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Ozempic is a glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) medication that can help control type 2 diabetes and may help people lose weight. Other medications that work similarly, such as Mounjara and Saxenda, are available online from telehealth companies.

Ozempic (semaglutide) is a once-weekly semaglutide injection that helps to manage blood glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes. It is a glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) medication that increases incretin hormone levels. The enteroendocrine cells release these stomach hormones into the blood within minutes of eating, helping the body produce insulin.

Ozempic also delays stomach emptying, reducing a person’s appetite and leading to weight loss. While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved Ozempic for weight management, some healthcare professionals may prescribe it for this condition off-label.

Learn how to get Ozempic here.

Semaglutide, the main ingredient in Ozempic, helps control blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes and can help people lose weight in conjunction with a healthy diet and lifestyle changes. A recent study found that people with obesity or overweight can lose up to 10.9% of their body weight within six months of using this drug.

Currently, there is a shortage of Ozempic, which means people may find it difficult to purchase this medication. However, there are alternative options for both type 2 diabetes and weight management.

Alternative drugs to Ozempic for type 2 diabetes include:

  • Mounjaro (tirzepatide): This injectable medication activates GIP and GLP-1 pathways to help regulate blood sugar. Similar to Ozempic, it also slows down food digestion.
  • Trulicity (dulaglutide): This is an injectable medication for adults and children over 10 years of age. It improves blood sugar and helps to reduce the risk of major cardiovascular events. It also slows down food digestion.
  • Rybelsus (semaglutide): This medication contains the same active ingredient as Ozempic and works the same way. However, it comes in tablet form.

Alternatives to Ozempic for weight loss that have FDA approval for this condition include:

  • Wegovy (semaglutide): This drug has the same active ingredient as Ozempic and works in the same way. This injectable medication has FDA approval for the use of weight management.
  • Saxenda (liraglutide): This injectable medication is suitable for adults and children ages 12–17 with overweight or obesity who also have weight-related conditions.

There are three main GLP-1 alternatives for type 2 diabetes to Ozempic. Healthcare professionals may prescribe these medications if Ozempic does not control a person’s blood sugar well or if they are experiencing adverse side effects.

Mounjaro (tirzepatide)

Mounjaro (tirzepatide) is an injectable form of medication to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes.

Just like Ozempic, Mounjaro imitates incretins, which tell the pancreas to release more insulin after a meal. This medication also slows food movement in the digestive system, which may make a person feel fuller for longer.

People need to inject Mounjara into the stomach, thigh, or upper arm once per week at any time of the day. This drug is suitable to use with or without meals. Healthcare professionals will start people on a dose of 2.5 milligrams (mg) for four weeks, after which they may increase up to 5 mg. People should not exceed a 15 mg weekly dose.

At the time of publishing, there is not currently a shortage of Mounjaro in the United States.

Discover how to get Mounjaro here.

Sesame Care for Mounjaro

  • Price: around $999 per month without insurance
  • Appointment cost: varies by healthcare professional
  • Accepts insurance: yes

Sesame Care is a telehealth company offering various medications, including the generic Mounjaro, tirzepatide.

To sign up, a person must first book an appointment with a Sesame healthcare professional to decide if tirzepatide is appropriate for their condition. People can then pick up the medication at their local pharmacy.

The company states that the doctors on this platform set their own prices, availability, and services. Therefore, the price of using this service will vary depending on who a person chooses to visit.

Sesame Care accepts people with or without insurance.

People can reduce the cost of virtual visits by enrolling in Sesame Plus, which costs $10.99 per month or $99 per year. With this membership, each visit starts from $27, and people also have access to one free lab or blood test per year.

Trulicity (dulaglutide)

Trulicity (dulaglutide) works by stimulating the body’s natural production of insulin and stops it from releasing glucagon. Healthcare professionals will prescribe this medication to people who cannot take metformin.

Trulicity is an injectable medication that people can take with or without food. The dose starts at 0.75 mg once weekly, which healthcare professionals can increase up to 4.5 mg once weekly if necessary.

At the time of publishing, the FDA is reporting a shortage of Trulicity in the United States.

K Health for Trulicity

  • Price: around $886.56 plus pharmacy costs without insurance
  • Appointment cost: $39 per visit
  • Accepts insurance: yes

K Health is an online platform that offers 24-7 access to healthcare professionals that can prescribe and refill medications.

The company offers branded Tulicity. The cost will vary depending on the pharmacy a person chooses and whether a person has insurance coverage.

To use K Health, a person must create an account. Then, they can choose a healthcare professional to connect with. Each visit will cost $39.

People can also sign up for the company’s K Health membership, costing $49 per month. The company provides primary and urgent care access for the subscription holder and any children ages 3–17.

Rybelsus (semaglutide)

Rybelsus (semaglutide) contains the same active ingredient as Ozempic and works in the same way. However, this medication is in tablet form, which may be easier for people who find it difficult to use injectable drugs.

Healthcare professionals may prescribe Rybelsus to people in addition to metformin to achieve more blood sugar-lowering effects.

The starting dose of Rybelsus is 3 mg once daily for the first 30 days. People should take the medication with no more than 4 ounces of water and at least 30 minutes before any foods or other beverages.

Healthcare professionals can increase the dosage up to 14 mg once daily.

