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hcg for lipodystrophy?
May 31, 2010

I'm hearing a lot about the "hcg protocol" for fat loss. Supposedly, small doses of hcg coupled with a low calorie diet result in the body using deep reservoirs of body fat for energy. Any thoughts on whether or not this would effectively combat lipodystrophy?

Response from Mr. Vergel

The approach you are referring to has never been studied in HIV-related lipodystrophy. Here is a summary of the claims:

Wikipedia summarized info on HCG and fat loss well:

"A controversial usage of hCG is as an adjunct to the British endocrinologist A.T.W. Simeons' ultra-low-calorie weight-loss diet[10] (less than 500 calories).[11] Simeons, while studying pregnant women in India on a calorie-deficient diet, and "fat boys" with pituitary problems (Frlich's syndrome) treated with low-dose hCG, claimed that both lost fat rather than lean (muscle) tissue. He reasoned that hCG must be programming the hypothalamus to do this in the former cases in order to protect the developing fetus by promoting mobilization and consumption of abnormal, excessive adipose deposits. Simeons, practicing at Salvator Mundi International Hospital in Rome, Italy, recommended low-dose daily hCG injections (125 IU) in combination with a customized ultra-low-calorie (500 cal/day, high-protein, low-carbohydrate/fat) diet loss of adipose tissue without loss of lean tissue. After Simeons' death, the diet started to spread to specialized centers and via popularization by such as the author Kevin Trudeau, a specialist in promotion.

The controversy proceeds from warnings by the Journal of the American Medical Association and the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that hCG is neither safe, nor effective as a weight-loss aid."

For those who do not know what hCG is:

Human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) (not to be confused with human growth hormone, or HGH) is a glycoprotein hormone that mimics LH, produced in pregnancy that is made by the developing embryo soon after conception and later by part of the placenta. Its role is to prevent the disintegration of the corpus luteum of the ovary to maintain progesterone production that is critical for pregnancy in women. It is a hormone that supports the normal development of an egg in a woman's ovary, and stimulates the release of the egg during ovulation.

HCG is used to cause ovulation and to treat infertility in women, and to increase sperm count in men. HCG is also used in young boys when their testicles have not dropped down into the scrotum normally. It is also used to increase testicular size after long-term testosterone or anabolic steroid use. It is given as an injection under the skin with an insulin syringe or into a muscle with a regular syringe. As mentioned at the beginning of the book, testosterone replacement therapy triggers the hypothalamus to shut down its production of GnRH. Without GnRH, the pituitary gland stops releasing LH. Luteinizing hormone normally travels from the pituitary via the blood stream to the testes (testicles or gonads), where it triggers the pro-duction and release of testosterone. Without LH, the testes shut down their production of testosterone. In males, HCG closely resembles LH, the natural hormone in your body that tells the testes to produce testosterone. If the testicles have atrophied (shrunken) after long-term testosterone use, they will likely begin to enlarge and upregulate their testosterone production significantly shortly after HCG therapy is instituted. HCG "jump-starts" the testes to produce testosterone and to increase in size.

HCG can be extracted from pregnant women's urine or through genetic modification. The product is available in brand names Pregnyl, Follutein, Profasi, and Novarel, which are all derived from the urine of pregnant women. Ovidrel is another brand that is a product of recombinant DNA. Compounding pharmacies can also make HCG by prescription in different vial sizes.


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