Medically reviewed on Aug 23, 2023 by Jordan Stachel, M.S., RDN, CPT. To give you technically accurate, evidence-based information, content published on the Everlywell blog is reviewed by credentialed professionals with expertise in medical and bioscience fields.
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In the US, an estimated 73.6% of adults aged 20 and over are overweight.  To that end, weight loss to improve health outcomes is a common concern amongst Americans.
If you’re looking to lose body weight to improve your overall well-being, you may have come across medications like Mounjaro® or Wegovy®. While both of these medications may help support weight loss goals, it’s important to understand how they work, the potential side effects, and what requirements you need to meet to secure a prescription from a healthcare provider.
Below, we cover the key distinctions between Mounjaro® vs. Wegovy® to help you decide which medication could be right for you.
Mounjaro® is the brand name for a drug called ‘tirzepatide’. It’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.  However, as of 2022, it hasn’t been approved for the treatment of weight loss in the absence of type 2 diabetes. 
Tirzepatide is used to treat type 2 diabetes because it impacts two metabolic hormones related to blood sugar regulation :
By impacting these hormones, Mounjaro® increases insulin sensitivity. Insulin is a hormone that allows the body to absorb glucose obtained from food sources.  Insulin resistance is a condition in which your body becomes less responsive to insulin, flooding the bloodstream with glucose.  People with type 2 diabetes are insulin resistant. 
Thus, Mounjaro® works to repair insulin resistance, helping the body do a better job of processing and removing glucose from the blood. It also has the effect of :
In combination, these effects may also result in weight loss.
Healthcare providers may prescribe Mounjaro® to qualifying patients who have type 2 diabetes.
The medication is not prescribed to patients who :
Wegovy® is the brand name for a version of a drug known as ‘semaglutide’.  Semaglutide is primarily used to manage type 2 diabetes, though it can also assist with weight loss.  It works as a weight loss treatment in two ways :
For this reason, people who take Wegovy® may feel fuller earlier, or after eating less food than usual. Wegovy® is taken by injection, usually to the thigh, abdomen, or upper arm. [6,7]
Semaglutide is the same weight loss drug found in the medication Ozempic®, which may also be used for weight loss purposes.  However, Wegovy® has a higher maximum dose— as the dose for Ozempic® is 2 milligrams per week, while Wegovy®’s dose is 2.4 milligrams per week. 
A healthcare provider may prescribe Wegovy® if you meet the following criteria :
If you’re prescribed Wegovy®, it’s likely your weight loss treatment plan will also involve making dietary and behavioral changes.7 Proper nutrition and regular exercise are equally important components of a weight loss protocol that includes Wegovy®. 
Mounjaro® and Wegovy® are two very different drugs, though they both may result in body weight loss for people who use them. If you have type 2 diabetes, you might qualify for a prescription, but you’ll need to consult with a healthcare provider to get one.
If your healthcare provider has recommended one or both of these medications, knowing the following advantages and disadvantages of either weight loss drug can help you choose which is right for you.
See related: Overweight vs. Obese
Mounjaro® can be a helpful drug for people with type 2 diabetes, but it may require some planned adjustments in cooperation with your healthcare provider. If you’re considering using Mounjaro®, bear in mind that:
Additionally, like most medications, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the side effects that can come with the use of Mounjaro®. These include :
Wegovy® can be a supportive weight loss medication for people with type 2 diabetes, as well as people who are focused on losing weight. That said, there are some considerations to bear in mind before starting Wegovy®:
It’s common for people who take Wegovy® to observe side effects, particularly as they adjust to the medication. The side effects that may not require medical intervention include :
If you’re persistently experiencing these symptoms to the point of distress, it’s best to reach out to your care team. Wegovy® isn’t the only way to treat type 2 diabetes or meet weight loss goals, and it may be worth exploring other options with your healthcare provider’s guidance.
Your clinical eligibility for taking Mounjaro® or Wegovy® may differ. If you’ve been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you may be eligible to use either medication. If your goal is to lose weight, but you do not have type 2 diabetes, you may be eligible for a Wegovy® prescription if your healthcare provider deems it necessary.
But, before taking either medication to help with chronic weight management, it’s important to acknowledge that both medicines may require you to make significant lifestyle or behavioral changes. These adjustments can help you weather any side effects you may experience, as well as support your weight loss goals.
And remember, better health isn’t solely about weight loss. A balanced diet full of nutrient-dense foods, regular physical exercise, and activities that reduce stress can all help your body get back to a healthy baseline and help you cultivate a sense of enduring well-being.
See related: What is a Balanced Diet?
Whether you want to monitor your metabolism or keep tabs on your thyroid health during your weight loss journey, Everlywell helps you stay informed about your wellbeing from the comfort and convenience of home with a collection of easy-to-use, at-home test kits.
Additionally, our Weight Care+ program provides you with access to a broad network of telehealth experts in weight loss. By enrolling in our online weight loss program, you’ll find a comprehensive support system alongside one-on-one virtual visits with licensed clinicians, healthy lifestyle content, and access to GLP-1 receptor agonist prescriptions for qualified candidates.
To discover how Everlywell can complete your picture of total health, visit Everlywell online today.