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November 5, 2023

How Does Ozempic Work for Weight Loss

In this episode, Christa goes over the new “medication rage”: Ozempic. She shares a live story of a patient who did benefit from taking the medication. It resulted in weight loss and control over her blood sugar levels. Learn how this medication works with the body AND the integrative approaches you should consider with a health care team. Listen to the end to get Christa’s top recommendations. 

Key Topics: 

  • (1:35) The story of Rachel a patient who had always struggled with her weight, but after being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, she knew she had to take control of her health. She tried various diets and exercise programs, but nothing seemed to work. She felt like she was stuck in a cycle of weight gain and loss, and her blood sugar levels were always fluctuating.
  • (2:37) The medication did provide her results with weight loss and blood sugar control but she also integrated physical activity and monitored intake while on it.
  • (3:51) Ozempic for Weight Loss: How It Works and What You Need to Know
  • The research article “Mechanisms of Action and Therapeutic Application of Glucagon-like Peptide-1” discusses what GLP-1 does for the body
  • (4:50) It’s helping your body to produce more insulin to bring your blood sugar levels down
  • (4:57) It also decreased Glucagon the hormone responsible for bringing more blood sugar into your blood 
  • (7:23) What Happens When You Come Off the Medication Ozempic? You want to establish a workout routine and a diet that helps your blood sugar levels. This can include bringing a healthcare team (such as a registered dietitian and licensed therapist) on board to help get a comprehensive and integrative approach.  
  • (9:15) The steps a Registered Dietitian recommends you take BEFORE going on the medication (if medically able and it’s deemed safe) 

How Does Ozempic Work for Weight Loss 

Welcome to our podcast episode on “How Does Ozempic Work for Weight Loss?” Today, I’m going to be discussing the story of Rachel, who struggled with her weight and type 2 diabetes until she discovered Ozempic, a medication that helped her control her weight and improve her health.

Rachel, grappling with her weight for a long time, faced a turning point when diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Realizing the need to take charge of her health, she experimented with different diets and exercise routines. Despite her efforts, she found herself caught in a cycle of weight fluctuations, and her blood sugar levels remained unstable.

While surfing the internet for details on diabetes treatments and weight loss, Rachel stumbled upon an article about Ozempic. The article outlined how Ozempic, a medication designed for diabetes treatment, had the additional benefit of aiding weight loss by curbing appetite and slowing digestion.

Intrigued by the information, Rachel took the initiative to discuss it with her doctor. The doctor, in turn, provided a detailed explanation of how Ozempic functions and outlined the potential advantages and risks associated with the medication. Following a thorough examination of her medical history and current health condition, the doctor prescribed Ozempic for her.

What Ozempic Rachel Noticed About Her Cravings

Over the next few weeks, Rachel noticed a significant reduction in her appetite and cravings for sugary and fatty foods. She also felt more energized and less tired throughout the day. Her blood sugar levels began to stabilize, and she lost a few pounds in the process.

Encouraged by the initial results, Rachel continued taking Ozempic as prescribed and made some lifestyle changes to complement the medication’s effects. She started exercising more regularly and eating a healthier diet, rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.

After a few months, Rachel had lost over 20 pounds and felt more confident and in control of her health than ever before. She knew that taking Ozempic was not a magic solution, but it had helped her break the cycle of weight gain and loss and kick-start her weight loss journey.

For those not acquainted with Ozempic, it functions as a medication for treating type 2 diabetes and offers additional benefits in facilitating weight loss. Ozempic achieves this by diminishing appetite and decelerating digestion, enabling individuals to consume fewer calories and consequently lose weight.

Ozempic for Weight Loss: How It Works and What You Need to Know

You might be wondering what exactly might’ve worked in Rachel’s plan? Well, let us go to the research.

The research article “Mechanisms of Action and Therapeutic Application of Glucagon-like Peptide-1” published in Cell Metabolism in 2018 by Drucker DJ aims to provide an overview of the mechanisms of action and therapeutic applications of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) in various diseases.

