Noom vs. hCG Diet - How Do These Plans Compare?
Noom vs. hCG Diet – The latest in weight-loss science and technology versus a diet plan from the 1950s. A lot has changed since then, including how we approach weight loss. Today losing weight is about total support of the body and mind – does the hCG Diet offer that?
What is Noom?
Noom is a mobile weight-loss program that offers dieter 16 weeks of personalized support, including contact with a human coach. After the initial 16 weeks, Noom offers a weight maintenance program that lasts as long as the user wants.
Noom’s weight-loss program utilizes calories, food logging, exercise tracking, educational lessons, and quizzes to teach healthy lifestyle habits that promote weight loss. Users are not only given direction on how to make changes, Noom explains why making the changes can benefit your health.
What is the hCG Diet?
The hCG Diet is a ketogenic-style diet that utilizes hCG injections and an extremely low-calorie intake to promote fast weight loss. The diet was first introduced in the 1950s but remained one of the most popular fad diets of all time.
hCG, or human chorionic gonadotropin, is a hormone associated with pregnancy. However, small amounts of the hormone are also found in men.
Noom vs. hCG Diet – History
Brief History of Noom
Noom was founded in 2008 by friends Saeju Jeong and Artem Petakov. The duo had a novel idea – weight-loss and the mind are connected more than people think. With that idea in hand, Jeong and Petakov partnered with doctors and psychologists to develop a program that that integrated mind and body.
After years of development, Noom’s platform set the bar for weight-loss apps. In 2018, it was one of the most searched diets on Google. To help even more people to lose weight, Noom partnered with Novo Nordisk, a global healthcare company, in 2019.
Noom is also featured on the list of Lifestyle Programs by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Check out a free trial of Noom today to find out why the CDC lists this plan as a lifestyle program.
Brief History of the hCG Diet
Dr. Alfred Simeons created the hCG Diet in the 1950s. Simeons was a British endocrinologist who noticed what he thought was a connection between hCG treatment and weight loss.
There’s a bit of cloudiness around what exactly prompted the doctor’s interest in an hCG-based diet. One story claims the doctor had been treating adolescent males with testosterone deficiency with hCG. A side effect of low testosterone is weight gain, so many of the boys were overweight.
The boys who were treated with hCG, and placed on a diet that controlled calorie intake, lost weight faster than the doctor expected. This sparked an interest in the possibility that hCG could be the answer to weight loss. Simeons spent decades researching and developing the hCG Diet.
Another story claims that while practicing in India, where he lived for more than 15 years, he noticed that underfed women birthed healthy babies despite the lack of food. He discovered that undernourished women produced more hCG, which was causing the body to use stored fat to sustain the fetus. Either way, he studied the possible connection between hCG and weight loss in India until 1949 before moving to Rome.
Simeons continued to study the effects of hCG on weight and published the book Pounds and Inches in 1954 – the first book explaining the hCG Diet.
Noom vs. hCG Diet – Who’s Behind the Plan?
Who Created Noom?
Artem Petakov and Saeju Jeong created Noom in 2008. Petakov started out with an interest in coding as early as nine years old. He dabbled in the dot com world in high school before attending college for computer science. In college, Petakov developed a liking for psychology, in particular the partnership of psychology and decision making.
Jeong was interested in entrepreneurship in his teens. He spent six years living and working in Korea, where he started BuyHard Productions, before moving to the United States. Jeong approached Petakov with the idea of Noom in hand, but Petakov was reluctant at first. Eventually, he left his job at Google and jumped on board with the Noom app.
Who Created the hCG Diet?
Dr. Alfred Simeons was born and raised, for most of his life, in London. He attended school for medicine in Germany and graduated summa cum laude. He continued his medical studies in Germany and eventually, Switzerland. His interest was in Tropical Medicine, the study of health and medicine in tropical and sub-tropical climates, so he began studying at the School of Tropical Medicine in Hamburg. Simeons researched, studied, and practiced medicine in India and Rome.
Outside of his medical practice, the first introduction the world had to the hCG Diet was in 1954 when Simeons published the book Pounds and Inches. The same manuscript published in 1954 is used as the basis for today’s hCG Diet.
