Semaglutide has many amazing benefits for weight loss and cardiovascular health – it reduces appetite, controls blood sugar, and slows digestion which all aid with weight loss and improving health outcomes. On average, clinical trial patients taking Semaglutide lost 15% of their body weight with many patients losing up to 20%.1 Like most medications though, it can come with some common side effects, especially when first starting the medication or increasing your dosage. The good news though is that most of the common side effects tend to get better over time as your body adjusts to the medication. Here are the top 4 most common side effects of taking Semaglutide and how you can manage them.  

#1 Nausea / Vomiting

Nausea is the number one reported side effect for those taking Semaglutide. It is more likely to be experienced on a higher dose or when you are increasing your dosage. One of the ways Semaglutide works for weight loss is to slow digestion so that you feel full longer. It is suggested that this may increase pressure in the stomach, and therefore, cause sensations of nausea or vomiting. Luckily, nausea does tend to get better over time as your body adjusts to taking Semaglutide.2

How to Manage Nausea while Taking Semaglutide

Although nausea will likely get better as you continue taking Semaglutide, there are a few things you can do to help manage your nausea while taking the medication.

  • Avoid fried/greasy or sugary foods
  • Eat meals slowly and smaller portions
  • Drink cold water
  • Go outside for fresh air
  • Include more fruits, vegetables, and fiber
  • Avoid lying down right after a meal 

If you try these tips and are still struggling with nausea on Semaglutide you can also try a few over-the-counter remedies such as tums, Nauzene, Dramamine Nausea, Ginger Chews, Ginger Tablets, or Vitamin B6.

#2 Diarrhea

Diarrhea is another one of the most reported side effects of taking Semaglutide. Although unpleasant, this side effect should only last a few days and does get better over time. It occurs most often during a Semaglutide dosage increase.3

How to Manage Diarrhea while Taking Semaglutide

A few things you can do to help manage diarrhea while taking Semaglutide include:

  • Avoid high-fat and greasy foods
  • Avoid sugary foods and drinks
  • Avoid caffeine
  • Drink plenty of fluids

You may also try over-the-counter medication options such as Pepto Bismol, Imodium, or probiotics. 

#3 Reflux / Indigestion

Some patients taking Semaglutide also experience indigestion / reflux along with burping. Burping and acid reflux are more common on lower doses as your gastric system first starts to slow down. The foods you eat can also affect the amount of acid your stomach produces so it’s important to note what foods may trigger this for you.4

How to Manage Reflux / Indigestion while Taking Semaglutide

A few things you can do to help manage reflux / indigestion while taking Semaglutide include:

  • Avoid fried/greasy or sugary foods
  • Eat meals slowly and smaller portions
  • Eat bland foods
  • Avoid Spicy or Acidic Foods

If those suggestions alone don’t alleviate your indigestion, you can try over-the-counter tums or other anti-reflux medicines.

#4 Constipation

Constipation is another side effect that can happen when starting Semaglutide or increasing your dosage. Semaglutide by design slows your digestion and reduces your appetite so you may feel like your movements are less frequent. And, naturally when you’re on a reduced calorie diet your fiber intake may be lower than normal which can lead to constipation.

How to Manage Constipation while Taking Semaglutide

To alleviate constipation symptoms while taking Semaglutide drink lots of water and try to prioritize high fiber foods such as:3

  • Oatmeal
  • Whole grain bread
  • Fresh fruits & veggies
  • Drink plenty of water

Continue with all the above suggestions and if there’s still not much relief, you can try over-the-counter stool softeners, Benefiber, or Metamucil.  

Rare Side Effects of Semaglutide

These side effects of Semaglutide are rare, but if you do experience the below-mentioned symptoms, you should stop taking Semaglutide immediately and seek medical attention.

  • Severe Abdominal and / or Back Pain
  • Lump or Swelling in the Neck / Hoarseness / Trouble Swallowing


  1. Wilding, J., et al. (2021). Once-Weekly Semaglutide in Adults with Overweight or Obesity. New England Journal of Medicine. 
  2. Norfleet, Tracy. (2023). How to Manage Nausea from Ozempic for Long-Lasting Relief. GoodRX, Inc.
  3. Gorgojo-Martínez, et al. (2022). Clinical recommendations to manage gastrointestinal adverse events in patients treated with GLP-1 receptor agonists: A multidisciplinary expert consensus. Journal of Clinical Medicine.
  4. Norfleet, Tracy. (2023). What You Can Do If Ozempic is Giving You Heartburn. GoodRX, Inc.
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