Hello, everyone! It’s Nurse Practitioner and owner Britney Jackson from Jackson Health and Wellness Clinic, and today I want to delve into a topic that’s been generating a lot of buzz in the weight loss world: weight loss injections. These injections have gained significant attention on social media recently, and we receive numerous inquiries about them daily. So, let’s dive right in and discuss two popular weight loss injections: Saxenda and Wegovy.

Understanding Weight Loss Injections:

Weight loss injections have garnered considerable interest due to how effective they can be as a tool to aid in weight loss. Bear with me a moment to understand how these incredible drugs have an effect on our bodies: these injectable drugs belong to a class called GLP-1 agonists. These medications were originally developed for diabetic treatment. However, later research demonstrated their impact on weight loss. Consequently, Saxenda and Wegovy were specifically formulated to address obesity rather than diabetes.

How Does It Work?

These GLP-1 agonists simulate the function of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), a hormone naturally present in the body. Among individuals with diabetes, GLP-1 triggers insulin production and aids in reducing blood sugar levels. Interestingly, these medications also influence a very important part of the brain: the hypothalamus. This region is responsible for appetite control and cravings. Moreover, the drug impacts the stomach, resulting in slower gastric emptying, leading to an increased feeling of fullness so you stay feeling fuller longer! This tends to help people focus less on their cravings and more on eating balanced diets at regular times.

Who Can Have These Medications?

Determining eligibility for these medications can be a matter of debate. Generally, weight loss medications are recommended for individuals with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher. Additionally, individuals with a BMI of 27 or higher, accompanied by co-morbid conditions such as hypertension or dyslipidemia, may be considered eligible candidates. It’s essential to note that Saxenda and Wegovy are the only medications specifically approved for weight loss. Other GLP-1 agonists, like Mounjaro, Ozempic, Rybelsus, Trulicity, and Victoza, are exclusively intended for individuals with type two diabetes. Therefore, individuals without type two diabetes should not request these medications, as they would not be suitable. It is crucial to consult a healthcare professional for an accurate assessment and appropriate prescription, particularly considering that insurance companies are scrutinizing weight loss medication requests.

Considerations & Restrictions:

Supply shortages have been common recently, primarily concerning Wegovy, due to high demand exceeding supply capabilities, particularly for lower doses. Respectfully, it’s important to consider individuals with diabetes who require these specific medications for their survival. Also, weight loss injections are contraindicated for pregnant or breastfeeding individuals due to limited research on their effects. Additionally, individuals with a personal or family history of medullary thyroid cancer or multiple endocrine neoplasia should exercise caution. Those with a history of pancreatitis or gallbladder attacks should inform their healthcare provider, as these medications may pose potential risks. Open communication with the healthcare provider is essential for informed decision-making.

Managing Side Effects:

The most frequently reported side effects associated with weight loss injections are gastrointestinal (GI) in nature, including symptoms such as nausea, indigestion, diarrhea, and constipation. Some individuals may experience dizziness, headaches, or fatigue. However, for the majority of patients, these side effects are generally manageable and do not necessitate discontinuation of the medication.

Realistic Expectations and Lifestyle Changes:

It’s important to understand that weight loss injections are not magical solutions. They should be viewed as supportive tools within a comprehensive weight loss journey. According to research findings, Saxenda has shown an average weight loss of around 21 pounds after one year of treatment, while Wegovy has demonstrated an average weight loss of approximately 33 pounds, both representing meaningful reductions in body weight. However, sustainable results can only be achieved through complementary lifestyle changes. These changes encompass adopting a balanced nutrition plan, engaging in regular exercise, prioritizing adequate sleep, managing stress levels, and maintaining proper hydration. It’s crucial to recognize that weight loss injections are not intended for long-term use, and successful weight maintenance necessitates ongoing commitment to a healthy lifestyle.

Get in Touch!

If you are uncertain about your eligibility for Saxenda or Wegovy, I encourage you to reach out to our clinic. Our team can provide a comprehensive evaluation based on your unique circumstances. Feel free to contact us at 270-629-6722 or visit our website, where you can also find us on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. At Jackson Health and Wellness Clinic, we are dedicated to supporting you in achieving your weight loss goals.

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