After having over 100 million visitors to this blog, it’s safe to say I have seen my fair share of Hcg Diet success stories… and not so successful stories.  I have come to the conclusion that there is no one “right way” to do the Hcg Diet, although sticking as close to the original protocol as possible, tends to see the best results.  In fact, the most successful Hcg Dieters I have seen, have been those who have at least stuck to the original Hcg diet food list, while adjusting dosage for hunger and adding certain supplements and movement to their plan.

I have adopted this approach and now I am confident I have found the magic formula for myself, resulting in a 12 lbs loss my first week and a loss of 18 lbs in about two weeks.  I had these extraordinary losses while sometimes eating a more than the original Hcg Diet’s allowance of 500 calories. In fact, I shifted my focus from the drastic restriction of calories, to the focus of getting healthy, filling my body with nutrients and preparing for a lifelong weight loss maintenance following the Hcg Diet.

Hcg Diet 169

So what makes my approach work so well that in my last round, I was able to lose 18 pounds in just two weeks?  Where the original Hcg Diet focuses on extreme restriction and requires endless will-power, my approach focuses on nourishing the body, giving the body lots of good nutrition and creates healthy habits for long term success.

My Hcg Diet Checklist

My Hcg Diet Plan Basics

Hcg type, and dosage:
I prefer Hcg injections myself, and the dosage doesn’t seem to matter to my body. I have occasionally lowered the dosage based on whether or not I feel hungry.  (Hunger on Hcg, usually means your dosage is too high.  If you have questions about this, I suggest checking with your doctor or asking the coaches in the forums.)  Same time every day, I prefer to take my Hcg in the evenings. Subcutaneous injections with tiny needles in the back upper hip (intramuscular is not necessary although some prefer it; subcutaneous works- take a pregnancy test and you will get a positive, and know the hCG is present in your body.) The correct needles come with a quality Hcg kit (I ordered from Nu Image Medical for my last round, and I am currently using
Diet Doc for my current round) which includes everything. You can can find a list of legitimate Hcg telemedicine companies on my Buy Hcg injections and drops page, with current sale offers and coupon codes.) The needle is so small, I don’t really feel anything more than it feels when someone touches you with a fingertip. Tip: Let the alcohol dry before injecting to avoid an unnecessary sting.

I take a number of supplements, including a good multivitamin, Udo’s probiotics, Vitamin D, and Calcium. If you know there is a supplement that benefits you personally, now is the time to be consistent with these.  Note:  Please consult a doctor if you are taking medication. I haven’t heard of any medications that cannot be used while on the Hcg Diet but it is best to consult with a doctor to be safe.  If you are ordering from one of my sources, you can consult with the doctor that does your health interview and save yourself a trip to the doctor’s office (and that co-pay!)

My Hcg Diet Food Plan

This is the part of my Hcg Diet Plan that varies somewhat from the original Hcg Diet.  Some days, I go beyond the 500 calorie VLCD (very low calorie diet) and I believe in eating when I’m hungry.  It is WHAT I eat that makes a huge difference and it is also what I consider my “secret to success” on the Hcg Diet.  This smoothie recipe makes several glasses of “green drink” for the day:

The “Green Drink.”  I learned this fat-burning superfood smoothie from Dr. Young (author of Ph Miracle) while visiting with him on his ranch. These were a staple in my life when I was living comfortably in a size 6 for many years.  They are full of nutrients and you are basically drinking a salad and a handful of superfoods at the same time.  I drink these at least 3 times a day (or more) while on the Hcg Diet;  anytime I feel hungry, I reach for one of these before considering anything else.  Not only are they fat-burning miracle smoothies, but I notice my skin glowing, I sleep better, and my energy levels rise within hours of having these.

Jen’s Phase 2, Green Drink Recipe (makes 3 super-smoothies.)

