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Forty-three percent of US adults had obesity in 2017-2018. People with obesity typically do not want to have obesity, as demonstrated by the fact that two-thirds of American adults with obesity attempt to lose weight each year. It stands to reason that there will be a high demand for safe and effective weight loss drugs.

Wegovy has been shown to cause 15-18% loss of body weight with relatively minor side effects. It is the first highly effective, and apparently safe, weight loss drug to gain regulatory approval in the US (June 2021). Although in 2021 its US wholesale cost is $1,349 per month, demand has nevertheless outstripped supply. The possibility that Wegovy and other new weight loss drugs will drive down obesity rates must be considered alongside the observation that obesity rates have been increasing in the US since the 1960s, but particularly since the 1976-1980 NHANES survey period. Some projections suggest that US obesity rates will continue to increase.