New FDA-Approved Weight Loss Drug Doubles Odds of Success Toward Losing Weight

Weight loss

According to weight loss experts, losing weight through exercise and dieting is the only way to safely and effectively lose weight that will remain lost. However, what if there was a way to double the odds that you will lose 5-10% of your initial body weight through recommended standard weight loss efforts? Find out now about a new weight loss drug for overweight and obese adults that experts recently reported can help give you a significant jump-start on losing weight.

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According to a news release from the Endocrine Society, researchers reported their results of a year-long study involving over 3,000 overweight or obese study participants about the effectiveness of a new drug called “liraglutide” that is recommended for patients while on a calorie controlled diet and exercise regimen. The study made a comparison between volunteers who made the same diet and exercise lifestyle changes, with 2,487 of them receiving liraglutide and 1,244 provided with a placebo.

All volunteers had comorbid conditions such as pre-diabetes, hypertension and dyslipidemia. However, those diagnosed with diabetes were excluded from the trial.

The importance of this study was to find adjuncts to aid current obesity guidelines that recommend an initial weight loss goal of 5 to 10% of a dieters’ starting weight. Earlier research has shown marked improvements in multiple health markers such as lowered blood pressure and improved fasting blood sugar responses when overweight or obese patients managed to lose 5 to 10% of their weight.

According to the press release, nearly 35% of the American population is overweight or obese and as such is in need of supplemental help including and beyond exercise and dieting:

“The US Food and Drug Administration recently approved liraglutide 3.0 mg for the treatment of obesity as an adjunct to diet and exercise,” said lead study author Patrick M. O'Neil, PhD, director of the Weight Management Center and professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences of the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. “In the US, 3.0 mg of liraglutide is indicated as an adjunct to a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity for chronic weight management in adults who are overweight or obese and have at least one weight-related comorbidity.”

After 56 weeks on the study, the volunteers (both on either the tested drug or the placebo) who lost 5% or more of their body weight were categorized as “responders. All other participants who failed to lose at least 5% of their pre-study base weight were categorized as “non-responders.” The results were as follows:

• 63.2% of participants on liraglutide were considered “responders,” compared with only 27.1% qualifying as “responders” while on placebo.

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• “Responders” in both the drug and placebo groups achieved clinically meaningful improvements in blood pressure and blood sugar levels.

• Fasting plasma glucose decreased most among the “responders” in the liraglutide group followed by the “non-responders” in the liraglutide group.

• Waist circumference, systolic blood pressure, and a 36-Item Short Form Health Survey (SF-36) decreased most among the “responders” in the liraglutide group followed by the “responders” in the placebo group

• Adverse events to liraglutide were largely similar in both “responders” and “non-responders” who were given the drug.

The researchers determined that taking liraglutide in conjunction with dieting and exercise approximately doubled the odds of successfully achieving a weight loss goal of losing 5-10% of initial weight, and that this can have significant ramifications toward improved health.

“Many people with obesity are unaware of its severity and its implications for their health. Losing 5% to 10% of their weight can give them significant health benefits, including improvements in blood glucose levels, blood pressure, cholesterol levels and obstructive sleep apnea. The nature of this disease is complex and maintaining weight loss can be challenging. Multiple treatment options are needed to help people with obesity lose weight, keep it off, and improve their health,” stated Dr. O’Neil in the press release.

For more about weight loss drugs that have demonstrated favorable results toward improved health, here is an article about a new weight loss drug that the FDA approved earlier this year.

Reference: Endocrine Society press release― “Liraglutide May Help Overweight and Obese Adults Lose Weight Safely and Effectively.”

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