One of the scientists whose work paved the way for the development of drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy has revealed why life can get so miserably boring after two years of using the drug.
Ozempic is an FDA-approved drug used to treat type 2 diabetes. It works by mimicking a hormone called glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1), which regulates blood sugar levels and slows down the rate at which food leaves the stomach, often creating the feeling of fullness.
These semaglutide injections sold under the brand names Ozempic and Wegovy have increased in popularity as many people, including Hollywood celebrities, have used it to lose weight. Additionally, people also found that Ozempic was effective in curing their addictive habits, such as drinking, smoking, shopping, or nail biting.
However, due to the growing popularity of Ozempics, it has led to national shortages of type 2 diabetes treatment, leaving those who actually need it without.
In an interview with WiredProfessor Jens Juul Holst, who received the Warren Alpert Foundation Award in 2021 for his work developing treatments based on the GLP-1 hormone, spoke about the effects of Ozempic and why he believes many people will stop taking the drug after a few years.
What happens is you lose your appetite and also the pleasure of eating, and so I think there’s a price to pay when you do, Holst said. Wired. If you like food, that pleasure is gone. Food cravings for some people are eliminated when they take GLP-1 medications.
He continued: Eventually it might be a problem, that once you’ve been at it for a year or two, life is so miserably boring that you just can’t take it anymore and have to go back to your old life.
Holst added that drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy have been on the market since 2005, even though studies show these people don’t take them for a long time.
It’s just like any other drug, they don’t stay on it for many reasons, she explained. One reason, as I said, is that once you try it and realize you’ve lost interest in food, then that might be enough.
We don’t know why people stop taking these drugs, but we know for a fact that they stop. They do it all over the world.
A 2020 study found that 70 percent of people taking GLP-1 drugs for type 2 diabetes stopped taking them within two years.
However, this could be a problem for many patients taking semaglutide injections. Research has found that people who stopped taking Ozempic or Wegovy for weight loss experienced a rebound in weight. A study published in April 2022 saw participants regain two-thirds of the weight they lost after 68 weeks of taking semaglutide.
Regarding celebrities who use the injection once a week to lose weight, despite not having diabetes or clinical obesity, Hans instead drew attention to the many terrible problems diabetics have struggled with by not having drugs like Ozempic readily available.
Have you ever been to a diabetes hospital? It’s really regrettable, she said. People arrive with amputated limbs and impaired cognitive function and heart problems or can barely move, are unhappy and depressed. It’s really serious. There is so much you can improve with a drug that is not only a weight loss drug but is also an antidiabetic.
Amid the popularity of semaglutide injections, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued warnings for consumers not to use off-brand versions of Ozempic or Wegovy, because they may not include the same GLP-1 hormone used in approved drugs.
Earlier this month, agency officials reported problems with patients using compound versions of semaglutide that combines traditional semaglutide with other ingredients. These drugs are not approved by the FDA, and the agency does not test compound drugs for safety or efficacy.
Consumers should only use semaglutide-containing medications with a prescription from a licensed health care provider and obtained from a state-licensed pharmacy or other FDA-registered facility, the agency said.
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