Jesse Plemons: My weight loss came from intermittent fasting, not Ozempic

It’s always a big deal when an American actor picks up an acting prize at one of the major European film festivals. That’s what happened this year at Cannes – Jesse Plemons won Best Actor for Yorgos Lanthimos’ Kinds of Kindness, and now the American press is like “oh, okay, we need to pay more attention to this film and Jesse Plemons in particular.” Lanthimos is coming off a creative high – Poor Things was arguably his most successful film to date, and Emma Stone picked up her second Best Actress Oscar for the film. Will the same thing happen with Jesse? We’ll see. Apparently, Kinds of Kindness showcases Jesse’s recent weight loss as part of the story. Jesse recently chatted to the LA Times about the film and how he achieved his weight loss. Some highlights:

His reluctance to plot out his career: “It’s just a survival technique. I’ve been doing it for so long that it almost doesn’t benefit to look too far ahead. And that’s kind of worked for me so far … I’m constantly just looking at this next thing and following my gut [about] what is interesting and exciting to me.”

What ‘Kinds of Kindness’ is about: Jesse Plemons emerges alongside Stone as the film’s co-lead. Although “Yorgos kept insisting it was a comedy,” as Plemons deadpans to me at one point, the subject matter roiling underneath the stories’ anodyne log lines — forced sterilization, cannibalism, sexual assault — unsettled him as much as it will the viewer.

His weight loss: One unexpected through line among Plemons’ characters in the film is an attention to their physical appearance that at first concerned the actor, who lost weight before being approached for “Kinds of Kindness” and worried Lanthimos wanted “the bigger me.” In the first segment, “The Death of R.M.F.,” Plemons’ corporate functionary submits to a strict regimen established by his controlling employer (Dafoe), who quips, “Skinny men are the most ridiculous thing there is”; in the third, “R.M.F. Eats a Sandwich,” he’s clad in a suit so baggy it seems designed to draw attention to the actor’s thinness.

He did not take Ozempic: “It’s really unfortunate that I decided to get healthy when everyone decided to take Ozempic. It doesn’t matter, everyone’s going to think I took Ozempic anyways. But what it was was getting older and — I hate even getting specific because then it turns into a whole thing, but there was a part that I did that in my mind I could not imagine him as the size that I was. Several people talked to me about intermittent fasting and I just gave it a shot and [was] surprised at how quickly it was effective. So I lost a little bit before I did that part and then felt like I was in the rhythm, I was feeling better, and something shifted in my head. I just sort of got a handle on it.”

[From The LA Times]

Do you believe his weight loss is the result of intermittent fasting and not weight-loss/diabetes drugs? I mean… it felt like it was a dramatic loss in a short time, which usually indicates more than an”intermittent fasting” diet, but whatever. If he says it wasn’t Ozempic, I’ll choose to believe him. He really looks different too – the weight loss has changed his whole face and given him a more prominent jawline and cheekbones.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Cover Images.

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31 Responses to “Jesse Plemons: My weight loss came from intermittent fasting, not Ozempic”

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  1. Kimmy says:

    Whatever he did, he looks great. Hopefully he doesn’t yo-yo the way some male actors do for roles. It’s got to be so hard on your body.

    I love him and Kiki together so much! They seem so stable and happy together.

    • ally says:

      I Love him and Kirsten! Fav celeb couple for sure. I think he has lost / gained weight for roles before and since there was no ozempic, no one could scream it at him lol.

  2. Murphy says:

    I respect this guy and want to believe him but….ozempic makes intermittent fasting a hell of a lot easier.

  3. Tuesday says:

    I do believe him. I think the speed with which intermittent fasting takes weight off has a lot to do with how you fast. I know a handful of people who experienced dramatic weight loss over 6-12 months with it. I know he lost weight but it didn’t seem abnormally quick.

    And I know I’m parsing his words in a way he didn’t intend, but I wish his statement about “getting healthy just as everyone started ozempic” frustrating. Even if the side effect is weight loss, it’s a side effect designed to improve the health of the person taking it. It isn’t “unhealthy” to take Ozempic

    • DK says:

      I don’t think you’re wrong, while I don’t think he explicitly meant to be rude about Ozempic or anything, there is definitely a subtext of “I lost weight the real/good/hard/healthy way but now everyone will think I did it the Ozempic way [read: fast, cheating, lazy, unhealthy, etc.]” – he clearly implies a negative perception of Ozempic and/or Ozempic users.

      Which is a stereotype that is rooted in fat-phobia and judgments about “why” people are fat, as well as about “right”/”wrong” ways to lose weight. I’m sure he wasn’t thinking consciously about what his comments implied, but they certainly reveal at least implicit bias and I’m disappointed to hear him make those remarks (for some reason, perhaps unfairly, I assumed he would do better than that.)

      • Karen says:

        He has definitely gone up and down for different roles. I completely believe him. Love, love, love his work.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      I’ve been doing the Keto diet as well as getting up to a few hours of uninterrupted exercise a day and I’ve lost about 10lbs in 4 weeks. It also helps that I’ve been making sure to burn more calories than I consume, aiding the idea of keto to make the body burn what it has stored. I have a lot more weight to lose before I get to my goal weight but you can lose weight the healthy way (and consistently) if you stick to your diet and exercise regime. I only eat between set hours of the day so I guess you can say that I’m intermittent fasting as well.

      I have issues with fluid retention and a lot of what I’ve lost has been my fluid stores – when you lose that people tend to notice the change more. You look less puffy and bloated.

    • Mario says:

      I agree with everyone who is noting it’s not inherently “unhealthy” or “cheating” or “easy” to take semaglutide, when appropriate for one’s case/health history and ethically prescribed.

      I don’t take too much offense at his position (though I think he could have chosen his words better) given his personal reference for the use of these very expensive, very inconvenient, and often unpleasant (side effects can be terrible) GLP-1 drugs probably includes a lot more people paying cash to use them to lose 10-20 lbs quickly, for a role or red carpet, or other purely cosmetic reasons. That’s par for the course in Hollywood, where crash diets, unrealistic expectations, and even eating disorders are tolerated to be “model/actress thin” and an everyday fluctuation of 10-15 lbs (common in the rest of the country and world) cab lead to terrible gossip, bad photos, and fewer gigs for many.

      BUT, while that may be HIS reference, that’s not my experience here in the non-Hollywood, middle-class world, where the only people I know paying up to $1600/month to go through the really unpleasant (and surprisingly slow, once you get past that first 10-15lbs) and open-ended GLP-1 injectable protocols are people with legitimate medical obesity, concerning co-morbiditities (like diabetes, substantial hypertension, etc.), and usually a lifelong struggle to manage it, full of failures and dangerous yo-yo behaviors. For them, semaglutide is a key and essential tool, with its own pros that ultimately outweigh the many, many cons, no different from hypertension and cholesterol drugs. I never see people shaming others for getting blood pressure and cholesterol numbers down and associated heart attack and stroke risk down using medicines (even though many of those cases could be brought under control over time with dramatic diet changes, elimination of excess sodium and fats, and daily exercise regimens, just like many cases of lifelong obesity). We have so many stigmas, shames, stereotypes, and misconceptions about the spectrum of metabolic and weight disorders, but have completely normalized treating blood pressure or cholesterol issues, even though weight issues are often far more multifaceted and deeply established than the others.

      Actors rushing to assure us they did things traditional ways (which aren’t always good for the body, either, depending on the particulars) help promulgate that stigma. But we can all do better.

    • Thinking says:

      I didn’t think he was talking about regular people who actually need Ozempic.

      I thought he was alluding to actors/celebrities who use if for potential vanity reasons.

      I assumed he was referring to the Hollywood-izing of Ozempic (ile Mindy Kaling? Does she actually need it? I’m not sure…)

  4. Keke Swan says:

    I’ll just say I hope it wasn’t Ozempic because the drug supply is running short for the people who actually need it. You know, to live not just look good for a part.

    • VoominVava says:

      He did say he didn’t take it, and also maybe he had some health issues which also contributed to his getting his health / eating under control. It can be many things and he doesn’t have to tell us any. I’m glad he answered the question honestly though. I think he seems like a good guy.

  5. prissaO says:

    I believe him. Ozempic weight lost has a certain “look”, to me. I don’t know how to describe it, execpt that it looks like their body becomes long and thinned out, but their head remains super big. Oprah really looks this way.

    Either way, I’m happy for him and I really like him and Kirsten together too.

  6. Jais says:

    I can believe he didn’t use ozempic. He kind of seems like someone who never tried to lose weight before and then with a guys metabolism it came off pretty quick. And then he liked it and kept with it.

  7. Ameerah M says:

    I mean he’s a dude. My brother was once sick with a cold for a week and lost 10 pounds. They’re Not Like Us.

    • DeeSea says:

      It’s so true: Weight loss is so much easier and faster for (most—not all, but most) men. My husband can lose 5 pounds without even blinking an eye. I’m inclined to believe him about the intermittent fasting. It’s the only way I can lose weight. I don’t think it’s right for everyone, but it does work for me. Anyway, Jesse Plemons looks great now and he looked great before, and I love him and Kirsten Dunst as a couple!

    • Kirsten says:

      This is totally true (and unfair). I have a friend who just gave up beer and lost 20 pounds.

  8. Kirsten says:

    I would probably believe him because both he and Kiki lost weight pretty rapidly and at the same time — if you have a partner who’s on the same eating schedule, it makes it easier to stick to.

    • Jenn says:

      I am probably projecting here, but I truly think they both had a sobriety glow-up, which I LOVE for them. Do me next, sobriety!!

  9. Eden75 says:

    However he lost it, it’s his business, but I do believe him. One of my co-workers slimmed down in 4 or 5 months with intermitted fasting and a clean up of his diet. It seems to work way faster for men than it does for women, if there are no other underlying issues.

  10. HollyGolightly says:

    I wasn’t overweight, but I’m 5’0 so a few pounds either way is always a lot.

    I was having MAJOR problems sleeping and my doctor suggested to stop eating after 6:00 PM to see if that helped–and I started doing that and stuck to it, and some days I would stop eating much earlier than 6:00.

    I ended up dropping so much weight people were worried about my health, and I realized I was doing some kind of intermittent fasting. So, I actually can believe this.

    • May says:

      Totally agree that his weight loss could be down to intermittent fasting. I started trying this, not eating after 6:00 p.m., within the last year and notice a huge difference, not just with weight loss but not getting bloated and having a lot of water weight gain. I think some people just function better with this type of an eating schedule.

      • SarahCS says:

        A former colleague started doing 5:2 and she steadily lost weight to the point where if you hadn’t seen her for maybe 6 month you’d have been quite surprised at how much she lost. She’s quite petite and went from being somewhat overweight/’heavy’ for her frame to outright slender.

  11. VilleRose says:

    This is what he used to look like when he was younger and thinner. I’ve seen the Breaking Bad episodes of the last season when he most closely resembled Matt Damon. He’s back to looking like Matt Damon with the weight loss. I always thought his weight gain was for a role actually, I don’t think I realized it was due to natural ageing!

    It was a bit weird though when he was in the Breaking Bad movie with Aaron Paul (El Camino) and you see him in the flashbacks during Jesse’s (Aaron Paul’s character) captivity. Jesse Plemons was super thin when he was on Breaking Bad the last season so when you see him in the El Camino flashbacks which was filmed several years after the finale of Breaking Bad, it’s when he’s heavier so for continuity sake it’s very distracting. You don’t see Jessie Plemons character right away in El Camino and I thought they were keeping him off screen at first because they thought the weight gain for Jesse Plemons’s character would be distracting and it definitely was.

  12. TN Democrat says:

    I once lost 40 lbs over a summer by giving up soda/sweet drinks and intermittent fasting. Losing weight isn’t always the issue. Maintenance is.

    • Chaine says:

      Exactly–my partner’s company at some point stopped having a free soda cooler and so he gave up his 6 Cokes a day and lost about forty pounds very quickly.

      • tealily says:

        Omg!! I wish it was so easy! Not to discount your husband’s sacrifice, I’m sure that wasn’t easy for him.

  13. Nic919 says:

    If he got on some sort of food plan that managed calorie intake that would lead to weight loss over time. I am assuming he added some physical fitness too. He’s not an actor we see outside of film promotions so it’s quite possible he was doing this over several months and no one would notice it.
    And some of the films that have recently come out with him bigger were filmed a few years earlier.

  14. Nicki says:

    I lost weight doing intermittent fasting, along with a high protein and low carb diet. And yeah, it happened right as Ozempic took off. How you get there isn’t really important. imho what matters most is whether you can keep the weight off. (A year and counting here, so fingers crossed. 🙂

  15. tealily says:

    He will always be Landry Clarke to me. And who wouldn’t believe Landry Clarke??