Doctors warn that some weight loss drugs could be bad for your health

Copycat versions of weight loss drugs like Ozempic and Wegovy are popping up all over the internet, but doctors warn that they could cause more harm than good.

For Upper Marlboro, Maryland, resident Kasandra Styles, losing weight was a struggle after the pandemic.

“I can certainly understand it when you feel like you’ve tried everything and done everything, and the weight just isn’t coming off,” Styles said.

She said her doctor put her on a couple of weight loss drugs. While they seemed to be effective, Styles said the drugs did not work for her.

“It was raising my blood pressure. Ultimately, I had to come off them,” she said. “The damage would outweigh any benefit.”

Some people are even turning to fake weight loss products that are not FDA-approved.

“What you should not do is purchase it over the internet at one of these social media sites,” local physician Geoffrey Mount Varner said. “What we’re finding is that there are a number of social media sites … selling it and they’re not attached to any pharmacy at all.”

Varner said that is affected by the cost of the products.

“Most insurance companies are not covering it,” Varner said, adding that the requirements for weight loss drugs are based on your body mass index.

He advises people to buy legitimate weight loss drugs, or to lose weight in other ways such as exercising, going on some kind of weight management plan, and getting plenty of sleep.

Sandra Jones

Sandra Jones is an Anchor/Reporter for WTOP. She’s been in the news industry for more than two decades.

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