FAQ: All You Need to Know About Losing Weight with Semaglutide

Get answers to all of your questions about Semaglutide, the break-through medication for weight-loss.

The game-changing weight loss medication semaglutide is everywhere right now and you may be wondering just how to get your hands on it. Or maybe wondering if semaglutide is right for you. Or how you’ll pay for semaglutide.

We’ve gathered your most popular questions and provided detailed answers from our team of leading functional and integrative medicine providers.

What is Semaglutide and How Does it Work to Lose Weight?

Semaglutide is an injectable medication that belongs to a class of medications called GLP-agonists. GLP-1 is a hormone that affects the regulation of blood sugar by stimulating glucose-dependent insulin secretion. Insulin is a hormone that promotes sugar uptake by the cells, stores sugar as glycogen, promotes the building of fat, and signals the body to build skeletal muscle.
 
GLP-1 agonists inhibits the release of the GLP-1 hormone , which slows down the release of sugar into the blood so that you burn more fat, and slows down gastric emptying to make you feel full longer while reducing the desire for food intake.
 

How does Semaglutide work for weight loss?

Semaglutide mimics the GLP-1 hormone in your body, which helps to control your blood sugar by blocking the liver from releasing sugar into your bloodstream, slows down how fast your stomach empties food, and causes your pancreas to release insulin.

Together, these functions can help you feel less hungry, causing you to eat less food and lose more weight.

Does Semaglutide curb your appetite?

Yes, it is believed that semaglutide can help curb your appetite. In addition to slowing gastric emptying to make you feel full for longer, GLP-1 also plays a direct role in how your appetite is regulated.

Let’s Get Technical. What Semaglutide Is NOT.

Is Semaglutide a type of insulin?

No, semaglutide is not a type of insulin or a substitute for insulin. Semaglutide simply stimulates your pancreas to release insulin when glucose (sugar) is present. Because semaglutide relies on your body’s own insulin to be released from the pancreas, semaglutide isn’t used when your pancreas can’t make insulin, such as in patients in type 1 diabetes.

Is Semaglutide a stimulant? How is semaglutide different from phentermine?

No, Semaglutide is not a stimulant. While other weight loss medications, like phentermine, have stimulating effects that help curb your appetite, Semaglutide works differently. This means that it is safe for more people, especially those with high blood pressure, sleep issues, anxiety and more.

Timeline: How Long Until You Lose Weight with Semaglutide? And Then What…

How long does it take to lose weight on semaglutide?

Weight loss will be gradual since you will slowly work your way up to the target dose of semaglutide, at which time you will see the most amount of weight loss.

This was the case in the clinical trials, where participants had their dose adjusted until they reached 2.4 mg once weekly. In the phase 3 trial that measured outcomes at 20 weeks, most participants were able to reach the full dose and also lost weight as their dose was increased. They saw additional weight loss over the remaining 48 weeks at the full dose. Study participants received treatment for a period of 68 weeks (about 1.5 years) during each of the four trials conducted by the company.

It is important to keep in mind that weight loss can take time, and you’ll see the best results when you are using your medication in combination with a healthy diet and exercise. Sometimes the medication may not work for you, or you may not be able to tolerate the full dose due to side effects.

Do I have to stay on semaglutide to keep the weight off?

Studies, as mentioned above, do not currently have data past 68 weeks. However, your program is designed to help you begin adopting healthy lifestyle changes that will promote lasting weight loss where medication is no longer needed. Being on semaglutide can help you learn to control your portion sizes. However, if you go back to how you were eating once off semaglutide, and do not adopt the necessary lifestyle changes to maintain the weight loss, it is likely that you will gain the weight back.

Purchase, Dosing and Insurance: Forum Health Medical Weight Loss with Semaglutide

Forum Health providers believe that using semaglutide can be one piece of the weight-loss puzzle. We may also recommend hormone balancing, checking thyroid function, accountability coaching, supplements, lifestyle changes, and more. We design a personalized plan that includes semaglutide, if your medical professional recommends it is appropriate for you.

Where will I buy my semaglutide?

Forum Health, like many integrative and functional medicine providers, uses compounding pharmacies that combine the same active ingredients as semaglutide to meet the individual patient’s needs, without the brand name and at a lower cost. The “generic” version if you will.

Forum Health only uses compounding pharmacies that are SF FDA Registered 503B facilities. Patients require a prescription for all compounded medications, just as they do for retail pharmaceutical prescriptions.

We do not prescribe the branded medicines Ozempic or Wegovy that are in short supply. Working with our network of compounding pharmacies helps ensure our recommended treatment’s availability.

Once enrolled in the program and evaluated by our qualified providers, the medication and the supplies will be shipped straight to your home or office. The price of the medication is included in the program for the first 8-to-10 weeks depending on your custom dose. You may purchase additional doses after the initial program if recommended by your provider.

How does the dosing work with semaglutide?

Forum Health’s approach to semaglutide is very personalized. We help you find the precision dose that gets you the maximum weight loss with the minimum side effects. There isn’t one dose that fits all. Our medical team and health coaches are highly trained in partnering with you to maximize your results in the safest, most effective way using our comprehensive functional medicine approach.

Our Forum Health providers prescribe custom dosing schedules based on each patient’s unique needs.

Is semaglutide covered by my insurance?

Semaglutide may be covered by insurance under the branded names. However, when it is not, branded Semaglutide cost can be up to $1,500 a month.

Forum Health bypasses the hassle of insurance and offers a full-service medical weight-loss program with better pricing on the medication through our compounding pharmacy partnerships.

Semaglutide Safety and Side Effects:

What should I avoid while on semaglutide?

  • Foods to Avoid: It is recommended to limit sugar, fast-digesting carbs, and processed foods. Fried foods and fatty foods, such as fast food, processed foods, carbonated and sugary drinks, and foods high in sugar and saturated fat are likely to make you nauseous while on semaglutide.
  • Alcohol: Limit how much alcohol you’re drinking while taking semaglutide, especially if you are diabetic. Alcohol can have an effect on your blood sugar, and there is a risk that it may drop too low in combination with semaglutide, especially if you are drinking on an empty stomach. Alcohol can irritate your stomach, too. This might make you feel worse in combination with some of the GI side effects from the medication.

Is semaglutide safe?

Yes. Semaglutide is considered to be safe and effective when used as indicated. “Safe” doesn’t mean that there aren’t risks. Semaglutide is FDA approved for weight loss in the branded version Wegovy.

Are there any significant health risks associated with using semaglutide?

The common side effects of Semaglutide are:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach pain
  • Constipation

Who cannot use Semaglutide?

Semaglutide is not recommended for those with a history of thyroid cancer,  type-1 diabetes, history or pancreatitis, people who are pregnant, or if on other blood sugar lowering medications.

Can I go on semaglutide if I’ve had gastric bypass surgery?

Studies show a clear benefit of adjunct treatment with semaglutide in post-bariatric patients. However, consultation with your healthcare provider is necessary to determine if it’s right for you.

Begin your weight loss journey with the Forum Health Medical Weight Loss with Semaglutide Program.

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