What’s All The Buzz Behind Ozempic?

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If you’ve been keeping tabs on the weight loss world, you’ve likely heard about a drug called Ozempic. The name has been making the rounds in recent years, with everyone from health experts to Hollywood stars buzzing about it. It’s because this blockbuster drug has paved the way for effective weight loss, making it highly sought after by people looking to manage their weight. While it’s only recently gained attention for its effects on weight, this weight loss medication has been around for years, initially developed for diabetes patients to help manage blood sugar. However, it was found that its effects also worked well for shedding pounds.

Ozempic and other weight loss medications have disrupted the weight loss scene, and more advancements are coming. Here’s what you need to know about Ozempic, medical weight loss, and why these have become so popular:

What is Ozempic?

Ozempic is a brand name for a prescription drug called semaglutide. It is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist, which is a type of medication that helps regulate blood sugar levels. Ozempic is approved by the FDA for the treatment of type 2 diabetes in adults, but Wegovy—another semaglutide drug—is also approved for weight loss and obesity treatment. There are specific qualifications to receive a prescription for these drugs or go through medical weight loss. A patient must have a BMI of 30 or higher or a BMI of 27 or higher with at least one weight-related medical condition.

How do GLP-1 drugs work?

Aside from semaglutide, other weight loss drugs like liraglutide and tirzepatide can aid in weight loss. When these are injected into the body, these GLP-1 agonists activate the receptors in the body that respond to GLP-1, mimicking the hormone. This allows your body to regulate insulin and control blood sugar. However, it also makes you feel full, helping curb appetite and slow stomach emptying. By suppressing your appetite, you can prevent consuming excess calories, experience fewer thoughts and cravings for food, and feel fuller between meals. This effect has helped people lose an average of 15% of their body weight.

Why are weight loss medications and medical weight loss popular?

GLP-1 medications have skyrocketed in popularity, with doctors having written nine million prescriptions for them in the last three months of 2022 alone. Aside from their effectiveness, drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy have helped change perspectives on obesity. More people are becoming aware of obesity as a chronic disease that can’t always be solved by willpower, diet, and exercise alone. As such, using GLP-1 for weight loss has emerged in popularity alongside medical weight loss because these drugs help level the playing field and address biological factors of weight. You also get the benefit of receiving tailored guidance. You can be prescribed Wegovy (semaglutide), Zepbound (tirzepatide), or Saxenda (liraglutide) based on your specific needs and lifestyle.

However, the drugs alone won’t be effective; pairing them with a balanced diet, regular exercise, adequate sleep, stress management, and more is crucial for maintaining weight loss even after stopping their use. As such, qualified individuals often seek medical weight loss to receive a program that’s created with the help of a professional, allowing them to find the right plan and medication to address chronic obesity.

How are weight loss drugs changing the game?

Ozempic and other similar drugs are in the midst of a cultural shift, reshaping how obesity is perceived and treated. Rather than obesity being a result of poor lifestyle choices, it demonstrates how weight loss isn’t a level playing field for many, and it’s a chronic disease that requires appropriate treatment. It’s also helped shed light on the importance of maintaining healthy habits for sustainable weight loss, even without the help of medication. Rather than facilitating weight loss through restriction and quick fixes, you shouldn’t deprive yourself of your favorite foods or go through tortuous workouts to lose weight. Staying consistent and diligent is crucial, as is finding joy in the process. You can still throw and enjoy that BBQ party without worrying about weight!

The demand for these weight loss drugs may only continue to grow, but so will the conversations on obesity and weight loss. Ozempic may only be the tip of the iceberg for changes in the weight loss and health industries and shifting how obesity treatment is approached from a medical and cultural perspective.

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