Maybe you know a co-worker or friend on one. They’re losing weight and you’re curious?
Weight loss injectables are a group of medications that replicate one of our human gut fullness hormones, Glucagon-like Peptide-1 (eg. GLP-1).
While there are multiple reasons why weight gain can happen, there is one reason that is common: an attenuated release of GLP-1 in response to food among people who carry extra weight…
Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to create a lab test to prove this (e.g. Like checking to see if your thyroid hormone is low). The hormone’s natural half-life is just too short to capture on a lab test. Instead, we just trial patients with excess weight with a GLP-1 agonist medication (e.g. hormone duplicate) and watch to see how much weight loss happens.
Multiple variations and names for GLP-1 agonists exist, but two specifically are indicated for weight loss.
The first GLP-1 agonist injectable made for weight loss was Liraglutide (e.g. Saxenda). It is a once-daily injectable that delivers the GLP-1 hormone medication. It’s half-life is approximately 13 hours.
Following Liraglutide, a once-weekly GLp-1 agonist version was created: Semaglutide (e.g. Wegovy). By basically adding a protein to the medication molecule chain, it lengthened its half-life to 165 hours! Although Health Canada has approved Wegovy for weight-loss in Canada, it still hasn’t arrived (supplies are low, and even the United States is having a hard time keeping up!)
There’s a reason why. Wegovy is the most effective weight loss medication currently available.
The STEP-8 Trial put Saxenda and Wegovy head-to-head. When Liraglutide was compared to Semaglutide, Semaglutide induced greater weight loss from baseline weight:
- Saxenda: – 6.4%
- Wegovy: – 15.8%
Bonus Fact: In the original Semaglutide trial, they found that 1/3 of patients lost 20% of their body weight from baseline. By the way, 20% is an insane result. That’s a number we could only quote for bariatric surgery results before….!
Now we Know!