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Ozempic’s Surprising Side Effect: Could It Curb Addictions To Alcohol?

Ozempic, a medication primarily developed to treat type 2 diabetes, has emerged as a global sensation.

The drug, known scientifically as GLP1-agonists, has garnered widespread attention beyond medical circles due to its unexpected ability to facilitate significant weight loss.

But now, a new surprising side effect has been uncovered.

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Study shows the active ingredient in Ozempic may also be able to reduce the desire for alcohol, cigarettes and other drugs.

On today’s The Briefing podcast, we talked to Dr Leigh Walker from the Florey Institute to find out what we already know and how safe Ozempic could be to treat addictions.

Novo Nordisk, the pharmaceutical company behind Ozempic, has witnessed an astronomical rise in its market value.

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Ozempic is the new wonder drug sweeping the world of weight loss. But now a new surprising side effect has potentially been uncovered. There’s anecdotal evidence that semaglutide – the active ingredient in Ozempic, may also be able to reduce the desire for alcohol, cigarettes and other drugs. Now, research is being undertaken to find out if science can back up those claims. In this episode of The Briefing, Simon Beaton speaks with Dr Leigh Walker from the Florey Institute to find out what we know already, and how safe Ozempic could be to treat addictions. #ozempic #druguse #health #podcast

♬ original sound – LiSTNR Newsroom

From a modest $17 billion to an astonishing $554 billion in just a few years, Novo Nordisk now stands as Europe’s most valuable corporation, contributing substantially to Denmark’s economic growth.

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Dr Walker said there are currently nine ongoing trials on whether Ozempic could stop alcohol and opioid addiction.  

“Well, we’re not quite sure yet, but what we do know is that in populations of people who do take drugs or use alcohol, there seems to be some people who will also reduce their intake,” Dr Walker said.

She mentioned that the largest trials with 157 participants have been conducted on alcohol use, revealing that individuals with comorbid obesity experienced reduced alcohol intake, but only among those who also had obesity.

“What’s really interesting about this is that actually in people who were of normal weight, that actually had the opposite effect and actually increased their alcohol use,” she added.

“In terms of safety, there’s a lot that’s different in the brain of somebody who has been using a lot of alcohol or drugs…these chemicals change our brain as well.”

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