, unnecessary food.


Micronutrients (minerals, vitamins, omega3) are those nutrients that are needed by our body in small quantities, but they are still needed.

There’s no need to buy commercial multivitamins, the same nutrients are present in a pletora of natural herbs and seeds. If almonds, walnuts, flaxseed, chia see007-natural-supplement-seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds (and so on) seem not so cheap to you, I’ll tell you something instead: they are.

You need small quantities of these, so yes a bag of walnuts can cost even 4-5 dollars, but you can eat 1-2 walnuts a day and be just fine. A bag will last for weeks or months. And a teaspoon of flaxseed per day is more than enough. Not to mention herbs: they give taste to your meals, add some good phytochemicals and are practically free.


It’s easier to get better deals if you buy your food in bulk, rather than buying small quantities often. 007-discounted-bulk-food

Grocery stores apply special offers to “family packs”, so keep an eye open for these. This is valid for all the products that don’t expire quickly and can be stored in your kitchen.




Eating healthy on a budget is the art that many mums know well, as the are used to recycle leftovers. 007-recycled-leftovers

Especially with kids, there is often something left in the plate at the end of a meal.

Learn from mums: if it’s not too messy, there’s no hurry to throw that food away. Give it a second chance tomorrow, possibly baking the leftovers in the oven rather than frying them in oil.

The HCG diet scam

I noticed that this HCG weight loss program is generating a lot of interest recently, so I started researching about it. Hormones injections? 500 calories per day? It didn’t take me much time to start thinking that it was a scam. But I kept on researching, and while I was studying the bohcg-injections-bisoks and the articles, the idea that this diet is a nonsense became robust.

First, I think in the process of evaluating information you should always consider from what source that information comes from.

The idea of the HCG weight loss program comes from Albert Simeons, an english endocrinologist who died in 1970. In his book Pounds and inches a new approach to obesity he explains his theories about obesity. They made me roll my eyes as I read them. Here some pearls

I have always held that overeating is the result of the disorder, not its cause.

Good starting point to create a new crazy diet: switching causes with effects.

Obesity in all its many forms is due to an abnormal functioning of some part of the body.

Of course, there is “some part somewhere” that causes obesity…

Persons suffering from this particular disorder will get fat regardless of whether they eat excessively, normally or less than normal. A person who is free of the disorder will never get fat, even if he frequently overeats.

Really. And what about the poor areas of Africa? There should be fat people there too even if they are starving. And what about the US, with one of the fattest populations on the planet? Is it only a coincidence that their diet is frequently full of junk food?

If I can be forgiven for comparing my fellow-endocrinologists with wicked godmothers, HCG has certainly been their Cinderella, and I can only romantically hope that its extraordinary effect on abnormal fat will prove to be its fairy godmother.

I usually appreciate personality and sense of humor even in professional work, but this book clearly isn’t anywhere professional.

However, let’s see what this quick-fix diet consists of. In short, it’s about starving yourself with a 500 calories diet and adding HCG. Human Chorionic Gonadotropin is an hormone produced by pregnant women in their early pregnancy, with a peak at about 13 weeks. Simeons says he observed a reduction of abnormal-excessive fat in pregnant women on a calorie deficient diet, deducing that this effect was due to HCG.

His theory was that this hormone somehow programs the hypothalamus to trigger the consumption of this excess of fat instead of lean muscle, thus could be used to realize the dream of many: lose fat only where it’s needed.

According to this, Simeons created the following HCG weight loss program:

STANDARD CYCLE (described more in detail in the book)

  • Weight: to lose up to 15 pounds (7 kg).
  • Duration: 26 days. The duration remains the same even if the patient needs to lose less than 15 pounds.
  • Diet: 500 calories per day.
  • HCG: 23 daily injections from the first day. No injections in the last 3 days, only the 500 calories diet.

HEAVIER CYCLE (the book is not very precise here, the following comes out making two counts)

  • Weight: to lose more than 15 pounds (7 kg) but less than 34 pounds (15 kg)
  • Duration: ~48 days. The treatment stops earlier if the 34 pounds loss is reached.
  • Diet: 500 calories per day.
  • HCG: 40 injections here. He suggests only 6 injections per week to delay a sort of immunization effect that may appear after a while. That makes ~45 days. Not repeated, but I deduce that the last 3 days HCG-free thing is still valid, that makes ~48 days.

While the 40 injections limit is to avoid immunization to HCG, the 34 pounds limit is clearly intended not to weaken the body too much.

MORE CYCLES: to lose more than 34 pounds (15 kg) the treatment can be repeated. But after a 40 days cycle, a resting period of 6 weeks must be observed to make the hormone effective again.

This is basically what the HCG weight loss program is. Before I go with further details, I need to point out two things.

Simeons says clearly that the assumption of HCG must happen through injections. This is the original version of the HCG weight loss program, and drops are never cited in his book. But injections means needles, and this creates a big problem for the industry of fraudsters who market this diet: people is uncomfortable with the idea of being injected daily with needles. hcg-drops

So how did they make the hormone assumption more inviting? Drops! Easy to take for customers, easy to ship worldwide. The funniest thing is that since FDA declared the use of HCG fraudulent (December 2011) some suppliers started to produce HCG free drops!

Geniuses. Selling HCG products without HCG.

Second, there are a lot of misunderstandings and errors in internet about this subject. I browsed many sites that promote the HCG weight loss program to understand what it was.

But it’s even hard to find a consistent description of the plan: time schedules and hormone dosages vary from site to site. I am pretty sure that many authors of those sites have never read the Simeons book.


Back to the diet plan, there is something totally crazy.

Have you seen the program above? Well, you can’t just go to your physician and start it like nothing. No, you have to prepare. There is a prerequisite to start the HCG weight loss program that doctor Simeons explain well: you must eat like a pig for one week.

I’m not kidding. He says that since the 500 calories is very hard (I would not say the contrary, of course) before starting the program the patient must stock all the normal fat reserves by eating to capacity:

highly concentrated foods such as milk chocolate, pastries with whipped cream sugar, fried meats particularly pork, eggs and bacon, mayonnaise, bread with thick butter and jam, etc“.

He’s basically saying that you should eat some of the most harmful, chemical-loaded, processed foods around. I could understand if there was some logic about the calorie quantities (there is not).

But here we are not talking about simple highly caloric foods, that cause obesity instead of preventing it. Here we are talking about foods that have many other side effects on the health of a person. Diabetes, high cholesterol, dental caries to name a few. This is pure folly.


Take a look in the websites that market the HCG weight loss program. You will find enthusiast tones. You fill find lots of evidence from people swearing on the effectiveness of the hormone there. But if you dig deeper you can find real sites not sponsored by the sellers, and forums in those sites where the truth comes out.

People writing that they’re not able to follow the plan, because it’s too strict. They talk about the cravings, the hunger, the exceptions they do in the night, the early weight loss (due to the starvation) always followed by new gains of weight.

Don’t fall into this trap. Don’t think in terms of 26 days or 48 days, because diet is not something that is done for a short period. Diet is something you have for life, and it’s based on your lifestyle and attitude.

You can’t stress your organism by eating crap for one week, then starve it for some weeks, then come out of the period with a fit body and expect your life to be the perfect. This is just a nonsense.

So, stay away from the HCG diet, in my opinion is definitely a scam.