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What is GLP-1 Therapy? How Can It Help in Weight Loss?

What is GLP-1 Therapy? How Can It Help in Weight Loss?

In the search for weight loss and diabetes management, one innovative approach has captured the attention of the medical community: GLP-1 therapy. It paved the way for a new era in healthcare; the finding turned out to be a breakthrough and gave birth to the group of injected medications known as the GLP-1 receptor agonists, which mimic the action of GLP-1.

Today, GLP-1 therapy has played a leading role in the treatment of type 2 diabetes and obesity. This article focuses on how GLP-1 therapy works, how it aids in weight loss, and its positive effects on different organs.

What is GLP-1 Therapy?

At its core, GLP-1 therapy directs the body toward healthier glucose levels and decreases hunger by using the power of a hormone that occurs naturally to control blood sugar and appetite.

GLP-1 therapy (GLP-1 agonists) is a forefront treatment strategy focusing on weight loss and type 2 diabetes management. In response to meal consumption, the gut releases the GLP-1 hormone, which is central to controlling blood sugar, insulin production, and hunger. The main goal of GLP-1 therapy is to enhance these organic outcomes, which help with glycemic management and promote weight loss.

How Does GLP-1 Work for Weight Loss?

GLP-1 works in several ways to promote weight management strategies, especially for those struggling with obesity or weight-related health issues. Let’s shed light on how GLP-1 works for weight loss:

How Does GLP-1 Work for Weight Loss?
  • Blood Sugar Regulation: The GLP-1 therapy increases insulin release in response to elevated blood sugar levels and decreases glucagon release. This dual action helps stabilize blood sugar. Studies have shown that GLP-1 therapy can reduce HbA1c levels (a blood test that shows what your average blood sugar level was over the past two to three months) by 0.5% to 1.5%.
  • Appetite Control: By slowing gastric emptying, GLP-1 therapy extends the feeling of fullness post-meals, which naturally reduces food intake. Clinical trials have illustrated that GLP-1 therapy can lead to weight loss ranging from 5% to 10% of body weight over 6-12 months.

Building upon the foundational understanding of GLP-1's natural functions, pharmaceutical advancements have led to the development of GLP-1 receptor agonists.

What are GLP-1 Receptor Agonists, and How Does It Work?

GLP-1 receptor agonists (GLP-1 RA) are medications that mimic the naturally occurring GLP-1 hormone. About 1 in 10 people in the US has diabetes, and nearly all of them (95%) have type 2 diabetes. GLP-1 medications are a key treatment for this condition. Type 2 diabetes happens when the body can't use insulin properly, leading to higher blood sugar levels over time.

Beyond controlling blood sugar, GLP-1 receptor agonists also help to manage health, particularly weight loss and cardiovascular risk reduction.

1. Heart Health Benefits:

  • Atherosclerosis Management: GLP-1 receptor agonists achieve this by either halting or decelerating the progression of atherosclerosis, also known in shorthand as ASCVD (atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease). Moreover, they're instrumental in decreasing blood pressure and improving lipid profiles.

2. Regulating Blood Sugar:

  • Pancreatic Function: GLP-1 RA communicates with the pancreas, signaling it to release more insulin when blood sugar levels spike, which ensures that blood glucose levels stay within a normal range.
  • Liver Function: In addition to its action on the pancreas, GLP-1 RA limits the liver's release of stored glucose in order to form an additional layer of blood sugar stabilization.

3. Supporting Weight Loss:

  • Brain Function: GLP-1 RA has a significant impact on the brain, specifically the regions tasked with regulating appetite and food consumption. By acting here, GLP-1 RA contributes to weight loss efforts by reducing hunger and increasing satiety.

Medications in the GLP-1 Class

GLP-1 receptor agonists are a class of drugs that includes exenatide, lixisenatide, liraglutide, dulaglutide, semaglutide, and tirzepatide. Although each drug is different, they all serve the same purpose: to replace the body's own hormone called GLP-1 and control blood glucose levels.

Medications in the GLP-1 Class


One of the pioneering medications in this class, Exenatide, is available in two formulations: Byetta for twice-daily injections and Bydureon for once-weekly injections. It's particularly effective in managing blood sugar levels but requires careful consideration for those with reduced kidney function.


Lixisenatide belongs to the GLP-1 receptor agonists. It is delivered through injection, once daily or once a week, at patients' needs or as physicians recommend.

The drug has been endorsed by the FDA for use against type 2 diabetes, and it has been proven to be efficient in improving glycemic control, weight loss, and risk reduction of cardiovascular ailments in diabetic patients.


Liraglutide is an agent endorsed by the regulatory authorities for the treatment of diabetes and weight reduction. It is available in two forms: daily and once-weekly injectable.

Liraglutide is used widely among type 2 diabetes or obesity patients who are struggling with obesity. The daily injectable form is typically given once a day, while the once-weekly form is given once a week.


Dulaglutide is a drug that is introduced as one single shot weekly. It serves primarily as a diabetes medication, balancing sugar levels and stimulating insulin production in the pancreas.

Furthermore, this medication has proven to aid some patients who want to manage their weight loss. It helps reduce appetite and keeps people better satisfied, thus playing an essential role in weight loss programs.


The latest advancement in GLP-1 medication, Tirzepatide, targets additional pathways for an even more comprehensive approach to diabetes treatment and weight management.

In addition to its weight loss features, the medicine also exerts beneficial actions in terms of glycemic control. The results have raised hopes for a better treatment for people who suffer from obesity and related health conditions.

⇒ For those seeking a reliable alternative method to weight loss, the Tirzepatide package offers a promising solution.


Semaglutide is a medicine that initially appears as a weekly dose and then a daily dose. It is also approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes and obesity. It is a long-term injected drug that has been tested and found to result in substantial weight loss in both men and women.

⇒ As an alternative approach to weight loss, let's see how Semaglutide can help you here.

Side Effects of GLP-1 Therapy

GLP-1 therapy is generally well-tolerated, but some common side effects can occur, including:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Abdominal pain

These side effects are usually mild and temporary, often subsiding as the body adjusts to the medication. Maintaining good hydration can help manage these digestive issues.

Sometimes, severe side effects can occur.

  • Pancreatitis
  • Thyroid tumors
  • Suicidal behavior ideation

Therefore, before undertaking GLP-1 therapy, you must talk with your healthcare provider about probable side effects and the treatment's positive features.

Side Effects of GLP-1 Therapy

Although GLP1 therapy has been successful in managing type 2 diabetes and weight loss, it is simply one piece of a multifaceted approach. Modifying your lifestyle, such as eating right and exercising often, is another essential subject. Furthermore, GLP-1 weight loss natural supplements from STAAR LABS, may provide alternative or complementary treatment options.

Exploring GLP-1 Therapy

GLP-1 therapy is a groundbreaking approach to managing weight and reducing associated health risks. Being aware of how these medications function, as well as their potential benefits and drawbacks, can help you to have an informed conversation with your doctor about whether GLP-1 therapy is a good fit for you.

On the other hand, if you're looking for alternative solutions to support a healthy lifestyle, you may want to explore STARRLABS' products.

Chen, Zhengfang & Ilyas, Iqra & Kamato, Danielle & Little, Peter J. & Liu, Zhenghong (11/05/2021). Access date: 2024-03-25.

Xiaodan Lv & Yongqiang Dong & Lingling Hu (11/06/2020). Access date: 2024-03-25.

Jillian Foglesong Stabile, MD (20/12/2023). Access date: 2024-03-25.

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