With rising obesity rates, embarking on a journey to better health and weight loss is a path many are walking. In medical solutions for weight reduction, two names often come up: Mounjaro and Wegovy. These weight loss injections are gaining attention since both were approved for weight loss in the UK in 2023, but how do you know which one is right for your weight loss journey?
Mounjaro vs Wegovy: At a Glance
|Side Effects||Nausea, diarrhoea, vomiting||Nausea, diarrhoea, constipation, vomiting, headache|
|Frequency of Injection||Weekly Subcutaneous Injection||Weekly Subcutaneous Injection|
|Dosage||Injection pens increase in increments from:|
|Injection pens increase in increments from:
|Who Can Take It||Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 or more |
BMI between 27-30 and have weight-related health problems
|BMI of 30 or above
BMI of 27 or above and a weight-related health condition
|Availability on the NHS||Available||Available|
|Intended Use||Type 2 Diabetes||Weight Loss Treatment|
|How to Use||Mounjaro How to Use||Wegovy How to Use|
What are Weight Loss Injections?
Weight loss injections, such as Mounjaro and Wegovy, are part of a modern approach to chronic weight management. These injections typically work by:
- Hormonal Regulation: Many weight loss injections work by mimicking or influencing hormones that regulate appetite and food intake.
- Metabolic Changes: Some injections can alter how your body metabolises food and stores fat.
- Appetite Suppression: By affecting certain hormones or areas of the brain responsible for hunger signals, these injections can reduce feelings of hunger.
- Improving Insulin Sensitivity: For people with type 2 diabetes, some weight loss injections can improve insulin sensitivity, which helps in better blood sugar control.
It’s important to note that these injections are part of a comprehensive weight management plan, which includes lifestyle modifications like diet and exercise. They are prescribed for individuals who have not achieved significant weight loss through diet and exercise alone and are used in cases where obesity poses considerable health risks.
What is Mounjaro?
Mounjaro, known generically as Tirzepatide, is a relatively new medication used for managing blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes. In clinical trials, it’s also proved effective in helping patients to lose weight. Mounjaro works by mimicking two different hormones:
- GLP-1 (Glucagon-Like Peptide-1): This hormone is naturally produced in the body and helps regulate appetite and food intake. By mimicking GLP-1, Mounjaro helps reduce hunger and calorie intake.
- GIP (Glucose-Dependent Insulinotropic Polypeptide): This hormone also plays a role in managing blood sugar levels. Mounjaro’s action on GIP helps improve insulin secretion and blood sugar control.
The combination of these two actions makes Mounjaro effective not only in managing diabetes but also in aiding weight loss. Its role in weight management is an added benefit, particularly for those who struggle with obesity and diabetes.
How does Mounjaro help with weight loss?
Mounjaro’s effectiveness in weight loss is primarily due to its dual hormone action. This dual action not only assists in managing blood sugar levels but also significantly influences body weight management:
- Enhanced Satiety (“Full”) Signals: Mounjaro intensifies the signals to the brain that you are full, which leads to a natural reduction in food intake.
- Efficient Insulin Utilisation: The medication’s influence on GIP enhances insulin efficiency in the body and doesn’t directly cause weight loss but supports metabolic health.
- Metabolic Rate Adjustments: Studies testing Mounjaro’s effectiveness in weight loss have found that it might subtly alter the body’s metabolic rate, making it more efficient at burning calories.
Who can use Mounjaro?
Mounjaro is suitable for adults aged 18 and over who:
- Have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 or more (obesity)
- Have a BMI between 27-30 (overweight) and also have weight-related health problems such as prediabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart problems.
Side Effects of Mounjaro
When considering Mounjaro for weight loss or diabetes management, it’s essential to be aware of its potential side effects and how everyone experiences side effects differently:
Common Side Effects
Uncommon Side Effects
- Low Blood Sugar (Hypoglycemia) (particularly in those taking other diabetes medications)
- Decreased Appetite
Rare Side Effects
- Kidney Problems
Click here for more Mounjaro side effects.
