Medical Weight Loss

Medical Weightloss

Weight Loss can be a daunting challenge.  Many of us fight the battle of pounds and inches as a lifestyle.

At Copper Valley Medical, we offer multiple programs to assist you with weight loss.

The purpose of any diet is getting healthy; not skinny.  HCG works to burn fat stores, without causing hunger, despite a very low calorie diet.  Here’s the skinny (pun intended) on how and why HCG works:

  • We store excess energy as fat. The energy is derived from the foods we eat, mostly carbohydrates.  Therefore, if we want to lose weight, we need “merely” eat less than we use.  Sound simple, but…
  • If we eat a low calorie diet, we will lose weight proportionate to the reduction in calories unless there is some underlying issue (which I will mention a bit later). The main problem is that as we reduce calorie intake, a hormonal signal tells the brain and body that we are starving – really, physiologically starving.  The longer this goes on, the more intense the signal to eat.

In our bodies, there are a host of signals to defend against starving.  One, for example, is in the throat signaling the brain that a certain volume of food has passed on its way to the gut.

Another signal is in the stomach, telling us that there is food pressing on this part of the stomach (right at the bottom, before it enters the small intestine).  There are also a host of chemical signals – hormones – to control the growl of an empty stomach.  If all of these are ignored, and we can if we choose, then a message goes to the brain telling it/us that we are in starvation mode.  This, in turn triggers a host of reactions designed to reduce the activity level of the body and change the digestive system.  At the bottom line – once in starvation mode it is essentially impossible to lose weight without losing muscle mass and body tissue, which is emaciation.

  • The big problem with this explanation is pregnancy. When a woman is pregnant, how can she eat enough for both herself and her growing baby?  Shouldn’t she be constantly hungry and eventually go into starvation mode?  Yes, she should but she doesn’t.
  • After extensive research, Dr. A.T.W. Simeons found the answer back in the 1960s. During pregnancy, the woman’s uterus produces a hormone that turns off the hormone trigger for hunger and starvation: It is called Human Chorionic Gonadotropin, or HCG.

When a person – male or female – is given HCG, it turns off all those signals, allowing the body to use a very low calorie diet without starving.  The effect is to draw down the fat stores, leaving muscle and tissue alone.

A woman may lose 15 pounds in about a month; a man may lose 20 pounds.

Yes, it is safe.  No serious side effects have been noted from using the HCG diet.  But, FDA has not approved HCG for weight loss.  Why not?

In order for a drug to be “approved” by FDA the drug manufacturer is required to do many studies on how a drug is used in the body – first in animals then in humans.  When these multi-phase studies are completed, the drug company must do a series of human studies to demonstrate the effectiveness of the drug for the claim being made.  Commonly, drug evaluation activities take place over a ten year period, and cost upwards of $10 billion dollars.  Then, a drug company gets the right to market the drug exclusively for a few years.  The drug company always has to consider one thing: Can we turn a profit on this drug?  If not, they will not make the investment in the studies.  Since FDA can’t approve a study that is never submitted, HCG has never been approved by the FDA.

The very best option for weight loss is a combination of healthy eating – more proteins than fats or carbohydrates – with one hour per day of exercise.  Even a brisk walk will satisfy the need.

Being chronically overweight or obese is associated with poor health. Conditions include:

Atherosclerosis Heart attack Stroke
Hypertension Diabetes Type II Osteoarthritis
Chronic Pain Gall Stones Infertility
Sleep apnea Cancer

We find that people who battle weight issues try one diet after another, and one gimmick after another.  They may lose a few pounds, but it always comes back.  The reason for the yo-yo effect of diets is pretty easy to understand:

Being overweight comes from stored fat; our bodies are intended to store fat to survive a famine or drought.  Whenever we take in more energy-producing food than we need, our bodies convert this to fat and store it in special cells, called adipocytes.

The biochemical mechanism is very cool.  In essence, certain cells have an enzyme system that looks at the level of food we have ingested and compares it to the activity level we have developed.  A jelly doughnut is good for about 18 hours of typical activity.  That means everything you eat after that jelly doughnut – for the next 18 hours, anyway – is converted to fat and stored.  Incidentally, this is the main reason that processed foods sweetened with High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) is so deadly.  HFCS is synthetically made usually 45% fructose and 55% glucose.  The fructose part of the food by-passes the enzyme system and ALL of the glucose is stored as fat.

When we go on a diet – which may be reduced calories, reduced portions of food, low fat, low carbohydrates, or a combination of these – we can lose some weight.  Then, maybe we’ve lost 5 or 10 pounds and the diet is over or there is some special event that “forces” us to eat high-calorie food, and we go right back to storing the fat.  Down – up; down – up, and so it goes.

The adipocytes in which we store fat are a bit like tiny balloons.  We blow up the balloon with a poor diet, then force the air out with a diet, then blow it up again, and let the air out again.  But, the balloon is still there.