The FDA does not currently report any shortages of this drug.

Sesame Care for Rybelsus

  • Price: around $900 without insurance
  • Appointment cost: varies by healthcare professional
  • Accepts insurance: yes

Sesame Care offers the branded version or Rybelsus to people with and without insurance.

Once a person signs up and completes an initial consultation, a healthcare professional will decide if Rybelsus is the right medication for their situation. Once they prescribe the drug, people can pick it up from their local pharmacy the same day.

While the healthcare professionals on this platform are in charge of their own prices, people can sign up for Sesame Plus for $10.99 per month or $99 per year, which offers consultations from $27 per visit.

There are several FDA-approved GLP-1 medications for weight loss that healthcare professionals may prescribe instead of Ozempic.

Wegovy (semaglutide)

Wegovy (semaglutide) has the same active ingredient as Ozempic and works the same way. It received FDA approval for weight loss in June 2021.

This medication is appropriate for adults and children ages 12 or older with obesity or overweight. People must inject Wegovy into the stomach, thigh, or upper arm once a week on the same day each week, with or without food.

Doses start from 0.25 mg once weekly; healthcare professionals can increase it up to 1.7 mg once weekly.

The FDA reports that there is currently a shortage of Wegovy.

Ro for Wegovy

  • Price: no information
  • Appointment cost: $99 for the first month, $145 per month thereafter
  • Accepts insurance: no

Ro offers prescription Wegovy through its Body Program. This program provides access to GLP-1 medications, including Wegovy, a health coach, and ongoing care and support.

The Body Program costs $99 for the first month and $145 every month thereafter. This program is not eligible for insurance, nor does it cover the cost of medication. Ro does not provide Wegovy pricing information.

Saxenda (liraglutide)

Saxenda (liraglutide) is another injectable GLP-1 medication that received FDA approval for use in weight management in April 2020.

This medication works in the same way as Ozempic. People can use this medication with or without food. Doses range from 0.6–3.0 mg, and a healthcare professional will monitor the individual to ensure their dose is appropriate.

At the time of publishing, the FDA does not report a shortage of Saxenda.

K Health for Saxenda

  • Price: around $1,349
  • Appointment cost: $39 per visit
  • Accepts insurance: yes

K Health offers the branded version of Saxenda. The company states that is may prescribe this medication to people if they have overweight or obesity and a weight-related condition, such as high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes.

A one-off healthcare professional consultation costs $39. This does not include the cost of medication.

People can opt for the K Health membership which costs $49 per month. People can access to 24-7 appointments for themselves and any children ages 3–17.

Below is a chart that compares Ozempic with the other drugs in this article.

Eligibility criteriaFormDose frequency Price
Ozempichave type 2 diabetesinjectiononce a week around $892.06
Mounjarohave type 2 diabetesinjectiononce a weekaround $999
Trulicityhave type 2 diabetesinjectiononce a weekaround $886.56
Rybelsushave type 2 diabetestabletonce dailyaround $900
Wegovyhave overweight and obesity and a weight-related medical conditioninjectiononce a weekno information
Saxendahave overweight and obesity and a weight-related medical conditioninjection once dailyaround $1,349

There are many products that advertises being over-the-counter (OTC) Ozempic alternatives. However, many of these supplements have minimal scientific evidence that they can work effectively like sumaglutide.

The FDA has also found that some OTC supplements contain ingredients that may be harmful, including undisclosed prescription medication. It is important to know exactly what is in a product to ensure the ingredients will not interact with other supplements or medication.

Some undisclosed ingredients that may appear in OTC weight loss supplements, such as subutramine and fenproporex, have severe and potentially fatal side effects and companies are not allowed to sell products containing these drugs.

People should always consult with a healthcare professional before taking any OTC weight loss aids, and watch out for warning signs that a product is making fraudulent health claims. Some signs include:

  • promises of a fast and easy fix
  • claims such as “scientific breakthrough” or “ancient remedy”
  • phrases such as “thermogenisis” and “hunger stimulation point”
  • claims that a product is “natural”
  • unsubstantiated testimonials of fast and easy results by customers and doctors
  • no-risk, money-back guarantees

Here we answer some common questions about alternatives to Ozempic.

Is Trulicity the same as Ozempic?

No, Trulicity (dulaglutide) is not the same drug as Ozempic (semaglutide).

While they are both GLP-1 medications that work in the same way and have FDA approval to treat high blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes, a 2018 study found that low doses of semaglutide may be more effective than low doses of dulaglutide in improving blood sugar levels.

Is there a natural alternative to Ozempic?

There are several substances that scientists are investigating that may have similar effects to Ozempic. For example, berberine, a component of a traditional Chinese herb, Rhizoma Coptidis, may help reduce body fat. However, these substances require more rigorous study.

It is important not to take “natural” alternatives to Ozempic without the advice of a healthcare professional.

What works better than Ozempic?

There are several GLP-1 medications available. People should discuss with a healthcare professional to find the type that best suits their needs.

Ozempic (semaglutide) is a GLP-1 medication that can help improve blood sugar levels and manage weight. There are several GLP-1 alternatives that have FDA approval for both concerns.

While over-the-counter alternatives do exist, it is important not to take them without first discussing with a healthcare professional. Some of this alternatives may include illegal or harmful ingredients, or undisclosed prescription medication.