Have you seen the recent headlines on the “miracle” weight loss drug Ozempic?

It is everywhere, and it is likely to be the best-selling drug of all time. 

It does make you slimmer, there is no doubt about that, but as ever, the devil is in the detail, and we must be cautious about side-effects. 

Big pharma are not known for their honesty in this regard.

See the lethal painkiller Vioxx and Merck’s subsequent $4.85 billion compensation to the many victims (approx 100k) of heart attacks and strokes (which they knew about and covered up). 

Or Pfizer $2.3 billion:

Or J & J $2.2 billion: 

Or Glaxosmithkline $3 billion

Or Eli-Lilly $1.4 billion

I could go on, but you get the idea. Do not be surprised if the quoted safety figures from the RCT’s are not correct. 

Anyhoo, the news ran with the Pharma favourite statistic, the relative risk reduction, of 20% in terms of risk of heart attack, strokes and death.

But the reality is, relative risk reductions are just that, relative to real terms risk reductions, or absolute risk reductions.

If you check the actual study, you see the truth. 

Note the magical 20% figure does not appear there. 

What they are saying is in the placebo group it was 8% risk, and in the treatment group it was 6.5%. 

Thus, a benefit of 1.5% absolute risk reduction. 

But 1.5% reduction in risk is not going to sell drugs and get headlines, so they argue, 1.5% of 8% is a RELATIVE reduction of 20%. 

But it is not real, because in order to get the 20% reduction, you would need to know you are going to have a heart attack, ie you were in the 8% and not the 92% that never had an issue.

And of course you cannot know that, thus it is a statistical sleight of hand and meaningless. 

You can read more about that here:

Note also the side effects meant 16% of patients had to stop due to side effects. 

That is a pretty high % and again I suspect it will be higher than that in real world scenarios where the patients are not subject to Pharma’s gentle massaging of data. 

You might have noticed a few of these:

Statins are a great example of real world data vs RCT.

While RCT data sponsored by Pharma is suspiciously low, under 5%.

Could it be that the patients stop taking the drugs in the run in phase due to side effects, so they throw them out for non-compliance:

But let us look at what Ozempic does. 

It is a GLP1 agonist, so then what is GLP1?

GLP-1, or Glucagon-Like Peptide-1, is a hormone produced by the intestines in response to food consumption. 

It plays a crucial role in regulating blood sugar levels and appetite. Here’s a breakdown of what GLP-1 is and how it works. 


GLP-1 binds to specific receptors in the pancreas, stimulating the release of insulin, a hormone that helps the body’s cells absorb glucose (sugar) from the bloodstream. This process helps to lower blood sugar levels and regulate metabolism.

Insulin secretion: GLP-1 stimulates the pancreas to release insulin, which helps to regulate blood sugar levels – The drug was originally for diabetes. 

Appetite suppression: GLP-1 also binds to receptors in the brain, reducing appetite and increasing feelings of fullness – THIS ONE IS REALLY IMPORTANT

Gastrointestinal slowing: GLP-1 slows the movement of food through the digestive system, allowing for better nutrient absorption and reducing the risk of blood sugar spikes (Also important and key to some of the side effects in the gut).

I am afraid there is no such thing as a free lunch (pun intended). 

Does that mean it should not be used? 

No, it should.

But as front line therapy when we are drowning under the weight of ultra-processed foods that are highly addictive and easily overconsumed? 

I would say, no, let’s try some real whole food with behavioral back up, aimed at controlling blood sugars, giving enough protein and fat.

We are having huge surges in diabetes type 2 in people under 40. 

It isn’t your genes, or climate change, or racism, or sexism, it is the food people are eating.  

We know what is fueling this, over consumption of ultraprocessed food.

Check out the difference in body shapes from 1970 to now.

We also recognise that among the very obese there is often a strong history of childhood abuse/neglect. 

Does that mean they get Ozempic as front line therapy? 

I say no, let’s go for some EMDR. 

Click it

Next week, I will show you how you can increase your own GLP1 naturally without Ozempic, it is easier than you think.