Podcast: Play in new window | Download
Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | RSS
We already discussed how to fix a cheat on the hCG Diet, and why cheating on hCG is really not a good idea.
We all know this. I know this.
And I still cheated a few times on hCG. It doesn’t mean ultimate failure. It just means it may take a little longer to get to your ultimate goal.
And that’s okay. Because as Steve Chandler wrote in his book 100 Ways to Motivate Yourself – Change Your Life Forever, “progress toward goals is never in a straight line. It will always be a bumpy line. You’ll go up and then come down a little.”
There’s a few reasons you might find yourself in the throes of cheating:
The hCG protocol is a psychological bootcamp.
Am I right?? You are in a bootcamp not simply for losing weight, but realizing that you ate for so many other reasons than hunger and learning how to change this- this doesn’t happen overnight or without small setbacks along the way, especially considering for many your current relationship with food has been going on for many years. Most people are VERY surprised at how challenging this protocol is mentally. Knowing this, what can you do if you just break down and can’t handle it all one day?
2. Sometimes you’ll find yourself in a situation where you just aren’t prepared one day through no fault of your own. Ie. you planned to come home and make your Phase 2 lunch, but you just found out you have to rush over to your grandmas to take her to her doctors’ appointment because the person who was supposed to take her got the flu and you won’t be able to get home for 3-4 more hours and you’re already getting pretty hungry. This happens ALL the time- it seems like stuff shouldn’t come up that often, but believe me, you watch enough hCG youtube vloggers and yes, life is just crazy and there’s only so much control we have over that. In fact, I really admire how resilient the women doing this protocol are- they keep making adjustments and plowing through despite the constant things that come up in life when you have family and friends to take care of in your life.
So whether we find ourselves in a place where we are temporarily imprisoned by our own weaknesses, or the crazy stuff that comes up in life, how can we make the BEST choices under these different circumstances? Well….let’s talk!
You can lessen the consequences by cheating smarter.
Some might say that I’m encouraging cheating by showing you how- that is not my intention at all. I think you should do whatever you can to do this protocol right- this is the most healthy way to do it and will get you the best results. That’s why I wrote about why cheating is a bad idea.
It’s just that I’m very in tune with the process an overweight woman who has issues with food goes through on the hCG Diet journey because I’ve been through it- my mind was and is much like yours. So I already know there may be some unavoidable times where you are just going to screw up. Blame it on hormones, blame it on the wrong dose of hCG that made you feel starving, or that you’re still in the middle of fixing your relationship with food, whatever the case, you might as well be educated on your actual cheating choices.
Even to this day in regular life- I overeat sometimes. I get too full. But because I have learned to make the right choices as to what I’m eating when I do this, there is almost never any actual negative impact on my bodyfat. You can’t gain weight from a smoothie made mostly of ice. With hCG, anything over 800-1000 calories and you’re going to be causing some “damage” that you’ll have to undo.
If you HAVE to freak out and “cheat” these are the better ways to do it:
I realize perhaps in the end these may not cut it for you- but they’re worth trying first, before you fall all over that chocolate cake.
1. Eat more of p2 foods- especially the P2 proteins and P2 veggies.
The calorie count may end up being too high for weight loss, but you are still avoiding fats on the diet, which is KEY, and you may not consume enough to cause actual fat gain (although you may see a small gain from having a fuller stomach).
And do keep in mind, that many newer alternate hCG protocols involve eating up to 800 calories where ladies and gents are still losing weight pretty well. So if you are following the 500 cal protocol, increasing may not necessarily stall you out if the food sources like this are chosen well.
2. Try some miracle noodles aka shirataki noodles.
These are 0 calorie noodles because they are purely fiber. They are filling, they give a different texture, and if you combine them with p2 veggies and protein you end up with a fairly substantial meal that might just fill whatever you feel inside you is missing. You can read why I feel miracle noodles are okay on the hCG Diet. Same thing for a “gain” applies here as well- gains from miracle noodles, from my experience anyway, are not fat- they are simply bulk and resulting liquids retained that will pass through your digestive tract in a short time! I liked to use mine in soups- to be honest I don’t really consider these noodles to be cheating as I ate them only daily during P2 on 3 of my rounds to provide a more satieted feeling. But if you haven’t been eating them you’ll feel like it’s a real luxury! You can buy miracle noodles online here or you can buy them as “shirataki noodles” in the refrigerated section of your local Asian market. Make sure you buy the ones that say 0 calories!
