HCG Diet Steak Day
Phases 3 & 4
In Phase 3, we are introduced to the "Steak Day." On any day in Phase 3 that you weigh yourself and notice that you have gone more than 2 lbs. (approx. 1 kg) above the weight you ended Phase 2 at, you go to Steak Day. So, what is this Steak Day and what will it do for you?
Phase 3 gives you 3 weeks to stabilize your weight. If you gain more than 2 lbs. during phase 3, you have probably:
- Eaten something your body reacted badly to (causing fluid retention,)
- Eaten foods outside the Phase 3 dietary guidelines (starches or sugars)
- Need to evaluate your portion sizes.
Whichever of these is the source of the problem, a Steak Day will give you a day to reset and get back on-track again.
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Steak Day Specifics
- Eat nothing during the day.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Evening meal --- eat as much as you comfortably can of a large, lean-cut of steak, with nothing else (you can use salt).
- A couple of hours later in the evening, you may eat either one medium-sized apple or one tomato.
Why nothing but water until the evening meal?
- If your weight gain is from something your body is reacting poorly to, then not eating during the day and drinking plenty of water will help give your body a way to flush your system.
- If you over-ate or ate food outside the Phase 3 guidelines, not eating will create a considerable calorie deficit. The energy source your body will turn to will largely consist of body fat.
Why eat a large steak?
- It provides a large amount of slow-digesting protein than your body will need for cellular repair later at night, while you are sleeping.
- You won't go to bed hungry. The fact that slow-digesting proteins are good appetite suppressors is supported by a lot of research.
- Meat proteins have a high thermic effect (around 30.) This means that a significant amount of calories are burned just digesting your steak...which is definitely a bonus!
Why eat an apple or tomato later in the evening?
- It ensures you eat a maximum amount of protein. If you ate an apple with your meal, you wouldn't have as much room for your steak.
- It provides your body with fiber and enzymes to keep the large amount of protein you just consumed moving through your digestive system. If you have trouble with constipation, an apple is for you!
- Your body digests protein at a much slower rate than fruits and vegetables. Even if you chew the steak carefully, it will still sit in your stomach acid for a few hours before it is digested sufficiently to be released to your intestinal tract. Eating an apple or tomato a few hours later ensures that everything moves through your digestive tract together, instead of having your apple or tomato ferment in your stomach acids and cause uncomfortable gas.
Do I have to eat the apple or tomato at the end of the Steak Day?
No, you don't have to eat the apple or tomato at the end of the steak day. This is optional---you only use it if you need it. You may not even want it if you eat a large enough portion of steak. However, if you struggle with constipation, eating a bit less meat and sending an apple along to escort that meat through your system is probably a wise choice...
Can I do a Steak Day if I have gained some, but still less than 2 lbs. (1kg)?
It's not recommended to do a steak day when you've gained less than 2 lbs (1kg), and here's why: You are training your body to stabilize the existing weight, and training yourself to interact with food in a way that allows your body to do so. The danger of going on a steak day if you have not gained more than 2 lbs., is that you are falling back to an extremely low cal diet to maintain your weight, rather than training your body to sustain this weight with regular, healthy eating. This is particularly important in Phase 3.
Can I do more than one Steak Day in a row?
Yes, but never more than two. Without the hCG in your system, more than two Steak Days in a row is actually counterproductive in Phase 3, as you risk slowing your metabolism. One Steak Day should give you what you need. However, if it is not enough, it is usually a more effective strategy to do one Steak Day, then give your body a break before you come back the next week for another one. This approach is the best for Phase 3 as you seek to stabilize and maintain what you've earned. Again, if you feel the need to really reset, and want to do more than one steak day in a row, just limit it to two days, and don't repeat it again until the following week, if needed. You want to keep your metabolism up, and without the hCG in your system, too low of calories for an extended period of time can slow your metabolism down and ultimately cause weight gain.
I missed my Steak Day timeframe. Can I do it at a later time?
Yes, although it may not be quite as effective as the day after you hit the two pound gain mark, it is still beneficial. If you watch your calories and increase your physical activity levels, it is our experience that you will often naturally drop back to your end-Phase 2 weight, as long as you don't let things get out of hand for more than a couple of days.
Is Steak Day effective in Phase 4?
Yes. We talk about this and maintenance strategies for HCG Phase 4 here.