Blog/Are GLP-1 Compounds as Effective as Ozempic and Wegovy in Weight Loss?
1/29/2024 | 3 min read

Are GLP-1 Compounds as Effective as Ozempic and Wegovy in Weight Loss?

Understand the difference, how they work and their effectiveness

African American woman looking thoughtful while holding a cup of coffee

In the pursuit of an effective weight loss solution, you’ve likely come across an overwhelming amount of medications, treatments, dietary recommendations and even workout programs that deliver different results unique to the individual. 

Today, we’re here to shed some light on one of the top emerging (and most fast acting) solutions out there for weight management, GLP-1 medications

I’m sure you’ve  seen ads for Ozempic and Wegovy, right? But are you familiar with their main ingredient, semaglutide? It’s what links compounded GLP-1s with the branded options, resulting in very similar results with a vastly different price tag. After reading this, you’ll be an expert in all things semaglutide, trust us.

Let’s jump right in and explore the effectiveness of GLP-1 compounds compared to some of the more frequently advertised branded medications out there.

Understanding GLP-1 compounds

To get us started, let’s first breakdown what a GLP-1 is and exactly how it’s used to help you lose weight. GLP-1 (Glucagon-like peptide-1) compounds are a class of medications designed to regulate blood sugar levels for diabetic patients. Recently, they have shown tremendous promise in aiding weight loss patients, as well. 

Compounds are the generic versions of branded GLP-1s like Ozempic and Wegovy. They are prepared in an FDA regulated compounding pharmacy and contain the same Glucagon-like peptide hormones combined with body-safe vitamins like B6. Since they contain the same active ingredients, compound GLP-1s offer the same weight loss results as branded GLP-1s but at a fraction of the cost.

These compounds work by mimicking the effects of GLP-1, a hormone that stimulates insulin production, slows down digestion and even reduces appetite. Semaglutide, a prominent member of this class, has garnered global attention for its proven role in rapid weight loss treatment.

Semaglutide for weight loss

Semaglutide is a GLP-1 compound that has been extensively studied for its weight loss effects. Clinical trials have demonstrated its ability to significantly reduce body weight in overweight and obese individuals. It  has also been shown to cause increased feelings of fullness and reduced food intake, making it a promising option for those struggling to find a successful solution to excess weight.

The main functions of semaglutide work to suppress appetite, slow gastric emptying, improve blood sugar control and increase energy expenditure. It must be prescribed and monitored by medical providers, and lifestyle changes like diet and exercise are often recommended alongside to ensure long-term success.

Compound vs. branded GLP-1 medications

One crucial consideration for individuals exploring weight loss options is whether to opt for compound medications or splurge on the branded alternatives, like Ozempic or Wegovy. Branded medications are well-established, thoroughly tested and come with a known track record. On the other hand, compounds are custom-mixed by pharmacists to match the specific needs of an individual, often at a much lower cost.

How are they able to make compounds so affordable, you ask? By using a compounding pharmacy, the added costs of pre-filled injection pens, manufacturing facilities and distribution are eliminated. Instead, the vial of medication is shipped  from the compounding pharmacy directly to you, the patient.

Cost and insurance coverage

Branded medications like Ozempic and Wegovy come with a much higher price tag, typically in the range of $1,500 per month. In contrast, GLP-1 compounds, being custom-made by pharmacists, present a more cost-effective option. This can be a major deciding factor for those seeking an affordable yet effective solution for weight management.

The coverage of GLP-1 compounds, including medications like semaglutide, for weight loss can vary depending on individual insurance plans and policies. GLP-1s are primarily approved and covered by insurance for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. However, insurance coverage for off-label use, such as weight loss, may not be as straightforward. 

While some insurance plans may cover off-label use of medications, others may not, and individuals may be required to bear the full cost. It's essential for individuals considering GLP-1 compounds for weight loss to check with their insurance providers to understand the specific coverage details.

Safety and effectiveness

Safety is a paramount concern when it comes to weight loss medications. GLP-1 compounds have demonstrated a favorable safety profile in clinical trials. Common side effects may include nausea and vomiting, but these are generally mild and transient and are also commonly displayed in branded patients. As with any medication, it’s crucial for individuals to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the most suitable option based on your medical history, individual needs and desired outcomes.

The weight loss outcomes observed with GLP-1 compounds are extremely comparable to those achieved with Ozempic and Wegovy. The key lies in the ability of GLP-1 compounds to target the underlying factors contributing to weight gain, making them a viable alternative for those seeking effective solutions.

As the landscape of weight management continues to evolve, understanding the options available and making informed decisions with the guidance of healthcare professionals can pave the way for a successful and sustainable weight loss journey.

Ready to Start Your Weight Loss Journey?

Before embarking on any weight loss journey with medications, it’s important to consult certified professionals. They will assess your health conditions, provide personalized recommendations and monitor your ongoing treatment. The collaborative approach between patients and healthcare providers ensures tailored, effective and long-term weight loss.

This brings us to Agile Telehealth! We offer rapid treatment for your weight loss concerns from licensed providers across the U.S. Simply fill out a brief, 5-minute health survey and schedule some time to meet your clinician virtually. They will review your information, confirm eligibility and create a personalized weight loss plan for you to begin right away. 

Agile’s monthly weight loss subscription includes the cost of visits, labs and semaglutide medication shipped directly to you for just $349 per month! No hidden fees and no insurance needed. If you’re ready to take the first step towards achieving your weight loss goals, schedule your appointment today!