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Ozempic for Weight Loss: Too Good to Be True or an Effective Treatment?

By |2023-03-27T15:55:25-04:00March 27th, 2023|Categories: Diabetes, Weight Loss|Tags: , , |3 Comments

When it comes to medications, supplements, diets, and other trendy solutions for weight loss, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. And as anyone who knows me is aware, I am highly skeptical about quick-fix, one-size-fits-all treatments for any medical condition.

So, when I started to hear stories about Semaglutide (sold under the brand names Ozempic, Wegovy, and Rybelsus), my initial reaction was to wonder, “What’s the catch?” Could this medication, which was developed to treat insulin resistance really be as effective for weight loss as many people claim? And could it possibly be as safe as the pharmaceutical companies and the FDA have led people to believe it is?

Then, I started to recognize some patients who had struggled with losing weight, feeling healthier, and looking the best I had seen them in years! Seeing these amazing results with my own eyes forced me to take a deeper look into the Semaglutide craze that is taking over the weight loss industry.

In this post, I share what I discovered.

What Is Semaglutide?

Semaglutide is more than what you see on TikTok! It is an injectable medication that is typically prescribed in combination with diet and exercise to help control blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes to manage weight.

Semaglutide works by mimicking the action of glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) — a naturally occurring hormone that has the following effects:

  • Stimulates insulin production to help regulate blood sugar
  • Inhibits glucagon release, slowing the release of sugar into the blood causing the body to burn more fat
  • Slows gastric emptying to make you feel full longer
  • Reduces appetite (because you feel full)

Together, these effects can help slow the conversion of sugar to fat, burn more fat, make you feel less hungry, and adhere to a healthy diet, all of which make it easier to manage weight and blood sugar.

Understanding the Connection Between Insulin Resistance and Weight

The research on diabetes, weight gain and loss, and inflammation is very clear — two thirds of all Americans are on a spectrum of insulin resistance. This means that their Continue reading…

What’s Making Your Immune System Go Haywire?

As a doctor trained in the functional medicine approach to healthcare, I spend much of my time discovering and treating chronic illnesses, including those encompassing chronic inflammation, which can often be traced to immune system dysfunction. The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates daily how an infection can trigger a powerful immune response resulting in inflammation.

With COVID-19, the inflammation primarily impacts the lungs, but it can affect other organs and tissues, as well. Deaths from COVID-19 are typically a result of excessive inflammation caused by the body’s over-the-top immune response.

Inflammation isn’t all bad. In fact, it’s part of the mechanism responsible for enabling the body to fight disease, recover from injury, and repair damaged tissue. Any trauma to the body’s cells triggers an inflammatory response. The immune system releases inflammatory chemicals, which expand blood vessels and cause them to leak, thereby delivering healing cells and substances to the site that’s injured or under attack. The expansion and leaking of blood vessels are what cause the inflammation.

Unfortunately, the immune system can become the body’s own worst enemy, identifying healthy cells as threats and attacking those cells — a condition referred to as autoimmunity. Various autoimmune diseases can develop as a result, depending on the cause and the organs or tissues being damaged. With type 1 diabetes, the immune system attacks pancreatic cells, impairing the body’s ability to produce insulin; with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, the immune system attacks the thyroid; with rheumatoid arthritis, it primarily attacks the joints; with multiple sclerosis (MS) and Guillain-Barré syndrome, it attacks nerve cells; with myocarditis, it attacks the heart; and so on.

The exact mechanism that gives rise to an autoimmune disease remains a mystery. However, evidence suggests that the cause may be traced to a genetic susceptibility triggered by one or more environmental factors, which may include chronic stress, poor diet, gut dysbiosis (an imbalance of microorganisms in the intestines), infections, environmental toxins, as well as other stressors.

Recent research points to viral and bacterial infections as being major triggers for several autoimmune diseases, including the following: Continue reading…

The Diabetes Cure: Is Diabetes Really Reversible?

The conventional approaches to the treatment and management of diabetes is the single worst case of mismanagement in medicine today!

Full disclosure: My family history is riddled with diabetes — uncles, aunts, grandparents, and parents all with diabetes. These were not overweight people. Not by today’s standards. They had a genetic predisposition for sure. However, each had a chance to control the disease and failed miserably.

Besides genetics, what did they have in common? They all used the conventional approach to diabetes care: Lowering blood sugar by any means necessary, including using prescription drugs and insulin injections, which increase the risk of long-term complications including heart disease and cancer. Diabetics using the pharmaceutical heavy model are destined to remain reliant on the medical system.

Diabetes treatment in the current conventional health care environment will not reverse diabetes and in many cases will actually aggravate the underlying causes of the illness, leading to more chronic conditions and long-term complications.

How can we expect to reverse something with medicine if we never address the root cause?

Asking Better Questions

Conventional medicine approaches diabetes treatment with the wrong question: “How can we lower the patient’s blood sugar?”

A better question is this: “What are some root causes of blood sugar problems and what can we do to resolve them?”

The underlying causes of blood sugar problems include the following: Continue reading…