Just for some personal feedback, I ate miracle noodles daily during Phase 2 myself on my later rounds and felt like I still lost weight very well and it totally kept me sane!
3. Make yourself a P2 slushie treat Again, worth a go before going for something more sinister.
- 8 Calorie Lemon Slushie
- 0 Calorie Hibiscus Slushie
- DIY Stevia Soda Make a dessert of your P2 fruit
- P2 approved super low cal yummy drink recipes (please note some of these are AP recipes- meaning alternate protocols, so be sure what you feel comfortable doing first).
- Phase 2 hCG Dessert Recipes
4. I hate to say it but a diet soda can get you through a difficult time here and there.
The problem with these is they can quickly become habit forming and I don’t think it’s a great idea to drink them daily on hCG, or even in regular life. However I can tell you there were a number of times during my different rounds that….
a can or two of diet soda got me through a gathering and prevented me from descending on the deviled eggs and applecrisp.
That’s a #win to me. I long ago removed diet coke and any diet sodas sweetened with aspartame. I switched to some of the stevia sodas out there like Zevia and Blue Sky Zero. But I understand now that some of you out there are actually allergic to stevia! Please let that never happen to me. All in all, any diet soda whether it’s aspartame sweetened or stevia and erythritol sweetened, is not exactly a health food right? But to me it’s all about balancing perfection, which is impossible, with being able to deal with life, and so I do have a few of these sodas now and then. [ezcol_1half][/ezcol_1half] [ezcol_1half_end][/ezcol_1half_end]
5. Keep some P2 fruits in the car. This is a good thing to do when you find yourself in those situations where you’re entire just changed with one phone call and now you’re stuck either not eating at all or trying to scrap together a healthy p2 meal while out and about. P2 fruits usually keep for a bit so you can leave some in the car- apples, oranges, possibly grapefruit (although that can get kinda messy).
Did you know? There is even this super cool car fridge on amazon now that runs on your cigarette light port! Check it out. I just personally love my apple nice and cold.
6. Keep raw P2 veggies handy- always take with you when you leave even if you plan on coming home. Things like cherry tomatoes make a great simple snack to grab and have with you just in case (which you can keep in that car fridge you just bought off Amazon ;)). One of the things that can lead to cheating when you didn’t intend to is getting to the point of too much hunger- that ravenous feeling that leads you to scarf down anything in sight. Even if the cherry tomatoes or orange doesn’t fill you up, it might be just enough to help you stay sane until you DO get home later to finish making the rest of your hCG protocol meal.
Less stellar options but not horrible: – Eating more p2 fruits- this is of course, more sugar and carbs, so just not as good of a choice. But it’s still better than eating chocolate cake, so if you just have to have to something sweet, some strawberries with stevia sprinkled on them is pretty satisfying.
What would be considered true cheats ie. really going against what is best for your body on hCG:
– Foods with fat in them, in general (if you are following an updated protocol w/ coconut oil, that’s of course just a big different, but even then bricks of cheese = gain on P2 right?)
– Large amounts of calories But of course, sometimes this does happen, in which case you’ll want to read my favorite way to fix a cheat to get back on track.
With Phase 2 you will need to get rid of the all or nothing mentality.
Some of you will be able to get through an entire round with not a single cheat or temptation to cheat. But many of you, and I was there too, will have a strong urge on at least a few occasions, and some will give in to that urge- one that will really help you either choose a healthier “not really cheating” option OR recover from an actual cheat faster is to get rid of all or nothing thinking.
An extra apple is better than chocolate cake, even if it’s off protocol.
A piece of cake 1 day and then getting back on track IS better then multiple days cheating and giving up.
I have been SUCH a naturally all or nothing person most my life and it was only when I realized how much damage it was doing to me and my life that I consciously worked at changing that – and those efforts started to lead to different (and much better!) outcomes for me in my life.