Noom vs. hCG Diet – The Rules
Rules of Noom
Noom is all about transforming through education, healthy lifestyle changes, and dedicated support. Psychology plays a substantial role in the program, as does food logging, exercise tracking, and knowledge. If you use Noom, you are taught about healthy changes, why those changes make a difference to your health, and how to make the changes in a gradual way that builds new habits.
Food Logging: Logging food on Noom is about more than just tracking calories. Each food is placed in a category based on overall nutrition. The categories are Green, Yellow, and Red.
Green foods are all go – you can eat these nutritious, highly nutritious foods in abundance. About 30% of the calories you eat each day will come from green foods.
Examples of green foods: grapes, raspberries, cherries, tomatoes, cucumbers, potatoes, mushrooms, brown and wild rice, whole wheat bread, egg whites, most fish, ground turkey, and non-fat dairy.
Yellow foods are slow – these foods are still nutritious, but they may contain more calories than the green alternative or may be higher in sugar content – like some fruits. Around 45% of your daily calories come from yellow foods.
Examples of yellow foods: plantains, avocado, couscous, basmati and yellow rice, chicken breast, lean pork and beef, turkey, sushi, and low-fat dairy.
Red foods are stop (at least most of the time) – these foods are to be eaten only on occasion. Red foods tend to be high-fat, high-calorie, and low-nutrition. You should eat 30% or fewer calories from red foods.
Examples of red foods: dried fruits, biscuits, bagels, white bread, bacon, fried meats, wine, vodka, champagne, and sugary desserts.
Tracking Exercise: Noom includes an integrated exercise tracker that automatically adds in 50% of the calories you burned doing exercise into your calorie goal for the day. For instance, if your calorie goal is 1500, and you burn 500 calories during exercise, your calorie goal will increase to 1750.
Lessons, Quizzes, and Education: Unlike other weight-loss programs, Noom makes use of small chunks of information via lessons and reinforces what’s been learned with short quizzes. The program requires only 10 minutes a day.
Each small chunk of information builds on something that’s just been learned, and, over time, those small chunks add up to lasting lifestyle changes that are now part of everyday life.
These three elements work together to make for a plan that doesn’t feel like you’re dieting – because you’re not. Check out the “no-more-diets” app for a free trial.
Rules of the hCG Diet
The original hCG Diet used hCG injections given by a doctor. hCG is not available in homeopathics, supplements, or any over-the-counter products. hCG is only available by prescription.
Loading Phase: Days one and two – start hCG injections and eat lots (loading) of high-calorie, high-fat foods.
Weight-Loss Phase: Up to six weeks – continue hCG injections and consume no more than 500 calories per day.
Maintenance Phase: Three weeks – stop hCG injections and slowly increase calorie intake, avoiding simple carbohydrates.
Today, medical clinics continue to advertise the hCG Diet, complete with hCG injections. Some clinics offer more detailed rules that give better insight into what to expect.
Based on information gathered from multiple sources, some of the standard rules and suggestions include:
Drink 64 ounces of water daily. In addition to these 64 ounces, you can choose to drink as much green tea, black tea, black coffee, mineral water, or sparkling water as you’d like. Note: add nothing to the coffee or tea.
Do not take a vitamin or mineral supplement. Even though the hCG Diet doesn’t provide the nutrition needed for good health, multivitamins are often discouraged. The reasoning is that some brands contain sugars and starches, which can slow or halt weight-loss progress.
You must borrow food from other meals to eat breakfast. On some hCG Diets, breakfast foods are not included in the meal plan. To eat breakfast, you’ll need to take foods from your other meals, or you’ll have to wait until lunch.
Noom vs. hCG Diet – Eating Plans
The Noom Eating Plan
The eating plan with Noom is personalized to the user. When setting up the initial plan, users are asked a series of questions that help in the development of an individualized diet. Then, when users are paired with their personal coach, they can further personalize the experience, ask questions, and get advice.
