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My weight loss journey experience

I struggle with my weight loss and I know I am not alone. I do exercise regularly but in order to lose weight I generally need to be hungry. I hate being hungry! Coupled with menopause, i have gradually added extra pounds over the last 10years. For me appetite control would be the silver bullet.

Within 3 weeks of starting Ozempic (a weekly injection) I had lost 9lb which is reduction of 5% of by body weight. I did not experience hunger or cravings, when I ate I felt full very quickly. This was not a fad diet, I ate smaller healthy meals, did not feel the need to snack and continued with my usual exercise regime. According to the Rethink Obesity study (https://global.rethinkobesity.com/) my weight loss has benefitted me by;

  1. reducing my risk of diabetes type 2
  2. reduction in cardiovascular disease
  3. improvements in cholesterol levels
  4. improvements in blood pressure
  5. improvements in osteoarthritic pain
  6. improvements in obstructive sleep apnoea
  7. improvements in quality of life

So whilst I’m delighted about these, I do feel better about myself, confidence levels and my clothes fit better.

Q 👩🏾What is this National Medical Weight Loss Program?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️This is a nationwide slimming program that Coalport skin clinic has become partnered with.
It is based on a calorie controlled diet, with the addition of a once weekly ozempic pharmacotherapy (a tiny Injection pen) that you administer at home, to manage your appetite.
It involves an on-line assessment tool to ensure you are fit and well. Then if we can treat you, we ask you to look at the process of consultation, treatment and on-going support.
(During lockdown these steps will take place virtually by video call or telephone if you prefer).
If you like what we propose, we begin. If not, that’s fine too. There’s no obligation to sign up.

Q 👩 How much weight can I expect to lose?
A👩🏼‍⚕️This varies between individuals, however
most people lose around a stone (6.5kg)  every 4- 6 weeks, but that’s dependent on your Body Mass Index (BMI), will-power, exercise regime & how much weight you have to lose.

Q 👩🏼 How long does it take to start working?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️It usually takes around a few hours to start to work, that’s what most users report.

Q 👩🏻 Who will be involved in my care?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ We offer only Nurse Prescribers to care for you under the program.
We will adopt a holistic approach to your well-being and review you as the process continues.

Q👩🏻 Once you’ve reached your ideal weight, how do you maintain it?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️Everyone is different in their approach to maintaining their desired weight.
Some people find the habitual changes over a few months of being on the medication enable them to psychologically carry it forward.
The medication will make you feel full most of the time; so when you do eat, it will be small portions of (hopefully) healthy food.
You may not want to return to what you ate before.

Other people stay on the medication long-term, because they see it as the only way to keep where they want to be.

Others will be between these two scenarios. They may have positive changes but start over-eating again. They will sometimes utilise the medication again, but have long periods without it too.

Q 👱🏼‍♀️ Is fasting part of the program?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ No fasting is not part of it.
You are encouraged to try to eat three small, nutritionally balanced meals per day.
Some people just cannot face food because the medicine prevents the desire to eat at all (it also greatly reduces the desire for alcohol 🍾🍷).
In this case we recommend having nutritional supplements and bars/shakes etc, to ensure you are getting the vitamins and minerals you should have to be healthy.

Q 👨🏿 The medicine lasts for a week, so will I feel more hungry towards the end of the week as the medicine wears off?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ Everyone has different experiences, but generally people say they “don’t feel hungry at all” on the medication.
You may feel less effect as the week goes on but it’s unlikely.
If you do start to get hunger cravings it’s best to tell us as soon as possible, so we can look at altering the dose or your Injection technique.

Q👨 I don’t like needles, will it hurt?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️The Injection is reportedly completely painless.

Q 👩🏻 Is it legal?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ Yes it is 💯 legal, it’s been previously developed as a medication for type 2 diabetes, so it has been clinically trialled and approved for this category of patients.
We use this pharmacotherapy “off label” which means we are using it for weight loss rather than treatment of type 2 diabetes.

Q 👨 Are there any health benefits?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ The benefits of a weight loss of just 5% of your weight are (according to https://global.rethinkobesity.com
Rethink Obesity Study) are as follows:

✅A reduction in the risk of type 2 diabetes.
✅A reduction in cardiovascular risk factors.
✅Improvements in blood lipid profile.
✅Improvements in blood pressure.
✅Improvements in osteoarthritic pain.
✅Improvements in severity of obstructive sleep apnoea.
✅Improvements in health-related quality of life.

Apart from this study, what we see in anecdotal terms is that people regain their self-confidence and self-esteem, feel brighter and happier 😊 within themselves when they are able to reach their goal weight.

Q 👱🏼‍♀️ Are there any side-effects?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ Yes, it is commonly reported that you may have a couple of days to a week of feeling nauseous. Around 25% of patients report this.
It’s normally because the medicine is taking time to settle, but it’s also a good indication that it will really work for you as your body is very responsive to it.

Other side-effects include constipation and headache. It’s important to drink lots of water.

Furthermore the following have been reported: low blood sugar, vomiting, diarrhoea, increased heart rate, tiredness and dizziness, tummy ache.

Side-effects normally are short-lived and not everyone will have any of them.

Q 👨🏿Is there anyone who can’t have it?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ Yes, there are rules around your BMI. We will look at this on your health assessment and provide you with an answer on suitability. This is a treatment for people who are considered ‘overweight’ or ‘obese’.
Further contraindications include:
Being pregnant or breastfeeding.
Having an allergy to the medicine.
Having Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Syndrome.
Having a family history of medullary thyroid cancer or other thyroid carcinomas.

You may not have the medication if you are under 18 or over 75.

Q 👩🏿 How much does it cost?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ It’s £240 for the first month, as we complete the health assessment and consultation during the first month, then it’s £195 per month.

You are welcome to do price comparisons because we will normally be far more affordable than others.
When comparing Injection pens please don’t mistake this product for a less effective product that is injected daily, this is a once WEEKLY pen.

Q 👩🏽 How do I start?
A 👩🏼‍⚕️ If you want to move to the next step, we need a preferred email address to send out the initial assessment form.
Send us your email address by text if you like
☎️ 07875510070 or email us directly
📧 info@coalportskinclinic.co.uk