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Guide to Weight Management and Weight Loss Medications (including Saxenda injection, Ozempic, Rybelsus, WeGovy) in Singapore

Guide to Weight Management and Weight Loss Medications (including Saxenda injection, Ozempic, Rybelsus, WeGovy) in Singapore

Obesity (BMI >30) rates are on the rise in Singapore, with a 2020 survey by MOH showing 10.5% of adults aged 18 to 74 years old were living with obesity in Singapore. Weight loss medication like the saxenda injection could help with weight loss.

Obesity related conditions

Obesity is a major risk factor for medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, sleep apnoea and some cancers. It is recommended for Asians to maintain a BMI of <23.

Saxenda injection

Weight loss Medications

  • Orlistat (Xenical)
  • Phenteramine (Panbesy)
  • Liraglutide (Saxenda)
  • Semaglutide (Ozempic, WeGovy, Rybelsus)

Orlistat (Xenical) 

Works by reducing the body’s absorption of fats. Common side effects include bloating and oily diarrhea.

Phentermine (Panbesy)

Works by suppressing appetite. Common side effects include dry mouth, insomnia, restlessness, headache, increase in blood pressure and rebound weight gain.

Liraglutide (Saxenda Injection)

is Glucagon Like Peptide Receptor Agonist. GLP-1 is a protein that is naturally produced by the gut in response to food. Its main effects are to make us feel full , slow down food from leaving the stomach and bring our blood sugar back down to normal by stimulating the pancreas to produce insulin. Saxenda is approved by HSA for the treatment of obesity BMI >30 or BMI >27 with weight related health issues, as well as for the treatment of diabetes. Saxenda is self-administered via daily subcutaneous injections into the tummy.

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Semaglutide (Ozempic, WeGovy, Rybelsus) is also a Glucagon Like Peptide Receptor Agonist, acting via the same mechanism as Liraglutide (Saxenda). Originally developed as a treatment for Diabetes- semaglutide (WeGovy) has been recently approved by Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority for the treatment of obesity. Ozempic and WeGovy are self- administered by weekly subcutaneous injections into the tummy. Rybelsus is taken by mouth, once a day dosage in the morning on an empty stomach.

What to expect with liraglutide (Saxenda Injection) or Semaglutide (Ozempic, WeGovy, Rybelsus) treatment

It is common to encounter mild nausea, bloating, constipation or diarrhea for the initial 1-2 weeks of treatment, which improves over time.

Rare side effects include: gallstones and pancreatitis

This treatment is not suitable for those with a family history of thyroid cancer or women who are pregnant or lactating.

What are the expected results?

In published clinical studies, patients on Saxenda can lose up to 10% of their body weight, while patients on semaglutide can lose even up to 20% of their body weight, over a 1 year period. In practice, many patients can achieve their target body weight within 3-6 months of treatment provided they maintain a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Results vary between patients.

Benefits of weight loss

Apart from looking younger and healthier, patients who lose weight enjoy multiple health benefits, such as improvement in diabetic control, reversal of pre-diabetes, lowering of blood pressure, improvement of fatty liver, reduced risk of heart attack and stroke.

Avoiding rebound weight gain

To maintain a healthy weight after the completion of a course of medications, it is recommended to maintain a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet and regular exercise.

Weight management programme at Bay Clinic

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  • Consultation and review of diet/lifestyle
  • Health screening
  • Weight loss medications
  • Body contouring treatments

At Bay Clinic, we adopt a holistic approach to weight management, which begins with a doctor’s consultation and review of health conditions, diet and lifestyle. Health screening is offered, to detect obesity related conditions such as hypertension, high cholesterol or diabetes. Weight loss medications are prescribed carefully for patients who meet criteria, with regular follow up visits. For patients who have achieved their target weight loss and are seeking body contouring treatments to address stubborn fat, loose skin or stretch marks, Bay Clinic offers a range of non invasive no downtime body contouring treatments.

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