There’s also the traffic light-style system of green, yellow, and red food categories. While the Noom eating plan starts off with a calorie goal, the food categories help the user to learn how to make good choices based on portion sizes and nutrition. Eventually, making the best choices will be a natural process, so you don’t have to focus on calories at all.
The hCG Diet Eating Plan
Two meals are planned each day on the hCG Diet – lunch and dinner. You have the option to take food from one meal and consume it as breakfast or a snack during the day, but you can’t combine the two meals or take from one meal to add to another.
The food groups allowed are meat, vegetable, bread, and fruit.
Meat: Only extremely lean cuts of meat are acceptable. These include white fish, shrimp, crab, lobster, veal, skinless poultry, 96% lean beef, and buffalo. You cannot eat ground meats, deli meats, dried fish, or pickled fish.
Preparation: Cooking methods are limited to grilling and boiling. Do not add fat of any kind.
Serving Size: 3.5 ounces, raw – no bones
Vegetables: There is conflicting information about the vegetables allowed on the hCG Diet. Some programs offer an extremely limited list, while others are more flexible, allowing most vegetables. Stricter guidelines suggest sticking with leafy greens, tomato, cucumber, celery, radishes, asparagus, and cabbage. You cannot eat canned vegetables.
Preparation: Cooking methods are limited to grilling or boiling. Vegetables can also be eaten raw. Do not add fat of any kind.
Serving Size: Between one and three cups, depending on the type of vegetable.
Bread: Just like the vegetables, there is differing information about your bread options on the hCG Diet. The one common food mentioned across many programs is Melba Toast.
Serving Size: One toast.
Fruit: You can choose from four fruits for your lunch and dinner meals: apple, strawberries, grapefruit, and orange.
Serving Size: medium apple or orange, ½ cup strawberries, or half a grapefruit.
Choose one food from each category for lunch and again for dinner. These eight food items make up your entire daily menu. No additional foods or snacks are allowed.
Noom vs. hCG Diet – Plan Duration
How Long Does Noom Last?
Noom is a 16-week, progressive plan. Each week focuses on a different aspect of overall health, wellness, and weight loss. After the 16-week weight-loss program, Noom offers continued support for weight maintenance. Users can purchase up to a 12-month subscription. An active account comes with your personal coach and dedicated social community even after the initial 16 weeks.
How Long Does the hCG Diet Last?
Based on the three phases of the hCG Diet, it lasts nine to ten weeks. In some cases, proponents of the diet suggest multiple cycles, especially for people needing to lose a substantial amount of weight.
Significant Differences Between Noom and the hCG Diet
The most significant difference between Noom and the hCG Diet is that Noom doesn’t restrict any foods and calorie suggestions are enough to provide the nutrition the body needs. Noom has also been clinically-proven to promote weight loss that lasts.
Can You Follow the hCG Diet on Noom?
No, you cannot follow the hCG Diet on Noom. Noom does not advocate following an extremely-low-calorie diet without the advice and supervision of a healthcare professional. Noom will never suggest a calorie intake below 1000.
Possible Side Effects of Noom vs. the hCG Diet
There are no potential side effects of using the Noom app – other than weight loss, that is. The hCG Diet does come with the possibility of adverse effects.
Due to the extreme calorie restriction, muscle loss is common on the hCG Diet.
The body may conserve energy to protect against starvation, so you burn fewer calories.
You may also experience:
- Stomach Pains
- Growing Hunger
In extreme cases where the body uses up all fat stores and resorts to protein for energy, people can feel withdrawn or listless, and the immune system may be compromised.
Noom vs. hCG Diet – The Research
Clinical Research on Noom
As a weight-loss app, you wouldn’t expect there to be significant research into the platform. Apps come and go – but Noom is here to stay. In a study published in Scientific Reports, more than 35,000 men and women used Noom to lose weight. More than 75% of the participants reported significant weight loss.
Anyone who’s ever tried to lose weight knows that keeping the weight off can be just as hard, if not harder, than losing weight. Noom is effective there, as well. Researchers tested the effect of Noom on weight maintenance in overweight and obese Koreans, according to an article published in Metabolic Syndromes and Related Disorders. After the trial, Noom users kept more weight off than non-users.
