Woman measuring her waistline while wondering "what is the best injection for weight loss?"

What Is the Best Injection for Weight Loss?

Written on January 23, 2024 by Jordan Stachel, MS, 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.

Table of contents

Recently, weight loss injections have gained a lot of attention. If you are curious about these injections and whether they are right for you, it is always best to consult a qualified healthcare provider. Read this article for everything you need to know.

What Are the Different Options for Weight Loss Injections?

With so many options, you may wonder what is the best injection for weight loss? Weight loss injections are glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) injections that regulate metabolism by impacting the way that carbohydrates are metabolized. Typically, these injections are administered in the upper arms, outer thighs, buttocks, hips, or lower back.

One class of these injections is known as semaglutide. These are GLP-1 injections that aid in losing weight due to the mimicking of the hormones in the gut.[1] Many people experience a decline in appetite as a result of these injections. Two common brands of semaglutide injections are Wegovy® and Ozempic®. The difference between the two medications lies in the maximum injection dosages, with Ozempic® maxing out at a 2 mg dose and Wegovy® maxing out at a 2.4 mg dose.[1] Wegovy® is approved by the FDA for weight management.

There is another FDA-approved medication for weight management known as liraglutide, or Saxenda®. This drug stimulates the pancreas to make more insulin when blood sugar levels rise.[1] While drugs that lower blood sugar can help people lose weight, many of these medications require that you have a comorbidity, such as type 2 diabetes, to be eligible.

To figure out what the best injection for weight loss is for you, it is best to consult a qualified healthcare provider. All medications can come with side effects, and it is important to be informed and under medical supervision before adding a new medication to your routine.

Everlywell Weight Loss Support

What Are the Side Effects of Weight Loss Injections?

Side effects of weight loss medications will vary based on your age, health status, and other medications or supplements that you take.[2] Some commonly reported side effects of Saxenda® include:

  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Bloating
  • Low energy
  • Nausea
  • Headache

While these are typically mild side effects, more serious side effects have been reported in some cases.[2] If you have recently started on a new weight loss injection and are experiencing any side effects, consult a healthcare provider as soon as possible.

If you are experiencing more mild side effects, some of them may pass as your body acclimates to the new medication. For example, nausea is the most commonly reported side effect of Saxenda®, and you can take several steps to help remedy it, including [2]:

  • Eating smaller meals more frequently
  • Avoiding foods that are aggravating to the gastrointestinal system, such as fried or spicy foods
  • Using ginger or peppermint
  • Not lying down after eating

The Effectiveness of Weight Loss Injections

While further research is needed in this area, some studies have indicated that these injections are helpful overall in aiding in weight loss.[3] Using semaglutide subcutaneously in people who are overweight or obese has been shown to help with weight loss. People lost about 6% to 11% of their body weight at three- and six-month intervals while taking the injections.[3]

While these weight loss medications can help individuals lose weight, those who want to lose weight need to prioritize their dietary and lifestyle habits to help support health and longevity. This means that if someone is taking a weight loss injection just to lose fat but is less concerned with optimizing their internal physiological functioning, they may be selling themselves short. So, in addition to weight loss, people need to focus on healthy dietary and lifestyle habit shifts to help support long-term health outcomes.

To help you along with your weight loss journey, try adding more protein, healthy fats, and vegetables to your dietary intake. Getting more of these nutrients helps to bolster your body with adequate nutrition so that it is fueled during weight loss. In addition, find a movement routine that works for you. It is generally recommended to try to try a routine that includes both cardio and weight-based movement.[4] If you need more personalized recommendations, it is always best to consult a qualified healthcare provider.

Support Your Physiological Health With Everlywell

At Everlywell, we combine the best in modernized, rigorous lab testing with easy-to-access, at-home medicine. We provide a range of blood tests and services, including our weight management program, that are available from the comfort of your home. Take control of your physiological health today with Everlywell.

Bloating vs. Fat Mass

Weight Loss and Hair Loss

Gaining Weight After Working Out


  1. GLP-1 agonists. Cleveland Clinic. Last Reviewed July 3, 2023. Accessed January 15, 2024. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/13901-glp-1-agonists.
  2. Liraglutide injection (Weight management). Cleveland Clinic. Last reviewed 2024. Accessed January 15, 2024. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/drugs/18595-liraglutide-injection-weight-management.
  3. Ghusn W, De La Rosa A, Sacoto D, et al. Weight loss outcomes associated with semaglutide treatment for patients with overweight or obesity. JAMA Network Open. 2022;5(9):e2231982. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2022.31982. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2796491.
  4. Institute of Medicine (US) Subcommittee on Military Weight Management. Weight Management: State of the Science and Opportunities for Military Programs. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2004. 4, Weight-Loss and Maintenance Strategies.

Jordan Stachel, MS, RDN, CPT is most fulfilled when guiding others towards making stepwise, sustainable changes that add up to big results over time. Jordan works with a wide variety of individuals, ranging in age from children to the elderly, with an assortment of concerns and clinical conditions, and has written for publications such as Innerbody. She helps individuals optimize overall health and/or manage disease states using personalized medical nutrition therapy techniques.

Everlywell makes lab testing easy and convenient with at-home collection and digital results in days. Learn More