What To Expect When Stopping Ozempic

If you’re thinking about coming off Ozempic (Semaglutide), you may wonder what happens when you stop taking the medication.

Keep reading to learn what to expect when stopping ozempic, why people stop taking it, and how to wean yourself off safely.

What happens when you stop taking Ozempic?

Here are the 3 most prominent things that can happen when you stop taking Ozempic:

1) You may gain back the weight that you have lost

Based on a 2022 study, people who stopped taking Ozempic regained the weight that they had lost within one year after stopping. 

This is because Ozempic is no longer suppressing their appetite and hunger. Hence, their normal eating habit is restored. 

Without any inhibition, your usual appetite will return, and you will gain back the weight that you have lost if you stop taking Ozempic. 

Some people may gain more weight after stopping Ozempic. This effect is also called “weight rebound.” 

Weight rebounds can occur because Ozempic does not fix the underlying problem of weight gain at the core. It only suppresses appetite and hunger when it is taken. 

This is also why Ozempic is not a replacement for a healthy diet and exercise if weight loss is your goal. 

If you have been bothered by the drastic weight loss while taking Ozempic, you may feel relieved from regaining the weight you have lost once you stop taking it.

2) You won’t experience the side effects from Ozempic anymore

Just as with any medications, they only work when you take them and will stop exerting their effects once you stop taking them. This applies to Ozempic too. 

Once you stop taking Ozempic, you will also stop experiencing the side effects that come from taking Ozempic, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation. 

You can bid goodbye to the days of dry heaving, abdominal discomfort, and passing loose stools. Your appetite will also return.

3) Your blood sugar could become high

Stopping Ozempic without properly transitioning to another type of anti-diabetes medication may lead to a spike in blood glucose levels. 

When your blood glucose levels go out of control, you may experience symptoms of high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). 

Prolonged states of hyperglycemia can increase the risk of cardiovascular events such as heart attacks and strokes. It can also predispose you to infections.

Here are some signs and symptoms of high blood sugar levels:

  • increased thirst
  • increased need to urinate more frequently
  • headaches
  • blurry vision
  • fatigue

In more severe cases, your blood glucose levels may surge, leading to:

  • dry mouth
  • dry or flushed skin
  • confusion
  • a fruity smell on the breath
  • nausea, vomiting, or abdominal pain
  • difficulty breathing

If you experience any of the above symptoms, you should seek medical attention immediately to prevent the worsening of your condition. 

type 2 diabetes supplement

Why people stop taking Ozempic

Although Ozempic is clinically proven to work to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus in adults, each person may respond to the medication differently. 

Below are some reasons why some people stop taking Ozempic.

1) Can’t tolerate the side effects

Ozempic’s side effects commonly affect the digestive system, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation. 

Some people may also experience abdominal pain or feel bloated while on Ozempic. 

These side effects tend to occur during the first few weeks of taking Ozempic or when the dosage is increased. 

However, some people may find these side effects particularly bothersome and thus wish to stop taking the medication.

If any of the side effects of Ozempic are affecting you, you should consult your healthcare provider before stopping the medication on your own. 

2) Rapid weight loss side effects

“Ozempic face” is a term used for the drastic weight loss that is apparent on the face. Someone with an Ozempic face may have a saggy or hollow-looking face because they have lost the fatty tissues which used to cushion and stretch the skin overlying them. 

Another problem with rapid weight loss associated with Ozempic use is “Ozempic butt,” where the skin around the buttocks starts to sag. 

There are several ways to overcome these problems, including dermal fillers, face thread lifts, fractional CO2, and other skin-tightening procedures. 

However, if the effects of drastic weight loss caused by Ozempic are too much to handle, you may discuss other alternatives to treat your diabetes. 

3) Want to switch to an oral medication

Not everyone likes injecting themselves, not even if it is once weekly. Some people may not be able to stand the swelling or itchiness at the injection sites, and some may have a problem with injectables in general. 

These problems can lead to someone being non-compliant with taking Ozempic. Instead of avoiding your medications, you should discuss other anti-diabetes medication options with your healthcare provider. 

4) The medication isn’t managing your blood sugar effectively 

Although Ozempic has seen many successes in treating type 2 diabetes mellitus, everyone’s body and system are unique and may respond differently to this medication. 

If your blood sugar levels are not reducing despite increasing the dose of the medication, you may feel the need to switch to another medication that can help treat your diabetes. 

Your healthcare provider can help you transition to another medication that can work better. 

5) Too expensive

The high cost of medications is commonly cited as a reason for Americans to stop taking their medications. 

Ozempic is no exception. Without insurance, Ozempic can cost around $890 per month. However, if you qualify for insurance coverage, Ozempic can cost as little as $25 for a monthly supply. 

Ultimately, your out-of-pocket cost for your Ozempic prescription depends on your insurance coverage. 