  • A handful of spinach (preferably organic baby spinach) (7 calories, 4.3 grams fiber)
  • A handful of kale (preferably organic) (33 calories, 3 grams fiber)
  • Half of an English cucumber (regular cucumber in a pinch; organic is best*. (22 calories, 2 grams fiber)
  • 1 green or red apple. Preferably organic.  Green is better if you go with a lemony version of this smoothie, red is better if you prefer sweet and with cinnamon.
  • Strawberries: swap for the apple, or mix. (Optional for those not following the “1 fruit rule” on the original protocol. I add these with my apple and do just fine but for anyone else… proceed with caution.)
  • 1/4 cup of unsweetened Almond milk (a little more if you prefer your smoothie to be thicker) (32 calories)
  • 1/2 inch of raw ginger (or size based on taste) (9 calories)
  • Dash of turmeric and/or cayenne and/or cinnamon (metabolism boosters! increase amount based on your preference)
  • Water and/or ice to fill remaining space in blender/vitamix.
  • Lemon if you prefer a zesty flavor.  OR stevia if you prefer a sweet flavor.

Phase 3 variations:

  • 1/2 cup of coconut water (optional to save this for phase 4 since it has sugar. ) (23 calories)
  • 1/2 avocado – You can add more if you plan on using this smoothie as a meal replacement- boom, instant healthy protein shake!

Total calories 286.  95 Calories per glass, but keep in mind, this is also very fiber heavy so that eliminates much of the calories, while also giving sooooo much healthy nutrition.

Special Notes –  For taste variations: Handful of strawberries (frozen or fresh), Juice from one lemon, or adjust ingredient amounts to your preference.  IF you are on a higher calorie Hcg diet…. Do not eat the avocado, coconut water, or more than a few teaspoons of almond milk separate from this smoothie while on the Hcg Diet. The ingredients are designed to work together as a fat-burning, body-nourishing super drink.  I drink 1 to 3 a day, having one first thing in the morning.  I will also have these with or before meals if I’m hungry.  *Use organic ingredients whenever possible; the less toxins your body is required to process, the more efficiently your body can work on weight loss and getting healthy.

Other Foods while on the Hcg Diet

For the most part, I stick to the permitted foods of the original Hcg Diet, in very small portions.  I try to wait at least 3 hours between eating times. I often feel satisfied after a few bites and stop eating.  If I am still hungry, I will finish my portion, which is no larger than the palm of my hand.  If I feel hungry between meals, I will have a green drink before considering regular food.  A typical Hcg Diet day for me:

  • Wake up, have coffee.  Mid to late-morning, I will have a green drink. 1 to 3 hours later, this is followed by 2 hard-boiled eggs with Himalayan pink salt. (Yes, you can have eggs on the Hcg diet!) No need to ditch the yolk every time- in fact, it is better if you eat the yolk or at least some of it; it will keep you satisfied longer and they are full of healthy omegas.
  • Approx 3 hours later, I will have a handful of strawberries as a snack.
  • Lunch: I will have a green drink, along with a small portion of an Hcg diet friendly recipe from<  I love making slow cooker recipes and you will see some of my recipes there. Note: I often add more vegetables and spices to these recipes.  Breakfast and Lunch are my largest meals of the day, but because I have my green drink, I rarely eat a full meal.
  • Appox 3 hours later, I will have organic apple slices (shared with my toddler 😉 )
  • Dinner: Green drink, fish or a small chicken breast or half of a steak, with an arugula salad and balsamic vinegar. Sometimes I will include strawberries, and/or a hard-boiled egg, or crushed melba toast like croutons.  Another fav is chicken breast or shrimp with green beans and Himalayan pink salt; simple to make and surprisingly tasty.

I have found that I can use one snap-spray of coconut oil cooking spray without any effect on my Hcg losses.

