Advocates of the HCG diet claim the hormones create an anabolic state – the phase in which the body builds muscle, instead of the catabolic – the phase when muscles begin to break down.
Other reports say that because the body is using less energy to digest food, dieters feel an increase in energy, their blood sugar stabilizes, and they experience improved sleep.
For men taking HCG, there has been evidence of increased testosterone.
As is the case for women, HCG is sometimes prescribed to men experiencing infertility.
The increase in testosterone is correlated to muscle growth and water retention.
Combined, these side effects can give the impression of swollen muscles and result in men believing they are not losing muscle while taking HCG.
However, once they stop, their bodies will return to their previous state.
It’s not just the FDA that is against the diet.
The British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology meta-analysis concluded: “there is no scientific evidence that HCG is effective in the treatment of obesity; it does not bring about weight-loss of fat-distribution, nor does it reduce hunger or induce a feeling of well-being.” (6)
Nevertheless, proponents of the diet still say it is a great way to reset your body’s hypothalamus, break food addictions, and get accustomed to small-portioned meals.