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Diarrhea Forever | Raw Egg Nationalist

It’s a bum deal

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Take a moment to spare a thought for the young woman who will now have diarrhea forever after taking Ozempic to lose weight. Yes, you read that right: diarrhea forever.

According to the Daily Mail, Ozempic caused the woman to suffer a “life-threatening bowel injury,” probably a chronic obstruction, which required emergency surgery. After nine hours on the operating table, doctors told the poor woman she will be in pain “for the rest of her life” and “will never have a solid bowel movement again.”

Talk about a bum deal.

Spare a thought, too, for the woman who claims she vomited so much after taking Ozempic and Mounjaro, an Ozempic competitor, that her teeth fell out.

And while you’re at it, give thanks you’re not the lady who took Ozempic and ended up with a paralysed stomach that prevented her from going for a poo for an entire week.

All three of these women are now among hundreds suing the manufacturers of Ozempic (Novo Nordisk) and Mounjaro (Eli Lilly) for the physical damages they claim to have suffered. Thousands more are preparing to do so. An attorney for law firm Levin Papantonio Raffery told the Daily Mail that his firm already has nearly 100 clients who have been diagnosed with gastroparesis — the medical name for stomach paralysis — and he estimates tens of thousands of people will soon come forward to put their names to huge class-action lawsuits of the kind we’ve seen for drugs like Paxil, Welbutrin, Bextra, Vioxx, and Oxycontin. Another legal firm, Morgan and Morgan, claims to have turned away over 40,000 applicants whose injuries were not deemed to be serious enough to be part of existing class-action suits.

There’s no reason to believe the settlements in these new cases will be any less than some of the biggest we’ve already seen. We’re talking hundreds of millions, or even billions, of dollars. Eli Lilly knows only too well how much a serious class-action lawsuit can cost. In 2009, it was forced to cough up $1.42 billion — $515 million in criminal fines and $800 million in civil settlements — because it had marketed the antipsychotic drug Zyprexa for treatment of dementia and Alzheimer’s without FDA approval. That combined settlement is the fifth largest pharmaceutical payout in US history.

The new lawsuits will almost certainly revolve around the claim that the side effects of drugs like Ozempic and Mounjaro are not properly communicated to users in the drugs’ packaging. The plaintiffs may also go further, and seek greater damages, by alleging that the manufacturers were aware of the risks but chose to hide them. Central to this more serious charge will be scrutiny of the licensing process for the drugs, which began as diabetes treatments before being used “off label” for weight loss and then, in the case of Ozempic, acquiring full FDA approval for weight-loss use as well. It will be alleged that Novo Nordisk and Eli Lilly always intended to market the drugs for weight loss, despite seeking initial licensing for a different purpose, and that during the clinical trials Novo and Lilly encountered side effects including gastroparesis but did not include them among the side effects in the packaging inserts for their products.

During trials of Ozempic, Novo Nordisk dismissed the possibility of a side effect known as “pulmonary aspiration,” which causes a person to inhale the contents of their own stomach. Disgusting, I know — and also potentially fatal. The condition is being reported at greatly elevated rates for users of Ozempic, especially when they undergo surgery for weight loss at the same time, which many will. Bariatric surgery is commonly prescribed as a treatment for obesity in combination with Ozempic. Because of this startling increase in case of pulmonary aspiration, anaesthetists are scrambling to update their guidelines to take into account the greatly reduced speed at which the stomachs of Ozempic users empty. Where your stomach under normal conditions will empty totally in 6-8 hours, on Ozempic this could take as long as three weeks.

With horror stories and lawsuits mounting, many will think twice about using these drugs for weight management unless they feel they have no choice. Casual use for easy, fast weight loss has been particularly encouraged by celebrities, from Elon Musk to Kim Kardashian and many more in between. Every celebrity weight-loss transformation is now accompanied by are-they-aren’t-they speculation about whether a certain drug was involved. Chances are, it was.

