With so many people taking drugs like Ozempic for weight loss, and others who would if they could, some commentators have suggested this could spell the end of obesity. But is there any truth to this?

In the next article of our Ozempic series, food and nutrition scientist Emma Beckett says if we look past the hype, claims of “curing” obesity aren’t true. Responses to the drug are variable, with some people non-responders. And it’s unclear if its effectiveness will wane over time.

But according to Beckett, the Ozempic buzz is likely to fuel fat-phobia. “The framing of these drugs as a ‘cure’ exacerbates the binary view of thin versus fat, and healthy versus unhealthy, ” she writes. “These are not binary outcomes that are good or bad. Weight and health exist on a spectrum.”

Later in the week, Clare Collins will interrogate claims that taking drugs like Ozempic is “cheating” at weight loss or the “easy way out”. Catch up on the series so far here.

Fron Jackson-Webb

Deputy Editor and Senior Health Editor

Drugs like Ozempic won’t ‘cure’ obesity but they might make us more fat-phobic

Emma Beckett, UNSW Sydney

Many have declared drugs like Ozempic could ‘end obesity’. This isn’t just untrue – it also perpetuates fat stigma.

Is Japan joining AUKUS? Not formally – its cooperation will remain limited for now

John Blaxland, Australian National University

AUKUS is still a very new partnership, so expansion isn’t viewed as a priority until the envisioned technology sharing is proven to work.

Penny Wong floats recognising Palestine ahead of two-state solution to help path to peace

Michelle Grattan, University of Canberra

The Albanese government’s policy has been for a two-state solution, but it has not previously embraced recognising a Palestinian state ahead of that.

No cash, no play? Have cost-of-living pressures impacted sports participation in Australia?

Vaughan Cruickshank, University of Tasmania; Brendon Hyndman, Charles Sturt University; Tom Hartley, University of Tasmania

Many people are suffering due to cost-of-living pressures but have they impacted sports participation rates in Australia?

More mergers to come under scrutiny in another leg of Chalmers’ competition policy

Michelle Grattan, University of Canberra

All proposed mergers above a yet-to-be-determined threshold will have to be reported to the ACCC. It’ll have to give a yes or no within 30 days.

How about this time we try, just try, to report on budgets and tax differently?

Peter Martin, Crawford School of Public Policy, Australian National University

Former treasury boss Ken Henry has fessed up to helping dumb down debates about tax and budgets to lists of winners and losers. He says what matters is what wins rather than who.

The limits of ice: what a 19th century expedition trapped in sea ice for a year tells us about Antarctica’s future

Edward Doddridge, University of Tasmania; Annie Foppert, University of Tasmania; Stuart Corney, University of Tasmania

In 1898, a pioneering Antarctic expedition was stuck in sea ice for over a year. In 2024, that area is open water.

Aboriginal people made pottery and sailed to distant offshore islands thousands of years before Europeans arrived

Sean Ulm, James Cook University; Ian J. McNiven, Monash University; Kenneth McLean, Indigenous Knowledge

Pottery made more than 1800 years ago by Aboriginal communities on Jiigurru in the Lizard Island group in the Great Barrier Reef is the oldest ever found in Australia.

We have a new way of looking at data that shows what’s working for Indigenous school kids and what isn’t

Peter Anderson, Griffith University; Kerrie Mengersen, Queensland University of Technology; Owen Forbes, Queensland University of Technology; Zane M. Diamond, Monash University

Unlike the traditional method of comparing Indigenous students with non-Indigenous students, a new approach compares Indigenous students with their Indigenous peers.

Quiet on Set highlights how we don’t keep child stars safe – in Hollywood or online

Edith Jennifer Hill, Flinders University

New documentary about Nickelodeon, Quiet on Set, highlights how we don’t keep child stars safe. In the age of social media this is an even bigger problem.

The End of the Morning: Charmian Clift’s taut, intimate, unfinished novel feels like a slightly broken book

Paul Genoni, Curtin University

The End of the Morning is Charmian Clift’s most successful piece of fiction. But it is only a piece and one that leaves two matters unresolved.

NZ’s government is relying on executive power to govern – that’s not how MMP was meant to work

Richard Shaw, Massey University

The coalition is increasingly using parliamentary urgency, cutting the public service and fast-tracking legislation – all of which risks upsetting the equilibrium between government and the governed.

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