What is Wegovy?
Wegovy, known generically as semaglutide, is a medication used for weight management. It’s mainly aimed at adults who are obese or overweight and have weight-related medical problems.
Wegovy mimics the GLP-1 hormone, which regulates appetite and calorie intake. Unlike Mounjaro, which is primarily for diabetes management with weight loss as a secondary benefit, Wegovy targets weight loss explicitly.
Wegovy helps individuals achieve and maintain weight loss when used alongside a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity and is a promising option for those who have struggled with weight loss through diet and exercise alone.
How does Wegovy help with weight loss?
Wegovy aids in weight loss primarily through its action as a GLP-1 receptor agonist and, like Mounjaro, works by mimicking the effects of the GLP-1 hormone, which is naturally produced in the body:
- Reducing Appetite: By activating GLP-1 receptors, Wegovy increases feelings of fullness and reduces hunger, decreasing overall calorie intake.
- Slowing Gastric Emptying: The medication slows down the rate at which the stomach empties, prolonging the feeling of fullness and helping to control appetite.
- Impacting Blood Sugar Control: Wegovy also helps stabilise blood sugar levels, which can reduce cravings and erratic eating patterns.
It’s important to note that Wegovy is not a quick-fix solution but a tool to assist with long-term weight management. These effects create a conducive environment for weight loss combined with lifestyle changes like a healthy diet and regular exercise.
Who can use Wegovy?
Wegovy is aimed at those with:
- A BMI of 30 or above
- A BMI of 27 or above and a weight-related health condition such as asthma, diabetes or high blood pressure.
Side Effects of Wegovy
When considering Wegovy for weight loss, it’s essential to be aware of its potential side effects and how everyone reacts to them differently:
Common Side Effects
Uncommon Side Effects
- Gallbladder Problem
Rare Side Effects
- Kidney Problems
- Allergic Reactions
Click here for more Wegovy side effects.
Mounjaro and Wegovy Prescribing Information
Mounjaro and Wegovy were approved for weight loss at different times. Mounjaro was approved in November 2023 in the UK. In contrast, Wegovy is approved for weight management in adults with obesity or overweight with weight-related health problems and has been since September 2023.
In the UK, both Mounjaro and Wegovy require a prescription and cannot be purchased over the counter. The prescription process for weight loss medications in the UK starts with a consultation with your pharmacist or GP, who access your overall health and weight management needs as part of a comprehensive weight management plan. This treatment cannot be used as a single weight loss method and will include a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity. Your GP or pharmacist will then monitor your progress.
Differences between Mounjaro and Wegovy
Mounjaro and Wegovy have not been directly compared in clinical trials for weight loss. However, separate studies have shown significant results for both drugs. In a review of trials, tirzepatide (the active ingredient in Mounjaro), taken at the maximum dose of 15 milligrams (mg) once per week, was found to cause more significant weight loss than semaglutide (the active ingredient in Wegovy), taken at the maximum dose of 2.4 mg once per week. Another review looked at the weight loss effect of these drugs in people without diabetes and found tirzepatide (10 mg or 15 mg once per week) more effective for weight loss than semaglutide (taken at a dose of 2.4 mg per week).
Both have demonstrated that they are effective at supporting weight loss. However, it is important to note that these results are from separate studies and not a direct head-to-head comparison, and the effectiveness can vary based on individual health situations.
Intended Use and Patient Demand
While both are effective for weight loss, Wegovy and Mounjaro have different primary intended uses. Wegovy is specifically designed as a weight-loss injection for adults who are obese or overweight and have weight-related health issues. Mounjaro is considered off-label for weight loss, as this is a secondary use as its primary indication is for the management of type 2 diabetes. This makes Mounjaro a versatile medication for patients with type 2 diabetes who also need assistance with weight loss.
In terms of availability, Wegovy is readily accessible in the UK market. Patients can obtain it through a prescription from their GP or pharmacist, provided they meet the necessary criteria for its use. Its availability makes it convenient for those seeking a dedicated weight loss medication.
