What Happens When You Stop Taking Ozempic?

how to stop ozempic

There are many reasons people choose to stop taking Ozempic. They may be dealing with the ongoing shortage, side effects, lack of insurance coverage, or high out-of-pocket costs. 

Whatever the reason behind the choice, they all share a common concern: what happens next?

Can you stop taking  Ozempic?

Yes, of course you can. But, while it is possible to stop taking Ozempic, it’s important to understand that this medication was intended to be used long-term. 

Ozempic and other medications like it are a treatment for obesity, not a cure. There is no magic number on the scale where you can say, “okay, I can stop now.” It was meant to be taken long-term to maintain the health benefits. 

However, there are reasons people need to stop taking Ozempic

For those who need to discontinue use due to intolerable side effects, they have the option of exploring Ozempic alternatives—such as tirzepatide or metformin. For all other reasons, you’ll need to take care when you stop so you don’t suffer from what is known as “semaglutide withdrawal.”

Before making the decision to stop taking Ozempic, you will need to consult with a healthcare provider. This is still a prescription medication and care needs to be taken. Your provider can offer guidance tailored to your individual circumstances and help you navigate the potential side effects that come with discontinuation. 

What happens after you stop taking Ozempic?

Discontinuing use of Ozempic does come with its own set of considerations and potential side effects. While it is often referred to as a “withdrawal”, it’s important to clarify that your body doesn’t undergo a withdrawal in the same sense as other prescription medications. 

Ozempic has a relatively short half-life, meaning it exits your system pretty quickly after discontinuation. However, the challenge lies in the fact that the medication is no longer providing its therapeutic benefits. 

As your body adjusts to the absence of Ozemic, you may experience changes as various physiological symptoms come back online. 

Physical Changes

After you stop taking Ozempic, your body will start to adjust to the absence of the medication. These changes can impact various aspects of your health including blood sugar levels, appetite regulation, weight management, and cardiovascular health. 

Most commonly, you’ll experience:

  • Return of Appetite. Ozempic acts as an appetite suppressant and delays gastric emptying. When you stop taking Ozempic, you may find yourself getting hungrier faster. 
  • Blood Sugar Increase and Reduced Control. Even if you’re taking Wegovy, semaglutide helps to control your blood sugar. It did begin as a diabetes medication. Stopping Ozempic can lead to reduced blood sugar control. Diabetics may need to adjust other medications to compensate. 
  • Weight Gain. With the increased food intake, weight gain is inevitable. This issue can be mitigated, but studies have found that individuals can gain back two-thirds or more after they stop taking Ozempic
  • Blood Pressure Increase. Weight gain and changes in lipid profiles can increase blood pressure. 
  • Cholesterol Changes. You may see a change in lipid profiles and cholesterol levels when you stop taking Ozempic. This may increase cardiovascular risk or negate the cardiovascular improvement caused by Ozempic. 

Psychological Effects

Ozempic itself is unlikely to cause any psychological side effects with discontinuation. However, you may see some changes to your mental health if you lose some of your momentum. 

Ozempic may have helped you lose a significant amount of weight. Seeing the number on the scale increase, even if it is only a small amount, can have a negative impact on your mental health. 

So, please be aware of how you’re feeling and how you’re handling the changes you’re seeing. And, speak to a healthcare professional if your mood worsens. 

How to stop taking Ozempic safely

If you are considering discontinuing Ozempic, then you need to approach the decision with caution and under the guidance of a healthcare professional

While some individuals on lower doses may be able to simply stop taking Ozempic, this should always be done with the supervision of a healthcare provider. 

To safely stop taking Ozempic, it is recommended that you:

  • Consult Your Healthcare Professional. They are essential to this process. Your healthcare professional can provide personalized guidance on a tapering schedule and monitor your progress to ensure a safe and smooth transition. They can also offer support and address any concerns or challenges as they arise. 
  • Taper Off Gradually. It is generally recommended that you gradually taper off a medication as opposed to stopping cold turkey. Tapering off allows your body to adjust gradually, reducing the likelihood of experiencing rebound effects. Again, you should be doing this under the guidance of a professional, not self-tapering. 
  • Meet With A Nutritionist. This is not mandatory, but it is highly recommended. A nutritionist can help you establish healthy eating habits and lifestyle changes that will support your weight management goals long-term—even without Ozempic. Building these habits before discontinuation can help you maintain your results longer. 

By approaching the process of stopping Ozempic with care and guidance from healthcare professionals, you can ensure a safe and successful transition while maximizing your potential for long-term success. 

How to Maintain Weight Loss Long-Term After Ozempic

While some weight gain may be inevitable after you stop taking Ozempic, it is possible to prevent yourself from regaining all the weight lost during treatment. Rebounding is common thanks to the increase in appetite and food intake that accompanies discontinuation. 

But, that only highlights the importance of making sustainable lifestyle changes that support weight maintenance in the long-term. Don’t just rely on the medication to do the work for you.

So, what can you do to maintain long-term weight loss after you stop taking Ozempic?

Lifestyle Changes

One key strategy to prevent rebound weight gain is to focus on making lifestyle changes. Living a healthier life and paying attention to what you’re putting in your body can go a long way in supporting your weight management efforts. 

Diet and exercise, yes—see below. But, factors such as sleep quality and stress levels can also impact your weight, underscoring the importance of addressing all aspects of your lifestyle. 


Diet plays a crucial role in mitigating weight gain after stopping Ozempic. You’ll be eating more and more often. Adopting a healthy, balanced diet can help minimize the extent of the weight gain. 

While some weight regain may occur, sticking with a nutritious diet can help to limit the amount you regain and allow you to maintain a healthier weight long-term. 


In addition to diet, regular exercise is essential to maintaining weight loss. Incorporating regular physical activity into your routine can help offset the effects of decreased metabolism. It can also help to offset the increased appetite and food intake by promoting a calorie deficit. 

The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends that adults engage in 150-300 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, complemented by muscle-strengthening activities on two or more days of the week. 

Think Long-Term

While Ozempic is intended to be a long-term treatment, you don’t have to be on it forever. If the side effects are too much or you can’t access Ozempic due to the shortage, there are other options—and Heally can help. 

If the out-of-pocket costs are too high, there are programs—like the one offered by Heally for $299 per month—that can help to offset these costs. 

If the potential withdrawal is what’s holding you back, don’t let it. There are ways to mitigate the rebound weight gain and maintain your weight loss long-term. 

Ready to get started with Ozempic? Set up a virtual consultation today! 



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