Watch Michelle’s Full Interview here
Watch Chris’s Full Interview here
Watch Melissa’s Full Interview here
37,000+ hCGers Join
how-to's | interviews | pep talksYup, I want this!
Desiree Carter says
While on my 8th day of phase 2 my sugar level dropped to 43 ( I have type 2 diabetes). What can I eat to increase my sugar level without messing up the protocol?
Eating an apple that is allowed on Phase 2 can help increase your blood sugar levels. Those on meds often find they need to reduce their meds as they are on the diet so it’s best to do with your doctor.
I cheated today, it’s my period and I crave. I had a sliced of Babka and i won’t do it again 😢😢😢😢
Is it okay to drink Diet Coke on the HCG Diet?
Occasionally, yes it’s okay.
Is movie theater popcorn really bad? Like a small serving ? I know it’s definitely not P2 or even P3 but I just want to know how bad the impact can be if I’m on day 7 p2 and we are going to the movies to see the avengers end game and all I will be smelling is FRESH HOT POPCORN AND NACHOS AND OMG SO MUCH BAD FOOD that I know I will be starving
1oz of popcorn is 106cal with 1.2g fat and 21g carbs.
You can try and bring your own snacks that are P2 friendly. One hCGer said she takes an apple with cinnamon to the movies. Maybe this recipe can help: https://hcgchicarecipes.com/recipe/p2-hcg-diet-fruit-dessert-recipe-caramel-dipped-apple/
Or maybe make some meatza to take with you, here are some recipes for meatza: https://hcgchicarecipes.com/meal-type/meatza/ There’s a taco meatza in there. 🙂
Hope that helps!
Thank you for sharing your experience It is been plesure to be inspired by you in many ways.I am very happy to let my wate shift and be back to normal me I started 150 with out HCG just eating foods from the list and then on HCG 142.2 and now I am 129.6 and still working on to stay on diet for 46 days.Very sutiafide .
Rayzel—love your website and thank you for your devotion to it.
I’m a 48 year old mom who has thyroid issues. My md put me on hgc injections and I’m on round 3 over the last year. I also take bioidentical hormones–these are plant based estrogen and testosterone in a…get this..oil based cream! I realized that this prescription might be why I don’t lose as one normally would on hgc. I have now switched to a hormone pellet injected into my hip. This dissolves slowly over 3 months. It’s tiny about the size of a grain of rice. But it is also a oil based insert. Will this hurt my current hgc protocol? I’m going into phase 2 today. My hope is that the pellet is much smaller than the daily creams I used before.
I was concerned about the oils in the cremes myself as well as the omega 3 capsules, but my hormone doctor told me they were negligible. Hope it worked out for you.
Hi I cannot live with out my café con leche in the morning it’s ok the milk 2%
Secret: I had half and half in my black tea on my last couple rounds…. 😉 so personally, I think it’s fine- I hope that helps!
How much half and half were you able to get away with? Going on a Disney vacay, still on round 2 week 7 but the half and half may really help me!
I mostly just splashed some in but my guess is probably 1-2 tbsp a day 🙂
I was doing so well, then cheated on a Sunday night.. was NOT hungry, just went through all the crackers, salsa, soy nuts that were in my freezer (waiting for P3). . . 2 days later, I am 2 pounds up… ANNOYING.
One of my theories is the carb count of the cheat, as I’m sure I’ve been in ketosis for at least a week. The other, of course, is the amount of calories in the cheat.
Will continue with clean eating, low carb (under 30 grams) and hopefully get back to where I’d like to be.
Any other suggestions with this, Chica??
Gen, hCGChica team buddy says
Rayzel has written a very detailed post on how to fix an hCG diet cheat for you to read: http://hcgchica.com/how-to-fix-cheat-on-hcg-diet as well as a whole section of blogposts she recommends that discusses ways to cheat “smarter” when struggling, what causes cheats, etc. You’ll find that here: : http://hcgchica.com/cheating-on-the-hcg-diet/
Hope that helps 🙂
I thought I was alone in this. I have never tried to really diet that is without Nutra system or something like that. This is a new world for me. I have never liked strawberries in my life. I cannot eat grapefruit due to heart burn issues. But I still Need to loose 25 pounds! I am overjoyed to know you are there! Thanks!
