Semaglutide (GLP1 agonists)

At present, the therapeutic application and potential value of GLP-1RAs in diseases other than diabetes has become a research hotspot.- Xin Zhao

Semaglutide (GLP1 agonists)
Semaglutide (GLP1 agonists)

image by: Colleen Marie Walker

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Non-insulin Injectable Diabetes Medications

... there are numerous types of diabetes pills that can be effective in treating type 2 diabetes. But, thanks to the changing nature of this condition, over time, diabetes pills may not be enough to keep blood sugars and HbA1c within a safe range. In the past, the next step would be to start on insulin. And while many people do, indeed, go on insulin (and there’s nothing wrong with that), today, there are other options: these are the non-insulin injectable medications.

The other class of non-insulin injectables that is more widely used than the amylin analog is known as GLP-1 receptor agonists. The action of these drugs is based on incretins, which are gut hormones that work to increase…

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 Non-insulin Injectable Diabetes Medications

You might be wondering why anyone would take these drugs, since they must be injected. These drugs do lower HbA1c levels, but only by 0.5% to 1.5%. They’re also only used as a second or third agent, not by themselves. One of the main draws of these drugs is that they do lead to weight loss in about 80% of users, and they seem to curb hunger, making it a good choice for people who constantly feel hungry. Weight loss eventually plateaus, however, so keep that in mind.

GLP-1 Agonists

GLP-1 agonists are used to lower blood sugar levels to treat diabetes type 2 by releasing more insulin into the bloodstream


Ozempic® is a medicine for adults with type 2 diabetes that, along with diet and exercise, may improve blood sugar. While not for weight loss, Ozempic® may help you lose some weight.


Though not for weight loss, RYBELSUS® may help you lose some weight


Wegovy® is for adults with obesity (BMI ≥30) or overweight (excess weight) (BMI ≥27) who also have weight-related medical problems to help them lose weight and keep it off. Wegovy® should be used with a reduced-calorie meal plan and increased physical activity.


Many formulations of GLP-1 agonists, all of which historically were injectable and administered subcutaneously due to poor oral bioavailability, can be prescribed in the United States. Lixisenatide and liraglutide dosing are once-daily, albiglutide, dulaglutide, semaglutide dosing is once weekly, and exenatide can be dosed either as a twice-daily or a once-weekly injection. Recently, the FDA approved an oral formulation of semaglutide.

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