A note about the first week on the Hcg Diet:  This is such an important transitional stage, I feel it is necessary to explain what to expect along with a few tips to make it easier.  I think of the Hcg Diet as a cleanse.  With this in mind, during the first week (up to 2 weeks for some people) your body is transitioning from a state where it is used to excessive food, toxins, preservatives and other chemicals.  Sometimes your body will go through withdrawals, as symptoms of headaches or unecessary hunger (feel hungry right after eating? Feeling hunger too frequently?) Taking an example from Haley Powell’s book: if someone wakes you every morning at 3 am for a roast beef sandwich and ice cream… well it won’t be long before your body is waking you at 3 am expecting that sandwich and ice cream. Your body is conditioned based on old habits and sometimes it can be challenging to transition to new, healthy habits.  This is perfectly normal, and I want to share a few tricks that have worked for myself and others, to get through this stage as easily as possible.

  • Drink plenty of water. Keep a bottle of water with you at all times, and get in the habit- the faster those toxins are flushed, the better. Also, the more water you drink, the more efficient your body can lose weight.  Dehydration can also trigger feelings of hunger.
  • Avoid strenuous exercise during this period. This can increase hunger. I do add yoga and walking to my phase 2, but I take it really easy during the first week.
  • Feel free to use a light appetite suppressant during this period, or an appetite suppressing tea. I say “light” because you don’t want to completely take hunger away- you want to start training yourself to eat when you are truly hungry after all. Some people choose to use appetite suppressants throughout the Hcg Diet round, but I don’t find this necessary.  I will use them occasionally if needed, but before the end of my 2nd week, my body has adjusted to very small portions and the preservative withdrawal-headaches are gone. Sugar cravings are gone as well.
When and How to have a Stray-Day (aka “Cheat Day”)

At the beginning of a round, I tell myself that I can have one day a week to go off-menu and have a stray-day (I am not a fan of the word “cheat” as it implies you are doing something wrong.) When I do consider a stray-day, I first,  ask myself if it is worth not losing weight for the next two days (typical result of going off-menu.)  So far, I have only done this once, but I was careful and still lost weight!  I simply avoided processed sugar and most complex carbs, and limited what I had to 3 bites or less.  Surprisingly, I found this extremely satisfying.  I doubled my exercise for the day (I will cover exercise next) and up’d my tea and fiber intake for the day.  The next day, I was down more than half of a pound.

I also went away for a weekend and unfortunately, the hotel and festival we went to, was not “Hcg Diet friendly.”  I stayed as close to the original diet as possible, but at one point, I did have 1/3 of a sandwich (bread and all) and a few other off-menu items.  I walked a significant amount that day, and did yoga that evening.  I drank a lot of water and added my favorite vegetable supplement:  Amazing Grass Superfood.  1 scoop is the equivalent of 2 cups of vegetables but in its powder form, it is convenient to travel with.  At the end of the weekend, I was still 1 pound lighter.

Exercise Plan on the Hcg Diet

Ever since losing nearly 90 pounds on the Hcg Diet, I have become a huge fan of exercising; at least, once I figured out that I don’t have to walk an hour, bored out of my mind on a treadmill.  Instead, I love choosing things I really enjoy, that also happen to make me feel good.  I encourage you to do the same, but during the first few weeks of your round, I strongly suggest avoiding any strenuous workouts.  Since having my son, I normally go to pilates 3 times a week, and do intense Corepower hot yoga 3 times a week.  Before having my baby, this kept me in great shape with a flat stomach and great abs!  After having my son however… it just hasn’t been enough to take this baby weight off which has led me back to the Hcg Diet (the only diet I have found to work.) You can read my post-baby hcg weight loss journal here.

My exercise plan for the first 2 weeks of an Hcg Diet round:

At least a 20 minute walk, every morning, and a 30+ minute walk in the evenings with my family.

I lightly bounce on my rebounder throughout the day, never letting my feet go off the rebounder. I will watch tv and lightly bounce rather than sit.  The benefits of this are extraordinary:  fabulous for your circulation, lymphatic system, metabolism, endorphins… Such a simple way to exercise with so many benefits!  Note: A rebounder is not the same as a trampoline. You can do some research and learn more, but I also want to add that the price of a rebounder can be daunting, but I had my last one for 10 years before passing it along to a friend and getting my new one.

