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From Fox News, Weight-loss medications are not effective without ‘nutrition therapy,’ Dr. Osborn comments

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics calls on providers to give nutrition referrals with weight-loss prescriptions

Published March 4, 2024 7:22pm EST

Dr. Brett Osborn was recently quoted in a Fox News story about a new statement by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics emphasizing the importance of combining weight-loss medications with nutrition therapy for effective obesity treatment. It added that people who are on weight-loss journeys should not rely solely on anti-obesity medications.

Dr. Lauri Wright, president of the academy, highlighted the need for collaboration among healthcare professionals to maximize patient success rates. The statement also underscored the complexity of obesity and its association with serious health risks.

Semaglutides, a class of medications known as GLP-1 receptor agonists — including Ozempic (prescribed for diabetes management), Wegovy (prescribed for weight loss), Rybelsus (type 2 diabetes) and Saxenda (weight loss) — have been spiking in popularity in recent years.

The number of people in the U.S. using GLP-1 agonists for either diabetes or obesity reached 40 million in 2022, research has shown.

Dr. Osborn is a big proponent of semaglutide medications as a treatment in the fight against obesity.

"They are indeed the holy grail of modern-day medicine and will likely have a similar effect on worldwide health as the advent of antibiotics in the early 1900s," he predicted to Fox News Digital.

Osborn said he agrees with the academy's recommendation.

"The management of obesity is complex," he told Fox News Digital. "It is best done through a multi-pronged approach that emphasizes proper nutrition, exercise and psychosocial factors. One cannot anticipate long-term and sustainable results without all three."

Medications like Ozempic and Mounjaro have "changed the landscape of obesity management." Osborn said.

"By sending a robust satiety signal to the brain, these medications force the brain to ‘just say no,’ equating to a caloric deficit and weight loss," he said."But absent exercise and a properly designed macronutrient-based food regimen with its full complement of protein, fats and carbohydrates, one may develop a relatively malnourished state … and a compromised immune system."

For this reason, Osborn recommended that medications like Ozempic and Mounjaro should always be prescribed along with nutrition and exercise counseling.

The original version of this story by Melissa Rudy was published on Fox News on March 4.