Reprinted from Channel 8 Las Vegas NOW - Eyewitness News
Updated: Sep 15, 2009 8:52 PM EDT
LAS VEGAS, Nv -- The popular HCG hormone diet is spreading like wildfire through Las Vegas, touting a weight loss of a pound a day. But one local doctor who closely monitors his patients who are on it warns that dangerous black market versions of HCG have also surfaced.
The medical HCG diet requires patients to get a daily injection of a human hormone-like substance that quickly unlocks your body's most stubborn fat while at the same time telling your brain you're full.
Under doctor supervision, it's shown some remarkable weight loss results, first in Europe and now in the United States. "On average, patients lose a pound a day," Las Vegas Cosmetic Surgeon Dr. Lane Smith said.
Dr. Smith says it's easy to understand why the HCG diet is catching on fast in Las Vegas with an average weight loss of 32 pounds in six weeks. "It's extremely successful because patients are not hungry and it immediately starts breaking down the fat that never got broken down before- fat on the hips, waist, belly," Dr. Smith also said.
Kathy Kubik lost 30 pounds on the HCG diet.
New Beginnings hCG
"I was so frustrated because I had tried everything to lose weight," Kubik said. "I could not wait to get up and jump on the scale the next day to see it going down a pound a day. It was unbelievable."
And with diet and exercise, Kubik has not only kept the weight off, she's also off three of her four blood pressures and cholesterol medications as well. "It's given me my life back," Kubik said.
But a six-week program costs about $750. So some dieters desperate to save dollars are opting to score HCG on the streets.
"It's especially dangerous if you do the wrong doses. There are even versions that use feline, or cat HCG," Dr. Smith said.
Dr. Smith also says patients who misuse HCG can suffer severe liver, kidney, even heart damage.
Given Kathy's heart condition, she says black market HCG was never an option she would consider. "If you take shortcuts, sometimes it ends up costing you a lot more in the long run, including your health," Kubik said.
ED COMMENT: The New Beginnings hCG Program is less costly
The only thing you have to lose, is a pound a day.