It took me awhile to broach this subject, because I realize that even though I don’t see myself as a fitness influencer, many people do. I wanted to research all pros and cons about Ozempic and weight loss injectables before speaking out about them. After a lot of research, I’m finally ready to present the facts I found, while trying to stay neutral. There are plenty of things I’ll offer my opinion on, but when it comes to your health, only you know what’s worth it, and what’s not.
I’m hoping most people use common sense and remember the multitude of quick fix weight loss drugs, like Fen Phen, that were pulled off the market by the FDA after they realized they contributed to cancer. If you’re of normal weight and do not have a health condition like Type 2 diabetes, please read what I have to say. Ozempic and other similar drugs are not designed to be a short-term “I gotta drop 10 pounds for spring break” type of solution.
Injectable Weight Loss Drugs
So, unless you’re living under a rock, you’ve seen the internet buzz about the latest class of weight loss drugs on the market. You might have seen the hashtag #Ozempic blowing up on TikTok, or heard Elon Musk talking about it as the secret to his weight loss. But what exactly is Ozempic, and is it really the miracle diet drug that people are claiming it to be?
First off, Ozempic and Wegovy are brand names for a medication called semaglutide. Originally approved to treat type 2 diabetes, it became approved by the FDA for weight loss in 2021. Basically, it works by mimicking the action of a hormone called GLP-1, which helps to regulate blood sugar levels and promote weight loss. By slowing down the rate of food digestion and stimulating the release of insulin, it helps you feel fuller for longer and eat less overall.
The point being: if you feel fuller longer, you consume fewer calories. And that’s where the weight loss comes in. So, can it make you get used to eating less often and smaller portions-yes! Will it get to the root of the behaviors that lead to overeating or changing your mindset around food or healing the past traumas that might cause food-related issues-definitely not.
Other drugs in the same class as Ozempic, which has been marketed as more effective than other similar drugs:
- Victoza (liraglutide)
- Byetta (exenatide)
- Bydureon (exenatide extended-release)
- Trulicity (dulaglutide)
- Tanzeum (albiglutide)
- Rybelsus (oral semaglutide)
Ozempic Side Effects
Now, there’s no denying that Ozempic has been shown to be effective for weight loss in clinical trials. But there are also some potential downsides to consider. For one thing, it’s not a magic pill – you still need to make healthy lifestyle choices in order to see significant results. And like any medication, it can come with side effects. The most common ones are gastrointestinal issues like nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and constipation.
Some studies have suggested that Ozempic and other GLP-1 receptor agonists may increase the risk of certain types of cancer, such as thyroid cancer and pancreatic cancer. These findings are not conclusive, and further research is needed to fully understand the relationship between Ozempic and cancer.
Eating Disorder Ramifications
What’s really concerning some experts is the possibility that Ozempic is contributing to the rise of eating disorders. There have been reports of people with anorexia, bulimia or binge eating seeking out the drug as a new tool for self-destruction. Some psychologists report seeing an increase in Ozempic-related eating disorders. So while it seems tempting to jump on the Ozempic bandwagon for weight loss, consider the potential risks first.
Ozempic is not a cheap drug. Without insurance coverage, it costs upwards of $1000 per month. And even if you do have insurance, coverage for weight loss use may not be available. The craze has also caused a shortage for people who actually need it to help control their diabetes.
At the end of the day, the decision to try Ozempic for weight loss is a personal one. But it’s important to approach it with caution and awareness of the potential risks and limitations. And as always, the most sustainable way to achieve long-term weight loss is through a combination of healthy eating, regular exercise, and a supportive community. So let’s keep that in mind as we navigate the world of trendy diet drugs.
Listen to my full episode about Ozempic, Wegovy, Semaglutide and Injectables here.
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