Exercise Plan for Weeks 3 and 4 of my Hcg Diet Round:

  • At least 30-45 mins of walking daily. The more the better!
  • Rebounder jumping/playing with my son… As often as possible, which tends to be at least 20-40 minutes a day.
  • Yoga at home;  I will hold poses throughout the day, and do light yoga in the evenings before bed.  If you are new to yoga, or just like the idea of a “yoga class at home” I recommend Gaia Yoga.
  • I will occasionally go to a therapeutic/restorative yoga class. This class is typically just laying down and stretching.  The majority of the class tends to be the elderly and out of shape, or recovering from something. It is extremely relaxing and meditative. This is an excellent option for beginners.
  • Planks.  Start with a straight plank for as long as you can hold it; work your way up to 3 minutes.  You can also do side planks- again, work your way up to 3 minutes.  These are amazing full-body workout poses, that build a strong core and overall strength and balance.

If this all seems a bit too much for you, then try to stick to this rule:  Do some kind of exercise every single day.  Whether it’s a walk or rebound bouncing, a 20 minute yoga session, or a few planks.  Treat it like a part time job, and just do it.  The payoff will be well worth it and once this becomes a habit, it will help you keep the weight off in the long run.

A few last words about my Hcg Diet Plan…

I hope this has helped those of you looking for a more flexible approach to the Hcg Diet.  As I said in the beginning, feel free to make changes that work for you and learn to build your instincts when it comes to making healthy choices.  In the end, all that matters is that you lose the weight, gain healthy habits and feel better overall.  Focus on those goals and you will be successful.

If you have questions, feel free to ask in the comments below, or ask one of the coaches or veterans in the Hcg Diet Forums.  If you would like me to add or expand a topic, please let me know- anything I can do to help us all succeed in becoming happy and healthy, I’m happy to do whatever I can!

Happy Losing!

Author Jen Larson, BSN, Pursuing PhD
While I have a background in nursing and nutrition, I also personally lost 88 lbs with the HCG Diet in 2002, and I kept it off for over 10 years. I am currently on a mission to lose 45 lbs of baby weight with HCG from Nu Image and Diet Doc. This diet changed my life, leading me to start the first Hcg Diet site: 15+ years later, 100 million visits, over a million pages, & countless lives changed… HDI has become the true highlight of my journey.
View Jen Larson, BSN, Pursuing PhD's Blog Posts
20 Responses to “Jen’s Hcg Diet Plan”
  • Jen – So in your diet you add good fats in during this time with the green drink. I’m so scared of doing anything out of the box to stall my weight loss. I have been on it one week and have lost 6.8 lbs and I am thrilled with that!! Because it is so stringent about no fat (no oil in your lotion or makeup), I assumed the reason was so that your body would use all the abnormal fat instead of any fat we put into or onto our body… I really want to try your green drink – it sounds wonderful… but I’m so nervous…. I have 34 more pounds to loose. any suggestions??
    Thanks so much!

    • Hello Marsha,
      In your case, if you are comfortable and the diet is working well for you- stay the course. There is no one “right way” to do the hcg diet, and what works for one, may not always work for all. The key to being successful on the Hcg Diet is to simply find what works for you and once you do, stick to it. If you would really like to try the green drink, do it- start by adding one or two a day, and keep an eye on your scale for the first few days. It will work- I promise. If by some chance you see a slow down in your progress, then double check your ingredients. There’s quite a bit of room for flexibility with this shake though so I definitely say it’s a safe (and healthy) addition to your protocol.

      By the way- I really don’t worry about my cosmetics and toiletries. I stick to as natural a product as possible, but honestly, I know very few people these days who worry about this while on the Hcg diet. I have heard different theories on this where some doctors believe Simeons included this because of the heavy fats used in these products back in the day.