I am only on day 2 after loading and I am constantly hungry….I can’t sleep and I wake up starving. I don’t know what to do. I upped my hcg even though you said not too until after day 3. But I feel like eating the paint off the walls and I am desperate. I am trying to eat a little more broths with miracle noodles and I am still hungry after eating. I went from 175iu to 200iu….but still starving. I have prescription hcg, so that shouldn’t be the problem….does it get better??
Shell c Personally, I do intermediate fasting and also on occasion will do a 3 day fast where I eat nothing! I do this for my health because it’s sort of resets my immune system. One of my absolute sworn proven tricks that helps me to not feel hungry while I am fasting, is to keep some natural pink sea salt in the house, in my purse, and in the car. When I feel hungry I literally suck on some sea salt and the hunger immediately goes away. Much of the time our hunger is really for minerals and for water. I also try to drink a gallon of water a day which is surprisingly easy to do. Just spread throughout the day. Not only does water help release water weight gain but it flushes excess sodium and also helps greatly with hunger. Sea salt gives minerals and electrolytes and water fills and hydrates.
Haha. I “snack” at night on sea salt, literally wet my finger and dip it in salt. My husband thinks I’m insane but it helps. I drink a lot of Jasmine tea with stevia throughout the day to fight off hunger. Also, I throw ice, stevia and lemon or lime juice in the Ninja to snack on when I’m dying. I also use the prescription HCG and feel like I’m starving. Hang in there, it really is worth it. I’m going to add miracle noodle to the kitchen tomorrow. Hopefully it will help.
Kimberly Brockman says
Shellac- This was probably the hardest part of the diet came in for me as well. Are you combining your hcg with any appetite suppressants? I was provided phentermine which helped with energy and took the edge off the hunger.
Take a moment to try this: Close your eyes and just feel your hunger pang. Dont have an opinion one way or another about them. Just feel it. Feel that little demon in you telling you to eat tons of cheese and cake and whatever else that has been plaguing your health. Are you going to let those little things win? YOU can endure a hunger pang. It isn’t THAT bad. You can also say “get lost” to the voice that tells you “it’s not a big deal- just eat that cookie”. Sometimes you just have to suffer thru it a bit. As time goes on, your appetite will lessen, your cravings will be fewer, it will get easier but u just have to let it pass sometimes. Your body is getting use to the lifestyle change but it WILL adjust. Sometimes you gotta close your eyes and just tell yourself to just bear thru it till it passes….it always does.
I also agree that drinking plenty of fluids is a HUGE part in helping you lose the weight and feel full. I often would put lemon juice and stevia in water to get me to drink more of it – really yummy – and I am getting closer to actually getting a gallon a day because of it.
Read”HCG 2.0″ – this book helped me stay on this diet longer by finding other foods apart from the traditional protocol that will still help me lose weight or at least cheat smarter. You can get the ebook right to your smartphone from Amazon. One great tip I got from there was drinking a bit of chicken broth (low sodium). I put a couple bits of green onion and Braggs 24 Seasonings in it, pop it in the microwave and it was very satisfying. The hot broth fills you up and the bits of onion let you satisfy the desire to chew on something. I found myself usually needing one between meals.
Also, chewing gum after meals seems to help me as well. A lot of the problem with overeating is we just have an addiction or habit to chewing on something until we’re ready to pop – gum right after my meal helped extend my short lived chewing sessions with the tiny hcg meals and also can help the desire for sweets after eating something savory. Not to mention fresh breath and whiter teeth! 🙂
We are in this together – keep reaching out – keep trying. Your weight loss is important to EVERYONE around you. Dont let your cravings steal your success.
Hello Kimberly! Thanks so much for chiming in with such helpful info and encouragement. Great thoughts. And I so agree with making water tasty to make it much more drinkable! I don’t know why but if I drink plain water I really struggle getting each little bit down and even makes my tummy feel bloated but if I make it a bit sweet like you said with lemon and stevia and a stevia flavor it just slides right down by the quart so easily!