Although approved for use, Mounjaro is not yet available in the UK. As a dual-purpose medication, there will likely be a high demand for Mounjaro when stocks are available. This could lead to similar issues as seen with Ozempic earlier in 2023, which faced challenges in stock availability from high demand.
Similarities between Mounjaro and Wegovy
Active Ingredients – Tirzepatide vs Semaglutide
The active ingredients in Mounjaro and Wegovy are different, yet their mechanisms of action have notable similarities.
Semaglutide, the active ingredient in Wegovy and other medications like Ozempic, functions similarly to the hormone GLP-1.
Tirzepatide, the active ingredient in Mounjaro, mimics two hormones: GLP-1, like semaglutide, and GIP (glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide). They are both considered GLP-1 agonists, as they share the GLP-1 mimicking action with Wegovy, which stimulates insulin release and suppresses hunger and is designed to remain active in the body longer than the natural GLP-1, leading to extended feelings of fullness, reduced appetite, and lower calorie intake. They also slow the digestive process, prolonging the time food stays in the stomach.
The GIP in Mounjaro adds another layer. This dual hormone action helps in managing blood sugar levels more effectively, making it particularly useful for individuals with type 2 diabetes, alongside aiding in weight loss.
Side Effects of Wegovy and Mounjaro
Mounjaro and Wegovy, while different in their primary functions and active ingredients, share several similarities in their side effect profiles. Both medications, being GLP-1 receptor agonists, commonly cause gastrointestinal issues. This similarity is significant, especially for individuals concerned about how these medications might affect their daily lives.
The most common side effects for both Mounjaro and Wegovy include nausea, diarrhoea, and vomiting. These symptoms are particularly prevalent when starting the treatment and tend to decrease over time. This is a typical response as the body adjusts to the medication.
Additionally, both medications can cause changes in appetite and eating patterns due to their effects on hunger and satiety signals. This can lead to decreased food intake and, consequently, weight loss. While this is a desired effect for those seeking a weight loss drug, it’s important to manage it carefully to ensure it doesn’t lead to nutritional deficiencies.
Frequency and Dosage of Mounjaro vs Wegovy
Both Mounjaro and Wegovy are administered once a week by subcutaneous injection in either the upper leg, stomach or upper arm. Both medications require a slow increase in dosage over several weeks. This approach helps assess the body’s response to the drug and adjust the dose accordingly.
Buy Wegovy and Mounjaro Online from Click2Pharmacy
If you’re considering Wegovy or Mounjaro for weight loss or diabetes management, here at Click2Pharmacy, we offer a convenient and trusted way to access these medications. Our UK-registered online pharmacy has its own dedicated diabetes medication clinic and weight loss clinic to provide a reliable platform for your healthcare needs and then have the convenience of getting your medication delivered directly to your doorstep, saving you time and effort.
Our patients can quickly fill out an online assessment form to gather essential information about your health and medical history to ensure the medication is suitable and safe. Once you complete the form, it will be reviewed by qualified professionals who will assess your suitability for either Wegovy or Mounjaro. You can be assured of receiving professional advice and support throughout your treatment journey. Our team is available to answer any questions and provide guidance on the best use of your medication.
Mounjaro vs Wegovy FAQs
Can I switch from Ozempic to Mounjaro?
You can switch from Ozempic to Mounjaro, but it should be done under your prescriber’s guidance. They are both for type 2 diabetes and help with weight loss, but they work differently. Your GP or pharmacist will consider your health and response to Ozempic before switching and will guide you on the right dose to avoid side effects.
Can I switch from Ozempic to Wegovy?
You can switch from Ozempic to Wegovy, but it’s important to do this under the guidance of your GP or pharmacist. Both medications contain the same active ingredient, semaglutide, but they are approved for different uses. Ozempic is primarily for type 2 diabetes, while Wegovy is for weight loss.