Ozempic Nausea Relief

Ease the Quease: Managing Ozempic Nausea

Nausea is one of the most common side effects of Ozempic, a medication used to treat type 2 diabetes and promote weight loss. While this side effect may be frustrating and uncomfortable, there are ways to manage it.

In this blog post, we will discuss the causes of Ozempic-induced nausea and provide tips for relief. As a Registered Dietitian, I focus on what to eat and what to avoid in order to ease discomfort. We will also touch on the causes, duration, and when to seek medical advice.

Why Does Ozempic Cause Nausea?

This medication works by delaying gastric emptying, or how fast the food passes through your GI (gastrointestinal) tract. This leads to feelings of fullness and decreased appetite, which, in turn, can cause extra pressure in the abdomen and impact the nerves in your gut, causing nausea and other GI issues.

Nausea is a very common side effect of this medication. In clinical trials, 11 to 20% of people on semaglutide (the active component in Ozempic) reported nausea when compared to those taking the placebo

How Long Does the Nausea Last?

The duration of Ozempic-induced nausea varies from person to person. Some individuals may experience it for a few days, while others may have persistent symptoms for weeks. 

Often, nausea is more severe when patients start the medication or escalate the dose.  This may indicate that the body is adjusting to Ozempic.  The good news is that the severity and frequency of nausea may decrease over time as your body gets used to the medication.

It is also common to observe people experiencing more pronounced effects in the day or two following the injection, only to feel much better for the remainder of the week. 

However, if the nausea persists or becomes unbearable, it’s essential to speak with your healthcare provider.

What to Eat to Avoid Nausea

When it comes to avoiding nausea, there are a few simple tweaks you can make to your diet.

Eat Small Frequent Meals

Opting for small, frequent meals throughout the day can be a game-changer when it comes to managing nausea. Instead of loading up on large portions that can take a long time to digest, spreading out your intake into smaller meals helps digestion.

Plus, having something in your stomach at regular intervals can help ward off that queasy feeling that often accompanies an empty stomach.

Eat Slowly

Eating too quickly can worsen nausea, so take your time with meals. Eating slower also gives your body more time to digest the food properly, reducing the chances of feeling nauseous.

Mindful eating is another technique that can help reduce the onset of nausea. Take a moment before each meal to breathe deeply and center yourself.

Eat Food Cold or at Room Temperature

Hot and steamy meals can sometimes trigger nausea, so opting for cold or room-temperature food might be more tolerable. Try switching up your usual warm breakfast for a bowl of overnight oats or swap your warm dinner for a chicken salad.

Protein Shakes and Smoothies

If the thought of eating solid food makes you feel nauseous, consider having a protein shake or smoothie instead. These drinks are easier for your stomach to digest and can be packed with the nutrients that your body needs.

Try Eating Bland Foods

When experiencing nausea, bland foods tend to be easy on the stomach. This includes foods like crackers, toast, rice, and applesauce.  However, many people using Ozempic are concerned about eating refined carbohydrates. For that reason, I usually don’t push this suggestion to patients who are taking GLP-1 meds. But it is often recommended in other populations. 

Protein-Rich Foods

High-protein diets are more likely to be tolerated than a high-carbohydrate diet. Considering this is the type of diet that can also promote weight loss and glucose management, this type of diet is a win-win for people on Ozempic. 

However, remember that protein takes longer to digest than other nutrients, so don’t overdo it.  You still want a well-balanced diet. 

Ginger Tea

Ginger tea is a natural remedy that has long been used to help combat nausea. The active compounds in ginger have anti-inflammatory properties that can soothe the stomach and reduce nausea symptoms.

You can make your own ginger tea by steeping thinly sliced ginger in hot water for 10-15 minutes, or you can purchase pre-made ginger tea bags from most grocery stores.

Ozempic Nausea Relief

Foods to Avoid

Avoiding certain types of food can make the biggest difference when it comes to nausea related to GLP-1 meds.  

Avoid Fatty Foods 

Foods that are high in fat can further slow digestion and irritate the stomach, leading to feelings of nausea. Avoid fried foods, fast foods, and baked goods.

Avoid Strong Smells

Strong smells can often trigger nausea, so it’s best to avoid foods with strong odors. This is the reason why many people can tolerate cold or room-temperature foods better.

Avoid Large Meals

Eating large meals can put added pressure on the stomach and make you feel even more nauseous. Instead of three large meals a day, try eating smaller, more frequent meals throughout the day.

Drink Less Liquid with Meals

Drinking too much liquid with meals can sometimes lead to feeling nauseous. Instead, try sipping on small amounts of water throughout the day to stay hydrated.


Drinking can worsen Ozempic side effects. So, if you are experiencing nausea, it’s best to avoid alcohol.

When to Seek Medical Advice

While nausea is a common side effect of Ozempic, there are instances where it may indicate a more serious issue. Persistent or severe nausea, accompanied by vomiting, abdominal pain, or other concerning symptoms, should prompt a discussion with a healthcare provider.

Open communication with your doctor is essential for monitoring side effects and determining if adjustments to your Ozempic dosage or treatment plan are necessary.

Beyond adjusting your dose, your doctor can prescribe anti-nausea medications to help you during the adjustment period.

My Expert Opinion

Managing nausea while on Ozempic can be challenging, but with the right strategies and support, it is possible to find relief.

Most of the time, nausea only lasts a few days or a few weeks. However, it can intensify as the dose increases.  People react differently to the medication, and it’s wise to listen to your body, adjust your diet, and communicate closely with your healthcare providers.

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