Stopping Ozempic injections for weight loss can cause weight gain and a possible increase in blood sugar and blood pressure. To restart Ozempic treatment, a doctor will slowly increase your dose to avoid its side effects.

Ozempic is a brand-name medication containing the active ingredient semaglutide and belongs to the class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 agonists). It mimics the GLP-1 hormone your body naturally produces, helping your body to slow its digestion and improve blood glucose regulation.

It is a subcutaneous injection medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for managing and reducing the risk of major cardiovascular events in people with type 2 diabetes.

Doctors may also prescribe Ozempic off-label to assist with weight loss. Off-label use means a doctor prescribes a medication for purposes other than what it’s been approved for. The medication only works as long as you administer the injections on schedule.

In this article, we explore what happens once you stop taking Ozempic, how to stop safely, and whether you can restart taking the medication.

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There are numerous reasons why you may wish to discontinue Ozempic. These often include experiencing unpleasant side effects within your first month or the expense of administering the medication once per week.

However, due to its role as a treatment for type 2 diabetes, it is typically a component of a lifelong treatment plan, working most effectively when you take it long term. For example, clinical studies state that other semaglutide medications effectively reduce the body weight of people with overweight by 15% over 68 weeks.

This means that as you stop administering Ozempic, the effects of the medication will also stop.

Does Ozempic cause withdrawal symptoms?

No, Ozempic isn’t known to cause withdrawal symptoms. But in the days and weeks following your last dose of Ozempic, you will likely experience an increased appetite as the drug leaves your body.

Additionally, if you take Ozempic to manage symptoms of type 2 diabetes, stopping Ozempic can trigger high blood sugar levels. This may lead to symptoms including:

  • excessive thirst
  • headaches
  • nausea
  • fatigue
  • vomiting
  • blurry vision
  • excessive urination

If you have additional questions about stopping Ozempic, talk with your doctor.

Weight gain after stopping Ozempic

Semaglutide suppresses your appetite and promotes satiety. This is what leads to weight loss. As a result, stopping Ozempic will likely cause you to regain some of the weight you lost during your treatment.

One study from 2022 notes that after 1 year of stopping both semaglutide treatment and lifestyle interventions (such as counseling on diet and exercise), individuals regained approximately two-thirds of their prior weight loss on average.

This is the result of your appetite returning to pretreatment levels. By adding other lifestyle changes to your Ozempic treatment, you can effectively manage your weight after the treatment ends. However, even with a healthy lifestyle, there is still a chance you will regain some weight after Ozempic.

Some lifestyle changes that can help prevent regaining weight after Ozempic treatment include the following:

  • Regular exercise: A 2024 study suggests regular physical activity after withdrawing from semaglutide medications can prevent you from regaining the lost weight.
  • Drinking plenty of water: Drinking water is not only important for your overall health and well-being but can help mimic the fullness you feel while taking Ozempic. Drinking water may also help to burn calories.
  • Seek professional help: If you want to withdraw from Ozempic but have concerns about regaining the weight you have lost, speak with a registered dietitian or personal trainer to help you create a lifestyle that supports your goals.

Semaglutide has a half-life of 7 days. It takes approximately 4 to 5 weekly doses to maintain a steady level within your body. It will take the same period of time to remove it from your body.

If you wish to stop taking Ozempic, it is important to speak with a doctor or pharmacist.

When do I eat while taking Ozempic?

Ozempic is safe to administer with or without food and at any time of day, meaning the time you administer it will not affect your mealtimes.

However, you must administer it on the same day each week.

Can you take Ozempic with coffee?

Ozempic can trigger gastrointestinal (GI) side effects, such as nausea and stomach pain. Caffeine can also trigger these symptoms for some people. If this applies to you, it may be best to avoid caffeine while taking Ozempic.

Other foods that can cause GI discomfort include fried foods, spicy foods, and alcohol. But this will vary from person to person. Talk with your doctor to learn more about which foods you may want to avoid while taking Ozempic.

Starting Ozempic after a withdrawal period requires a gradual reintroduction of the medication. This is the same as how a doctor will prescribe Ozempic at the start of the treatment.

This typically involves a slow increase in your weekly dosage. This helps to prevent severe GI side effects that may occur if you administer a high dose before it is safe to do so.

If you restart Ozempic, it is important to always follow the instructions of your prescribing healthcare professional.

Ozempic is a subcutaneous injection medication approved by the FDA to help manage symptoms of type 2 diabetes. Doctors may prescribe Ozempic for weight loss. While it is possible to stop and restart Ozempic, you may regain some of the weight lost during treatment. Working alongside a doctor, dietitian, or personal trainer can help prevent regaining your weight.

If you wish to restart Ozempic, it is important to do so under the supervision of a healthcare professional. They will prescribe a dose that you increase gradually to prevent severe side effects.