Oprah Winfrey Reveals She Uses A Weight Loss Drug To Maintain Her Physique

“I’m absolutely done with the shaming from other people and particularly myself,” said the media mogul.

Oprah Winfrey is in the midst of a glow-up. Now she is sharing how she did it.  

In this week's cover story for PEOPLE, the media mogul discussed her slimmed-down figure and what she added to her regimen to maintain the results.

Throughout her life and career, "The Color Purple" producer has endured body shaming, which she said has been a "public sport to make fun of me" while her ups and downs with her body have "occupied five decades of space in my brain, yo-yoing and feeling like why can't I just conquer this thing, believing willpower was my failing."

Her new body was two years in the making following knee surgery in 2021 when she began hiking multi-mile treks daily. Along with exercise, she maintains her health with a holistic approach and weight-loss medication.

"I eat my last meal at 4 o’clock, drink a gallon of water a day, and use the WeightWatchers principles of counting points. I had an awareness of [weight-loss] medications, but felt I had to prove I had the willpower to do it. I now no longer feel that way," she said.

Ms. O explained to the outlet that before she became a dedicated user of the weight loss prescription, she recommended it to others. 

Still, it would take time for Winfrey to hop on board with using the drug.

Then, in July, the light bulb went off for her during a taped panel discussion with weight loss experts and clinicians called "The State of Weight" and part of Oprah Daily's "Life You Want series."

"I had the biggest aha along with many people in that audience," she recounted of the discussion, which dropped online in September. "I realized I’d been blaming myself all these years for being overweight, and I have a predisposition that no amount of willpower is going to control."  

As she puts it, "Obesity is a disease. It’s not about willpower — it's about the brain."

After coming to terms with the ins and outs of the prescription, she "released my own shame about it," then Winfrey consulted her medical physician who prescribed it for her.

While she reframed from naming the exact weight loss drug she takes, she said, "I now use it as I feel I need it, as a tool to manage not yo-yoing."

Winfrey continued, "The fact that there's a medically approved prescription for managing weight and staying healthier, in my lifetime, feels like relief, like redemption, like a gift, and not something to hide behind and once again be ridiculed for. I’m absolutely done with the shaming from other people and particularly myself."

Weight loss drugs such as Wegovy, Mounjaro, and Ozempic have gained popularity, with celebs like Tracy Morgan revealing he uses the latter. Still, Ozempic has been called "the worst kept secret in Hollywood," with stars like Chelsea Handler, Amy Schumer, and even Elon Musk admitting to having taken it, according to NPR.

According to UC Davis Health, Ozempic, known generically as semaglutide, was approved in 2017 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in adults with type 2 diabetes. Ozempic is a weekly injection that helps lower blood sugar by helping the pancreas make more insulin.

Although it has weight loss side effects, Ozempic is not approved for weight loss. However, semaglutide is approved for weight loss under the name Wegovy. Ozempic has a smaller dose of semaglutide than Wegovy.

Before the Thanksgiving holiday, Oprah used the weight loss prescription "because I knew I was going to have two solid weeks of eating," she noted, and "instead of gaining eight pounds like I did last year, I gained half a pound . . . It quiets the food noise."

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