Oprah has said what no other celebrities dare about weight-loss injections.

In the past year, weight loss drugs have had a 'revolution'. And it's all thanks to a specific injectable medication, originally designed for people suffering from diabetes.

As you're likely aware, celebrities, influencers, models and those in elite social circles made the popularity of the drug go mainstream earlier this year, with The Guardian describing it as 'Hollywood's worst-kept secret'.

While only a few celebrities have publicly admitted to taking the drug, others have shared their views on the trend, with some openly denying taking it. 

For the most part, the celebrity commentary that does exist around the weight loss drug is somewhat negative. Especially when it comes to the long-term side effects.

Chelsea Handler "didn't know" she was on it. Sharon Osbourne "felt f**king s**t" on it. Amy Schumer said she was so ill she couldn't play with her son.

But there's no one who could've flipped the conversation around weight, willpower and prescription weight-loss drugs quite like Oprah Winfrey.

Watch: Markle and Prince Harry with Oprah Winfrey. Post continues below.

Video via OWN

For the unaware, Oprah had, and continues to have, a long and very public relationship with her own weight. It was a subject she often tackled on The Oprah Winfrey Show and in O! magazine.


In 1988, she famously wheeled a red wagon onto the stage of her national television show, filled with 67 pounds (around 30kg) of animal fat – the exact amount of weight she'd lost in four months by replacing her meals with shakes.

At the time, 62 million – or one in four – Americans were watching. It would go down as the highest-rating episode of Oprah's 25-year run. 

Now, after decades of having her body (and her relationship with it) in the spotlight, Oprah has confirmed she uses weight-loss injections.

Speaking with People magazine, she revealed how the drug has helped her maintain a healthier lifestyle. "I now use it as I feel I need it, as a tool to manage not yo-yoing," she said.

"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."

After speaking with medical professionals, Oprah shared that she came to the revelation that, "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. Obesity is a disease. It’s not about willpower – it's about the brain."

She went on to say, however, that the drug is no quick fix – her body journey has been a process over the last few years, and on the advice of experts she successfully combined the use of weight-loss medication with lifestyle changes and exercise.


"I know everybody thought I was on it, but I worked so damn hard. I know that if I’m not also working out and vigilant about all the other things, it doesn’t work for me," she said.

"After knee surgery [in 2021], I started hiking and setting new distance goals each week. I could eventually hike three to five miles every day and a 10-mile straight-up hike on weekends. I felt stronger, more fit and more alive than I’d felt in years.

"... 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. I was actually recommending it to people long before I was on it myself."

Listen to Mamamia's daily podcast, The Spill, where on this episode we discuss Oprah's latest admission. Post continues after audio.

Why Oprah's weight-loss injection revelation is important.

While we've all seen and heard a lot about weight loss injections in the past year or so, there's something about Oprah's revelation that feels different. And there's a reason for this. 

The fact is, there's still a very obvious air of stigma around weight loss medication. And while the public debate around it has never been louder than right now, there's still a lot we're still not talking about.  

Something you'll undoubtedly notice is that many of the recent headlines warn against the use of the new range of injectable drugs, even suggesting they can be deadly. But there's little conversation around just how life-altering the drug can be.

In fact, Mamamia's own Clarie Murphy spoke about the unique shame of being prescribed weight loss drugs, describing how going to the pharmacy each time feels like a 'walk of shame'.


She writes, "This mean girls, ‘you can’t sit with us’ idea that is being given off in this debate about these drugs, like I haven’t earned my thin privilege because I’m not genetically gifted nor did I suffer enough to get there, is rage inducing.

"Now I read headlines warning other women not to use it, by a woman who is already thin and who openly admitted to overdosing on it. I read how a man blames this drug for the death of his wife, who took it just to lose a few kilos before a wedding, even though the coroner has made no link between her cause of death and the drug."

On the flip side, many doctors in Australia – desperate to treat what is widely seen as an "obesity crisis" (obesity currently affects two out of three adults) – are on board with the drug. Several medical professionals have branded the off-label use of the drug as a 'medical breakthrough' and the 'miracle cure' for obesity.

As Dr Brad Mackay told podcast host Claire Murphy on The Quicky, the medical profession has been promised a miracle weight-loss drug for decades.

He said: "I've been waiting for medication like this to come along my whole career, even at university."

"My university lecturers promised that, just around the corner, we would have amazing weight loss drugs – and we'd be able to make a big dent in helping the obesity crisis that was starting around the world many, many years ago."

Of course, weight management pills, programs and treatments have cropped up throughout the decades, some gaining massive popularity – but according to Dr Mackay, the evolution of this medication has been a game-changer.


He said, "In my experience, the people who have been inquiring in Australia are morbidly obese. They are really struggling with their weight. And they know that the medication can reduce their weight and it can be life-saving in its own way.

"So if you're able to reduce your weight, you're able to exercise a lot better, you're able to decrease your cholesterol, you're able to decrease your blood pressure – these are all longer-term gains."

In the Mamamia Outlouders Facebook group, hundreds of women shared their own experiences using weight-loss injections, describing them as "life-changing".

One woman wrote, "My blood pressure was through the roof, I was borderline diabetic, I was a sad sack of a mum to my daughter and, honestly, a heart attack waiting to happen... at 29 years old. I'm now a much more vibrant mum to my kids, was actually able to have a second child finally after five years of trying, my blood pressure is perfect, blood sugars are perfect and I've maintained the weight for two years now without the injection.

"As someone who works in healthcare – I saw my future every day in that hospital and I wasn't keen to die early. Diet and exercise were not that simple when your body is fighting you every step of the way to keep hold of the weight."

Then, there's still that stigma around "cheating" weight loss. The idea of not losing body fat "the old-fashioned way", through diet and exercise. 

Someone else wrote, "Medically, obesity is a considered a disease and can come with all sorts of health complications as a result of that. If used under the guidance of a responsible doctor, I fail to see the issue? I'd say half the reason it's so widely condemned is people still look at it and go 'it's the easy way out/you're being lazy' because society still tells us obesity is a choice, despite sooooo much evidence to the contrary!"


As Claire Murphy shared in her article, "It has been the right choice for me at this stage in my life. It turned off food noise and for the first time in my life, I can think clearly enough to make better choices. I am fitter and healthier now than I was nine months ago and I can thank a multitude of things for that, my doctors, my dietician, my physio and this drug, which none of us should feel ashamed to ask for."

Dr Mackay added, "I'm a little bit empathic for people who are using it for weight loss. Because people are often desperate, they've tried every diet under the sun, and it hasn't worked. We know that metabolism is just self-sabotage. Your body wants to keep you fat. Often people will need to go on medications to help them get to a much safer weight for their future."

For help and support for eating disorders, contact the Butterfly Foundation‘s National Support line and online service on 1800 ED HOPE (1800 33 4673) or email 

You can also visit their website, here.

Feature image: Instagram; @oprah/Canva.

Do you have kids aged under 13 years? Take our survey now to go in the running to win a $50 gift voucher.