Semaglutide for Weight Loss
SEMAGLUTIDE FOR WEIGHT LOSS
What is Semaglutide?
Semaglutide is an FDA-approved medication for weight loss that has been used since 2021. It is for individuals that have a BMI of greater than 30 or a BMI greater than 27 and at least one cardiometabolic risk factor such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, pre-diabetes, and type II diabetes, to name a few. It is a GLP-1 antagonist, a drug class initially used to treat diabetes mellitus type II. While on Semaglutide, patients were observed to experience multiple health benefits, including weight loss of up to 20% of their body weight, reduced inflammation, and reduction in blood pressure, triglycerides, and cholesterol levels. Patients were also experiencing increased lean body mass and physical functioning. Additional health benefits were found to be a reduction of cardiovascular events such as coronary artery disease and strokes and prevention and improvement of Diabetes Mellitus type II.
Semaglutide is a subcutaneously injected liquid used once weekly in the convenience of your home or our office. It is to be injected on the same day of the week each week at any time of the day. If a dose is missed, it may be administered any day up to two days before the next dose is due. If it is two days or less before the next scheduled dose is due, skip that dose and resume on the regularly scheduled day.
Vital Queries Addressed
Weight loss achieved with Semaglutide occurs as a person’s cravings and hunger decrease without stimulants and is non-addictive. It slows gastric emptying resulting in feeling fuller faster. This is achieved by working on multiple organs simultaneously, including the brain, stomach, pancreas, and liver. The brain reduces hunger, cravings, and the urge to eat, ultimately reducing one’s preoccupation with food. Slow gastric emptying to feel full sooner and for longer by the stomach. The pancreas increases insulin production leading to improved blood sugar control. The liver reduces the production of sugar. Through combined actions, this is believed to be responsible for profound weight loss success and the health benefits Semaglutide treatment provides.
Semaglutide decreases the overall risk of cardiovascular events. This is achieved as Semaglutide decreases blood pressure, improves glycemic control, decreases lipids in the blood, reduces visceral body fat, reduces inflammation, increases lean body mass, and improves physical functioning.
Semaglutide is safe and well tolerated, with minimal side effects. When people have side effects, they are generally mild and often improve over time. To minimize side effects, Semaglutide is started at a very low dose and increased gradually over a 4-week interval or as tolerated. The most common side effects of Semaglutide are gastrointestinal disturbances such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, heartburn, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, upset stomach, belching, and gas. Fatigue, headache, tiredness, and dizziness are less common.
Studies have shown that Semaglutide can lead to significant weight loss when used with a healthy diet and exercise program. Results vary from person to person however, studies have shown significant weight loss in both nondiabetic and diabetic patients. In a clinical study1, 70% of the patients lost a minimum of 10% of their total body weight, 50% lost at least 15%, and 33% lost at least 20% of their total body weight while on Semaglutide. On average, a person can expect to lose about 6-14 pounds a week, depending on the dose.
Semaglutide takes about one week to start to work. Many patients will experience a reduction in cravings, appetite, and hunger within the first or second week. Many patients will also start losing weight in the first and second weeks. However, not all will. A study showed that a reduction of more than 2% of total body weight was achieved after only 4 weeks.
It is for adults that have a BMI of greater than 30 or a BMI greater than 27 and at least one cardiometabolic risk factor such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, pre-diabetes, and diabetes mellitus type II, to name a few. It is also FDA-approved for adolescents 12 or older in the 95th percentile for their age and sex to treat obesity.
To get started on Semaglutide you must first schedule a consultation to determine if you are a candidate. During the consultation, the provider will review health history, dietary and activity habits, and current medications and request laboratory tests, including a complete blood count, complete metabolic panel, liver function tests, hemoglobin A1C, fasting lipid panel, thyroid panel, and urinary analysis. Laboratory tests are required to identify any additional factors that may be contributing to weight gain. During the consultation, measurements will also be documented, and a personalized weight loss plan will be formulated.
Our Semaglutide program has a 4-month minimum. Weekly lipotropic/skinny shots can be added to your program to achieve your desired results and goals. We also have IV infusion therapies available if so desired. Once enrolled in our program, you will receive your medications generally within 5 to 7 business days. A minimum of once a month a telehealth visit is required to monitor your progress. During these appointments, your treatment plan can be adjusted as needed to achieve your goals. We are available to answer any additional questions or address any concerns by phone or text at (813)955-0408.
Semaglutide contains an active ingredient that mimics the hormone GLP-1, which regulates appetite and glucose metabolism in the body. Ozempic and Wegovy are familiar brand names containing Semaglutide and work similarly to promote weight loss. However, in Ozempic, weight loss is considered a beneficial side effect of the medication, as it’s primarily used to control blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. In contrast, Wegovy is a medication specifically designed for weight loss.
It’s worth noting that while these medications have similar active ingredients, they may have different indications, dosages, and administration methods. Therefore, it is essential to follow a provider’s prescribing instructions and guidance for the specific medication being used. Additionally, the effectiveness and safety of these medications may vary depending on individual circumstances.
