The second stage of the human chorionic gonadotropin, or HCG, diet is the very low calorie diet, or VLCD, phase. This phase of the HCG plan requires that you eat about 500 calories per day for 21 to 38 days, depending on which HCG protocol you’re following. There are very specific rules about what foods are and aren’t allowed during this phase of the HCG diet, so it’s important to do your research before entering the VLCD stage.
HCG Diet Phase 2 Rules
You’ll have started taking the human chorionic gonadotropin injections during the first phase of the HCG diet plan, and you’ll continue throughout the second phase. Human chorionic gonadotropin reduces hunger, which makes it much easier to eat a more restricted diet. HCG dosages range from 125iu to 200iu, but most people take less than 150iu. You can make adjustments to your HCG dosage based on your hunger levels and your rate of weight loss.
There is a small and specific list of foods on the menu for the second phase of the HCG diet. For breakfast, you can have tea or coffee without sugar. The HCG diet allows for one tablespoon of milk every 24 hours. For lunch and dinner, the menu calls for 100 grams of protein with any visible fat removed as well as one type of vegetable, one grissini breadstick or one Melba toast, and a piece of fruit.
Instead of including the fruit in your lunch or dinner menu, you can also have it as a snack or dessert. It’s important to weigh out all of your foods, especially the protein, so a food scale is one of the most important tools to have on hand while on the HCG diet. If you follow the protocol exactly, you’ll be eating about 500 calories per day.
Foods Allowed During Phase 2
According to Dr. Simeons’ original human chorionic gonadotropin diet protocol, protein sources on the menu for the VLCD phase include:
- Fresh white fish
- Lobster, crab, and shrimp
The following vegetables are allowed on the HCG diet:
- Spinach, chard, chicory, and beat-greens
- Fennel, onions, and red radishes
- Green salad and cabbage
The following fruits are included on the menu:
The HCG diet also allows the juice of one lemon per day. You can use as much salt, pepper, vinegar, garlic, or other spices as you want, but the menu does not include oil, butter, or dressing.
Phase 2 Sample Meal Plan
Because there’s only a small number of foods on the HCG diet menu, it’s easy to get tired of your meals. According to reviews of the HCG diet, boredom with the menu is just as common of a reason for quitting the diet as hunger or cravings. This shows how important it is to switch up your menu every day and eat as wide of a variety of foods as possible. You should also take advantage of the seasonings and flavorings allowed on the HCG diet.
Here are some sample meals you can incorporate into your HCG diet menu:
- Roasted chicken with Melba bread crumbs, garlic, lemon juice, onion powder, and salt
- Beef stew with celery, onion, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper
- Asparagus and apple salad with red onion, lemon juice, salt, and cinnamon
- Apple slaw with diced apple, cabbage, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, and mustard powder
- Apple crumble made with chopped apple, stevia, cinnamon, and a crushed grissini breadstick
The restriction phase of the human chorionic gonadotropin diet may seem tough, but the time will go by quickly if you take the injections properly and get variety in your diet. While dropping weight rapidly, this is also a chance to learn new low-calorie recipes that you can use in the next phases of the HCG diet and for the rest of your life.