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HWLH News Letter for April 2023- Issue #113 - Is the Diabetic Drug Ozempic Safe for Weight Loss?
April 01, 2023
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April 2023 - #113 - Is the diabetic drug Ozempic safe for weight loss?
Happy Spring All!
Everyone is asking a whole lot of questions about Ozempic, so hopefully we will be able to answer all of those inquiries today.
Ozempic is actually the brand name for the drug Semaglutide which has become the latest weight loss trend to hit the market. Now people want to know if this medication that was created to help with type 2 diabetes is safe for weight loss?
Ozempic – What exactly is it?
Ozempic is a medication used to improve blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes when used in combination with diet and exercise.
It also helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular events such as stroke, heart attack and even death with people who have both type 2 diabetes and known heart disease.
This medication is not recommended for people living with type 1 diabetes.
This drug is an injectable prescription medicine and comes in 0.25 mg, 0.5 mg, 1 mg, or 2 mg strengths, which can be self-administered.
It was discovered that the patients taking this drug for diabetes, also experienced significant weight loss too.
That is why this medicine is now also being used as an anti-obesity medication that can help with weight management over a longer period of time.
Even though this medication is fairly new to the masses it was developed by the company Nova Nordisk in 2012.
So How Does It Work?
*Helps increase the production of insulin, the hormone which lowers the blood sugar levels
*Helps the growth of pancreatic beta cells which are responsible for insulin production and release
*Prevents the production of glucagon, the hormone that increases glycogenolysis (release of stored carbohydrates from the liver) and gluconeogenesis (synthesis of new glucose)
*Reduces food intake by lowering appetite and slows down digestion in the stomach, helping to reduce body fat
*In a nut shell, reduces hunger, reduces cravings, reduces food intake, and reduces body fat
How Much Weight Can You Lose?
Each person will have a different experience but it usually takes a few weeks of being on this medication to slowly start seeing any weight loss.
The reason for this is that a patient will start on a low dose of 0.25 mg per week and then the dose is gradually raised every four weeks to decrease the chances of any side effects. The maximum dose is capped at 2.4 mg.
In a clinical trial done in 2021, patients taking Ozempic lost over 30 pounds in a study that lasted for 68 weeks and the dose used was 2.4 mg weekly.
It has been noted that people can lose anywhere between 10 - 15% of their body weight over a period of time.
Do you need a prescription for Ozempic?
Yes, at this time you need a prescription for this drug, but somehow, there are always a few people who can get around the rules.
How Much does it Cost?
The cost varies greatly in North America and can run between $300 - $1500 for a month’s supply depending on whether you live in United States or Canada.
Some people may have private or commercial insurance which may make them eligible to pay very little for a month’s supply.
Will you regain weight if you stop using Ozempic?
Once you stop taking the drug it loses its effectiveness and your appetite will increase again slowly. This is why most people will gradually gain back the weight again.
Possible Mild Side Effects:
-Burping, gas, bloating
-Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) in patients with type 2 diabetes
-Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Possible Serious Side Effects:
-Serious Allergic Reactions
-Low Blood Sugar
-Changes in vision
**Warning: Doctors say this drug should only be used as a weight loss tool under medical supervision
**It is not known if this drug is safe for people who have had pancreatitis
**It is not known if this drug is safe or effective for children under the age of 18 years old
**It is not meant for use in people with type 1 diabetes
I hope we were able to answer most of your questions regarding this new weight loss medicine.
So if you think that Ozempic is right for you then the next step is to sit down and discuss this with your Doctor.
Wishing you health and happiness
Until next time
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