      34 lbs to go? You are almost there! You can do it!!!!!!

  • Hi Jen,
    so happy I found this site. I have tried the drops in the past with some success a few years ago. I’ve recently been experiencing difficulty with my metabolism and inability to lose weight, despite exercising and eating as clean as possible. I remembered the concept of HCG and thought I’d give it another try to reset my body – hopefully. My main goal is to gain consistency in my body. I liked Grammy’s feedback – seeming to be “stick to the plan” for best results, but, also like yours listed in your journey. Can you tell me, now that you lost the weight, how often you do the rounds of HCG injections? Is it still part of your maintenance? I don’t want to regain everything I lose when I’m done with the Phase 2 in six weeks. I’d love your feedback and suggestions on maintaining what you’ve lost and how you’ve remained consistent? Thank you, Monica

    • Hello Monica,

      I first did the Hcg Diet years and years ago, in college. I kept the weight off until I had a baby… 8 years later, I believe. It wasn’t without effort, but the diet was honestly the only thing that worked for me. I waited until my son was done breastfeeding but was eager to do another round of Hcg to start getting the weight off that I gained during pregnancy. My best advice is to learn as much as you can about healthy eating, and stay active to keep the weight off for the long run!

  • Hi Jen,
    This site is very helpful. This is my 5th time on the diet. I really waited too long this time as I gained almost 30 lbs.
    This IS the only diet that works for me. My problem is that the last 2 times, after the first week, I stall at the same weight for anywhere from 5 to 6 days. Then I lose 1 lb and then stall again for 5 days. I’ve tried the Vinegar and water and that didn’t start things up again. This time I started adding organic lemon juice to a bottle of water and bringing that to work with me to sip on. I get so frustrated and stressed about this that I’m sure that causes the stall also. The first 2 times on the diet I took the drops. These last 3 times it’s been the lozenges that I put under my tongue. I have upped the miligrams but was still stalled for 7 days. I lost 7 lbs in 6 days and then stalled for 7 days. I am thinking about trying your green drink to see if that might help. I just dread doing the diet because of these long stalls. I am hoping that green drink might help decrease the stalls. Any other advice?

    • Hi Terry!

      Oh wow, I want to give you a hug… I can feel your frustration, and ugh..what a rough ride. First, I would suggest re-evaluating the drops you are using. If it’s one I suggest on my Buy Hcg page, then you are good, but if not, do make sure they actually are real Hcg drops or lozenges. Personally I prefer injections but I realize this is not for everyone. Also, keep in mind that upping the dosage will not necessarily be the right move- a lot of people do far better by lowering their dosage. Does your supplier offer dosage adjustment assistance? Again, if they are from my list of suggested Hcg suppliers, they will offer this- take advantage and make sure you are on a good foundation from the start.

      Next, I would say… bravo for the organic lemon water and vinegar. I can tell you, the few times I stalled on my last round, were from dehydration. The second I up’d my water intake, I started losing again. Last… and most importantly, re-evaluate every single thing you are putting in your mouth! I cannot tell you how many times I took a bite of something and then realized there was sugar in it, or aspartame etc. Ugh- instant staller. Even vinegar beverages can sometimes have a sugar-ingredient in disguise (the nerve of them!) so do check everything carefully.

      My last suggestion- walk, or bounce (as you read in my latest post, I’m a huge fan of rebounders.) Yoga is awesome too and all are just so easy to keep the metabolism stimulated. Keep me posted- I would love to hear updates on how you are doing!

