New year, new motivation?
For 2024, some of the most common New Year’s resolutions include adopting fitness and diet regimens, plus losing weight, according to a Forbes survey.
As weight-loss medications like Ozempic and Wegovy peak in popularity, experts believe these meds could make it more likely that people stick with their resolutions.
Galit Shokrian, a Los Angeles-based CEO and co-founder of the online weight loss program Trimly, agreed that the widespread use of GLP-1s will impact the way people approach New Year’s goals.
GLP-1 agonists, which include semaglutides, are medications that help to reduce blood sugar and aid in weight loss.
“Semaglutides are a total game-changer in New Year’s resolutions this year,” she told Fox News Digital.
Millions of Americans make resolutions to lose weight each year — but 40% to 50% give up by the end of January, according to Shokrian.
“The introduction of semaglutide and tirzepatide treatments are finally allowing overweight women and men to not only lose the weight, but successfully keep it off,” she said.
(Tirzepatide, another GLP-1 medication, is sold under the brand name Mounjaro.)
“They kickstart a new lifestyle for someone who needs a boost in getting to their health goals.”
Losing weight via medication “staves off future health complications, increases confidence, increases sex drive and allows patients to become more active,” Shokrian noted.
Colin Banas, M.D., M.H.A., Virginia-based chief medical officer at the medication data platform DrFirst, said in a statement to Fox News Digital that he’s “never seen a therapy adopted so quickly.”
He said, “Our research shows that 80% of Americans believe more people will take these drugs for weight loss in the future, most stating it will become the norm.”
Semaglutide medications have “transformed” lives, effecting “dramatic results” for people who previously had complications with weight loss, Banas added.
Avantika Waring, 9amHealth’s chief medical officer and a trained physician and endocrinologist in San Francisco, noted that these previous complications have led to many failed resolutions.
“So many people make weight-loss resolutions for the New Year but find the months ahead to be challenging and frustrating because weight-loss and lifestyle changes are not easy to maintain,” she told Fox News Digital.
With the aid of semaglutide and related drugs, Waring said people are seeing quicker success with their weight-loss efforts.
“I predict this will get them even more motivated to make resolutions and stick with them, because they’re more likely to see a real impact,” she said.
Insurance plans, said the physician, often require a “demonstrated commitment to lifestyle change” in order for people to access these drugs.
“So it will be even more important to start with a firm commitment to a healthy lifestyle to ‘supercharge’ those New Year’s resolutions,” she said.
Although semaglutide treatments are “quickly changing the paradigm” for how people approach weight loss, Banas said it’s important to remember that it is “not a magic wand.”
He added, “For sustained weight loss, people will still need to exercise and follow a healthy diet.“
“Semaglutide and tyrzepatide treatments are finally allowing overweight women and men to not only lose the weight, but successfully keep it off.”
A recent study by Morgan Stanley found that weekly exercise doubled — rising from 35% to 71% — after participants began taking weight-loss medication.
Teddy Savage, national lead trainer at Planet Fitness in Maryland, told Fox News Digital that he doesn’t foresee fitness motivation decreasing in 2024.
“The COVID-19 pandemic opened people’s eyes to the importance of getting and staying healthy, so I’d say more people are making their health a priority,” he said.
“We always see more people committing to their fitness goals in the New Year, which is great,” he added. “We encourage everyone to start slow, set achievable goals and enjoy the journey.”
He also said, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.”
Despite the growing popularity and availability of weight-loss drugs, Savage said staying active should remain a priority.
“Physical activity is always a key ingredient to overall health and well-being, and we believe it’s important to prioritize fitness no matter the time of year,” he said.
Savage also noted that mental health is just as important as physical health. “It’s not just how you look, it’s how you feel.”
Said Savage, “Regular exercise benefits your heart, muscles and body, but exercise also has immense mental health benefits. It can help you sleep better, feel less stressed, and ready to tackle all that 2024 brings.”
For optimal wellness, Savage said it’s important to have a “full-body workout consisting of both cardio and strength training while eating a balanced, nutritious diet.”