Saxenda Weight Loss and Its Side Effects

by Adarsh Patel
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Saxenda Weight Loss

Saxenda is used to help obese teens ages 12 to 17 who weigh more than 132 pounds (60 kg) lose weight and keep it off. It is meant for teens whose body weight is more than 60 kg. Saxenda is used along with a low-calorie diet and more physical activity.

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What does Saxenda mean?

Saxenda works like a natural hormone that the body makes and helps control blood sugar, insulin levels, and digestion.

People having a BMI of 30 kg/m2 or more are the only ones who are allowed to take Saxenda. It is perfect for people with a BMI of 27 kg/m2 and at least one health problem related to their weight (like Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol).

In 2020, FDA allowed Saxenda to be used by teenagers 12 and older with a BMI of 30 kg/m2 or more and a weight of at least 132 lbs (60 kg).

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How does the drug Saxenda work?

How does the drug Saxenda work
Saxenda Weight Loss

Saxenda is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) agonist, a type of medicine. GLP-1 is a hormone made in the gut that controls how much you want to eat and how your body handles sugar. GLP-1 agonists, like the drug Saxenda, act like this hormone.

Saxenda, in particular, helps people lose weight by making it take longer for the stomach to empty after a meal. This means that the food stays in your stomach longer, which makes you feel full. But this is also why Saxenda can make you feel sick to your stomach. 

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What is it used for?

Your doctor will give guidance on how to use Saxenda properly. They will also say how much and how often to get it. Make sure to do what your doctor tells you.

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Being given Saxenda

Saxenda will be put under your skin once a day. Your doctor will also help you to use an injection pen to give yourself the shot. On the website, you can also find instructions.

Saxenda can be injected into your thigh, stomach, or upper arm.

Labels and containers for medicines that are easy to find

Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you can’t read the label on your prescription. Some pharmacies may give labels for medications that:

  • have large print
  • use braille and have a code you can scan with a smartphone to turn the text into audio

If your pharmacy doesn’t have these options, your doctor or pharmacist may be able to suggest one that does.

Adding Saxenda to other treatments

Saxenda is meant to be part of a long-term plan for weight loss. This should include a plan for eating less and working out more.

It is advised not to use Saxenda with other products that help you lose weight. There are prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs, herbal products, and weight loss supplements. We don’t know if taking Saxenda with these other medicines is safe.

Meal plans for Saxenda

Your doctor, dietitian, or nutritionist can help you devise a plan for healthy, low-calorie meals that fit your lifestyle.

How much weight do most people lose on Saxenda?

Saxenda has been looked at in both adults and teens, both with and without Type 2 diabetes. 

Over a period of 56 weeks, these studies compared Saxenda to a placebo ( which is an injection without medication).

In one study, adults who suffering with Type 2 diabetes lost an average of 5% to 6% of their starting body weight. People who took Saxenda lost about 3–4% more weight than those who took a sugar pill (placebo).

In another study, adults without diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes lost an average of 8% of their starting body weight. This was about five percent more weight loss than the group that just got a sugar pill.

During the teen study, people in the Saxenda group lost almost 3% of their starting body weight. This was 5% more weight loss than those in the placebo group, who actually gained weight.

Studies show that Saxenda can help you healthily lose weight. But remember that it works best when combined with a low-calorie diet and regular exercise.

How does Saxenda make you feel?

How does Saxenda make you feel
Saxenda Weight Loss

It’s advisable to discuss side effects with your doctor about Saxenda. They can tell you how to deal with them and what to look for if it’s a more serious problem. Read on to know more info about the most common and dangerous side effects.

Effects that happen often

As we’ve already discussed, Saxenda slows down how fast food moves through your stomach. This can sick your stomach and make you throw up or have diarrhea or constipation. It can also lead to upset stomach and stomach pain.

Most of the time, these stomach-related side effects happen when you first start taking Saxenda or when you change the amount you take. Because of this, your dose is usually changed slowly over a few weeks to reduce these side effects as much as possible.

These are some other common side effects:

  • Pain where the needle went in
  • Headache
  • Fatigue\sDizziness
  • Fever

Effects that are bad

There is a boxed warning (the FDA’s most serious warning) about the risk of thyroid C-cell tumors with GLP-1 agonists. Animal studies have shown this risk, but it’s still unclear if these medicines can cause tumors in people.

So, don’t take Saxenda if you or someone in your family has had medullary thyroid cancer before.

Other rare but severe side effects that could happen are:

  • Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas (inflamed pancreas)
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) (hypoglycemia)
  • Fast heartbeat or fluttering in the chest
  • Kidney problem
  • Severe reactions to allergens
  • Thoughts and actions that lead to suicide

What does Saxenda cost?

Prescription drug prices can change based on many things. Some of these things are what your insurance covers and which pharmacy you go to.

The drug price per month will vary from person to person, as will the price with and without insurance.

Coupons or other methods to save money on Saxenda

This drug doesn’t come with a coupon from the manufacturer. But the company that makes the drug does offer a card that can save you money. You can also the company’s website that makes the drug to find out more.


Saxenda is an injection that is given once a day and can help people with long-term weight problems. Adding it to changes in diet and exercise has been shown to help people lose more weight.

Saxenda make you feel less hungry, but you might get an upset stomach when you first start taking it. Most of the time, your dose is slowly increased over time to help lessen this effect.

Talk to the doctor to find out if it’s right for you and if there are any other options. If you would rather only get an injection once a week.

Warning ⚠️

Before taking any medicine, you should always talk to your doctor or another healthcare professional. The information about drugs here is subject to change, and it is not meant to cover all possible uses, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or bad effects. Even if a drug or drug combination doesn’t have any warnings or other information, that doesn’t mean it is safe, effective, or suitable for all patients or all uses.

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