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What is the difference between Saxenda vs Wegovy (and which is better?)
If you’re struggling with weight loss, and you’re finding that increased exercise and a better diet simply aren’t working for you, you might want to consider trying weight loss medication specifically designed to tackle obesity in people with chronic weight management issues.
Wegovy is a highly effective weight loss injection that when taken in conjunction with a reduced calorie diet and increased physical activity, will not only improve weight loss, but it will help keep the weight off too.
Now, you might have heard of a different weight loss injection, one that has been approved for use within the NHS in 2020 – Saxenda. So why would you switch to use Wegovy?
Well, for starters, according to manufacturer Novo Nordisk, Wegovy is a direct improvement on Saxenda.
Is Wegovy and Saxenda the same weight loss medicine?
If you’re obese, using a weight loss medication to help in your fight means you stand a higher chance of winning the weight loss battle.
In recent years, weight loss drug company Novo Nordisk, has released several highly effective weight loss medications, to help obese people lose weight and keep it off.
These drugs work by regulating appetite. They make you feel fuller and less hungry, allowing you to eat less and lose weight.
The first to be released was a drug called Liraglutide. This was originally developed as an anti-diabetic medicine, marketed under the brand name Victoza. When it was discovered quite how effective it was as an efficient weight reduction treatment, it was repurposed and given the brand name Saxenda.
The same thing happened with another of their anti-diabetic medicines, Semaglutide. Again, when it was realised quite how efficient this medicine was as a weight loss drug, it was also rebranded and marketed under the brand name Ozempic.
Now, a new version of Semaglutide has been developed, called Wegovy, and it has has been licenced for weight reduction in the UK and will soon be available to buy (with a prescription) online soon.
How does Wegovy differ from Saxenda?
Wegovy and Saxenda are both weight loss drugs. They’re both suitable for people living with obesity (i.e. they have a BMI of 30+), or people who are overweight (i.e. they have a BMI of 27+, have type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and/or high cholesterol.
They’re both injected, however Saxenda is a daily injection, whereas Wegovy is a weekly injection.
But that’s not the only difference.
Wegovy is an improved version of Saxenda. Clinical trials show Wegovy improves blood sugar levels, lowers risk of cardiovascular disease, and delivers better weight loss outcomes.
What is Wegovy and how does it work?
Wegovy (semaglutide) is the first once weekly prescription weight management injectable drug soon to be available through the NHS.
In essence, Wegovy is the new and improved weight loss drug, Ozempic.
Ozempic was originally designed to treat type 2 diabetes, but when it was discovered to be incredibly effective as a weight loss drug, it was rebranded as such, and prescribed to overweight patients with type 2 diabetes.
Wegovy is the latest, improved iteration of Ozempic, but with a much higher dosage of semaglutide. Making it a much better weight loss drug.
Wegovy is injected once weekly. Your healthcare provider will start you out with 0.25 mg weekly injections for one month, slowly increasing your dose as your body adjusts to the medicine, over the next four months, until you’re on the full dose of 2.4 mg.
When you inject Wegovy alongside a healthy eating plan and increased physical exercise, you will experience even better weight loss.
Wegovy is suitable for use as a long term solution for weight management, without causing significant side effects.
How effective is Wegovy to shift excess weight?
In a phase 3, 68 week medical study, people given Wegovy lost on average 15% of their body weight, in comparison to those on the placebo who only lost 2.5% body weight.
How much body weight can you lose with Saxenda or Wegovy?
In clinical trials, 3 out of 5 people taking Saxenda will achieve weight loss of 5% or more. That’s an average of 12 pounds – or 5 kg.
1 out of 3 people taking Saxenda will achieve weight loss of 10% or more. That’s an average of 23 pounds – or 10 kg
And on average, 6% of people will lose 20% or more of their body weight. That’s an average of 47 pounds – or 21 kg.
With Wegovy, on the other hand, research carried out by Novo Nordisk, showed people with obesity or excess body weight, in a 68-week study, average weight loss for participants was about 15% of their body weight, which equates to 35 pounds or 16 kg.
Once weekly injection vs daily injections
It is personal preference which injection you like – some people like the routine of taking a daily injection, whereas others prefer a more convenient weekly injection.
For those who hate injections all together, Novo Nordisk has announced they’re working on an oral version of Wegovy to further improve adherence to the programme.
Difference between Semaglutide and Liraglutide
Both Wegovy (semaglutide) and Saxenda (liraglutide) are GLP-1 inhibitors, meaning they both behave like the naturally occurring hormone, Glucagon like Peptide-1. Saying that, semaglutide has a longer lasting period of action.
Semaglutide is a weekly injection, whereas liraglutide is a daily injection, this is because semaglutide has a longer lasting action in the body.
Research suggests semaglutide is more effective at weight loss, at lowering cardiovascular risk, and at improving blood glucose control, compared to Liraglutide.
Research participants reported more side effects with semaglutide than liraglutide, in particular nausea and diarrhoea.
Is Semaglutide better than Liraglutide?
In recent research, semaglutide was found to significantly improve the control of blood glucose and body weight, in comparison to liraglutide. It was also found to be vastly superior to liraglutide in terms of weight reduction analysis.
What to consider before taking weight loss medication
Are you willing to inject yourself daily or weekly, long term, to see the weight loss benefits and maintain a healthy weight?
Will you be able to tolerate the potential side effects, including nausea.
Do you have have a history or family history of medullary thyroid cancer, or multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2? If so, you shouldn’t take either of these medications.
Are you pregnant or are you planning a pregnancy in the near future? Speak with your healthcare provider about the suitability of this medicine.
If you have type-2 diabetes, your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medicines reduce the risk of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
Which is better: Saxenda® or Wegovy®?
So, which is the better weight loss solution? Saxenda or Wegovy?
Both are GLP-1 inhibitors, and they both work to promote weight loss in obese people. However, a key difference between the two drugs is that Saxenda is a daily injection, whereas Wegovy is weekly injection.
More importantly, research suggests that Wegovy leads to more weight loss than Saxenda.