Woman measuring waistline while wondering, "Why am I not losing weight on Wegovy®?"

Why Am I Not Losing Weight On Wegovy®?

Medically reviewed on Aug 10, 2023 by Jillian Foglesong Stabile, MD, FAAFP. 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

Wegovy® is a semaglutide injection that’s approved by the FDA for chronic weight management. However, it’s not available to just anyone. The weight loss medication is made for adults who are obese, with a body mass index (BMI) of at least 30 kg/m2. [1]

The weight loss drug is also available to children 12 and older in the 95th percentile of weight and adults who are overweight, with a BMI of at least 27 kg/m2, in addition to one or more weight-related medical problems, such as high blood pressure. [1]

All that said, the effects of semaglutide on weight loss can vary. So, if you’ve been wondering why am I not losing weight on Wegovy®, this article is for you.

The Science Behind Wegovy®

Wegovy® is a self-injectable weight loss medication that’s intended for use once a week. It’s also used in adjunct to lowering caloric intake and increasing physical activity. [1]

Its key component is a compound called semaglutide. It’s a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist, meaning it can mimic the hormone GLP-1. This hormone, which is produced in the gut, works to:

  • Slow the emptying of the stomach
  • Stimulate satiety
  • Reduce appetite levels
  • Increase insulin levels

As such, semaglutide is believed to help support weight loss by helping you feel full longer and reducing hunger levels, thus creating a caloric deficit in patients. [2]

The general dosage of semaglutide is 2.4 mg. Although, patients will work up to this amount over the course of four months.[4] How long does it take to lose weight on this medication?

A clinical trial, which enrolled 1,961 adults with a BMI of 30 or greater, or a BMI of at least 27 and at least one weight-related medical problem, found that 86.4% of patients lost more than five percent of their body weight over the course of 68 months when taking a weekly dose of semaglutide. [4]

Reasons For Stilted Weight Loss On Wegovy®

Despite promising studies, some patients are considered semaglutide non-responders. These patients are categorized as losing less than five percent of their body weight after 12 weeks on semaglutide. [5]

Data from the aforementioned study found that 7.6% of patients were not responsive to semaglutide. [4]

Another study, which also underwent a 68-week trial period, also found a disparity in weight loss among participants. After weekly doses of 2.4 mg of semaglutide, 88% of participants were considered responders—their mean body weight changed -19.7% from week 0 to week 68. For the non-responders, the mean body weight only changed -6.4%, compared to 0.3% from the placebo group. [6]

The study concluded that those who respond early to weekly semaglutide injections have a higher chance of long-term weight loss.6 However, it’s not clear why certain people don’t respond to the weight loss drug. Some data has shown that those who have more medical issues may be at a higher risk of being a non-responder. These medical issues include [7]:

  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Early onset severe obesity
  • Endocrine disorders
  • Developmental delays
  • Early trauma

Additionally, while Wegovy® can improve satiety and reduce appetite levels, it may not have an effect on disordered eating habits, such as binge eating, particularly if binging behaviors arise from psychological triggers, such as stress or anxiety.

Another reason you may not be losing weight on Wegovy®? Its side effects. Gastrointestinal issues like nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and dizziness can deter patients from continuing the medication. In one clinical study, 11.4-14.5% of patients discontinued treatment due to adverse effects, compared to only 5.7%-7.6% of the placebo group. [7]

The Risks Of Regaining Weight On Wegovy®

Obesity is chronic and often relapsing, meaning it’s not uncommon to regain the weight you’ve lost. While there is only minimum weight gain when continuing Wegovy® past 68 weeks, complete discontinuation of semaglutide can result in excess weight gain. However, this is relatively common among most weight-loss medications. [8]

In the initial 68-week study, researchers examined weight change in 327 participants during the 52 weeks following termination of the medication. Among the group that was treated with semaglutide, participants experienced a weight regain of 11.6% from their initial 17.3% reduction in baseline weight. The placebo group, on the other hand, regained 1.9% of their 2.0% weight loss. [5]

That said, you can’t solely rely on weight-loss medications in weight management. Patients must also abide by a healthy diet of nutrient dense foods and maintain exercise habits to meet their weight loss goal.

Everlywell Weight Loss Support

Manage Your Weight With Everlywell

While clinical trials show overwhelmingly positive results for those using Wegovy® for weight loss, some patients may not experience the same effects. Some people may be semaglutide non-responders for a number of reasons and medical issues. That said, eating habits can also impact weight loss on Wegovy®, and weight regain is also common for those who discontinue the medication.

If you’re looking to take control of your weight management, consider making an appointment through the Everlywell online weight management program. Through telehealth visits, our licensed clinicians can help you navigate your weight loss journey by assessing your current condition and prescribing GLP-1 prescriptions, if applicable.

Through the program, you’ll also have access to quarterly lab-certified at-home tests and supplements to help track and support your health on your way to achieving your weight loss goal.

Start your journey with Everlywell today.

How Much Weight Can You Lose in 3 Months?

How to Start a Weight Loss Journey: Key Steps

How to Maintain Weight After Weight Loss


  1. FDA Approves New Drug Treatment for Chronic Weight Management, First Since 2014. FDA. Published June 4, 2021. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  2. Nauck MA. Glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1): a potent gut hormone with a possible therapeutic perspective. doi: 10.1007/s005920050116. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  3. Wegovy® Dosing Schedule for Adults. Wegovy® URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  4. Wilding J, et al. Once-Weekly Semaglutide in Adults with Overweight or Obesity. N Engl J Med. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  5. Chao A, et al. Clinical Insight on Semaglutide for Chronic Weight Management in Adults: Patient Selection and Special Considerations. Drug Des Devel Ther. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  6. Mosenzon O. Clinically-Relevant Weight Loss is Achieved Independently of Early Weight Loss Response to Once-Weekly Subcutaneous Semaglutide 2.4 MG (STEP 4). J Endocr Soc. doi: 10.1210/jendso/bvab048.013. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  7. Weight-loss drugs don't work for everyone. Here's why. Advisory Board.. Published June 29, 2023. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
  8. Rubino D, et al. Effect of Continued Weekly Subcutaneous Semaglutide vs Placebo on Weight Loss Maintenance in Adults With Overweight or Obesity. JAMA. doi:10.1001/jama.2021.3224. URL. Accessed August 8, 2023.
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