Whey Protein Shakes for the HCG Diet Protocol

I often get questions like the one below regarding whey protein shakes on the HCG 2.0 diet protocol. If you’re familiar with the traditional HCG diet, you’re aware that there are no protein shakes allowed. That’s because the traditional HCG diet is nearly 70 years old and a bit prehistoric in regard current research on dieting and food technology. God bless Dr. Simeons, the theories that inspired his manuscript, Pounds and Inches; A New Approach to Obesity are still relevant and quite progressive today, but his protocol needs updating – not by any fault of his own, just progress. Whey, which is the liquid by-product of cheese production, could only be consumed fresh in the days Dr. Simeons was practicing his 500 calorie HCG diet protocol. This version of whey also contained a lot of fat. However, as an invention of food science, the protein in whey has  been isolated from the fat and made into a powder, which is what you find on the shelves of your favorite nutritional stores today. See the question regarding Whey Protein from Lynn to the right…

“Do you know if I can do a whey powder protein drink? In other words, when I did it before there was an HCG protein drink, but it was rice based. I have since found out that I can’t do soy, rice, pea protein due to allergies (and hate the taste of stevia) so what caused me to hesitate to do this now is I can’t find a protein drink/meal replacement. I currently use Whey Cool Non-Denatured Whey Protein by Designs for Health, in a water base with organic strawberries and org freeze dried blackberry powder for every breakfast. Or perhaps you know of some other good hcg protein drink or meal replacement.” ~Lynn

This is a really great question. I’m always looking for material for my blogs and this gives me a lot to write about. There are several things I’d like to address in the email question here so I numbered them below…

  1. To answer the first question, yes. Whey is allowed on the HCG 2.0 protocol. The reason I was inspired to write HCG 2.0 was to make it a realistic weight loss alternative (I hate using the word alternative when describing holistic medicine because only westernized countries view these as “alternatives.” All eastern medicine BEGINS with our so-called “alternatives” and if results can’t be achieved they then move on to more invasive procedures and pharmaceuticals) for the average working adult. I outlined and explained many of the inadequacies of the traditional HCG diet in by book. You can view some of them here. Food chemistry was primitive at best when Dr. Simeons was practicing, which was why his HCG diet was so anecdotal. There was no Google to check the fat or carb content of foods, so he had to experiment. We don’t have to do that today which is why I incorporated all of the cool and innovative food statistics that are available now. All of the options in HCG 2.0 are based upon caloric value rather than weight. If you choose to eat leaner protein items, such as white fish and whey, you’re allowed greater portion sizes. The smarter you eat, the more food you can eat. The charts in the book rank protein items using my P/FC calculation.

  2. I’m still amazed that there are so many people doing the original 500 calorie diet version. A rice shake, mentioned above, only adds carbs to the protocol which is entirely contradictory to everything we now know about low-carb ketosis dieting. I say it everyday in my office, “the more you do to help the HCG by limiting carbs, the more the HCG will help you.” Any diet that limits protein, but allows up to 300 calories in fruit, bread sticks and root veggies is not ideal for weight loss. As an example, onions are allowed on the traditional diet while green peppers are not. Onions are root vegetables and they contain 4 times the carbs of a green pepper. Carbs inhibit ketosis and ketosis is the ONLY way to tap into the unwanted fat we tend to store in our bellies, thighs, arms, etc. There is a smarter way to lose.

  3. Whey Cool Non-Denatured Whey Protein by Designs for Health – I’m always getting questions about what is the best whey protein shake or what is the best “insert product here.” I usually try not to get too specific. My general advice is to (a) Stick with items that have the highest P/FC calculation and (b) Watch the food label for things you can’t pronounce. This product is one of the best I’ve seen. I’m so glad I was made aware of it. The P/FC is 3.23 (anything over 3 is excellent) and it has zero long-winded sugar substitutes that typically end in -ose, as you can see from the food label to the right. I’m not sure of the price because I haven’t taken the time yet to set up an account, but I will soon. I’m looking forward to trying.


Whey Cool Label


Soy also makes an excellent protein supplement. Soy in fact is the ONLY food item that contains all 20 essential amino acids. That means a human could survive solely on soy as a protein source. The best soy protein shake on the market is the Juice Plus complete. I don’t feel 100% comfortable recommending it for the low-calorie phase because it contains 20 carbs per serving (although it contains 8 grams of fiber for a net carb count of only 12 grams). However, the Juice Plus Complete Shake is the PERFECT food for maintenance and very family friendly. When my niece asks for chocolate milk, she gets a Juice Plus Complete. She’s none the wiser… and substantially healthier.

Whey and soy protein are examples of food technology actually helping rather than hurting us, so take advantage. I suggest that women get 15 grams of protein in the first 30 minutes of starting your day, while men should get 20-25 grams. I also recommend getting a lean protein snack before bed, even while on the low-calorie phase of your HCG 2.0 diet. Most of your cellular maintenance and regeneration occurs at night while you sleep and it’s good to have a protein base. It also provides better sleep. You’re mind is at rest after an infusion of calories. Again, think of our hunter/gatherer ancestors; if calories are scarce, the mind becomes more alert, searching for it’s next meal. There are South American tribes that induce vomiting before a hunt to make the hunters more alert – it sharpens the eye, as my grandfather used to say. The opposite is true when calories are consumed. That’s why you hit a wall after lunch and need a nap. You’re belly is full and your brain is content.


Dr. Zach LaBoube


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