Rebecca Engleman says
Hi there. This is my second round on hcg. My first round I did not really do load days. I was much hungrier. I am now on day 4 P2 and can honestly say I have nearly 0 hunger. I loaded high protein and fat and average carbs. After two day load I started P2. I was miserable and starving that first day…sooo I had read that you can load three days so I ate fried fish and tarter sauce and went on P2 the next day. No hunger at all. FYI I am 58 195 lbs, taking 125 mg injections mixed with b12. Sleeping the best ever. Only difference this time was the b12 and high fat load days. Sorry you are struggling. It’s not in your head, I guess I got lucky this time and loaded right. Hang in there
I’m worried about the blue sky zero I just had. The article above implies it is fine to have, but it seems everywhere else I look I read that erythritol is a huge no-no for phase 2. Knowing I sabotaged my first day is not a good feeling :.(
What about watermelon?
I am planning a vegas trip for the weekend and I will for sure not follow the diet but want to make some better choices as much as I can. I see on your blog that avoiding fat is key? Are there better alcohol options also? I do wonder though should I stop taking the hcg while I am there and then start back when I get home? Would taking the HCG while I cheat hurt me more then not taking the HCG and cheating? I will have been on the diet for 23 days by the time I leave. I want to finish the 40 day after I return.
You can replace your fruit with a glass of red wine, but avoiding alcohol in your system is really much more ideal for the diet. Definitely DO NOT have any sugary mixes in drinks, and most alcoholic beverages are not ok on the diet, I know it’s hard (especially on vacation) but you will thank yourself later for avoiding temptation in the long run! Hope this helps!
Hello, I need advice/help!!! I’m on my first week, first phase with hcg injections. I loaded properly, and after morning injection on Day 3 I accidentally left my vial on the cool, dark bathroom counter all day long!!! I didn’t realize until late that night. I have continued with the injections but I have struggled all week. My hunger and fatigue are like a yo-yo, sometimes here, sometimes not. But overall, I’d say I remain sort of hungry and fight cravings more than 2 times per day. By mid-afternoon (3-4pm) I am usually quite hungry and irritable and often need a nap. How can I tell if my hcg has lost effectiveness from being unrefrigerated for 12-14 hours or if this is instead an indication of a need to change my dosage?
Anu Anaya says
I am so confused. I ate 1 cup of liquid egg whites for dinner. Three strawberries a large apple and a sun warrior protein drink. Did I over do the protein and carbs??
Lori S says
First question is – did eating all that stall you, or did you do ok the next day? If you didn’t stall, maybe you’re fine doing that much from time to time? From what I understand, a cup of egg whites is 8 egg whites, and only 3 whites (plus one yolk) are allowed on P2 for a meal. Curious as to why you added an extra protein shake on top of all of that, and also curious as to the extra strawberries? Are you exercising a lot? If so, your body probably needs it – I know mine does! If not, it may just be the calories that are getting you if you’re stalling. A large apple has around 116 calories, the protein shake has 100, the berries have around 12, and the eggs have 127 (all from a quick google). All that is 355 calories, which is a bit above a one meal allotment if you’re doing a 500 calorie VLCD. That being said, a lot of folks are having good luck with the higher calorie count per day anyway; so if you’re not stalling, you’re eating good stuff and not going too overboard (like half a pizza), and could be just fine!
HELP!! Day 8 and I cheated not a big cheat but I had some herb roasted potatoes!! not evening a full serving. I had a lean chicken and veggies for lunch. I had coffee and and an apple at breakfast.
The rest of day I will not eat any carbs (melba toast) or fruit. Is there anything else I can do. Please guide me. I was so HUNGRY and I gave in….
Prue Duncan says
Huge cheat last night, and not smart .. Told myself I'd be okay about it today … But I'm not – depressed at what I've done .. Still, not giving up ..
Inspired Girl says
Well said Rayzel. It is great to have options, and often, just eating extra fruit, protein, vegies, even tomatoes can make the difference, and may not cause a weight gain. As you said, it is GREAT to stick to the protocol as closely as possible. But learning to 'cheat' smarter, is not only helpful in p2, it is such a great lesson and practice for long term maintenance. None of us are perfect, and knowing how to give ourselves some slack is a great lesson and tool. THANK YOU!
~inspired girl, aka Barbara