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The Unintended Hazards Of Ozempic, Mounjaro, And What To Do About It Now

There's something that's completely under-appreciated about Ozempic (Semaglutide) and Mounjaro (Tirzepatide). While I believe these are "wonder drugs" that will enhance many lives, there's a looming crisis flying under the radar. This crisis will affect all those who take these medications if action isn't taken today.


What makes these drugs wonderful is that they target what has caused so many of our modern health issues: we eat too much. This has led to an explosion of obesity, diabetes, osteoarthritis, heart disease, kidney failure, and probably cancer. Ozempic, Mounjaro and other drugs in that class has radically changed obesity management. It’s the holy grail that is helping so many people lose weight. In fact, I’m aware of bariatric hospitals that are suffering now that weight loss surgery volumes have tremendously decreased due to these drugs. That’s the good news.


But what's not being appreciated is that the typical person is already deficient in many nutrients. As people begin to eat a lot less due to these medications, existing nutritional deficiencies are likely to worsen. These deficiencies have serious consequences.


Obesity Was Not The Only Problem Before Ozempic And Mounjaro


Recent data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) reveals a startling picture of nutrient deficiencies in the United States. A significant portion of the population is at risk of deficiency in at least one vitamin or mineral:


95% are deficient in vitamin D

95% are deficient in omega 3

84% are deficient in vitamin E

48% are deficient in magnesium

46% are deficient in vitamin C

45% are deficient in vitamin A

39% are deficient in calcium

31% are deficient in vitamin K

16% are deficient in vitamin B6

15% are deficient in zinc

15% are deficient in vitamin B12

11% of women are deficient in iron


So you think taking multivitamins protect you? 28% of those taking dietary supplements are still at risk of deficiency.


There are many reasons for these deficiencies. Our soil is deficient in minerals, our foods are stripped of fiber and other nutrients, and our foods are optimized for salt, sugar and fat. So, despite eating a lot of calories, we still find ourselves deficient in so many nutrients. But imagine what happens when you take Ozempic or Mounjaro and start to eat A LOT less!! 


How Ozempic And Mounjaro Makes The Problem Worse


Now, let's consider how medications like Ozempic and Mounjaro could potentially exacerbate these existing deficiencies:


  1. Reduced Food Intake: These medications work by decreasing appetite and increasing feelings of fullness. While this is beneficial for weight loss, it also means less food is consumed overall, potentially leading to lower nutrient intake.

  2. Altered Absorption: Some users report gastrointestinal side effects like nausea or delayed gastric emptying. These could potentially interfere with nutrient absorption.

  3. Rapid Weight Loss: Quick weight loss can sometimes lead to nutrient deficiencies, particularly in fat-soluble vitamins stored in adipose tissue.

  4. Changed Food Preferences: Some users report changes in food tastes or cravings, which could lead to the elimination of certain nutrient-rich foods from the diet.

  5. Insufficient Compensation: Even if people are aware of the need to maintain nutrient intake while eating less, it can be challenging to get all necessary nutrients from a significantly reduced calorie intake.


Binge Eating disorder concept with woman eating fast food burger, fried chicken, donuts and desserts copy


The Short And Long Term Problems Ozempic And Mounjaro Are Creating


While weight loss can bring many positive changes, it's important to be aware of potential signs that indicate nutritional deficiencies. You may have heard of "Ozempic face" or "Ozempic butt" - terms referring to the rapid loss of fat and muscle that some users experience. However, these visible changes are just the tip of the iceberg.


Other visible signs of potential nutrient deficiencies include:


  1. Brittle nails and hair loss (possibly indicating iron or biotin deficiency)

  2. Pale or inflamed gums (potentially signaling vitamin C deficiency)

  3. Dry, scaly skin (which could suggest low levels of vitamins A or D)

  4. Slow wound healing (possibly due to zinc or vitamin C deficiency)



What's happening beneath the surface can be far more concerning than these visible signs. Chronic nutrient deficiencies can lead to serious health issues over time:


  1. Bone Health: Inadequate calcium, vitamin D, vitamin K2, and magnesium can lead to decreased bone density, increasing the risk of osteoporosis and fractures. This is particularly concerning given that 95% of Americans are already deficient in vitamin D.

  2. Muscle Wasting (Sarcopenia): Protein deficiency, along with inadequate vitamin D and magnesium, can accelerate muscle loss. This is especially problematic as we age.

  3. Immune Function: Deficiencies in vitamins A, C, D, E, and zinc can compromise immune function, leaving you more susceptible to infections.

  4. Cognitive Health: Low levels of omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins (especially B12), and vitamin E have been linked to cognitive decline and increased risk of neurodegenerative diseases.

  5. Cardiovascular Health: Deficiencies in magnesium, potassium, and omega-3 fatty acids can negatively impact heart health.

  6. Anemia: Iron deficiency, which is already a concern for 9-11% of women of childbearing age, can worsen with reduced food intake, leading to fatigue and weakness.


How To Protect Yourself


While I am a proponent of using Ozempic and Mounjaro and not stopping them without a discussion with your healthcare provider, there are some actions you can do now to protect yourself.


I can't stress enough the need to have a nutritional evaluation. While you can blindly take vitamin and protein supplements, these don't always address your specific needs. Are you getting the specific nutrients you need? We don't know without testing.


A proactive approach:


  1. Regular blood tests to check levels of key vitamins and minerals

  2. Assessment for hormone deficiency

  3. Evaluation of any symptoms that might indicate deficiencies

  4. Consideration of individual factors like age, gender, and health conditions

  5. Use high quality supplements that have been independently tested for quality, label accuracy, and toxins.


If you are one of my patients, let’s talk further about the options I can provide to help you achieve the maximum benefit from Ozempic or Mounjaro. The goal is to optimize your health beyond weight loss.


1. Reider, C. A., Chung, R. Y., Devarshi, P. P., Grant, R. W., & Hazels Mitmesser, S. (2020). Inadequacy of Immune Health Nutrients: Intakes in US Adults, the 2005–2016 NHANES. Nutrients, 12(6), 1735. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12061735


2. Bird, J. K., Murphy, R. A., Ciappio, E. D., & McBurney, M. I. (2017). Risk of Deficiency in Multiple Concurrent Micronutrients in Children and Adults in the United States. Nutrients, 9(7), 655. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu9070655



*Disclaimer: This blog post is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the guidance of your doctor or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding your health or a medical condition.









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