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What to Expect While Taking Medical Weight Loss Medication: Semaglutide (Ozempic) and Tirzepatide (Monjaro) 

Author: Dr. Ric S Kolluri (Hon.), CEO Pur MedSpa (formerly BitCare MedSpa) 

Medications like Semaglutide (Ozempic) and Tirzepatide (Monjaro) have gained significant attention in the quest for effective weight loss. These medications are designed to help individuals manage their weight, especially those struggling with obesity, diabetes, or prediabetes. Based on my journey and thorough research, here’s what you can expect while taking these medical weight-loss medications. 

 

My Journey with Semaglutide 

Hi, I’m Dr. Ric S Kolluri (Hon.), CEO of Púr MedSpa. I hold an honorary doctorate, and while I am not a medical doctor, my expertise in weight loss medication comes from extensive research and experience in the wellness industry. I started taking Semaglutide at our MedSpa a month ago. Thankfully, I haven’t experienced any extreme side effects. Here’s a snapshot of my experience: 

  • Side Effects: My sleep patterns were a bit off, and I felt mildly nauseous for about 1-2 hours after my second and third shots, but it was manageable. 
  • Lifestyle Changes: Knowing that weight loss can sometimes lead to muscle mass loss, I began lifting weights twice a week and added some treadmill cardio. Nothing extreme—just 20-pound dumbbells and 15-30 minutes of exercise a few times a week. I also started taking protein shakes.  
  • Motivation: I’m not obese and don’t have diabetes, but I gained about 15 pounds over the past year due to travel, stress, and lack of exercise. With my 48th birthday around the corner, I decided to make a change with Semaglutide to help me get back on track. 

“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.” – Marcus Aurelius 

As a follower of Stoicism, this quote resonates with me, reminding me that challenges are opportunities in disguise. 

 

Understanding Semaglutide (Ozempic) and Tirzepatide (Monjaro) 

Semaglutide (Ozempic): This medication is a GLP-1 receptor agonist that mimics the effects of the hormone glucagon-like peptide-1. It helps regulate blood sugar levels by stimulating insulin release and reducing glucose production in the liver. It’s commonly used for weight loss and managing type 2 diabetes. 

Tirzepatide (Monjaro): This dual GIP and GLP-1 receptor agonist affects blood sugar levels, appetite regulation, and fat metabolism, making it highly effective for weight loss. 

How Long Before You See Results? 

  • Initial Phase: It takes about four weeks for these medications to build up in your body and start showing their full effect. You may notice changes in your appetite and eating habits during this time. 
  • Full Effect: The medications typically reach their full potential within three months. Side effects are most noticeable during this period, especially in the first month. 

Common Side Effects and Management 

The first month of treatment is often the most challenging due to the side effects. Here’s what you might experience and how to manage them: 

  • Nausea: This is one of the most common side effects. It tends to be more pronounced at higher doses (1mg for Ozempic or 7.5mg for Monjaro). To manage nausea: 
  • Avoid heavy meals, especially those rich in meat, which can be harder to digest. 
  • Eat smaller, more frequent meals. 
  • Stay hydrated. 
  • Constipation and Digestive Issues: Constipation can lead to nausea and burping. To alleviate these symptoms: 
  • Increase your fiber intake. 
  • Drink plenty of water. 
  • Consider mild laxatives if necessary. 
  • Injection Site Reactions: Different injection sites can result in varying side effects. If one site causes significant discomfort, try another area for your injection. 

Long-term Effects 

After about six months of consistent use, most side effects, including appetite suppression, tend to diminish. To maximize benefits and minimize side effects: 

  • Optimal Dosage: Stay at the lowest effective dose that continues to provide benefits. This approach helps avoid building tolerance too quickly. 
  • Sustained Weight Loss: On average, individuals can expect to lose about 16% of their body weight with Ozempic and around 20% with Monjaro. However, results can vary based on individual health conditions like diabetes or high A1C levels. 

Importance of Lifestyle Changes 

While these medications are powerful tools for weight loss, combining them with healthy lifestyle changes is crucial for long-term success. Here’s why: 

  • Dietary Adjustments: Initially, weight loss might be due to reduced food intake caused by the medication. Over time, as side effects lessen, maintaining a balanced diet becomes essential. 
  • Exercise and Good Habits: Incorporating regular physical activity and developing healthy eating habits will support continued weight loss and overall well-being. 

Final Thoughts 

Weight loss medications like Semaglutide and Tirzepatide offer promising results for those struggling with obesity and related conditions. By understanding the timeline for results, managing side effects, and integrating healthy lifestyle changes, you can maximize the benefits of these treatments. 

Always consult your healthcare provider and follow their recommendations for personalized advice and more tips. It’s crucial to get with a good medical provider, check your vitals before starting the program, and change your lifestyle and diet for this to take effect. The goal is to be off medication and eventually maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

Achieving your weight loss goals is a journey that combines medical support with your commitment to healthier living. If you are in the Dallas Fort Worth area and looking for a Medical Spa practice to help you lose weight and offer body contouring, skin tightening, help with Ozempic face, etc., reach out to us via our website or call us at 469-750-2273.

Sources: 

Once-Weekly Semaglutide in Adults with Overweight or Obesity, The New England Journal of Medicine, John P.H. Wilding, D.M., Rachel L. Batterham, M.B., B.S., Ph.D., Salvatore Calanna, Ph.D., Melanie Davies, M.D., Luc F. Van Gaal, M.D., Ph.D., Ildiko Lingvay, M.D., M.P.H., M.S.C.S., Barbara M. McGowan, M.D., Ph.D., Julio Rosenstock, M.D., Marie T.D. Tran, M.D., Ph.D., Thomas A. Wadden, Ph.D., Sean Wharton, M.D., Pharm.D., Koutaro Yokote, M.D., Ph.D., et al., for the STEP 1 Study Group* 

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