Thursday, April 21, 2011


As you know, I have been doing Atkins now for over two years.  No one has tried harder than I have to diligently follow the plan.  I know there have been a few slips and off-plan meals here and there, but I have gone several months at a time without “cheating” and my weight has not budged, and has even increased for seemingly no reason.  Here is my weight chart since I started:

As of today, I weigh a whopping three pounds less than I was when I started on March 15, 2009.  The two times my weight has gotten below 140 pounds were short-lived, and no amount of tweaking fat, protein and carbs has proven to be successful for more than a few weeks at a time.  I know that my hormonal issues are a factor, too, but no amount of adjusting  them has given any relief, either.

I know that I started losing weight when Colette Heimowitz, the Atkins nutritionist, put me on 1400 calories and 11 net carbs, but the good results did not last.  There have been many times in the past two years that I have gone back to that plan, and it has not brought the same results – there are even times that I gain weight eating this way.  There is no rhyme or reason to it.

I have taken the advice of Gary Taubes to just stay the course, hoping that my fat stores will finally open up if I just keep eating low carb consistently.  It’s been two years, and the fat is not only not decreasing, but it is increasing in defiance of the science.

I’m just really weary and don’t know that there is anything else I can do, food-wise, to finally get to a healthy body fat percentage.  I only want to get to the high end of normal, which is 25%, and as of this morning, I am still 36.3%, which is too high for good health.  I still have 20 pounds of fat to lose to hit that conservative goal.  My waist-to-hip ratio is 0.795, which is only a few scant hundredths of a point to being dangerous and far above the recommended 0.700.  My waist-to-height ratio is 0.508, when it should be closer to 0.400 for good health.

I can’t go on like this, and knowing that I am in the new book as a success story is really bothering me.  Not to mention that people on the Atkins Community Forum look up to me and think I am doing well.  I feel like a fraud.  I visit the forum every day, but have all but stopped giving any advice.

It may sound like I am giving up and going back to a low fat, low calorie, high carb way of eating, but nothing could be further from the truth.  Not only do I know too much now to ever do that, but when I have eaten that way, I didn’t lose weight doing it.

Something has to give.  I spend a ridiculous amount of time on Fitday, trying to balance my food.  My life revolves around my weight loss and weight gain and it has become an obsession.  I want to live a normal life, but if I do not do all this work, my weight will go even higher and I will get even unhealthier, which does not make for a normal or happy life.  My dad has always told me to just go ahead and be fat and happy.  Right.  The words "fat" and "happy" do not belong in the same sentence, at least not for me.

At the urging of my bioidentical hormone doctor, I have been researching homeopathic hCG for the past few weeks.  My doctor has used the protocol herself and recently lost 35 pounds in about six weeks.  I have read the main book, Pounds and Inches, written by A.T.W. Simeons, M.D. in the 1950’s, which actually has some similarities with the way Dr. Atkins and Gary Taubes look at the disregulation of fat storage.  I have also looked at every website I could find on homeopathic hCG and real hCG, and I have read everything I could find on the supposed dangers of using either one of them.  My doctor recommends the homeopathic version.

What I have found is that the research that has been done on hCG has been faulty, not unlike the research that was done “proving” that saturated fat is unhealthy.  So at this point, all the evidence is anecdotal, whether positive or negative.  There are no reliable studies.

Day before yesterday, I made the decision to do the homeopathic version of the hCG diet to try to lose this 20 pounds of abnormal fat and I have ordered my supplies from a reputable company online.  The hCG will arrived yesterday, and I plan to start on tomorrow.  My husband, Bill, has had the same lack of success with eating low carb, and also has 20 extra pounds of fat to lose, and he has decided to do this along with me.  Because we each have only 20 pounds to lose, we are doing the short course, which lasts three weeks.  People having more than 20 pounds to lose do the longer course, which lasts six weeks.

We will take the hCG drops three times per day and eat 500 calories each day for 21 days.  At that time, we will increase our low carb calories to around 1200 for another two weeks, then increase to Lifetime Maintenance at that time, which will probably be around 1600 calories for me and 1800 calories for Bill.  After the initial 21 days of drops, we will be back on Atkins and will stay on Atkins from then on.  It is our expectation that we will each lose 20 pounds.  Because men lose faster than women, Bill may have to increase his calories before the 21 days is up in order to level out at his ideal weight and not lose too much.