When Semaglutide attaches to GLP-1 receptors in the body, it stimulates insulin release from the pancreas, reduces glucose production by the liver, and slows digestion. These actions lead to lower blood sugar levels, increased feelings of fullness, and reduced appetite, ultimately leading to weight loss.
Additionally, Semaglutide influences the appetite center in the brain, curbing cravings and reducing the urge to eat. This means you can consume fewer calories without feeling hungry or deprived, leading to more sustainable weight loss. By addressing underlying health concerns such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and inflammation associated with obesity, Semaglutide can also help improve overall health and reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases.
One of the main ways Semaglutide affects appetite is by increasing the release of a hormone called leptin, which is produced by fat cells and helps to regulate energy balance by reducing hunger and boosting metabolism. Semaglutide also reduces the release of a hormone called ghrelin, produced by the stomach, and increases appetite.
By influencing these hormones and pathways, Semaglutide can help to reduce cravings and the urge to eat, making it easier to stick to a healthy diet and achieve weight loss goals.
It’s essential to remember that Semaglutide should only be used under the guidance of your provider as part of a comprehensive weight loss plan that includes healthy eating habits and regular exercise.
A Guide to Proper Usage of This Medication
Semaglutide is typically available in a pre-filled pen or syringe for subcutaneous (under the skin) injection. The medication is injected once a week at the same time each week. Your provider will give detailed instructions on how to use the medication and may also show you how to inject Semaglutide properly. It is essential to follow the prescribed dosage instructions provided. Additionally, it is important to rotate the injection sites to prevent skin irritation and ensure proper absorption. If you have any questions or concerns about how to take Semaglutide, consult with your provider.
Do not discontinue use unless advised by your care team. For safe disposal of used needles and pens, use a designated sharps container and never throw them in the trash.
Possible Interactions with This Medication
Please inform your provider about all the prescription and non-prescription medicines, dietary supplements, herbal products, and other drugs you take. In addition, it is important to disclose if you smoke, consume alcohol, or use illegal drugs, as they may interact with this medication. Remember that this list may not include all potential interactions, so it is crucial to consult with your healthcare provider before starting or stopping any medication.
What Precautions Should I Take While Using This Medication?
Keep regular check-ups with your Defining Beauty Wellness and Med Spa care team to monitor your progress while taking this medication. Remember that it may take some time to see the full benefits of the medication. To avoid dehydration, drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication and contact Defining Beauty if you experience severe diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or excessive sweating.
What is the appropriate storage location for my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Refrigeration (preferred): Store in the refrigerator. Do not freeze. Keep this medication in the original container until you take it. Get rid of any unused medicine after the expiration date.
Important Information Before Taking This Medication
Before taking this medication, it is important to consult with your provider if you have any of the following conditions:
- Endocrine tumors (MEN 2), or if anyone in your family has had these tumors.
- Eye disease or vision problems
- Gallbladder disease
- History of depression or mental health disorders
- History of pancreatitis
- Kidney disease
- Stomach or intestinal problems
- Previous suicidal thoughts, plans, or attempts, or if you or a family member has a history of suicide.
- Thyroid cancer or if anyone in your family has had thyroid cancer.
- An unusual or allergic reaction to Semaglutide, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
This medication summary provides a condensed overview and may not encompass all possible information. If you have any inquiries or apprehensions regarding this medication, it is advisable to schedule a consultation with your provider at Defining Beauty Wellness and Med Spa in Tampa for a more comprehensive understanding and guidance. Our team can offer the most precise and current information and address your individual concerns.
Imagine a world where weight loss isn’t an endless cycle of punishing exercise and giving up your favorite foods. A world where achieving your weight loss goals is as simple as a once-weekly injection. That world is getting closer with Semaglutide, a medication approved by the FDA for chronic weight management in adults and adolescents. With promising results from clinical trials, Semaglutide has become the talk of the town. But before you consider jumping on board, it’s important to understand how it works and whether it’s the right choice for you. Call us at 813–955-0408 today to schedule an appointment and begin your weight loss journey with Semaglutide.
1Once-WeeklySemaglutide in Adults with Overweight or Obesity
John P.H. Wilding, D.M., Rachel L. Batterham, M.B., B.S., Ph.D., Salvatore Calanna, Ph.D., Melanie Davies, M.D., Niels Zeuthen, M.Sc., and Robert F. Kushner, M.D.et al., for the STEP 1 Study Group Luc F. Van Gaal, M.D., Ph.D., Ildiko Lingvay, M.D., M.P.H., M.S.C.S., Barbara M. McGowan, M.D., Ph.D., Julio Rosenstock, M.D., Marie T.D. Tran, M.D., Ph.D., Thomas A. Wadden, Ph.D., Sean Wharton, M.D., Pharm.D., Koutaro Yokote, M.D., Ph.D., BACKGROUND Obesity is a global health challenge with few pharmacologic options. Whether adults with obesity can achieve weight loss with once-weekly semaglutide at a dose of 2.4 mg as an adjunct to lifestyle intervention March 18, 2021 N Engl J Med 2021; 384:989-1002 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa2032183