Any deterrent effect will be welcome if it can save people the horrors of a lifetime of diarrhea or a paralysed stomach — or even, in extreme cases, death — but it’s unlikely to do anything to fix the source of the problem itself.

And I don’t mean obesity. Of course, that’s part of the problem, but it’s not the root cause. Instead, I mean our desire to delegate the management of ever more aspects of our health, from mood to weight, to the medical industry, in the mistaken belief that a pill can solve fundamental issues that can only be solved by changing the very way we live.

For starters, there are already new weight-loss management drugs that promise to leave drugs like Ozempic in the shade. A molecule called CPACC is being investigated for its ability to prevent weight gain in mice even when they are fed the equivalent of the worst kind of human junk-food diet. The mice continued to eat a high-fat, high-sugar diet, but CPACC made them lose weight despite the surplus of calories. The drug works, apparently, by reducing the amount of magnesium that enters the body’s mitochondria (basically little “power plants” in your cells), which in turn increases the levels of energy burned. To enjoy the benefits of Ozempic, you actually have to stop eating, although because of the drug’s appetite-suppressant effects, this isn’t much of a problem, but with CPACC you don’t have to make any changes to your unhealthy lifestyle at all. You just keep on chomping and the pill does all the work.

If this sounds too good to be true, that’s because it almost certainly is. Any drug that has such profound effects on metabolism will have knock-on effects down the line. Changes to mitochondrial function are an essential part of cancer formation, for example. Bookmark that prediction.

A small pen with a normal cap and a twisting plastic cap on the other side

Ozempic pen sold in China (HualinXMN / Wikimedia Commons)

Today’s obesity crisis – nearly 42% of adults in the US are now obese, and 20% of children – is a complicated problem indeed. There are many aspects and contributing factors whose role is unclear, such as the effect of ubiquitous endocrine-disrupting and obesogenic chemicals in the food, water, and even the air. But even so, the unavoidable truth, a truth that is so obvious and so clear that it should be accepted by anyone with eyes to see and a brain to think, is that we live at almost complete variance with our evolved nature as a species. This is why we are so unhealthy.

By comparison with our ancestors, we might as well be a different species. We barely move. We stare at screens all day long and bathe ourselves in blue light all day long, interfering with the sensitive mechanisms – the circadian rhythms – that govern sleep, hunger, and even sexual development. On the basis of experiments with rats, scientists believe massive exposure to blue light may be causing children to enter puberty early. We are chronically stressed, in ways our ancestors, who faced the very real possibility of death at a moment’s notice, simply wouldn’t have been able to comprehend.

Worst of all, perhaps, we stuff ourselves with increasing quantities of food some scientists believe shouldn’t even be categorised as food at all, but rather as a “food-like substance.” Over the past century or so, a profound change – a revolution – has occurred in the way we eat. Instead of consuming locally produced whole-food products, we now consume more and more of our calories in the form of processed or ultra-processed food. These novel foodstuffs have been linked to every one of the prevailing diseases of modernity, from obesity and diabetes to cancer, autism, and even dementia. In Britain, children between the ages of two and five now get two-thirds of their daily calories from processed food. As I wrote in an opinion piece for this publication, by allowing this we are setting our children up to fail.

Until we accept that our weight and health are not things the medical industry should manage for us, we will never have a chance of achieving real health, not as a society. A small minority may choose to nourish their bodies, to exercise their muscles and develop their inborn capabilities, but the vast majority will continue to wallow in ill health and seek easy fixes that never address the underlying problems. The costs of the status quo are borne by us all, regardless of the quality of our decisions or our role in maintaining it. And that really is a bum deal.

This op-ed features opinion and analysis from Raw Egg Nationalist, the popular health and fitness author recently profiled in the Tucker Carlson Originals documentary, “The End of Men“. His book, The Eggs Benedict Option, is available on his website and from popular book sellers, and his magazine, Man’s World, is available online.

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Raw Egg Nationalist
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Raw Egg Nationalist is the popular fitness and health author profiled in the Tucker Carlson Originals documentary The End of Men. His latest book, "The Eggs Benedict Option", is available now.

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