Dr. Kafka’s HCG Diet and Weight Loss Program in Ventura
Pounds and Inches Revisited: An Integrative Approach
In early 2007 I was handed a copy of Dr. A. T. W. Simeon’s original manuscript entitled Pounds and Inches, A New Approach to Obesity. The person who gave it to me had recently completed the program overseas and was extremely excited about what it had done for him. I read the manuscript and originally thought it was interesting, but it seemed too simplistic, and I set it aside. Many months later several members of our community approached me and asked me to do the program for them. I reread the manuscript and reconsidered. I was a bit hesitant at first, in part because Dr. Simeon’s weight loss program was originally designed for an in-patient type of setting. After discussing things over with my staff, I decided to go ahead and see if we could make it work.
That was over eight years ago. Since then I’ve had somewhere in the vicinity of two hundred and fifty people complete the program, many of them more than once because of the amount of extra weight they were carrying. I’ve had ample opportunity to learn a great deal from working with them and guiding them through it. What I originally thought was too simplistic has turned out to be something that borders on the medically miraculous, at least for some people. From the outset I felt that, while the claims in Pounds and Inches might be possible, I couldn’t understand how most people would be able to keep the weight off unless they changed some of the habits that helped create the excess weight in the first place. In that regard, I designed our program to have an optional body/mind component that complements the experience and helps lock in the physiological changes that occur while under the influence of a small dose of HCG and a low caloric diet. In addition, you will receive very detailed guidelines on how to transition back to and create a personalized diet once the program is completed.
The idea that the program as originally designed could actually affect the hypothalamus in such a way as to influence someone’s appetite in the long term is incredibly intriguing to me. I have witnessed time and again people losing weight in places they have never been able to lose weight before, and to a certain degree, the reshaping of the body that Dr. Simeon claims often occurs in his program and may continue afterwards. Many people experience some degree of the mild euphoria he talks about and a few have mentioned that they’d like to stay on the hormone because they haven’t felt so good in years. Everyone loses weight and is usually very pleased with the process. For some the experience is rather smooth and effortless, and for others it can be a bit of a struggle. To optimize the chance of complete success, be psychologically prepared to lose weight because you will. A little self-reflection beforehand can be very rewarding.
From my observations I have come to the following tentative conclusion. I will share this in the way of an analogy. While these ideas are based on my observations, there is now ample science evidence that identifies biological mechanisms that can explain how and why the program actually works the way that it does. (More on that at another time). It appears that the HCG does affect something at the core of our relationship to hunger. It is as if it is trying to reset our appetite back to how it was originally designed before all of our cultural conditioning disturbed its’ innate equilibrium. Think of a computer. It arrives brand new with a clean hard drive and operating system. Then we go about downloading lots of software, and in the process a few viruses may get in and cookies that we don’t want enter as well. After a while, the operating system starts to work more sluggishly and sometimes freezes or breaks down all together. We also get very attached to the various software programs we have installed. It is similar to what happens to our relationship with food as we grow up. As infants we naturally know what we need to eat (there are studies that verify this). Then gradually our familial and cultural patterns are installed, habits begin and cravings may develop. The reasons we eat slowly change. Originally derived from the signals that our bodies give us for proper nourishment they slowly become more emotionally based. Additionally our culture and the modern American diet are loaded with unhealthy, refined food substitutes and ideas that create imbalance, ensure cravings and create physiological addictions. All in all, our “operating system” gets very dysregulated and many people become overweight (now in epidemic proportions) and/or generally unhealthy because of their dietary habits.
Because of our modern cultural ideas and diet, a bit more than HCG with a low calorie diet may be required to complete its promise of sustained weight loss. I have found that some individuals have to work with their own eating patterns and make an effort to examine and change their emotional relationship with food as well. The good news is that the HCG makes that much easier than one might expect. I’ve designed the program with the option to help you become aware of what drives your unhealthy eating habits and with new awareness, be enabled to make permanent change. I like to think that this is where your role in healing yourself comes into play. The HCG plus diet will do the biological work and it is your opportunity to do the rest. It is not entirely realistic to think that you can complete the program, lose weight and keep it off if you just go back to all of your old habits and patterns. Something may have to change, and the program affords you the opportunity to do just that in a setting that we feel is extremely supportive and individualized.
If you are interested in changing your eating habits and patterns, I suggest that you change one daily habit at the outset of the program, such as brushing your teeth with the opposite hand each morning. This simple pattern interruption can have a snowball affect to expand your level of awareness all day long and adds to the fun and adventure of your HCG journey. If you feel inclined, keep a daily journal of what your thoughts and feelings are regarding your relationship to food. Are you eating because your body is hungry or because you are trying to avoid certain feelings or thoughts? Are you eating out of politeness in a social situation or to please somebody else? Do you just feel bored? Are you feeling unfulfilled and simply looking for some comfort? The issues that drive people’s appetites are seemingly endless, and we all fall prey to them at different times.
Program participants can have remarkable insights during the program that have lasting affects in their lives. A few have decided to contact a therapist to clarify some issues. If you are already involved with your own personal growth, this optional part of the program can be easy, exciting and fulfilling. If this is a new idea in your life, please know that we will be here to support and guide you if you choose a bit of introspection. I make myself available by email or phone each day if necessary and I encourage you to find some support amongst your family and friends. Sometimes two friends decide to sign up together so that they have each other for support. Please know that in-depth personal introspection is neither needed nor required for a successful program. You will lose weight regardless. If you don’t have a complex history of weight problems, the program will most likely be a breeze. However, for people with chronic weight issues, insights can be gained to assist in maintaining the weight that is lost. I offer this as an adjunct to the basic program itself because it can be very helpful for people with a more complex relationship with food.
I encourage you to think of this program as a special time that you are taking for yourself. Remember this was originally designed as an in-patient program. People traveled long distances to stay at a special clinic to participate. If you are interested in joining the program, I encourage you to make sure that it is well-timed in your life so that you don’t have to travel overnight anywhere during the first 23 days and that you don’t have too many obligations such as weddings, parties, etc. If you are a woman who still menstruates, it is best to start the program within the first week after your cycle ends.
The three weeks of maintenance following the HCG portion are also extremely important. If possible, please try to include that time without added travel or stress. In other words, setting aside a six-week block of time free of excessive extraneous obligations is ideal. Remember, you are trying to accomplish this while you are still very much right in the middle of your life. Unfortunately, it is a bit more complex than simply taking a pill. The HCG will make all of it easier than you can possibly imagine, but a well thought out, organized life plan by you is extremely important to the program’s success. Reading the book in its’ entirety, bringing all of your questions to me at the outset, buying the food and scales, knowing exactly what to eat, perhaps preparing some meals beforehand and freezing them can all contribute to decreasing your stress level and enable a very satisfying weight loss experience.
I have found the program to be very gratifying as a practitioner of the healing arts. I am continually learning and take great joy in seeing people lose weight and change their lives for the better. If you decide to join us, you’ll need to set up an appointment so that I can medically determine it is safe for you. It is very important for me to know your medical history thoroughly and to have a good feel for who you are. Before you start, we have a private session to make sure you understand all the pragmatics and are indeed prepared to begin. Moreover, if you are worried about the injections, fret not. We use a tiny insulin syringe, which even the most needle phobic people have had absolutely no problem with. I will show you exactly how to administer the HCG pain free.
It is our hope that by reading Dr. Simeon’s book and my overview of our program that you are well positioned to make an educated decision about whether this program is right for you. If you decide to join us, I look forward to working with you.
Kenneth R. Kafka, M.D.