The Rise of Ozempic: How a Diabetes Drug Became a Celebrity Buzzword

The Rise of Ozempic: How a Diabetes Drug Became a Celebrity Buzzword

For some time now, the ‘miracle’ drug has been causing quite a stir, with an impressive 147k tags on Instagram. However, this remedy may come with its share of downsides. Let’s delve into the subject further.

Kim Kardashian’s appearance at the Met Gala in 2022 left everyone in shock. Not only was she dressed in the iconic gown worn by Marilyn Monroe in 1962 while serenading President John F Kennedy, but the 42-year-old media icon also showcased a dramatic weight loss of 16 pounds in just three weeks. Reports also indicated that she achieved this by cutting out carbs and sugar, fueling speculations of her possible use of Ozempic.

The weight loss drug, Ozempic, sparked a major storm on TikTok with its supposed miraculous results. As whispers of its effectiveness spread, more and more people turned to it as a quick solution for shedding pounds. However, this injectable medication, originally intended for those with type II diabetes, has recently faced intense scrutiny.

HOW IT BECAME A CELEB CRAZE

Celebrities have recently been buzzing about the weight loss effects of Ozempic. At the 95th Academy Awards, Jimmy Kimmel even made a jocular remark about the drug, saying, “Everybody looks so great. When I look around this room, I can’t help but wonder, ‘Is Ozempic right for me?'” It’s clear that Ozempic has gained a strong following among many stars, who are turning to its active ingredient, semaglutide, for their slimming success. One notable example is tech mogul Elon Musk, who revealed to his X followers that semaglutide, also marketed as Wegovy, had played a significant role in his weight loss. When asked about his weight loss strategy, Musk replied, “Fasting + Ozempic/Wegovy + no tasty food near me.”

The Kardashian-Jenner clan has become the face of the latest craze surrounding the Ozempic trend. Fans have been abuzz with speculation that matriarch Kris Jenner has been secretly using the type II diabetes medication, especially after she shared a video during her September trip looking significantly slimmer than before. And it’s not just Kris- followers are also convinced that makeup mogul Kylie Jenner has jumped on the bandwagon, given her noticeably slimmer figure at a recent awards show. Even talk show legend Oprah Winfrey hinted at her use of weight-loss medication, highlighting the positive impact it can have on overall health. “Having a medically-approved prescription for managing weight and promoting better health in my lifetime feels like a blessing, a second chance, and something to proudly embrace,” she shared with People magazine.

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Khloé Kardashian, who has been battling with her weight for quite some time, celebrated her 40th birthday a few weeks ago. Along with this milestone, she also shared some stunning photos of herself looking slimmer in a gorgeous strappy silver dress, which immediately sparked rumors about her use of Ozempic. Amidst all the buzz, one question remains: is there a quick fix to combat obesity? Doctors are cautioning against any one solution.

SERIOUS SIDE EFFECTS

According to Dr. Ketan Pakhale, a specialist in endo-bariatric and metabolic medicine at Metabol, the use of semaglutide may lead to certain undesirable reactions. These can manifest as discomforts like nausea, abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, vomiting (both projectile and non-projectile), heartburn, dizziness, and decreased appetite. Additionally, there are more serious consequences such as pancreatitis, allergic responses, kidney complications, and rare but significant conditions like gastroparesis, also known as stomach paralysis. Notably, the drug carries a boxed warning from the FDA for potential risks of developing thyroid C-cell tumors, medullary thyroid carcinoma, as well as multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2).

INDIA: NO INJECTABLE SO FAR

Currently, Semaglutide is readily available in India in its oral form, having received approval for managing type II diabetes. However, it is often used off-label for weight loss. This can be concerning as many informed individuals choose to use it for weight loss without fully comprehending its impacts and potential drawbacks, often neglecting to seek medical advice. Dr. Pakhale emphasizes the importance of recognizing that Semaglutide is not a rapid solution for achieving a slimmer figure, but rather a therapeutic treatment in the holistic approach to tackling obesity. There are ongoing efforts to introduce and make it widely accessible in Indian markets.

‘OZEMPIC FACE’ and ‘OZEMPIC BUTT’

According to dermatologist Dr. Stuti Khare Shukla, MD, the use of Ozempic for weight loss can have an impact on the appearance of one’s face. This includes a reduction in facial fat pads, which can lead to a more sunken appearance and pronounced cheekbones. In other words, rapid weight loss from Ozempic may cause the skin to sag.

The Ozempic Butt phenomenon refers to the drooping of skin on the backside, likely caused by the swift shedding of pounds through semaglutide.

According to content creator Anmol Raina, relying solely on quick fixes like Ozempic may provide temporary results for a specific event, but maintaining long-term weight loss requires much more effort, potentially leading to a complete abandonment of fitness goals.

HOW OZEMPIC WORKS

When first approved, Ozempic was targeted towards individuals with type II diabetes. Its primary component, semaglutide, functions similarly to glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists, which are usually released when we eat. One of the key functions of GLP-1 is to boost the production of insulin, ultimately leading to a decrease in blood sugar levels.