Misuse of diabetes medication leads to shortage

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Wondering how celebrities have been dramatically losing weight? Rumor has it a new drug has been growing in popularity, but this “quick fix” is causing not just a buzz in the media, but a shortage of medical supplies for those who actually need the drug. 

What is Semaglutide and how does it work?
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Semaglutide is a prescribed injectable drug that is sold under brand names like Ozempic and Wegovy. The drug was initially approved and intended for individuals with Type 2 Diabetes, especially those who are considered clinically obese. The drug is used to stimulate insulin, which lowers glucose blood levels, and slows gastric emptying; the effect is the feeling of being fuller sooner, lowering and suppressing one’s appetite. Once prescribed Semaglutide, the patient is to inject themselves at home weekly. 

 All of these factors are meant to help overweight patients by reducing the risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular disease through weight loss. 

Semaglutide meets an unintended crowd.
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Years after Ozempic was given the green light, a higher dosage form of the drug, Wegovy, was approved for long-term weight management. This is the brand name that is slowly inserting itself into the A-listers red carpet prep list. 

Chelsea Handler, Elon Musk, and Remi Bader are some of the few celebs who have spoken out about their use of the drug.

Handler claims she didn’t even know she was on it, during the Jan. 25 episode of the Call Her Daddy podcast. The comedian claimed that her “anti-aging doctor just hands it out to anybody.” 

Bader also shared her thoughts on the popularization of the drug, and the implications it has for those who struggle with or those who have struggled with eating disorders in the past. 

“I was like, I bet the second I got off I’m gonna get starving again. I did, and my bingeing got so much worse.” Bader said as a guest on a Jan. 10 episode of the Not Skinny But Not Fat podcast.

The instant gratification of quick weight loss can be satisfying, but without lifestyle changes to accompany the results of the drug, people become reliant on it, resulting in health problems once they stop taking it. 

Why the over-prescription of Semaglutide is a serious problem
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The implications of the cosmetic use of Semaglutide are quite negative, to say the least. Due to its rising popularity, it’s becoming a much more in-demand product, and now candidates for the drug are having a hard time getting access to it. This presents a danger to those who rely on Semaglutide to regulate their health. 

Additionally, the lack of transparency regarding the use of this weight loss drug is likely to worsen the issue of disordered eating and body image problems for celebrities and their fans. Without being aware of the current misuse of diabetes medication it’s easy to misconstrue how everyone is losing weight so rapidly. Semaglutide is like an invisible and unattainable workout regime; those who don’t know why or how all of their favorite celebrities can get slim naturally fast might go to extremes themselves to replicate the results they’re seeing on tv. 

Semaglutide, like all prescription drugs, should be used by the proper candidates and when medical professionals believe they are the right choice for a patient’s health, not size.

Have you heard about this before? What do you think, let us know on Twitter @VALLEYmag.


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