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Semaglutide is an anti-diabetic and weight management medication developed by Novo Nordisk. Learn indispensable information about semaglutide for weight loss so you can buy weight loss supplements that fit specific use cases the best and prescribe them responsibly. The FDA approved Ozempic® (generic name: semaglutide) injections to treat adults with type 2 diabetes and heart disease: it helps with cardiovascular risk reduction and increases glycemic control. Ozempic® has gained popularity in recent years thanks to its powerful weight loss effects, so much so that shortages are reported worldwide.

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What Is Semaglutide?

Semaglutide is a medication belonging to the glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonists — shortly, GLP-1 RA. It mimics the GLP-1 hormones secreted by the lower gastrointestinal tract in response to eating.

Semaglutide can be taken orally or administered by subcutaneous injections in several variants:

  • Antidiabetic medication — To treat type 2 diabetes, semaglutide is sold as Ozempic® (OZEMPIC® 0.25mg, OZEMPIC® 0.5mg, or OZEMPIC® 1mg) weekly injectable, or a daily Rybelsus® (RYBELSUS® 3mg, RYBELSUS® 7mg, or RYBELSUS® 14mg) tablet.
  • Anti-obesity medicationSemaglutide is also used as a weight loss medication; to facilitate weight management long-term, semaglutide is prescribed as Wegovy® (WEGOVY® FLEXTOUCH 0.25mg, WEGOVY® FLEXTOUCH 0.5mg, WEGOVY® FLEXTOUCH 1mg, or WEGOVY® 2.4 mg) injectable. 

How Semaglutide Works?

Semaglutide mimics the incretine hormone produced naturally in our digestive systems. This targets the GLP-1 receptors in the human brain, the area that regulates appetite and food intake. 

As a result, semaglutide decreases the appetite and creates the feeling of fullness and satiety with less food consumed. Additionally, semaglutide slows down the stomach digestion and emptying speed, making patients feel full for extended periods.

Semaglutide’s mechanism promotes beta-cell growth so the pancreas better regulates insulin production. Blood sugar levels and glucagon hormone production are decreased. 

Semaglutide is prescribed along with lifestyle changes (diet and exercise) that improve and prolong the positive effects of medication.

It is important to note that none of the semaglutide (or liraglutide) variants are fat-dissolving injections.

How Effective Is Semaglutide For Weight Loss In Non-Diabetics?

Several studies have proven that semaglutide is very effective for non-diabetic, overweight, and obese people as well.

After 68-week-long research, the group using semaglutide reduced total fat mass and regional visceral fat mass from the baseline. Non-diabetic obese and overweight adults “had a mean weight loss of 14.9%” thanks to semaglutide and lifestyle changes that benefit weight loss efforts.

Moreover, semaglutide was more effective than liraglutide, another form of GLP-1 RA. 

What Are The Side Effects Of Semaglutide Injections?

Using semaglutide comes with serious side effects, and not everyone is the right candidate.

Most people who are just starting the semaglutide report gastrointestinal and stomach issues. These issues may include stomach pain, cramps, bloating, gassiness, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. Other semaglutide side effects include varying fatigue levels, dizziness, headache, and low blood sugar. 

You can alleviate the side effects by letting the body adapt to smaller amounts of semaglutide first. It is recommended to start with lower doses and gradually increase semaglutide intake, as you observe the effects.

More serious side effects include:

  • Pancreatitis;
  • Kidney failure;
  • Gallbladder issues;
  • Hypoglycemia;
  • Thyroid tumor/cancers.

Patients report and discuss other undesirable changes on online forums. These anecdotal side effects of semaglutide are likely to emerge as a result of the rapid and substantial weight loss that semaglutide injections facilitate.

“Ozempic face” appears when patients lose a noticeable amount of subcutaneous adipose tissue. The lack of facial fat makes the wrinkles more prominent, and the face becomes gaunt and saggy, resulting in an aged appearance.

For some patients, weight loss rebound happens within a year of them stopping the semaglutide use. Much like with popular diets, it is better to opt for sustainable lifestyle changes to help keep the yo-yo effect at bay. 

Who Should (And Should Not) Take Semaglutide For Weight Loss?

Using Wegovy® for weight loss is approved if patients meet one of the following criteria:

  • Having a BMI of 30, or greater;
  • Having a BMI of 27, or greater, along with at least one medical condition related to excess weight: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, etc.

Adolescents aged 12 years and older can use Wegovy® to treat obesity.

You should not use semaglutide if you have a history of medullary thyroid cancer or multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2, or type 1 diabetes.

Semaglutide is not recommended for:

  • Pregnant or breastfeeding women, and women who plan to conceive within at least two months from the last semaglutide injection;
  • People with a history of diabetic retinopathy, type one diabetes, kidney and pancreas issues.

People with semaglutide allergy should also refrain from using semaglutide; the allergy symptoms include face, lips, throat, and tongue swelling, problems with swallowing and breathing, rash, itching, fainting, and fast heartbeat.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Shot That Helps You Lose Weight?

Wegovy® is an injectable weight-loss medication that is prescribed to overweight patients with weight-related health conditions, or obese patients. It is highly recommended that patients improve eating habits and remain active to secure the best effect of weight loss medications.

What Is The Best Injectable For Weight Loss?

Choosing the correct anti-obesity medication will depend on the potential candidate’s health status; they should always consult with a physician and make an informed decision.

Are Weight Loss Injections Worth It?

For the right candidates, correctly prescribed weight loss injections immensely improve health and quality of life. With the doctor’s guidance, accompanied by a healthy diet and exercise, patients can lose stubborn, excessive weight fast and prevent the yo-yo effect.

Do Weight Loss Injections Change Your Metabolism?

Yessemaglutide injections directly impact blood sugar, digestion speed, and satiety levels, helping patients stay full with less food for a longer time. 

Is Saxenda® Better Than Ozempic®?

Ozempic® is proven to be more effective for weight loss than Saxenda®. While very similar to Ozempic®, Saxenda® is a liraglutide, and it is administered daily in different doses (from 0.6mg to 3mg). They shouldn’t be combined!


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