Clinical Research on the hCG Diet
Research on the hCG Diet reaches back to its creation. A 1977 edition of the Western Journal of Medicine shared a critical assessment of the diet. The results of this early research are similar to the results of current studies. According to the article, “Injections of human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) have been claimed to aid in weight reduction by reducing hunger, and affecting mood as well as aiding in localized (spot) reduction. We have tested these claims in a double-blind randomized trial using injections of HCG or placebo. Weight loss was identical between the two groups, and there was no evidence for differential effects on hunger, mood or localized body measurements. Placebo injections, therefore, appear to be as effective as HCG in the treatment of obesity.”
Jump forward to 2016, and a single sentence in a journal article in the Journal of Dietary Supplements sums up decades of research. “…after half a century still has no evidence to support [hCG Diet] efficacy; in fact, all scientific publications subsequent to the original article counter these claims.”
The Facts About Noom vs. hCG Diet
Quick Facts on Noom
- Noom’s Healthy Weight Program lasts 16 weeks.
- Post-program weight loss support is available.
- Each user is partnered with a personal coach.
- Weight-loss experiences are personalized to the individual.
- Subscriptions are available from one to 12 months.
- No foods are eliminated or off-limits.
- Noom automatically adds 50% of the calories burned during exercise to your calorie goal.
- Noom is an effective weight-loss program based on clinical research.
Quick Facts on the hCG Diet
- Dr. Simeons hCG Diet required hCG injections (or prescription hCG by today’s terms).
- You are required to eat no more than 500 calories per day for three weeks.
- Homeopathic hCG supplements don’t contain actual hCG.
- The diet doesn’t fulfill the body’s nutritional needs.
- There’s no clinical evidence that the hCG Diet is effective.
- Eating fewer than 500 calories per day can lead to serious side effects, including muscle loss.
- The hCG Diet doesn’t allow for flexibility – all rules are to be strictly followed.
Final Take on Noom vs. hCG Diet
There’s little doubt, based on science and sheer common sense that the hCG Diet is not an effective weight-loss solution. Eating 500 or fewer calories per day is not a sustainable diet and soon, with or without hCG, hunger will happen and it will keep growing. It’s important to reiterate that hCG is not available over the counter. No supplements that claim to contain hCG actually contain the hormone.
Noom, on the other hand, is clinically proven and asks for only 10 minutes a day to help you lose weight. Stop trying to lose weight the same way you always have – take a look at how technology and psychology can help you reach your goals.
Check out Noom with a free trial today!
Noom vs. hCG Diet Questions and Answers
What is the Noom diet plan?
Noom is a 16-week healthy lifestyle program that uses the latest technology, human coaching, and customized experience to promote weight loss.
What does Noom stand for?
Noom stands for Moon backward. Some say the moon provides the light needed to guide you through the night. Noom is the guiding light to weight loss.
What do you eat on Noom?
You eat all the foods you’d typically eat on Noom. There are no restricted foods and no food groups are eliminated. The idea isn’t to skip all the foods you love, but to learn how to eat them as part of your everyday life and lose weight.
How much does Noom cost per month?
There are six paid options for a Noom subscription. You can either choose to pay month to month at about $60/month or choose from one of five longer subscription options.
- Two Months: $50/month
- Four Months: $33/month
- Six Months: $25/month
- Eight Months: $20/month
- 12 Months: $17/month
How good is the Noom diet?
Based on clinical research on more than 35,000 men and women, 75% of people who use Noom lose weight.
How do I quit Noom?
If you’d like to cancel your Noom subscription, log into your account, and send a message to your personal coach. The coach will process the cancellation, and you’ll receive an email confirmation.
Does Noom send you food?
No, Noom is not a meal delivery service.
Does Noom give you a meal plan?
Noom provides the guidance and tools you need to eat the foods you love and lose weight. You are not held to a specific meal plan.
Summer Banks has researched over 5000 weight-loss programs, pills, shakes and diet plans. Previously, she managed 15 supplement brands, worked with professionals in the weight loss industry and completed coursework in nutrition at Stanford University.