This is my first article in the Mounjaro series. I will dive into the medication, tips to avoid specific symptoms, favorite products, and more. Stay tuned for future articles in the series.
Each year, the weight-loss industry develops new technology, medicines, or “hacks” to help accelerate weight loss. Mounjaro was a new name in 2022. What is this new weight-loss medicine, and how can you use it to help you? Mounjaro isn’t the only new weight loss drug out there. Other options include Wegovy, Ozempic, Saxenda, Trulicity, and more. Some of these are drugs for diabetes, but due to weight loss success, they are used off-label. Wegovy and Ozempic are the same drugs – Wegovy is for weight loss, and Ozempic is for diabetes. Mounjaro has been fast-tracked by the FDA for weight loss approval. The assumption is that it will be rebranded under a different name as a weight loss drug.
What is Mounjaro?
Mounjaro is the tradename for Tirzepatide, a medication that lowers blood sugar and increases insulin sensitivity. It is sold by Eli Lilly (NYSE: LLY). Eli Lilly announced on May 13, 2022, that the FDA had approved Tirzepatide to treat type 2 Diabetes. It is a prescription medicine that can be used once per week. You can buy Tirzepatide in the following dosages: 2.5 mg, 5 mg, 7.5 mg, 10mg, 12.5mg, 12.5mg, 12.5mg, and 15mg. Your healthcare provider will determine the appropriate dose and the timing of the steps.
Mounjaro (Tirzepatide) is a weight loss medication that can treat type-2 and nondiabetic patients. Eli Lilly reports that diabetics lost as much as 25 lbs while non-diabetic participants lost 52 lbs during Mounjaro’s clinical trials.
Mounjaro is also effective for people who are not obese. Separate clinical research was done, SURMOUNT-1. Eli Lilly stated that Mounjaro (Tirzepatide) led to a 22.5% weight loss in adults with diabetes, or 52 lbs, during a 72-week clinical study in which 2,539 non-diabetic people were tracked.
Is Mounjaro approved as a weight-loss medicine by the FDA?
It has been approved for the management of type-2 diabetes. The FDA is currently reviewing the approval for the treatment of obesity. October 6, 2022, FDA gave Mounjaro an expedited designation to investigate its effectiveness in adults with obesity.
As of January 2023, there has been a significant shortage of getting Mounjaro for diabetes or weight loss. The drug has been popular, and Eli Lilly has been caught unprepared. Additionally, there has been so much drama around coupon cards that Eli Lilly offered for Mounjaro. The grandfathering was stopped, the amounts, the eligibility criteria changed, and more. Due to the shortage, some pharmacies have taken it upon themselves to prevent non-diabetics from purchasing Mounjaro. The sticker price is hefty at more than $1,000 per month.
What does Mounjaro do to help you lose weight?
Mounjaro activates your body’s receptors to GIP-1 and GLP-1. These natural incretin hormones decrease food intake and make you feel fuller longer. They also increase energy expenditure, which eventually leads to weight loss. GIP-1 and GLP-1 have visible effects on metabolic dysregulation markers such as body weight, glucose, and cholesterol.
To be clear, this is not a lose quick weight gimmick. It stops the constant noise in your head and allows you to focus on everything other than food. Once you are on Mounjaro, you will likely need a maintenance dose for the rest of your life. Obesity is a chronic medical condition, just as diabetes is. It will not go away after you lose weight. The goal is for Mounjaro to quiet your mind enough for you to be able to focus on healthier behaviors and mindful eating. It is possible not to lose weight if you make no changes to your lifestyle.
Do not take Mounjaro if…
Mounjaro can be used to aid weight loss if prescribed by your doctor. Do not take it if you have had thyroid cancer, and Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Syndrome type 2, or an allergy to Mounjaro ingredients. Mounjaro can only be taken by people who are 18 or older.
The Mounjaro side effects do not appear in every person, and each dose increase may bring different side effects. Often these are temporary side effects, and they go away as your body adjusts to the medication. I have found ways to avoid many of the side effects. The only one I struggle with is dry mouth. I have changed the foods I eat, the time I eat, what time I give my shot, added certain supplements to my day, and where I give my shot (thigh). Everyone is different.
Potential Side Effects:
- Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas.
- Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
- Severe allergic reactions
- Kidney problems
- Dry mouth
- Severe stomach problems
- Gallbladder problems
- A decreased appetite
- Vision changes