There are actually 2 periods of maintenance that are 3 weeks each.
- During the first 3 weeks you gradually add caution foods back into your diet.
- During the second 3 week maintenance session you add carbohydrates back into your diet.
Maintenance is a very important part of the HCG diet because it ultimately ensures your long-term success. During maintenance your metabolism will be reset to a new healthier rate so that you will be able to eat normally once you complete the protocol. This is something that no other diet can offer. In fact, most diets require you to stay on them inevitably if you wish to keep the weight off.
The HCG diet 3 week maintenance period must be completed immediately following VLCD to work. During this time you do not want to gain or lose any weight at all. In fact, if you gain or lose more than 2 pounds during maintenance you may not need to complete a “steak day”.
A steak day is when you just drink water all day and then have a large steak for dinner with either an apple or a raw tomato. According to the protocol you can have coffee or tea during the day but no milk and only a dash of Stevia if needed.
If you do have coffee or tea you will need to increase your water intake even more. The next morning after a steak day you should be back within 2 pounds of your target weight. This is the weight you were the day you completed phase 2, or you LDW (last drop weight).
Be sure to monitor your weight carefully during maintenance. Even if you plan to complete another round of the HCG diet you will need to properly set your metabolic rate first to be successful.