I have been understandably leery of the 500 calorie requirement, believing that it would cause a person to burn muscle before fat, but in my research I have found that as the body releases fat as fuel, as much as 1500 to 3000 calories of body fat per day, that the body is not really living on 500 calories, but is living on 2000 to 3500 calories per day, and muscle is not used as fuel.  If a person just reduces their calories to 500 per day and does not take hCG, they will burn muscle before fat, and their body will truly go into true starvation mode and the metabolism will slow down.  The hormone hCG causes the body to release the abnormal fat stores, protects lean tissue and restores the metabolism to normal rather than slowing it down.  This is the theory and I guess time will tell if it proves true for Bill and me.  Because we will be monitoring our body fat daily, we will know if we are losing lean tissue instead of fat.

If we do not lose the weight we expect to on the drops in the first 14 days, we will get a full refund.  It is the claim that the only people who are not successful on this plan are the ones who do not follow it to the letter, eating the wrong foods, etc. and not following the other aspects of the protocol.

Tomorrow morning, we will weigh, take full body measurements, measure our body fat on our home machine and take photographs.  Although we are required to weigh every day as part of the protocol, we will also monitor our body fat daily.

I want you to know that I am not entering into this lightly and without careful consideration and the advice of my physician.  I have spoken to a friend about this, and she made the comment that it is unnecessary to use hCG when broccoli works just as well.  Which is my point.  Broccoli is not working, and how I wish it did!

I am feeling confident about my decision.  I love Atkins, and I think that there are many, many people, no doubt the vast majority of people, who Atkins will work for just by following the plan as written.  I would never do or say anything to discredit Atkins or the forum or the people there.  As a matter of fact, I recommend Atkins to people all the time because I have confidence in it.

My advice to anyone reading this is to try Atkins and it will probably work for you.  As I mentioned, I did Atkins pretty faithfully for over two years before coming to this decision, and then it was with the support of my physician.  I strongly recommend that anyone doing this should try everything else first, and then only proceed with the support of your doctor.  Don't try to do it alone.


  1. Okay you are reading my mind. I am doing the HCG diet also, under the advise and supervision of my natuorpathic doctor. She has done the diet herself and has over 300 clients who were successful. So after hearing that and researching it on line I am starting it tomorrow (Sat).

    I couldn't believe it when I saw your HCG blog this morning. Great moral support ....just what I need!

    I am a faithful reader of your blog. A lot of your story is my the diet, eat healthy, exercise and the pounds don't budge. Ugh!!!! to say the least. I will be following you and lots of luck with this and also your PT.

    Don't forget to fat load....real important....several sites on line give you guidelines.

  2. Hi, Kathy!

    Today and tomorrow I am fat loading with my husband! This seems crazy, but they say it works. My doctor says it works. Are you going to blog about your experience? I would love to compare notes with you, as we are only one day apart starting!

  3. I don't have a blog. I would love to compare notes also. I can post comments on my progress on your blog if that is okay.
    P.S. Didn't do well with the 6WC...I tried!

  4. Feel free to post your hCG results here and I will read them and respond.

    Did you read my 6WC results that I posted here on 4/19/11?

    By the way, how did you come across my blog?

  5. Yes I read your results. I've been following you since March 19th. I found your blog when researching about the 6WC diet. ( see my comment on 3/19). It is uncanny that we are both doing the same thing regarding our weight.

  6. It seems we are on the same wavelength, all right!

  7. My feeling is that this works not because of the 500 calories. I think that food with 500 (something else) would probably do the exact same thing with the same good results and that the 'calories' are not important because we don't "burn" this 'calorie' thing - whatever that is anywhere in our body. We digest food we don't "burn" stuff..

    Having said that, you have my full support dear friend. We are ALL individuals and maybe there is just that super cool thing in the herbs that does the trick with LESS food (not calories) and whalla - it might just work for you too as it did for a lot of other people! Good luck!! x


  8. You can see my results here: