semaglutide injection pen with apples and stethoscope
January 24, 2024

There seems to be a continual search for safe and effective weight loss treatments. In recent years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a medication called semaglutide to treat obesity. This drug has become a popular weight loss treatment for individuals who struggle to lose weight. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about semaglutide for weight loss.

What Is Semaglutide?

Semaglutide is an injectable medication that belongs to a class of drugs called glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RAs). This drug mimics the GLP-1 hormone that is released in the gut as a response to eating. GLP-1 tells the body to produce more insulin, which reduces blood sugar. This is why semaglutide has been used for more than a decade to treat type 2 diabetes. In higher amounts, GLP-1 interacts with the brain to suppress appetite and signal that you feel full. This means that the use of semaglutide, when combined with diet and exercise, can cause significant weight loss. As a result, people who are overweight and obese can have a reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.

Is Semaglutide Effective for Weight Loss?

person standing on a scale with measuring tape in the foreground

Semaglutide has been proven as an effective appetite suppressant for weight loss. The FDA has currently only approved one brand name of semaglutide for weight loss: Wegovy. This drug is typically administered weekly in a dose of 2.4 milligrams via subcutaneous self-injections. Studies have shown that obese adults who use semaglutide along with diet and exercise tend to lose significantly more weight than those utilizing diet and exercise alone. However, studies also show that individuals who use semaglutide for weight loss tend to regain the lost weight after they stop taking the medication.

What Are the Side Effects of Semaglutide?

All medications come with the risk of side effects, and semaglutide is no exception. The side effects of semaglutide are typically considered mild, and they are much less severe than the health complications associated with obesity. Individuals who take semaglutide for weight loss may experience side effects such as fatigue, dizziness, headache, nausea, vomiting, bloating, gassiness, constipation, and diarrhea. Gastrointestinal issues are the most common side effects people tend to experience when they first start taking semaglutide. However, these side effects may be reduced by starting at a lower dose and slowly increasing the amount.

Who Can Take Semaglutide for Weight Loss?

person about to inject semaglutide into belly

Semaglutide in the form of Wegovy is recommended by the FDA for individuals who have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or above. The FDA also recommends this drug for individuals with a BMI of at least 27 and who also have at least one weight-related condition. This may include type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol. Semaglutide is not recommended for anyone who has a history of pancreatitis, medullary thyroid cancer, or gallbladder disease. Individuals with multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN2) should also avoid semaglutide. If you are interested in semaglutide for weight loss, consult with your physician to find out if it is the best treatment for you.

Non-Prescription Supplements for Weight Management

If you don’t qualify for semaglutide for weight loss or you would rather try non-prescription methods, you have other options. In addition to diet and exercise, you can take supplements that may help with weight management. For example, Berberine DHB 5x is a great addition to your lifestyle changes. This supplement helps promote a healthy glucose metabolism as well as lessened appetite.

If you have any questions about semaglutide or supplements for weight loss, or you are seeking advice on ways to manage your weight, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Moore’s Compounding Pharmacy! Our knowledgeable pharmacy team is here to help you reach your health goals!

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