What's the Best Body Area to Inject Ozempic?

ozempic injection area
Photo Illustration by Amelia Manley for Verywell Health; Getty Images.

Key Takeaways

  • Nausea is a common side effect of Ozempic.
  • Some Ozempic users on social media claim that injecting the drug in the upper arm rather than the stomach can help reduce nausea.
  • It's recommended for people to rotate between injection sites to reduce skin irritation, but it's unlikely to make a difference in side effects.

Ozempic, a type 2 diabetes medication that is occasionally prescribed off-label for weight loss, can cause a number of side effects—with nausea being one of the most common.

A TikTok user shared that she had headaches, dizzying nausea, and fatigue from using Ozempic, but injecting the medication in the upper arm rather than the stomach might limit these side effects.

However, according to Jana Abelovska, MPharm, a pharmacist at the U.K.-based Click Pharmacy, the location of the injection site shouldn’t have any impact on side effects.

“The active ingredient in Ozempic—semaglutide—will still work in the body in the same way, regardless of where it is injected,” Abelovska told Verywell.

Semaglutide can be safely administered in the upper arms, the abdomen, or the front of the thigh area with the same level of efficacy. It’s actually recommended that individuals rotate between these different injection sites, Abelovska explained.

“The reason that multiple locations are recommended for these injections is to reduce the amount of skin irritation users may experience if they are repeatedly injecting the same site,” she said. “Those using these injections should find the locations that are most comfortable for them, and interchange locations ideally each time they administer the injection.”

How to Reduce Nausea from Ozempic

While changing the injection site is unlikely to prevent or reduce nausea caused by the drug, Abelovska said it’s a side effect that typically resolves over time.

“Gradually, as the body becomes more accustomed to semaglutide injections, the feelings of nausea will reduce naturally without the need to do anything,” she said. “However, that doesn’t make things more comfortable in the meantime.”

So while the body is adjusting, she recommends eating bland foods that are low in fat, such as toast or rice, and eating foods that have a high water content, such as soups.

For those who regularly feel nauseous, try to avoid lying down after eating, eat slowly, and regularly go outside for fresh air, she added.

“Although nausea is a common side effect, symptoms should never get worse,” Abelovska said. “If users notice that they are feeling increasingly more nauseous with Ozempic use, they should consult with their GP to determine the best course of action.”

What This Means For You

Rotating between injection sites—the upper arm, the abdomen, and the front of the thigh area—might help prevent skin irritation from Ozempic. However, injecting in the upper arm won’t reduce unpleasant side effects like nausea and vomiting. These symptoms should subside once the body becomes accustomed to the medication.

By Mira Miller
Mira Miller is a freelance writer specializing in mental health, women's health, and culture.