Ozempic is an FDA-approved medication developed for management of type-2 diabetes. The drug was developed by Novo Nordisk, one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies and released in 2017. Novo Nordisk specializes in the development of drugs called GLP-1’s, which have been shown to work well in managing insulin levels in type-2 diabetics. Novo Nordisk developed drugs called Wegovy and Rybelsus, both based on a molecule called “semaglutide.” They discovered that in overweight or obese diabetic patients, these drugs curbed appetites and led to remarkable weight loss properties. As a result, they decided to launch the molecule in a higher dosage under a new brand name specifically for weight-loss, in a drug called Wegovy. Ozempic has the same active ingredient as Wegovy in a lower-dose form. Due to supply shortages of Wegovy, your doctor may choose to prescribe Ozempic for weight-loss at a potentially higher dosage to almost exactly match the weight-loss properties of Wegovy.

How does Ozempic Work?

Ozempic’s active ingredient is called semaglutide. Semaglutide works by simulating the effects of the hormone your body produces when you eat food, called incretin. After you eat a big meal, your body releases incretin which signals the feeling of fullness and tells your brain to stop eating. In addition, it also helps to prevent the effects of insulin resistance which also contributes to a feeling of fullness and reduces cravings for sugary or unhealthy foods. Coupled with diet and exercise, Ozempic has been shown to have remarkable weight loss properties.

How do I take Ozempic?

Ozempic is taken as a once-weekly injection. The drug is prepackaged into a pen with a needle. You simply place the pen on your stomach or thigh and press down. You do not need to measure the medicine or handle the needles yourself. Injection is relatively painless and the prepackaged pens make taking the medicine easy. You also only need to inject once a week, with no pills or other required medicines at other times.

How much weight do I lose on Ozempic?

Novo Nordisk reports the average Ozempic user lost ~14lbs in 40 weeks on Ozempic. When coupled with your NextMed diet and exercise program, your weight-loss could be higher. With any weight-loss program, it will still be important to change your lifestyle and exercise will-power. However, the medication will make this process significantly easier.

Is Ozempic FDA-Approved for Weight Loss?

No, Ozempic is not FDA-approved for weight loss. Independent healthcare professionals have the discretion to prescribe a medication off-label if they believe it is an appropriate course of treatment for a particular patient. In this situation, your provider may choose to prescribe Ozempic for weight-loss at their sole discretion.

Ozempic Side Effects:

The majority of individuals who take Ozempic® typically experience minimal side effects. Nevertheless, some side effects are considered normal and not considered to be a serious health risk. The most frequent side effects that occur with Ozempic® are nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, stomach pain, headache, fatigue, upset stomach, dizziness, bloating, belching or gas, stomach flu, heartburn, and loss of appetite. If any of these side effects become bothersome or persistent, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare professional. Your medical team can provide guidance and supportive care for any concerns that arise. In the event of severe side effects, such as anaphylaxis or breathing difficulties, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention.

Ozempic Black-Box Warning:

WARNING: RISK OF THYROID C-CELL TUMORS. In rodents, semaglutide causes thyroid C-cell tumors. It is unknown whether OZEMPIC causes thyroid C-cell tumors, including medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC), in humans as the human relevance of semaglutide-induced rodent thyroid Ccell tumors has not been determined. OZEMPIC is contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of MTC or in patients with Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2). Counsel patients regarding the potential risk of MTC and symptoms of thyroid tumors.