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Ozempic, aka semaglutide, is now one of the most popular and widely known drugs for weight loss. It mimics the hormone that causes the release of insulin, prevents your liver from releasing sugar, and decreases the rate at which food leaves your stomach, a combination that has millions of people shedding pounds easier than ever. However, some of the Ozempic side effects have people eager to learn more and understand how to prevent them.
As with any medication, there is the potential that you will experience some side effects. Ozempic side effects will vary from person to person, but these are the most common.
Nausea is one of the most common side effects of taking Ozempic or other semaglutide medications. This side effect is reported in around 20% to 44% of users. Nausea is more likely to occur for those taking it for weight loss at the higher dose. Vomiting is not as common as nausea (about 25%).
Typically your doctor will try to reduce the likelihood of experiencing severe nausea when taking Ozempic by slowly increasing the dosage over the course of several weeks. This allows your body time to get used to the medication, and then the symptoms should improve. If you are still experiencing nausea, you can also try eating smaller meals, cut out high-fat foods, and avoid lying down after you eat. Eating bland foods or eating slower can also help keep nausea and vomiting at bay.
Another side people may experience when taking semaglutide for weight loss is diarrhea. Diarrhea affects around 30% of people who take it for weight loss. On the other hand, constipation can also occur in around 23% of people.
Similar to symptoms of nausea and vomiting, you may be more likely to experience diarrhea or constipation at a higher dose of semaglutide. Because of this, your doctor will slowly increase your dose to keep this side effect to a minimum.
You may experience mild stomach pain when taking Ozempic or another semaglutide medication for weight loss. However, only about 10% of users experience this symptom, and it will typically subside over time.
You can reduce the feelings of stomach pain or discomfort by following the recommendations for reducing nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea as well. Slowly increase the dosage, eat smaller meals, reduce fatty foods, and stay upright after you eat.
Some people find that they feel fatigued when taking semaglutide. Studies have shown that fatigue is less common when taking Ozempic, affecting less than 5% of people, while Wegovy affects around 11% of people.
Since taking semaglutide makes you feel less hungry, you will be eating fewer calories each day. When you eat fewer calories, you may feel more tired throughout the day. However, once your body adjusts to the new changes in your diet, you are likely to begin feeling more energy.
One of the Ozempic side effects that people may be most concerned about is the potential for rebound weight gain, meaning that when the medication is stopped, some or all of the weight lost while on the medication will come back.
When taking Ozempic or other semaglutide medications, you should also be following a healthy diet and exercise. Establishing these habits while taking Ozempic can set you up for long-term success once you stop. If you simply go back to the diet and lifestyle you had before taking Ozempic, then you are likely to gain weight again. This side effect isn’t unique to semaglutide. Rebound weight gain can happen when stopping any weight loss medication or weight loss fitness routine. That is why long-term lifestyle changes are so crucial in finding success in any weight loss method.
Although there are side effects that come with taking semaglutide like Ozempic, there are also many benefits, including a reduced risk of heart disease, lower blood pressure, improved mobility, reduced pain, and better mood, sleep, and self-esteem. If you’re curious about whether or not you could benefit from taking semaglutide, the generic form of Ozempic, schedule a consultation with Blokes. You get to speak with one of our board-certified clinicians, discuss your needs and concerns, and find out if semaglutide is right for you. Visit the website to learn more or to schedule a consultation.Back to Blog