Ozempic: Is it safe to use diabetes medicine for weight loss?

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Indicated for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, Ozempic has become popular among people seeking weight loss.

Every week, new fads appear on social media that offer miraculous promises and are somewhat dangerous to health. To give you an idea, the most recent one has caused a shortage of an important drug for the treatment of type 2 diabetes in the United States: the ozempic🇧🇷

This is happening due to intense slimming effect of the drug, so much so that the hashtag #Ozempic has already reached more than 400 million views on TikTok. And in Brazil, the trend seems to be repeating itself, as assessed by Márcio Krakauer, director of the Brazilian Society of Endocrinology and Metabology – São Paulo Regional (SBEM-SP).

But is the use of the drug for people without diabetes, aiming at weight loss, in fact effective and safe? What are the risks and possible side effects of this practice? Understand below:

What is Ozempic and how does it work?

Ozempic is the trade name of semaglutidea molecule designed to treat type 2 diabetes. This substance increases the production of insulin by the pancreas, helping to maintain blood glucose at adequate levels.

“This molecule helps with weight loss by decreasing appetite and reduce the gastric emptying of the stomach, making the person eat less and the post-meal glucose, which we call post-prandial, become softer”, explains Márcio Krakauer.

Read more: 20 tips to lose weight fast and healthy

That’s why Ozempic aroused the interest of those looking to lose weight. “Semaglutide has an action on brain neurons that inhibits appetite and, along with that, increases satietyreducing the desire to eat compulsively and to eat sweets in general”, completes the director of SBEM-SP.

Is it safe to use Ozempic for weight loss?

Despite having this slimming effect, the use of Ozempic to combat obesity is not effective enough and is not indicated for this use🇧🇷 That’s because the dosage used for treating diabetes is just 1 milligram (mg) per week.

“The studies done with semaglutide for the treatment of obesity in people without diabetes have already been completed, but they were conducted in the 2.4 mg dose per week🇧🇷 Therefore, when using Ozempic, which is indicated for diabetes, the drug will not reach the effectiveness we wanted for the treatment of obesity”, says the doctor.

On the other hand, the director of SBEM-SP points out that the Is it safe to use semaglutide to lose weight?🇧🇷 “There is no strict medical indication, but anyway, there is nothing that can harm people without diabetes at a dose of 1 mg per week. If at a dose of 2.4 mg per week it is safe, at a lower dose it is certainly also safe”, he says.

Even so, some side effects may be noticedsuch as nausea, heartburn, diarrhea and constipation. “These are expected adverse effects and, with good medical advice, they can be easily improved”, assesses Márcio.

Safe Obesity Medicines

With word of mouth, influencer advertisements and videos going viral on social media, the use of Ozempic for weight loss may cause drug shortages in pharmacies due to high demand – as has been the case in the United States. However, there are already drugs with semaglutide and other similar molecules that are approved and safe to treat obesity.

one of them is the Wegovyalso composed of semaglutide and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the US regulatory agency. In Brazil, this drug is not available, however, there are other options that work similarly here.

It is the case of Saxonycomposed of liraglutide, the same molecule that makes up the drug victoza, one of the options for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. “Saxenda is a pen with a dosage of up to 3 mg per week, specifically for the treatment of obesity. Victoza has a dosage of 1.8 mg and is indicated for the treatment of diabetes”, explains Márcio Krakauer.

Know more: Weight loss remedy: the most used to lose weight

Is there a risk of gaining weight again if I stop taking the drug?

With such a strong effect on weight loss, one question remains: could it be that, by interrupting the use of drugs with semaglutide and liraglutide, there is a risk of gaining weight again🇧🇷 According to the director of SBEM-SP, this can happen, but only if there are no other forms of treatment against obesity associated with the use of the drug.

“Medication is one of the tools for the weight loss process and is not the only treatment for obesity. Physical activity, diet, quality sleep, hydration, mental health care, all this must be seen in common agreement. The risk of a person gaining weight has to do with the disease itself and with the person not being treated, with medication or without medication”, adds Márcio.

Other alternatives for type 2 diabetes

In the absence of Ozempic, it is important for people to know that there are several options that can replace the drug in the treatment of type 2 diabetes – as long as they are indicated and prescribed by the doctor. The main ones are:

  • Diamicron MR;

  • Glibenclamide;

  • Gliclazide;

  • glyph;

  • XR glyph;

  • Glimepiride;

  • galvus;

  • Galvus Met;

  • Metformin;

  • Victory

Know more: Medicines for diabetes: know the main options

Content for educational purposes only. Consult a Doctor.

The translator user relied on the following source:

Minha Vida Website – REF99827

Disclaimer – (English version>) This content has been prepared based on information from research, additional publications, or the translation/verification work of a volunteer editor of this web council. This is a non-profit service. It is strongly recommended that all details and information published be carefully verified. We never allow medication recommendations, medication package inserts or any medication guidance. We never allow partisan politics as information.

Isenção de responsabilidade – (versão em português): Este conteúdo foi preparado com base em informações de pesquisas, publicações adicionais ou no trabalho de tradução/verificação de um editor voluntário deste conselho web. Este é um serviço sem fins lucrativos. É altamente recomendável que todos os detalhes e informações publicadas sejam verificadas cuidadosamente. Nunca permitimos recomendações de medicamentos, bulas ou qualquer orientação sobre medicamentos. Nunca permitimos a política partidária como base para checagem. Para mais informações, leia nossos termos.

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