UAE weight loss drug: TikTok craze leaves diabetes patients without lifesaving medicine Ozempic

weight loss

The TikTok-fueled weight loss hype for injectable Type 2 diabetes drugs Saxenda, Ozempic, and Wegovy has triggered a global supply shortage, including in the UAE, Dubai doctors revealed to Arabian Business.
The demand for these “quick fix” injectable weight loss drugs, which garnered a lot of popularity earlier this year, has shown no sign of waning.
Healthcare professionals have already raised alarm bells over users attempting this weight loss hack without proper medical supervision, with concern mounting that short-term appearance gains could be putting lives at risk.
These professionals warned that it is crucial that individuals seek medical advice before attempting any weight loss hacks, especially those involving prescription medications meant for other conditions.

‘Quick fix’ culture and eating disorders

According to Clinical Psychologist Dr. Reena Thomas, of Dubai’s Medeor Hospital, the pressure of social media and the quest for the “perfect” body has led to a surge in people attempting this weight loss hack without proper medical supervision.
“People go for these drugs desiring effortless immediate relief,” Thomas told Arabian Business. “They are in constant search of “effective methods” to reduce weight and get easily influenced by the publicity of its benefits through social media.”
The rise in body image issues due to social media over the years has created fertile ground for pharma companies to capitalise on this and promote the use of these drugs for weight loss, which will, in turn, help boost peoples’ self-esteem.
Many have flocked to these injectables to manage their weight rather than adopting a healthier behavioural approach to weight loss.
Thomas said that this is an unhealthy mindset to adopt, especially when it comes to those who have historically suffered from eating disorders.
“Emotional or binge eating is evident even amongst these people who go for quick remedies just like the ones that go for Bariatric surgery,” said Thomas.
“To complicate further, their self-esteem issues, body image disturbances and emotional issues remain unsorted. They continue bingeing patterns and adopt unhealthy coping measures.”
To solve these issues from an early age, she suggested that children be taught about resilience, coping skills, self-esteem, and social responsibility.
Parents, teachers, and friends play a crucial role in helping vulnerable children feel loved and worthy, she explained, which can help them to defocus from their negative body image and faulty perceptions.
“I would not advise injectables or quick fixes but rather educate them about the condition and convince them to seek help. Above all, parents or immediate family members and friends need to have the insight to identify the symptoms at an early stage,” Thomas said.
“Instead of giving ultimatums and threatening the consequences, they can be more supportive and loving to them. They can make them feel understood and refer to the healthcare providers or mental health professionals. They need to align with each other to give proper education to the clients, help balance the nutrients and address the biopsychosocial factors contributing to it.”
Medications and psychotherapies can be effective in helping emotional eating and related disorders such as body dysmorphia, and children need to be taught healthier ways to deal with emotional pain, she said. 

Read More: Arabian Business

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