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‘Oatzempic Challenge’: Does TikTok’s latest weight loss trend work?

Ebony Williams, Atlanta Journal-Constitution on

Published in Fashion Daily News

The use of diabetes drugs for weight loss has increased since celebrities like Kelly Osbourne and Oprah have glamorized them to get their newly shaped figures. Although people flocked to the shelves for Ozempic or its cheaper version, Wegovy, those on TikTok have taken matters into their own hands.

Instead of taking a pill, they’ve created Oatzempic — a drink made of oats, water and lime juice — they say helps people lose 40 pounds in two months.

The social media tag #Oatzempic has tens of millions of views. While users claim the drink is magic for getting rid of unwanted pounds, experts say the popular drink could help but not in the way some might think.

When it comes to comparing the drink to the medicine, doctors say it’s misleading, and users should be cautious about their expectations and results.

“Ozempic is a hormone that affects your brain, as well as your gut. It suppresses the appetite for up to a week,” said Mir Ali, MD, a bariatric surgeon and medical director of MemorialCare Surgical Weight Loss Center at Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California, as reported by Health. “When you eat oats, it can help you feel full for a few hours. (They are) certainly not the same.”

So, what’s the deal with the drink and why are some users losing weight? One possible answer is a caloric deficiency.


“If they substitute their breakfast, let’s say it’s two eggs, couple of pieces of toast and some butter,” Dr. Tommy Martin from MedsPeds Doc said in a reply to a popular Oatzempic video, “and they substitute that with half a cup of oatmeal ... it’s very likely that every single day their breakfast is now much fewer calories.”

According to a Plant Foods For Human Nutrition study, eating oats containing beta-glucan for 12 weeks can reduce BMI, body fat and waist-to-hip ratio. If you want to use oats to help with weight loss, dietitians recommend steel-cut over rolled oats.

“Steel-cut oats can absorb more water than instant oats, and they’re also superior to instant oatmeal because they are less processed and have a better nutrient profile,” said Linda Nikolakopoulos, RD, a dietitian at Nutritious Measures told Women’s Health.

As far as the TikTok trend goes, users who are seeing weight loss don’t mention in every video the other necessary steps, which include watching their diet, exercising and intermittent fasting.

“Everyone is looking for an easy solution, but unfortunately, there is no easy solution with weight loss. It’s important to focus on the diet throughout the day, not just one meal,” Ali said.

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