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Magic Pill

The Extraordinary Benefits and Disturbing Risks of the New Weight Loss Drugs

Johann Hari



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Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
03 September 2024
'A wonderfully accessible exploration of one of the most complex problems of our age' TELEGRAPH 'Magic Pill will help you think more clearly about eating, dieting, health and mental health, even if you never touch Ozempic' JONATHAN HAIDT

The bestselling author of Lost Connections and Stolen Focus takes a revelatory look at the new drugs transforming weight loss as we know it – sharing his personal experience on Ozempic and examining our ability to heal society’s dysfunctional relationship with food, weight and our bodies.

In January 2023, Johann Hari started to inject himself once a week with Ozempic, one of the new drugs that produces significant weight loss. He wasn’t alone – some predictions suggest that in a few years, one in four of the British population will be taking these drugs. While around 80 per cent of diets fail, someone taking one of the new drugs is likely to lose up to a quarter of their body weight in six months. To the drugs’ defenders, this is a moment of liberation from a condition that massively increases your chances of diabetes, cancer and an early death.

Still, Hari was wildly conflicted. Can these drugs really be as good as they sound? Are they a magic solution – or a magical illusion? Finding the answer to this high-stakes question led him on a journey from Iceland to Minneapolis to Tokyo, and to interview the leading experts in the world on these issues. He found that along with the drugs' massive benefits come twelve significant potential risks. He also learned that these drugs radically challenge what we think we know about shame, willpower and healing.

These drugs are about to change our world, for better and for worse. Everybody needs to understand how they work – scientifically, emotionally and culturally. Magic Pill is an essential guide to the revolution that has already begun – and which one leading expert argues could be as transformative as the invention of the smartphone.

'A brilliant synthesis of so much important information. Really important, and very necessary' STEPHEN FRY 'Compassionate, wise and mind-expanding . . . A must read' PHILIPPA PERRY
Imprint:   Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 153mm,  Spine: 29mm
ISBN:   9781526670151
ISBN 10:   1526670151
Pages:   336
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Forthcoming

Johann Hari is the author of three previous internationally bestselling books, translated into 40 languages. His TED talks have been viewed over 80 million times, and his work has been praised by a broad range of people, from Oprah to Noam Chomsky to Joe Rogan. He was also the executive producer of an Oscar nominated film, and an eight-part TV series with Samuel L. Jackson. @johannhari101

Reviews for Magic Pill: The Extraordinary Benefits and Disturbing Risks of the New Weight Loss Drugs

In Magic Pill, Johann Hari marshals his trademark talents at meticulous research, incisive prose, telling anecdote, and keen insight to dissect yet another of our dysfunctional culture’s troubling features: the obesity epidemic of the past few decades and its treatments. Entertaining without trivializing and deeply informative without being prescriptive, this book leaves us with much to ponder, both on the individual and social levels. -- Gabor Mate

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