A new medicine for obesity is on the research market showing outstanding results. The research product is Tirzepatide! Tirzepatide Brand Name is Mounjaro, and has recently been FDA approved for use to treat diabetes. But with this positive news experts are now studying tirzepatide for weight loss effect in the hope of finding a treatment.
Tirzepatide for Weight Loss
A new era in the treatment of obesity, researchers believe. But the effect probably lasts only as long as you take medicine.
In the last 30 years, the number of people with obesity has increased dramatically worldwide. It matters to health. When the BMI exceeds 30 – the boundary between overweight and obesity – the risk increases significantly for diseases such as type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea and cardiovascular disease.
However, obesity has proven harder to fight than researchers thought. Numerous studies have shown that the most commonly used treatment – lifestyle treatment – works poorly. The only really effective measure has been bariatric surgery.
Why it’s so Hard to Keep the Weight Off?
For many people losing weight and keeping it off is extremely difficult. First there is so much temptation around us it is easy to give in and over eat. Fast food outlets are convenient and are often the first port of call over preparing and cooking a home-made meal. Lack of knowledge in what we eat can pile on the pounds. Plus, sedentary lifestyles most of us have means we are not burning off the calories we are eating. And bad eating habits that can be passed down through generations make the problem worst.
A few small changes can help. You can also be successful by using any of the following strategies:
- Try to eat more healthy foods, choose primarily lean protein, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds and avoid processed foods and sugars.
- If you are stressed, eat more nutritious snacks such as raw vegetables or unsalted nuts.
- Drink plenty of water
- Eat regular meals
- Try to increase activity and move more
Obesity is a chronic disease
Obesity is a chronic disease with an increasing prevalence that is associated with metabolic, psychological, and social problems. The current prevalence of obesity in children and adolescents is 5% in boys and 9% in girls. As obesity increases, so does the frequency of being overweight in family members. One-third of children with overweight parents are estimated to be overweight. Because overweight and obese children grow up with overweight parents, this creates a vicious cycle.
Previous studies indicated that obesity increases the risk of respiratory problems, such as asthma and obstructive sleep apnea syndrome.
Obesity may lead to respiratory muscle weakness and changes in breathing mechanics, leading to pulmonary restriction. It is associated with increased airway resistance, and it may cause expiratory flow limitation in children. Children with obstructive sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) have repetitive and prolonged upper airway obstruction during sleep, leading to oxygen desaturation. Obese children and adolescents with respiratory problems, such as asthma and OSA, are more likely to suffer from psychological issues.
Tirzepatide Weight Loss Trial
But now the obesity picture might be about to change. In recent years, several drugs have come on the scene. In 2021, for example, a study showed that the drug semaglutide gives good results. And now comes even better news. A large study shows that the drug tirzepatide causes a record weight loss.
Results from Tirzepatide Weight Loss Study
The drug was initially developed as a medicine for diabetes 2, but early tests showed that patients also lost weight. That may not be so strange. For tirzepatide affects two different hormones that help control blood sugar and the feeling of satiety. Promising indications are leading researchers to launch a major study on the effects of tirzepatide on obesity.
The researchers recruited 2,500 people who weighed too much. The vast majority were obese. The participants weighed almost 105 kilos and had a BMI of 38. All groups were to change their lifestyle to eat 500 fewer calories than they needed per day and be physically active for at least 150 minutes a week.
The difference between the groups was the drug tirzepatide
One group took a weekly 5 milligrams tirzepatide injection, the other took 10 milligrams, and the third took 15 milligrams. The last group took a weekly injection of a placebo, i.e. an injection without active ingredients. The experiment lasted 72 weeks, i.e. a little less than a year and a half. The results were startling.
The placebo group, which had only received lifestyle treatment in practice, had lost an average of 2.4 kilos. This reflects the results of many previous studies on lifestyle treatment.
The group on the smallest dose of tirzepatide, on the other hand, had lost more than 16 kilos. The group of 15 milligrams of tirzepatide had become almost 24 kilos lighter on average. The results correspond to a weight loss of over 22% of body weight and are similar to bariatric surgery results.
The numbers were almost as good in the group that took 10 milligrams of tirzepatide weekly.
What are Tirzepatide Side Effects?
The results, of course, do not mean that all participants in a group went down the same amount of weight. Some went down more, while others had little effect.
However, the results showed that a large majority of the participants lost weight. In the group that took the most tirzepatide, over 90% of the participants lost more than five% of their weight. A minimum for the treatment to have any effect against the harmful effects of obesity.
The impressive number, however, was that well over half of the participants in this group lost more than 20% of their body weight. In comparison, the figure in the placebo group was 3 per cent.
The medicine had some side effects. Slightly more participants who received the treatment reported adverse effects than the placebo group.
The most common side effects were symptoms from the stomach, such as nausea, diarrhea or constipation.
A very few also got inflammation of the gallbladder. However, it is not yet possible to determine whether the medicine was the cause. It is also known from the past that losing weight is associated with such inflammation.
No Miracle Cure for Weight Loss
According to MedPage Today, this is the start of a new era in obesity treatment, said Ania Jastreboff, one of the researchers behind the study.
Other experts also believe that tirzepatide may be an essential tool in treating obesity. However, they warn against thinking that we have found a miracle cure.
The substances themselves do not make you slimmer. Still, they change the signals in the body so that it becomes easier to implement a lifestyle change and cause a weight loss.
– But they only work as long as the medication is taken, says Simon Cork from Anglia Ruskin University to the newspaper The Guardian. Cork did not participate in the study himself.
He warns that similar weight loss drugs, such as semaglutide, are currently only approved for use for a maximum of two years. Then the treatment stops. We know that this very likely reverses weight loss for many, the same probably applies to tirzepatide, he says.
Tirzepatide is not Suitable for Everyone
Jastreboff points out that tirzepatide does not have the same effect on everyone. Thus more research needs to be done.
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