Could Saxenda Really Be Used To Treat Alcohol Addiction?

Lots of people are talking about the weight loss medication Saxenda these days. It seems to be showing great success in helping people control their appetites. However, some claim that Saxenda is also reducing their cravings to drink alcohol. Could this weight loss medicine actually be used to treat alcohol addiction?

Many Saxenda patients record a considerable reduction in alcohol usage after starting Liraglutide. One Reddit individual said they would typically have a bottle of wine of an evening; however, taking Saxenda was “like flicking a light switch.” They’ve had three drinks in the last few months.

“I was always confused when I would see people taking all night to complete one drink,” an additional poster added. “Now I can totally connect.”

While even more study is required on the medication’s potential use as a treatment for an alcohol-use disorder, it shows promise in addiction treatments.

What Is Saxenda?

Saxenda is a prescription drug used for weight administration, particularly for people that are obese or obese. It is a brand name for the medicine liraglutide, a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist. Saxenda works by imitating the results of GLP-1, a hormonal agent that manages cravings and food intake.

By enhancing the degrees of GLP-1 in the body, Saxenda aids in decreasing appetite and promotes a sensation of volume, which can bring about weight loss. It is commonly utilized with a reduced-calorie diet and regular physical activity.

Semaglutide, marketed under the brand names Saxenda, Wegovy, and Ozempic, is an injectable drug that increases the manufacturing of insulin, a hormone that aids in regulating blood sugar levels. While Liraglutide was initially established to manage diabetes, Wegovy was approved as a weight-loss medicine in June 2021.

Some obesity-medicine professionals have actually called the medicine a “potential game changing drug.” Research has found it can cause a 17% to 22% reduction in body weight over two months.

Are Overweight People More Likely To Be Problem Drinkers?

Excessive weight and alcohol use disorders (AUD) are complicated problems that are affected by a mix of genetic, ecological, and way of living aspects. Research studies have shown that there is a relationship between obesity and AUD, with some studies recommending that obese individuals might go to an increased threat of developing AUD.

The factors for this association are not fully recognized, yet it is assumed that certain common threat variables, such as impulsivity, stress, and inadequate coping mechanisms, may contribute. Additionally, some study has actually suggested that obesity and AUD might share standard neural systems, such as changes in the mind’s reward systems.

Nonetheless, it is necessary to note that the relationship does not indicate origin, and it’s unclear whether obesity causes alcohol addiction or alcohol addiction causes excessive weight. Moreover, not all obese people have AUD, and not all people with AUD are overweight.

It’s important to remember that if you are having a problem with weight problems or alcoholism, assistance is available. A healthcare expert can help prepare for managing your weight and alcohol use, and several sources are readily available for those aiming to resolve these issues.

Saxenda Seems To Reduce Alcohol Cravings

Many doctors are stating to the media that a few of their weight-loss patients no longer experience alcohol cravings while on Semaglutide or Liraglutide. A similar sensation has also been shown in animal testing and research.

There are a couple of possible reasons. Drugs like Saxenda, called GLP-1 receptor agonists, “boost satiation in both your stomach and your head that can subdue alcohol cravings and food cravings.

The medicines likewise influence the mind’s reward center, dulling the dopamine hit a person might receive from eating junk food or drinking alcohol.

There are not enough research studies yet in people for the FDA to authorize Liraglutide as a treatment for alcohol-use disorder. The only double-blind, placebo-controlled test (the most extensive study format) really did not show a significant decrease in the variety of heavy drinking days in addicted individuals on a GLP-1 receptor agonist versus those on a placebo.

Breaking The Feedback Loop

Yet it did show the medicine stifled the mind’s feedback to alcohol, which can result in fewer urges to drink. It also found the GLP-1 agonists worked best to minimize alcohol intake in obese clients, so perhaps this drug works to reduce drinking in a very specific (obese) type of person only.

An additional subgroup that may benefit most could be those with moderate alcohol-use disorders or what the Stop Drinking Expert would call problem drinkers. They tend to consume more for stress release and less for relief from withdrawal, as longer-term problem drinkers do. The study did not distinguish between both types, which could have made the outcomes less obvious.

” I think there were some individuals who, even if they weren’t obtaining the high from alcohol drinking, the alcohol was still effective in eliminating several of those withdrawal signs,” he said. “To make sure that’s why they continued to drink.”

Doctors state that the potential of semaglutide in dependency medicine is “amazing,” but “we need to do even more research, and also we have to create the research right.”

Lack Of Drugs To Deal With Alcohol Addiction

We don’t have many alcoholism drugs available. Only Antabuse and Naltrexone, and both of those come with drawbacks.

Some medical professionals don’t wish to wait for the research study!

Many doctors have stated they have the proof they need to feel comfortable recommending Semaglutide / Liraglutide to some individuals in their addiction-medicine practices.

A well-respected addiction specialist said that one individual initially drank a bottle of vodka every other day. She had actually cut her consumption in half by taking naltrexone on the days she drank alcohol. However, when they introduced Liraglutide or Semaglutide, he stated her alcohol use dropped another 50%.

Not A Miracle Drug

Still, the medicine is not a miracle drug. It’s pricey and not covered by insurance if you do not fit specific standards, like having diabetic issues in the case of Ozempic. It can also have side effects like nausea and looseness of the bowels.

There is no silver bullet in weight loss or alcohol addiction; you can not just inject it and forget it. Much like weight-loss patients must comply with a diet regimen and workout plan for Liraglutide to be most reliable, alcohol-addicted individuals need to take the drug as a part of a comprehensive therapy strategy that might also consist of treatment and applications that assist in tracking their consumption.

Liraglutide has been studied in laboratory animals, including rats, as part of the process of testing its safety and efficacy prior to approval for use in humans.

In some studies in rats, liraglutide has been found to cause an increase in the incidence of thyroid C-cell tumors. However, it is important to note that the relevance of these findings to human cancer risk is not clear, as the tumor formation observed in rats may not occur in the same way or to the same degree in humans.

However, many believe that the damages of alcoholic abuse exceed the prospective damages of prescription Saxenda usage.

Getting Help To Quit Drinking

Medicine can make the journey to sobriety easier and quicker. However, they are not a solution on their own. It would be best if you addressed the reasons why you are turning to alcohol in the first place.

If you are worried about your drinking, take action! Reserve your place on today’s free quit drinking webinar.