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What Is Ozempic?
Ozempic is a brand-name prescription drug that contains semaglutide. It belongs to the drug class glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonists.
Ozempic is available as a liquid solution self-injectable medication. It is a pre-filled, disposable, single-use injection pen.
Can Ozempic Be Used for Weight Loss?
While Ozempic is not a weight loss drug, Ozempic’s ingredient semaglutide was approved for weight loss by the FDA in 2021. This new branding of semaglutide has been named Wegovy. Both Ozempic and Wegovy are delivered as a once-weekly shot, in combination with diet and exercise.
How Does Ozempic for Weight Loss Work?
Ozempic is in a drug class called GLP-1 agonists that are used to control blood sugar, and can be taken to assist in weight loss. This drug works by:
🔹 Slowing down how fast your stomach empties food
🔹 Blocking hormones that cause the liver to release sugar
Together, these combined actions cause the feeling of hunger to decrease, which leads to eating less, and finally, weight loss.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Ozempic Effective For Weight Loss?
Based on studies completed, Ozempic is an effective drug for weight loss when it is part of a lifestyle change program.
In a one year study done by the makers of Ozempic:
- People who weighed 197 pounds on average who took a 1mg dose of Ozempic lost 12 pounds on average.
- People who weighed 198 pounds on average who took a .5mg dose of Ozempic lost 9 pounds on average.
A newer study published in 2021 concluded that “in participants with overweight or obesity, 2.4 mg of semaglutide (Ozempic) once weekly plus lifestyle intervention was associated with sustained, clinically relevant reduction in body weight.”
The results of the study showed that in 1961 adults, the mean weight loss in 68 weeks was:
- 15.3 kg (33.1 lbs) with 2.4 mg of semaglutide (Ozempic) weekly
- 2.6 kg (5.1 lbs) with placebo
How Much Weight Can You Lose With Ozempic?
How much weight you can lose with Ozempic depends on what dosage you are taking, and for how long. In the study mentioned above, it took 68 weeks for the average study participant to lose 33 pounds.
It is important to note that these studies were done with lower doses of Ozempic (1 mg and 0.5 mg) but that as of March 2022, Ozempic has been FDA-approved to use at higher doses as well (up to 2 mg weekly). It isn’t clear if higher doses will lead to more weight loss.
While these results were dramatic, it is critical to know that the drug must be used in conjunction with diet and exercise: no drug can cause weight loss entirely on its own. Always talk to your doctor about your weight loss goals to establish realistic and healthy health plans.
Does Ozempic Curb Your Appetite?
Yes, Ozempic can help curb your appetite. Due to the actions described above, you feel fuller for longer, and eat less, leading to weight loss.
Related: Nutrition for Weight Management
How Long Does It Take for Ozempic to Work for Weight Loss?
Results vary from person to person with Ozempic. Some people may have a quick initial weight drop; for others, it may take more time. Ozempic has been shown to help people lose weight in a safe, long-term, and healthy way. A PlushCare doctor will help you with dosages of Ozempic for weight loss and might recommend slowly increasing dosage over time to maximize weight loss.
The speed at which you lose weight is largely influenced by the amount of lifestyle changes you are able to make: there is no magic weight loss drug on the market. It’s important to remember that weight loss takes time, and you’ll have the best results if you use Ozempic in combination with exercise and a healthy diet.
Ozempic for Weight Loss Dosing
Ozempic dosage for weight loss will start at the lowest dosage and potentially gradually increase, per your doctor’s recommendation, if necessary.
It is paramount to use Ozempic precisely as prescribed by your doctor. Your doctor will instruct you on how to use the self-injected pen, and make sure you are fully prepared before you start taking this medication.
Ozempic for Weight Loss Prescription
Ozempic is generally available through prescription for adults with type 2 diabetes (for which it is FDA-approved), so you will need to talk to a doctor. If you do not have type 2 diabetes though, your doctor may recommend what is known as an “off label” prescription if your blood glucose is abnormal, or if you have prediabetes or metabolic syndrome, to help with weight loss. This is because the weight-loss benefits of Ozempic have been recognized, and while Ozempic is not specifically for weight loss, you may lose some weight while taking it.
Prescriptions are available for Ozempic in the form of a self-injectable pre-loaded pen. Before use, your doctor will walk you through it, and explain in-depth how to use the pen.
Get Ozempic for Weight Loss Online
If you think Ozempic might be right for you, you can talk to a board-certified doctor online with PlushCare. PlushCare only employs expert physicians with an average of over 15 years of experience.
A PlushCare doctor will be able to determine if Ozempic is suitable for you through a virtual doctor’s appointment. If they conclude that Ozempic would be beneficial and that you qualify, they can write you a prescription and electronically send it to your local pharmacy.
To make an appointment with a PlushCare doctor and learn more about an Ozempic prescription, click here.
How much does Ozempic cost?
The cost of Ozempic will be less with insurance coverage. Ozempic may be covered partially by your insurance. With some commercial insurance plans, you may be eligible to pay as little as $25 when you receive a prescription for either a 1-month or 3-month supply.
Unfortunately, many insurance plans do not cover Ozempic at all. The cost of Ozempic at wholesale prices is much more expensive than with insurance.
What foods should you avoid when using Ozempic?
You do not have to avoid any specific foods during your Ozempic treatment. Ozempic can also be taken with or without food.
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