Semaglutide & Weight Loss

Semaglutide is a medication for a class of drugs called GLP-1 receptor agonists. It mimics the effects of a naturally occurring hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), released by the intestine in response to food.

Semaglutide is FDA-approved for treating type 2 diabetes. It is used to improve blood sugar control in adults who have not achieved adequate control with diet and exercise separately or with other oral medications. It is available in both injectable pen and pill form, and it is typically administered once a week.

In addition to its use for diabetes, semaglutide is also being studied at higher doses as a treatment for obesity. When used at higher doses, semaglutide has been shown to promote significant weight loss and improve cardiovascular risk factors in people with obesity.

As with any medication, semaglutide should only be consumed under the guidance of a healthcare provider, who can help determine if it is the right choice for you based on your needs and medical history.

Does Semaglutide work?

Yes. The STEP 5 trial for Semaglutide evaluated patients with an average BMI of 38.5 and followed them for 104 weeks. The practice found that, on average, patients who received weekly 2.4 mg doses and followed a behavior intervention plan lost 15% of their body weight.

 The study also discovered that the most weight loss occurred during the first 60 weeks, followed by a weight loss plateau. Despite the weight loss plateau, patients maintained positive results through week 104.

Weight Loss

What is considered significant weight loss?

Obesity medication professionals consider a weight loss of more than 5% to be a consequential loss with a treatment plan. At week 104, more than 75% of trial patients had achieved this. Over a third of the participants lost 20% of their body weight. Weight loss was associated with improved cholesterol, inflammatory markers, blood sugar, and blood pressure.

Benefits of Semaglutide

Some benefits of semaglutide include:

1. Improved blood sugar control: Semaglutide helps to lower blood sugar levels by generating more insulin secretion and reducing glucagon secretion.
2. Weight loss: Semaglutide has been proven to lead to major weight loss in people with type 2 diabetes, which may benefit overall health and reduce the risk of other health conditions.
3. Cardiovascular benefits: Semaglutide has been shown to decrease the chances of cardiovascular events, like heart attack and stroke, in people with type 2 diabetes who have a high risk of cardiovascular disease.
4. Lower risk of kidney disease: Semaglutide has been shown to reduce the risk of kidney disease in people with type 2 diabetes.
5. Convenient dosing: Semaglutide is available as a once-weekly injection, which can be more suitable for some people than other medications requiring daily dosing.

It is necessary to note that, like all medications, semaglutide may have potential side effects and risks, so it is essential to discuss with your healthcare provider if this medication is proper for you.

What are the requirements of Semaglutide?

To determine if semaglutide is appropriate for you, your healthcare provider will likely evaluate your medical history, current medications, and any other relevant factors.

Generally, semaglutide is prescribed to people with type 2 diabetes who have not attained enough blood sugar control with diet and exercise separately or with other oral medications.

Some other factors that may be considered when determining if semaglutide is appropriate for you include:

1. Your age
2. Your weight
3. Your kidney function
4. Your risk of cardiovascular disease
5. Any other health conditions or medications you are taking

It is essential to have open and honest communication with your healthcare provider to make sure that you receive the most appropriate treatment for your individual needs.


As with any medication, there are potential risks and side effects associated with semaglutide. Some of the risks and side effects of semaglutide include:

1. Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar): Semaglutide can cause low blood sugar levels, especially if taken with other medications that lower blood sugar levels.
2. Pancreatitis: Semaglutide has been associated with an increased risk of pancreatitis, which is pancreas inflammation.
3. Diabetic retinopathy complications: Semaglutide may cause an increase in the severity of diabetic retinopathy, a condition that affects the blood vessels in the retina of the eye.
4. Kidney damage: Semaglutide may cause damage to the kidneys, especially in people with pre-existing kidney disease.
5. Thyroid tumors: Semaglutide has been associated with an increased risk of thyroid tumors in animal studies.
6. Nausea and vomiting: Semaglutide can cause gastrointestinal side effects, such as nausea and vomiting.

Semaglutide & Weight Loss


Because of the side effects, some people will choose not to take this medication or will increase their dosage. Furthermore, without insurance, semaglutide can cost an average of $1,200, creating a pricing barrier. Medicare and some insurance plans will cover the costs, but this highly depends on a patient’s health situation.

What are the potential side effects of semaglutide at a higher dose for weight loss?

Some of the potential side effects of semaglutide at higher doses for weight loss may include:

1. Gastrointestinal side effects: Semaglutide can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, and other gastrointestinal side effects, which may be more severe at higher doses.
2. Decreased appetite: Semaglutide may cause a decrease in appetite, which can lead to weight loss, but may also reduce calorie and nutrient intake.
3. Headache: Semaglutide may cause headaches, which may be more severe at higher doses.
4. Increased heart rate: Semaglutide may cause an increase in heart rate, which may be more significant at higher doses.
5. Gallbladder disease: Semaglutide may increase the risk of gallbladder disease, such as gallstones.

Weight Loss with Semaglutide Treatment

Are you concerned about the potential risks of Semaglutide? While all medications have chances, Semaglutide has been extensively studied and proven safe and effective for many people with type 2 diabetes or obesity.

Renew Medical Centre can help you understand the risks and benefits of this medication and determine if it’s the right choice for you.