Pros and Cons of Semaglutide for Weight Loss

doctor with overweight woman on scales, to illustrate semaglutide for weight loss
Medically Reviewed
June 26, 2023

If you’re struggling to lose weight, you’ll definitely have heard of Ozempic or Wegovy, branded names for semaglutide – the ground-breaking GLP-1 medication that leads to significant weight loss.

Ozempic for weight loss has become incredibly popular on social media, generating viral content showing amazing body transformations caused by the “skinny pen.”

But does this medication really work? Does it contribute to healthy weight loss? How much weight do you lose with Ozempic? What happens when you stop taking it?

In this article, we’ll answer these and other questions about semaglutide to help you understand the fuss about this new weight loss trend. We want you to know all the pros and cons of Ozempic before deciding to take it.

What is Semaglutide?

Semaglutide is the active compound of medications belonging to a class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1) – a synthetic form of the incretin hormone. Your body naturally produces this hormone in response to food intake.

By mimicking the effects of GLP-1 in the body, semaglutide helps to regulate blood sugar levels by

  • stimulating insulin secretion,
  • reducing glucagon release, and
  • slowing down gastric emptying.

This leads you to feel reduced hunger pangs and increased feelings of fullness. What’s not to like!

For this reason, the FDA approved semaglutide for weight management in 2021, despite it being initially developed only for treating type 2 diabetes. When used for weight loss, semaglutide is presented as a weekly injection that suppresses appetite and helps control portion sizes.

The results for weight management are so impressive that some doctors agree that we’re living in a golden age for treating obesity and being overweight with relatively safe drugs, such as Ozempic and Wegovy.

How Fast Does Semaglutide Work for Weight Loss?

There’s a good reason why Ozempic has become so valuable if you’re overweight – it leads to real and significant weight loss.

A clinical study done with almost 2,000 non-diabetic obese adults who took 2.4mg of semaglutide or a placebo once a week for 68 weeks (combined with lifestyle changes) has shown that those who took the medication lost 15% of their body weight while the ones who took the placebo lost only 2.4%.

That means if you’re serious about weight loss but still haven’t found an effective way of losing those extra pounds, semaglutide may be just the extra help you need, so we’ll look at some of the main reasons why.

The Benefits of Semaglutide for Weight Loss:

1 Improves blood sugar

Stabilizing your blood sugar means you have fewer cravings and consume fewer calories. Ultimately, this helps you lose weight and keep it off. In addition, controlled blood sugar also helps to reduce the risks of cardiovascular events like stroke or heart attack.

2 Reduces hunger

By activating GLP-1 receptors throughout your body, semaglutide enhances the effects of the naturally occurring hormone GLP-1.

In other words, the hormone that you self-inject gets absorbed into your bloodstream and tricks your brain by sending the message that you’ve already eaten.

This satiated feeling leads to less calorie intake and a delay in your digestive process, causing you to feel fuller longer, even after eating smaller amounts of food.

3 Supports weight loss

Unlike natural GLP-1, which doesn’t last very long in the body, semaglutide does. That means that one injection per week is enough to leave you feeling full and satisfied, which leads to fewer cravings, fewer calories, and effective weight loss.

The Downside of Semaglutide for Weight Loss

Now that you know how semaglutide can support your weight loss journey, let’s look at the cons of this medication.

Potential side effects

Like any medication, semaglutide drugs like Ozempic can have side effects. The most common ones include

  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • diarrhea,
  • constipation,
  • headache, and
  • abdominal pain.

You might also develop a slight dislike for food.

These side effects are usually temporary and improve over time, but they can be intolerable for some people.

A few people have reported severe side effects to the point that they stopped taking the medication or reconsidered whether they’ll take it long-term.

In addition, some possible serious side effects of semaglutide include kidney and gallbladder problems, pancreatitis, and thyroid issues. To avoid those, you should review your comprehensive medical history with your healthcare provider before starting the treatment.

Weight regain after interrupting the treatment

Some patients report regaining all the lost weight right after stopping the treatment. This reinforces the need to use semaglutide combined with healthy lifestyle changes to achieve sustainable weight loss for you.

So – Ozempic should not be seen as a short-term aesthetic fix, as many celebrities tend to make you believe! Instead, it should be viewed as a tool to help you achieve a healthy weight while you build new positive and sustained habits and lifestyle changes to ensure you maintain your weight loss.


Ozempic can be expensive. When used for treating weight linked to type 2 diabetes, the medication is usually covered by most health insurance, but that’s not always the case for weight loss, and may become less so in future. For this reason, it’s important you consider the financial aspect of long-term treatment.

How Do I Get on Ozempic? Try NavaRX Medical Weight Loss Program

At Nava Health, we target the underlying causes of any health condition instead of prescribing quick fixes to the problem. This is also our approach to addressing obesity.

We understand that making sustainable lifestyle modifications is crucial for long-term weight management. So Ozempic – i.e. using semaglutide for weight loss – should not be seen as a standalone solution to your weight problem. It works best when combined with healthy lifestyle changes, including a balanced diet and regular physical activity.

That’s why our comprehensive NavaRX medical weight loss program combines a medically supervised diet, as well as nutrition counselling with a certified nutritionists and a once-weekly injection of semaglutide (Ozempic) – with appropriate dosage and personalized advice based on your situation and medical history.

Nava Health’s comprehensive approach ensures you reach a healthy and sustainable weight – and end your program with the education, support, and tools to maintain it.

Schedule your consultation today and take control of your health!

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Pros and Cons of Semaglutide for Weight Loss
Considering semaglutide for weight loss? Ozempic works best with a supervised diet, nutrition counselling, and lifestyle changes. Read why!