If the cost of Ozempic is preventing you from continuing its use, you can try to contact your insurance provider or apply to savings programs such as the Ozempic savings card. 

You can also try to find savings coupons online that can help you save a little on Ozempic. 

If none of the above methods work, you should discuss other cheaper alternatives to treat your diabetes with your healthcare provider. 

6) Shortage or lack of access to Ozempic

Ozempic has undeniably gained traction over the past few years, especially as an “off-label” weight loss drug. 

This has led to many people using Ozempic as a weight loss drug, causing a shortage in supply. As a result, patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus who actually need Ozempic for their health problems may have difficulty in procuring Ozempic due to the lack of supply. 

If you have problems accessing Ozempic, you should discuss other alternatives with your healthcare provider to ensure your diabetes is being managed properly. 

How long can you stay on Ozempic?

Ozempic is meant to be taken as a long-term medication to manage your diabetes and reduce the risk of stroke, heart attacks, and other cardiovascular events. 

You can stay on Ozempic indefinitely as long as you are responding well to the medication and you are tolerating the side effects.

Get Your FREE Diabetes Diet Plan

  • 15 foods to naturally lower blood sugar levels
  • 3 day sample meal plan
  • Designed exclusively by our nutritionist

By clicking “Download Now”, I agree to Ben's Natural Health Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Are there any withdrawal symptoms from stopping Ozempic?

There are technically no “withdrawal symptoms” from stopping Ozempic. The absence of the drug simply stops working and affecting your body the way it is intended to. 

You may feel an increase in your appetite and hunger, hence regaining the weight you have lost. You may also stop feeling nauseated as you did when you were taking Ozempic. 

Additionally, you may notice that your bowel habits have returned to normal, and you do not feel so bloated all the time. 

However, if you feel worse or have any symptoms of hyperglycemia, as stated above, you should consult your healthcare provider or seek medical help immediately. 

This could mean that your blood sugar levels have surged, and it could lead to serious complications if not addressed quickly.  

Can you just stop taking Ozempic cold turkey?

This is why it is not a good idea to stop taking Ozempic cold turkey and without first consulting your doctor, especially if you have diabetes.

When you abruptly stop using Ozempic without transitioning to another anti-diabetes medication, the amount of glucose in your body can surge. 

The surge in blood sugar levels can lead to problems such as diabetes ketoacidosis (DKA) or hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state (HHS). 

Both of these conditions are very dangerous as they can lead to severe complications such as organ failure, respiratory distress, electrolyte imbalance, and even death. 

What should you do if you want to stop taking Ozempic?

If you have decided that Ozempic is not right for you, you should discuss other alternatives with your doctor. 

You should not stop taking Ozempic on your own. This can lead to your blood sugar levels rising. 

You may even experience diabetic emergencies like DKA and HHS, which may land you in the Emergency Room (ER). Your healthcare provider can help you to stop taking Ozempic safely. 

how to reverse type 2 diabetes

How to wean off Ozempic safely

If you have any problems while taking Ozempic, you should first consult your healthcare provider. While some sources claim that there is theoretically no need to taper the dosage of Ozempic, there is still a need to monitor your blood glucose control and introduce another alternative to treat your underlying diabetes. 

Your doctor can help you with overlapping other anti-diabetes medications while you stop taking Ozempic so that your blood glucose is under control. 

They may gradually taper you off Ozempic while monitoring your response to the new anti-diabetes medication.

While transitioning from Ozempic to another anti-diabetes medication, it is also important that you are able to recognize the symptoms of hyperglycemia before they develop into a full-blown emergency. 

In the meantime, you should:

  • Follow the treatment plans given by your healthcare team, including follow-up visits in the clinic to ensure you are stopping Ozempic safely.
  • Practice a healthy lifestyle by exercising regularly to improve blood sugar control and blood pressure.
  • Eat a healthy and balanced diet that is tailored to your daily requirements
  • Limit alcohol and sugary drinks, which may cause unwanted glucose spikes in your body. Alcohol is also linked to various health problems, such as liver diseases. 

How long does Ozempic stay in your system after stopping?

Ozempic should stay in your system for about 5 weeks after the last dose. However, this value differs from person to person, depending on their age, metabolism, and dosage of the drug. 

Keeping the weight off after you stop taking Ozempic

Ozempic’s weight loss effect is only seen when you are taking the drug. Once you stop taking Ozempic, you may gain back the weight you have lost. 

Maintaining weight loss is a challenging task because it involves various factors like conditioning your body’s metabolism to adapt to a certain state, having a high level of discipline to remain compliant with lifestyle changes and interventions, and so on. 

Here are some ways you can keep weight off after stopping Ozempic:

1) Exercise regularly

Exercise can maintain weight loss, even weight loss from taking Ozempic. Exercise is also important to boost your overall health. 

Studies have shown that exercise can improve cardiovascular health, boost your mood and reduce your risk of developing chronic diseases. 