GLP-1 is a hormone produced by the intestine that stimulates insulin secretion and regulates blood glucose levels. The article discusses how GLP-1 works by binding to GLP-1 receptors on pancreatic beta cells, resulting in increased insulin secretion and decreased glucagon release, leading to improved glycemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes.

The article also discusses how GLP-1 regulates appetite and food intake by acting on the brainstem and hypothalamus to induce satiety, and how it may have potential therapeutic applications in obesity.

In addition to its role in glucose homeostasis and appetite regulation, the article also discusses the potential therapeutic applications of GLP-1 in other diseases such as cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative disorders, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

The article concludes that GLP-1-based therapies have shown promise in improving glycemic control, reducing body weight, and improving cardiovascular risk factors in patients with type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, GLP-1 receptor agonists may have potential therapeutic applications in other diseases, making them a promising area of research.

What Happens When You Come Off the Medication Ozempic ?

The cause of weight regain isn’t entirely transparent, but it’s believed to stem from the medication’s impact on appetite and metabolism. Ozempic operates by emulating the effects of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), a hormone that prompts insulin secretion and diminishes appetite. Through appetite reduction and digestion slowdown, Ozempic aids in calorie reduction, facilitating weight loss.

Nevertheless, when Ozempic is stopped, the appetite-suppressing impact of the medication might diminish, causing heightened hunger and increased food consumption, ultimately leading to weight regain. Furthermore, metabolic adjustments related to weight loss may occur, resulting in a reduction in resting energy expenditure, potentially contributing to weight regain.

To prevent weight regain after discontinuing Ozempic, it is essential to adopt healthy lifestyle habits, such as regular exercise and a balanced diet, to support weight maintenance. Patients should also work with their healthcare providers to develop an individualized plan for weight management and consider other treatment options if needed.

Defining a Semaglutide 

Semaglutide is a medication used to treat type 2 diabetes and is also FDA-approved for weight loss in people with obesity. It belongs to a class of medications called GLP-1 receptor agonists, which work by mimicking the effects of the hormone glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1).

GLP-1 is a naturally occurring hormone that is released from the gut in response to food intake. It stimulates the release of insulin, which helps regulate blood sugar levels, and also reduces appetite by slowing down digestion and promoting feelings of fullness.

Semaglutide works in a similar way to GLP-1 by activating the GLP-1 receptor, which leads to increased insulin secretion and reduced appetite. This can help people with type 2 diabetes to better regulate their blood sugar levels and can also lead to weight loss in people with obesity.

Typically delivered through a weekly subcutaneous injection, semaglutide is accessible under the brand name Ozempic. It is regarded as a relatively safe and effective treatment choice for individuals dealing with type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Steps a Registered Dietitian Recommends you Take First

Number one, if you have a history of periods of not eating to periods of eating so much within a one-day time frame. I would be sure you identify what the cause of that is. You could identify that through working with a Registered Dietitian and/or licensed therapist. Because you want to have established a regular eating pattern with a very healthful mindset around foods and your body in general. 

Number two, identify what your current movement routine is. Are you dedicating at least 30 minutes of walking, stretching or light strength training. This will h

Thirdly, do you actively track your food intake compared to your body’s actual needs? The main side effect of this medication is essentially a reduced appetite. If the medication is making you less hungry and you’re now consuming only 800-1000 calories instead of your usual 3000, it might contribute to your weight loss. Moreover, losing weight too rapidly could mean a loss of muscle, the mass you want to preserve on your body.

What an RDs Final Thoughts About GLP-1’s

What could quite potentially happen is that when you eat so little, your blood sugar will start to do some uncontrollable things, even when you’re not eating because it’s pulling energy from elsewhere to help you function. 

I’m suggesting these recommendations because incorporating a lifestyle routine with Ozempic is crucial. If you were to stop taking the medication, there’s a high probability that cravings and weight gain would return aggressively. Additionally, your blood sugar levels could become imbalanced. It’s essential to review the data before starting the medication.

I also can’t sugarcoat this part, “this can take anywhere from 3-12 months to establish depending on where you are in your journey. Get a healthcare team around you so that you get an immersive and integrative approach!