Lose Weight With Liraglutide

Liraglutide is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) medication for chronic weight management in adult patients with obesity or overweight with at least one weight-related condition (such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes mellitus, or high cholesterol), for use in addition to a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity.

Read more to understand how liraglutide works for certain individuals to maximize weight loss.

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What is Liraglutide? 

Liraglutide is a selective GLP-1 receptor agonist that has been found to reduce hunger and increase satiety in individuals with high BMIs. It's one of the weight loss drugs available from an Alfie doctor for the purpose of weight reduction or a weight-related health challenge, such as diabetes. It's made by Novo Nordisk.

Individuals who have a personal or family history of MTC, or are affected by Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2), should not take liraglutide. In patients with a past serious adverse reaction to liraglutide , including isomaltulose, aspartame, and sucralose, as well as those with a history of pancreatitis, liraglutide should also be avoided.

Brand Name and Class

Liraglutide is a synthetic peptide that mimics the natural hormone GLP-1 in the body. Liraglutide works by slowing down the stomach's emptying and acting as an appetite suppressant, allowing you to feel fuller after eating. It also slows down sugar absorption into the circulation, keeping blood sugar levels stable. It is available in brand names Saxenda and Victoza

How it works

GLP-1 is a naturally occurring hormone in your body that controls the appetite and food intake by acting on your brain. Liraglutide makes you feel less hungry and eats less food to help you lose weight by imitating GLP-1.

GLP-1s help the pancreas produce insulin after meals, lowering blood sugar levels. They bind to receptors in the brain to curb hunger. These receptors release chemicals that reduce your appetite by stimulating areas of your brain that control food intake. GLP-1s are naturally occurring molecules, but they have a short life span in humans. That's why taking GLP-1s can assist you lose weight even though your body already produces its own.

Is this prescription effective for weight loss? 

Liraglutide is one of the fastest, most reliable methods to help you lose weight quickly and safely, and has been shown in clinical trials to help individuals lose an average of 10% of their initial body weight, when combined with a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity, compared to participants who took a placebo.

How much does Liraglutide Cost?

Liraglutide may be an expensive medication, with an out-of-pocket cost above $1,000. Alfie works with the vast majority of commercial and employer insurance plans in order to get coverage for your doctor-prescribed medication.

Liraglutide is not covered by Medicare or Medicaid.

How do injection pens work?

Liraglutide is a GLP-1 receptor agonist that is administered once daily via a simple pen injector syringe and does not require the use of injections. Liraglutide injections are easy to administer, with no healthcare professional or clinician required. Liraglutide shots are given into the fatty tissue just beneath the skin's surface and should be administered once weekly at the same time each day. Liraglutide should be kept in the refrigerator between 36°F and 46°F or at room temperature for shorter periods of time.

If your doctor recommends Liraglutide, he or she will walk you through the procedure of injecting it into your abdomen or upper thigh. If you are unable to inject yourself, another person can do it for you.

Understanding your dosage

GLP-1 injectable medications are offered via a step-up approach, meaning your Alfie healthcare professionals (either an MD or NP) will prescribe a higher dose as your progress through the program until you are at the full dose. This helps minimize the risk of any side effects of taking the medication.

Saxenda comes in 5 different dose strengths. You start Saxenda at a dose of 0.6 mg once a day and increase the dose every week until you reach the full dose of 3 mg. It’ s important to follow the dosing schedule as recommended by your health care provider.

The Victoza pen contains 18 mg of Victoza and will deliver doses of 0.6 mg, 1.2 mg, or 1.8 mg. The number of doses that you can take with a Victoza pen depends on the dose of medication that is prescribed for you. Your health care provider will tell you how much Victoza to take. You start Victoza at a dose of 0.6 mg once daily and increase the dose after one week until you reach the full dose of 1.2 mg. Your doctor can also prescribe 1.8 mg if you do not see effectiveness with the 1.2 mg dose. It’s important to follow the dosing schedule as recommended by your health care provider.

Potential Side Effects

Liraglutide has a very favorable side effect profile and is generally well-tolerated. Nausea or indigestion are the most common adverse effects, which typically go away within the first month of treatment.

Other common side effects of Liraglutide mediations include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, abdominal pain, headache, fatigue, dyspepsia, dizziness, abdominal distention, eructation, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) in patients with type 2 diabetes, flatulence, gastroenteritis, and gastroesophageal reflux disease. Taking GLP-1 medications may also put you at serious risk of hypoglycemia or acute kidney injury if you are taking another similar medication at the same time.

If you have a personal or family history of medullary thyroid carcinoma or multiple endocrine neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN2), the GLP-1 class of drugs is not suggested. They're likewise hazardous if you've had pancreatitis. If you have any questions regarding your family heritage and whether you can handle a GLP-1 receptor agonist drug, talk to your primary care doctor.

Alternative Medications

Liraglutide is one of the multiple GLP-1 weight-loss classes of drugs. Other GLP-1 drug classes include:  

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