Try to get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise a week.

As you build endurance and stamina, you can then progress to clocking at least an hour of exercise a day. 

Some examples of moderate-intensity exercises are:

  • Brisk walking (at around 4 mph)
  • Doing house chores (such as vacuuming, mopping, washing windows)
  • Mowing the lawn
  • Cycling (at around 12 mph)
  • Playing racquet sports 

2) Eat well

Choosing what to eat is just as important as exercising and keeping active. You should eat a healthy diet if you desire a healthy body. 

Some of the ways you can opt for healthier dietary options are:

  • Choose whole grains, fresh fruits, and vegetables over refined grains or processed foods
  • Drink water or sugarless beverages over sweetened beverages or soft drinks
  • Choose healthier snacks like nuts and fruits over sweets and chips
  • Limit fast foods, sugary snacks, and alcohol
  • Increase fibers in your diet, such as vegetables and fruits
  • Stay hydrated 

3) Avoid overeating

When you stop taking Ozempic, it is easy to give in to your returned appetite and overeat. To overcome this, you should try to be mindful of your meals and eating habits. 

Here are some ways you can avoid overeating:

  • Eat smaller portions
  • Eat slowly
  • Only eat when you are hungry and stop when you are almost full
  • Rethink second servings
  • Avoid distractions such as watching TV or using your phone while eating 
  • Familiarize yourself with your recommended portion sizes

4) Ask for help

For people struggling with obesity, some may require long-term medications on top of lifestyle interventions. 

Obesity is a chronic disease that requires a multidisciplinary approach and long-term management. The management of obesity ranges from behavior modification programs to surgical procedures. 

If you are obese, you should consult with your healthcare provider to discuss suitable steps for managing it. 

There are also support groups and counseling services for anyone who is struggling with their weight. These channels can provide a safe space for you to share your issues, discuss ways to resolve them, and help you learn how to monitor your diet and weight while you maneuver through this journey. 


Ozempic is a semaglutide or GLP-1 receptor agonist medication that has been gaining traction recently. 

However, this medication may not be for everyone. If you have decided to stop taking Ozempic, you should first consult with your healthcare provider. 

Some of the things that can happen when you stop taking Ozempic are that you may regain the weight you have lost, stop experiencing Ozempic’s side effects, and, more dangerously, have problems with high blood sugar levels. 

Ozempic is meant to treat your diabetes, so stopping it abruptly may harm your health as your blood sugar surges and cause complications. 

Your healthcare provider should guide and help you transition from Ozempic to another viable alternative to manage your diabetes.

Explore More

switching from ozempic to mounjaro

Switching from Ozempic to Mounjaro: How To Safely Change Drugs.


  1. Control, C.f.D. and Prevention, National diabetes statistics report, 2020. Atlanta, GA: centers for disease control and prevention, US dept of health and human services; 2020.
  2. Karamanou, M., et al., Milestones in the history of diabetes mellitus: The main contributors. World journal of diabetes, 2016. 7(1): p. 1.
  3. Chamberlin, S. and W. Dabbs, Semaglutide (ozempic) for type 2 diabetes mellitus. American Family Physician, 2019. 100(2): p. 116-117.
  4. Scheen, A.J., [Semaglutide, once weekly GLP-1 receptor agonist (Ozempic®)]. Revue medicale de Liege, 2019. 74(9): p. 488-494.
  5. Weiss, T., et al., Real-world weight change, adherence, and discontinuation among patients with type 2 diabetes initiating glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists in the UK. BMJ Open Diabetes Research and Care, 2022. 10(1): p. e002517.
  6. Tay, J.Q., Ozempic face: A new challenge for facial plastic surgeons. Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery, 2023. 81: p. 97-98.
  7. Wilding, J.P., et al., Weight regain and cardiometabolic effects after withdrawal of semaglutide: the STEP 1 trial extension. Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, 2022. 24(8): p. 1553-1564.
  8. Rubino, D., et al., Effect of continued weekly subcutaneous semaglutide vs placebo on weight loss maintenance in adults with overweight or obesity: the STEP 4 randomized clinical trial. Jama, 2021. 325(14): p. 1414-1425.
  9. Panel, O.E., A.C.o. Cardiology, and A.H.A.T.F.o.P. Guidelines, Expert panel report: guidelines (2013) for the management of overweight and obesity in adults. Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.), 2014. 22: p. S41-S410.
  10. Van Baak, M.A. and E.C. Mariman, Mechanisms of weight regain after weight loss—the role of adipose tissue. Nature Reviews Endocrinology, 2019. 15(5): p. 274-287.
  11. Ruegsegger, G.N. and F.W. Booth, Health benefits of exercise. Cold Spring Harbor perspectives in medicine, 2018. 8(7): p. a029694.

Top Products

Total Health


Glucose Control