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Weight loss medication and muscle pain: Is soreness a side effect?

Key Takeaways

Key takeaways

  • Weight loss medications are not associated with muscle pain.
  • Weight loss of any kind, including while on prescription weight loss medication, can cause muscle loss. 
  • Taking measures to maintain your muscles while using prescription weight-loss medications can minimize muscle loss. 

Muscle pain isn’t a known side effect of taking GLP-1 receptor agonist* medications like semaglutide, Ozempic, and Wegovy, but there are some muscle-related effects you may want to keep an eye on. 

I have muscle pain while taking weight loss meds: What should I do?

Weight loss medications like semaglutide (Ozempic, and Wegovy) are not known to be associated with muscle pain. You shouldn’t experience this side effect while taking these prescription medications, so it’s likely that your muscle pain has a different underlying cause. 

To identify the cause of your pain symptoms and determine the best treatment, talk to your healthcare practitioner. 

Maintain those gains: Do weight loss medications cause muscle loss?

Prescription weight loss medications, like any weight loss strategy, can potentially lead to muscle loss. When our bodies lose weight, it’s not uncommon to shed some muscle mass along with fat, particularly if measures aren’t taken to try to preserve your muscle mass.

To limit muscle loss while losing weight, aim to eat a balanced diet that includes sufficient protein to support the maintenance of muscles. A useful rule of thumb is to aim for 0.7-1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. For example, for someone who weighs 160 pounds, the target daily protein consumption would be between 112 and 160 grams.

Prescription weight loss medications can be very helpful in managing weight, but it’s best to do so in a way that minimizes muscle loss.

Slow down: The rapid weight-loss and muscle-loss connection

Rapid weight loss can cause more muscle loss compared to a more gradual approach, regardless of whether or not the weight loss is achieved with the use of prescription weight loss medications. To avoid this, it can help to lose weight gradually and get enough nutrients each day.

Movement for muscle troubles 

If you want to avoid muscle loss, the use-it-or-lose-it principle applies. Strength and resistance exercises can help you use the biology of weight loss in your favour by retaining and even building muscle mass while losing fat.

Looking for more information about semaglutide and other prescription weight loss medications? Visit the Felix blog for more resources. If you think prescription weight loss treatment may be the right option for you, start an online visit with Felix to see if you qualify.

Note: When we refer to weight loss medications, we specifically mean a class of drugs called GLP-1 receptor agonists. These are drugs that mimic a naturally occurring hormone called glucagon-like peptide 1. They work by regulating hunger signals in the brain and slowing down the rate at which the stomach empties after a meal, increasing the feeling of fullness. 

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