Can You Drink Alcohol While on Ozempic?

is alcohol ok on ozempic

Is alcohol safe to drink with Ozempic and other weight loss medications? Drinking can alter how the medications work in your body.

We’ve put a lot of effort into determining what types of food to eat and what to avoid while on Ozempic. But what about alcohol? You may compromise your hard work and progress by adding alcohol to the picture.

Poor Weight and Blood Sugar Control

You may be taking Ozempic or other semaglutide or tirzepatide medications for the weight loss effects. But drinking regularly can be a source of weight gain. Alcohol contains empty calories and can slow your weight loss as your body works to break it down.

Interestingly, no direct interaction between alcohol and Ozempic has been found. But to optimize the weight loss and other health benefits of Ozempic it may be best to consider avoiding drinking alcohol.

We lose some muscle along with fat tissue any time we lose body weight. When Ozempic or other weight loss medications are used there is an even greater proportion of muscle lost from our body. Regular or heavy drinking adds to this problem because it can make it difficult for your body to build muscle. Alcohol can also slow fat burning.

Drinking alcohol can lead to low blood sugar or hypoglycemia, which is particularly concerning if you’ve been diagnosed with diabetes. If you are taking diabetes medication in addition to Ozempic you are more likely to become hypoglycemic. Talk to your health care provider about mixing your medications with drinking in your case.

Ozempic Side Effects May Worsen

Some people experience side effects with Ozempic, and alcohol can make them worse. The most common complaints are nausea, vomiting, indigestion, constipation, stomach pain, and diarrhea. If you are suffering with any side effects when beginning on weight loss medications it’s a good idea not to introduce alcohol to the situation.

Pancreatitis and kidney damage are rare side effects of taking semaglutide medications like Ozempic. However, alcohol can increase this risk as it can dehydrate you and put stress on your kidneys. Even if you choose to drink moderately, it is smart to drink water also to stay well hydrated.

alcohol on Ozempic

Ozempic Benefits May Be Lost

Another issue where Ozempic and alcohol are at odds with each other is heart health. Our cardiovascular health risks increase as we enter menopause. Regularly drinking alcohol can make it more likely you’ll experience high blood pressure, heart failure, and stroke.

Ozempic might be able to help lower your risk of stroke and heart attack. So adding alcohol to your routine can compromise any of these health benefits.

Here is a positive point to be aware of. GLP-1 may help you limit your drinking habits. Dopamine is released when you drink alcohol but GLP-1 blocks that dopamine so you may not notice that relaxing feeling when drinking as strongly as you used to. So this is a big help if you are wanting to decrease your drinking habit.

Alternatives to Drinking Alcohol

Try some healthier alternatives if you are trying to kick the habit or need a glass of something in hand at social events. Low sugar mocktails, non-alcoholic spirits, or alternative beverages are great options. 

Recognize that frequent drinking may be a habit that you’ve created. Plan before you are in the moment so you have another activity ready. You can take a walk, call a friend, write in your journal, meditate, or read a book. Remember that your goal is to boost your health and make sure your choices align with that wonderful goal.

Do you want some guidance and accountability to create and act on your health goals? Ask me about my Medical Weight Management Package. We’ll have 5 sessions together to get the most from your weight loss medications paired with proper nutrition, exercise recommendations, and lifestyle strategies.

Jennifer Katz RDN LDN CC

Jennifer Katz RDN LDN CC

Jennifer is a menopause nutrition and lifestyle dietitian. Founder of Balanced Woman Over 40 Method. She helps women understand midlife changes and guides clients to eat well and use lifestyle habits to feel good and minimize symptoms.

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