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Injections

Is it Worth a Shot in the Dark for the 42%?


(Photo Courtesy of Karolina Grabowska)

 

This year has been huge for the weight loss industry. More and more weight loss plans are now focusing on the psychological and emotional aspects related to obesity and now we have a several United States FDA approved, and about to be approved, medications that are being used to help obese people lose weight.

 

You may have heard about these medications. The one that seems to be most popular and most talked about is Ozempic. Others include Wegovy, Mounjaro and the soon-to-be approved Zepbound. In fact, they have become so popular that the country has been experiencing shortages of these medications.

 

They have become so popular that people are ditching their Peloton bikes and monthly subscriptions:

 

Peloton's Turnaround Plan Falters As Anti-Obesity Drug Craze Soars  | ZeroHedge

 

My understanding is that some of these medications are used to treat adults with Type-2 Diabetes. The weight loss side effect experienced by people taking these medications created a situation where the medication was being used off-label for weight loss. This led to the FDA approving these medications, and newer, similar medications, for weight loss.

 

From what I have read (see links I’ve posted below), these medications mimic hormones called glucagon-like peptides (GLP-1) which increase insulin production, which lowers blood sugar, and this makes you feel full, so you don’t feel as hungry and won’t eat as much. I must say this aspect of the medication appeals to me as my main focus with eating has always been ‘feeling full.’

 

Remember, I’m not a medical professional. I’m not giving anyone medical advice. If you want to learn more about this, I’ve posted links below to articles I’ve read about these medications. You can probably find even more articles yourself. Or, better yet, ask your medical professional.

 

Information I’ve come across reading about this medication in the articles I’ve posted:

 

  • The CDC estimates that 42% of Americans are obese (yep… I was one of them)

  • The medication is delivered by a weekly injection in the arm, thigh or waist (I hate needles).

  • Yes, there are side effects. Some of them seem unpleasant and concerning, but you can read about those yourself. Be aware that new side effect warnings came out in September 2023 for some of these medications.

  • In order to keep the weight off, this medication will need to be taken indefinitely as obesity is a chronic medical condition.

  • Some people cannot lose weight by dieting and exercising (apparently I’m not one of those people like I thought I was.)

  • Weight loss may plateau after three to six months as the body adjusts to the new normal and tries to retain that current weight to prevent starvation. Note that this can also happen with dieting.

  • The average weight loss was 10 to 15% of body weight (so far, I’ve lost 30% of my body weight on the calorie deficit diet).

  • Insurance may or may not cover the cost. I read that one dose could cost $1,000 BUT there are coupons out there that can help lower the cost.

 

Medical professionals: If I have posted inaccurate information, please correct me in the comments and I will correct this post.

 

I have mixed feelings about this medication.

 

My first reaction was frustration. Why? Because this medication has been used for weight loss since 2017, yet NOT ONE medical professional thought that a 5’6” woman, weighing in at 245 pounds (at one point), was a candidate to try this. Furthermore, if someone had just asked me why I was overeating, I could have explained my need to feel ‘full’ and it wasn’t happening until I had eaten far more than was healthy for me. That may have indicated that I needed help with my GLP-1 peptides.

 

My second reaction is relief that I was blissfully unaware, because I would have been tempted to try it, and I don’t think I would have liked to be jabbing myself weekly with a needle for the rest of my life, and I think I’d be worried about side effects and the fact that I was taking more medication instead of less medication. Also, I’ve done better than the average weight loss with this medication by using the calorie deficit diet instead.

 

My third reaction is excited for those who just cannot make a calorie deficit diet work for them like it did for me. These medications could be another option to help someone lose weight and become healthier.

 

So, I guess the follow-on question is this: Can we find a way to do what these medications do, through diet? The answer is absolutely...and is worthy of a future post in this blog, so, for now, I’m going to share a few articles I found:

 

Foods that mimic Ozempic revealed — best ones for weight loss (nypost.com)

So You Want To Try Semaglutide… Eat These Foods Instead | Women's Health (womenshealth.com.au)

More fiber in the diet may help boost levels of GLP-1, an Ozempic-like hormone : Shots - Health News : NPR

 

I can honestly say I’m glad I lost weight the way I did. In order to lose weight and find a way to keep from gaining it back, I had to look at how I became overweight and acknowledge that behavior so that I could change it.

 

I had to figure out what my relationship (love affair) with food was really about.

 

I had to understand the emotional and psychological aspects of my over-eating and retrain my brain to understand what a healthy portion size actually is. I had to be able to tell myself, no, you are not hungry, and accept that when it was the case.

 

If you are interested in learning more about these medications, here are the articles I read, but please do your own research:

 

Should You Take Ozempic for Weight Loss? – Cleveland Clinic

Ozempic For Weight Loss: What To Know – Forbes Health

Experts Say This Weight Loss Drug Is Better Tolerated By Patients Than Ozempic (yahoo.com)

Ozempic for Weight Loss: Is It Safe and Does It Work? | U.S. News (usnews.com)

 

If you’d rather do what I did, here is a post to get you started on a calorie deficit diet:

 

This is How We Do It! (publish0x.com)

 

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7th Decade Redhead
7th Decade Redhead

I'm 60+ years old female retiree who is finally figuring out why she's been struggling with losing weight her whole life. I want to share the lessons I learned so others can help themselves with their own weight loss struggles earlier in their lives.


60 Pounds by 60 Years
60 Pounds by 60 Years

My final weight loss attempt after 40 years of different diet failures. No shakes, no supplements, no surgery, no crazy food, no purchased meal plans, no fasting. Creating a healthier relationship with food and facing the painful truth about my relationship surrounding food. No BS, just common sense. And it worked.

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