We can get rid of the adipocyte balloons a couple of ways – but, as soon as we start eating junk food again, our genes turn on and we make more.

How can we lose weight and keep it off?  Eat healthily; exercise every day; and don’t turn on the adipocyte balloon gene.

Which diets work?  Well, all of them can work for a time; however, most take so long to have an effect that we grow discouraged and abandon the diet.  Some of the more common diets that people try include:

  • Weight Watchers®, which has you measuring food and limiting intake;
  • Nutrisystem® which requires you to buy very expensive prepackaged meals;
  • Adkins® diet which limits carbohydrate intake;
  • The Mediterranean Diet®, Zone Diet®, and others – all limit the type of food eaten.

One other feature common to all of these diets is that dieters are hungry – always hungry.  Let’s face it:  we learned how and what to eat as children, and it is very, very difficult to change the pattern.  In the U.S., we eat what has euphemistically come to be known as the Standard American Diet, aptly abbreviated as SAD.  The core of this diet is carbohydrates such as bread, cereals, candies, cookies, cakes, and pudding – everything sweet.  Since we learned this as children, our system is now programmed to want sweet things (even if we swear we don’t have a sweet tooth).  It is these carbohydrates that are converted to fat and stored.  This the reason the U.S. has such an incredibly high rate of obesity, with more than 1/3 of all adults being obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a 2016 report.

  • This is a hormone (human Chorionic Gonadotropin) produced women during pregnancy; it is the basis of a pregnancy test.
  • The function of the hormone during pregnancy is to signal the brain that the body will soon be experiencing a “famine” condition. That is, the woman will not be ingesting enough calories to sustain both mother and child. It is a signal to the brain that the body is not starving, despite the low calorie intake.
  • HCG negates or “turns off” other hormones that signal hunger, specifically the hormones Leptin and Ghrelin.  It is produced by both men and women in trace amounts all the time.
  • It is completely natural and provided in very low doses – just enough to turn down or off the appetite signals.

How does the diet work?

  • When this hormone is given in small amounts to otherwise healthy people, the hunger hormones turn “off.” This allows a person to eat a very low-calorie diet and not feel hungry. With a very low-calorie diet, the body will pull energy from your fat reserves – without feeling hungry, dropping your metabolism, or losing muscle mass. It only burns fat.
  • The hormone itself does not dissolve the fat, but it makes the very low-calorie diet possible, and that dissolves your fat. Your metabolism is “reset” making it possible for your body to maintain your new weight!

Is it safe?

  • HCG has been used for weight loss for more than 60 years.  It is extremely safe when used appropriately; it is safe to use in both men and women.
  • It may improve fertility or ease the symptoms of perimenopause and low Testosterone.  Many patients have decreased their risk factors for cardiovascular disease and reduced their medications, making them healthier and more likely to live long and healthy lives!
  • You SHOULD NOT use HCG if:
    • you are pregnant or nursing,
    • have ever had a blood clot or Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

Tell your doctor if you have any immune conditions or a history of cancer.

What is involved in the program?

  • The program is 3 weeks. If you are losing weight, you may extend in 3-week intervals.
  • Daily doses of HCG. We offer two options:
    • Injections, using a very small insulin-type syringe that is nearly painless;
    • A troche (lozenge) that dissolves under your tongue.
  • Weigh yourself daily at home
  • Weekly visits with your doctor to check-in on how you are feeling and your progress, be weighed and measured.
  • Very low-calorie diet for 3, followed by a low carbohydrate diet for 3 weeks to “lock in” your body’s changes.
  • Minimal to low amounts of light exercise
  • Back to a normal, healthy diet at the end.

How much can I expect to lose?

  • Every body is different, but on average you can expect:
    • 10-20 pounds weight loss in 3 weeks
  • What if I need to lose more than that?
    • You can do multiple rounds of the diet, with a break period between cycles.
  • When all you need to lose is the belly fat of middle-age, this may be the answer.
  • There are now several peptide analogs of Growth Hormone.  These stimulate certain receptors to enhance belly fat removal.  Common peptides – each with its own unique set of attributes – include:
    • Sermorelin
    • Hexarelin
    • Ibutamorelin
    • Ipamorelin 
  • For very low-calorie weight loss
  • Some patients report a loss of 20 pounds in three weeks.
  • Three or six-week programs
  • Necessary for normal metabolism and DNA synthesis
  • Gain energy and lose weight
  • Methionine
  • Inositol
  • Choline
  • Specially compounded to assist with weight loss
  • Some patients find great success with this option.
  • Too frequently, the reason a person gains weight with a healthy diet and regular exercise program is a food allergy.
  • We can help with that assessment – a blood test done by a specialty lab, also providing an “elimination” diet to get over the allergy.
  • Cortisol is known as the stress hormone; high levels are intended to prevent weight loss.
  • Let us help with cortisol testing (sputum and urine).

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