Evidence for, and Associated Risks with, the Human Chorionic Gonadotropin Supplemented Diet

J Diet Suppl. 2016 Nov;13(6):694-9. doi: 10.3109/19390211.2016.1156208. Epub 2016 Mar 24.


Trend diets can be commonplace amongst those who are trying to lose weight but in most cases there is some shred of evidence to suggest they might be of some benefit. Seldom is there a diet which is such a fad that it is not only completely unfounded but also potential harmful. The human chorionic gonadotropin or "hCG diet" is such a diet, which after half a century still has no evidence to support its efficacy; in fact all scientific publications subsequent to the original article counter these claims. In this short communication, we review the literature and present data on exactly what some of the hCG diet preparations actually contain and highlight that, based on current data, these may do more harm than good. It is worrying that more consideration is not given to the possible danger of administration of hCG preparations to individuals without an evidence-based rational.

Keywords: cancer; diet; hCG; hCG beta.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Obesity Agents
  • Chorionic Gonadotropin / administration & dosage*
  • Chorionic Gonadotropin / adverse effects*
  • Diet / trends*
  • Diet, Reducing
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Humans
  • Risk Factors
  • Weight Loss*


  • Anti-Obesity Agents
  • Chorionic Gonadotropin