Semaglutide, Ozempic, and Mounjaro – Are these the magic Obesity Solution? With Dr. Rocio Salas-Whalen

GLP-1’s were initially intended to treat Type 2 Diabetes. When Dr. Salas first started using GLP-1’s in her practice for diabetes, her patients were coming back with glucose under control AND had experienced weight loss. Prior to this, you had to tackle these two issues separately – you had to control glucose and find a way to lose weight. These medications are a synthetic hormone that helps to produce more insulin in your pancreas when your blood sugar goes up. They also increase your satiety hormone and decrease your hunger hormone – so you feel less hungry and feel more full. 

What Contributes to Being Obese? 

Obesity is multifactorial and there are basically five really broad categories of things that can contribute to you being obese:

  1. Lifestyle 
  2. Genetic Predisposition 
  3. Aging
  4. Hormonal Changes 
  5. Environmental Factors 
Semaglutide, Ozempic, and Mounjaro - Are these the magic Obesity Solution? With Dr. Rocio Salas pin

Are Drugs like Semaglutide, Ozempic, and Mounjaro Right for Me?

There are guidelines that practitioners follow to figure out if these GLP-1’s are best for you and your situation. The current clinical guidelines are a BMI of 27 PLUS one comorbidity (like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc.) OR BMI of greater than or equal to 30 without a comorbidity. However, BMI isn’t necessarily the BEST metric to use – there are a lot of different measurements that can be used like your percentage of body fat, your visceral fat, and your muscle mass. 

Are GLP-1’s Safe? 

These drugs are intended for obesity which is a chronic, multifactorial disease. GLP-1’s are really helpful aiding in 4 of the 5 contributing factors mentioned above. The efficacy and the safety of these drugs (Semaglutide, Ozempic, and Mounjaro), however, depends on the expertise of who is giving this drug. You can have someone who just looks at the number on the scale and a month later you may have lost 20 pounds. But 7 of those could be muscle…and then your body fat percentage actually went up! If we only use the scale or our BMI we can miss a number of things, including the possibility of making the clients become “skinny fat”. The goal should be more muscle and less body fat. 

What if I Only Need a Few Pounds to Lose? Will Semaglutide, Ozempic, and Mounjaro Work for Me? 

It all depends on the type and amount of fat you have. Even if you only have 10 pounds to lose, if it’s all visceral fat, you could benefit from it. But again, you cannot use the “scale” as your baseline for success. 

What Are the Common Side Effects of GLP-1’s? 

Side effects are the same regardless of how much weight you need to lose and they can include: 

  • Muscle loss
  • Dehydration 
  • Nausea (depending) 
  • Constipation (depending) 

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Dr. Salas-Whalen is a triple board-certified physician with broad experience across all facets of endocrinology, with an emphasis on women’s health and obesity. She believes that every patient is different and that effective care must be customized according to individual needs. She is a strong advocate for patients’ quality of life. Also she aims more for prevention rather than treatment. She performs in-office thyroid ultrasonography and fine needle aspiration biopsy of thyroid nodules.

Dr. Salas-Whalen is an active participant in the continuing advancement of her field and a strong proponent of lifelong career learning.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • What’s the deal with Ozempic?
  • What are some components leading to obesity?
  • How do you know if you have type 2 diabetes?
  • Are drugs an answer to weight loss and symptoms?