  • Good afternoon, Jen:
    I will finish my 40 days of 500calories and I am moving to phase 3. Any suggestions for this transition phase? Thanks

  • Hi Jen,
    What have you found works for maintenance after HCG? The lbs. seem to creep back on, very slowly and I don’t let them get too far, but it is the difference of fitting in a pair of jeans comfortably as opposed to being tight. I am probably going to do another round. Anyway, I am interested in your post HCG

    • Hello Barbara,

      My maintenance tends to be sticking as closely to “whole foods” as possible. I avoid chemicals as much as possible and stick to organic. I also avoid anything “diet” or “fat free.” Kiss of death, these foods! I’m actually working on a new tutorial now that covers all of this- it will be shared here and on Skinny Channel. Omg, if I could go back in time and erase all the “avoid fat!” and “less is more!” brainwashing I learned in my younger years… weight would never have been an issue in my life. I hope to share this with all of you because it has certainly been life changing for me.

  • Hi Jen,
    Thank you for your blog. I am about to start the HCG protocol and I would like to try your green drink but I am concerned about the fat ingredients. Is it really possible to lose on the HCG having that ? The original protocol says you cannot have any of those types of foods. I know you said to the the earlier post what works for some doesn’t always work for everyone. I just wanted to pick your brain since you have been successful and used different foods.

    • Hello Shelly,

      After so many years learning about nutrition, I honestly don’t have a fear of “healthy fats” anymore. I have such a better understanding of this and I actually see avocado (for example) as an exchange for meat or protein in general. I have also learned to avoid anything that says “fat free” – omg that’s another blog post in itself. Honestly, I lose weight easier, have far more energy and feel better in general when I have a steady amount of avocado and even coconut oil in my diet. I’m curious though… when you are not on the diet, have you tried any kind of whole food nutrition exchanges? I think you might be surprised at how much “healthy fat” you can eat and not see an increase on your scale. I know it amazed me!

  • Jen I admire your courage….I would be so scared to try these variations cos if it did cause a weight gain—what a waste! Then again, whenever I do the protocol I can’t wait to finish and usually gain weight back also. Maybe a more moderate version would be better!

    • Bubblebubby, I totally understand! It’s a lot of dedication to do this diet/cleanse, especially if you haven’t ever done it before. I have learned so much over the years though, and it definitely was a journey to find what worked for me. Hopefully what I have learned helps to make it easier for others. Honestly, at this point, I try not to take it too seriously- that is probably a blog post in itself because we seem to be our own worst enemies when it comes to our bodies, our failures and even our successes. Hmmm… I’ll add that to my list for future topics- ty for the inspiration!

  • When I went on the protocal a few months back I was very successful but then began losing hair like crazy
    Have others had that experience because I need to go back on to lose the final 10 pounds but am scared to lose anymore hair

    • Hello Jc, I’ve heard this before and usually, it was suspected that the hair loss was from using overseas hcg. I would definitely suggest changing brands if you want to continue. I would be curious to know if this helps in your situation- please feel free to email me. hdihealth (@) gmail. – Jen

  • The green drink… I do not like avocado, but i know you said all the ingredients are designed to work together. Do you think I could make it without the avocado, or would that not work?

    • Hello Karla, you can do it without the avocado but I would suggest trying it with maybe a small amount and see if you maybe like it? It really doesn’t taste “avocado-y” 😉 You can also adjust the flavor with the other ingredients to mask it if you find yourself still sensitive to the taste/texture. Even add quite a bit of ice to help with the texture.

  • Hi Jen I so enjoy reading about your hcg journey. I didn’t see you write anything about loading or maybe I missed it. Do you load on fatty foods for 2 or 3 days?

    • You know, my loading phase has been different every time. I suggest a 2 day Loading phase, planned and well enjoyed 🙂 IF by chance one of your loading days goes awry. For example, my first day, I got sick! I just wasn’t used to eating foods like that anymore, and certainly not in the larger quantity. So… the next day ended up being Loading Day #1.

      If you are about to start Loading, I strongly suggest jumping into the forums for “Leez’s Loaders” support group. Leez has been an expert on the Hcg Diet for years and years, and she’s just the best at answering questions and offering support.

      Hcg Diet Support Group: Leez’s Loaders

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