Metformin vs Rybelsus for Weight Loss – Which is Best for You?

In today’s world, people’s interests have rocketed regarding weight loss medicines. To meet the demand, many drug options are available in the world of medicine to support weight loss. Among those medicines, two names very often pop up: Metformin and Rybelsus.

Are you curious to know who will win the battle Metformin vs Rybelsus for weight loss purposes?

Both Rybeslus and Metformin are well-known medications used to treat type 2 diabetes. Losing weight is one of the side effects that these medications might have. Both Rybelsus and Metformin reduce appetite and help you feel fuller. This impact causes a decrease in calorie consumption, which causes weight loss.

We will compare the effectiveness in weight loss of Rybelsus, a more recent pharmaceutical, with metformin, one of the more established medicines. Keep reading to know the potential side effects of these drugs and their use for non-diabetic patients for weight loss.

Metformin vs Rybelsus for Weight Loss

Weight loss has been connected to metformin, a medicine for type 2 diabetes that is often recommended. Rybelsus, a more recent drug, was first created for the treatment of type 2 diabetes but has also demonstrated potential in the area of weight control.

Let’s dig deep to know how these drugs contribute to weight loss.

How Metformin Aids Weight Loss?

How Metformin Aids Weight Loss

The biguanide class of oral anti-diabetic medication metformin is used to treat type 2 diabetes. It is specially used to treat overweight and obese patients and individuals with normal renal function.

Metformin raises the insulin sensitivity of muscle cells. It reduces blood sugar levels and allows muscle cells to take in more glucose from the bloodstream. This can facilitate weight reduction by lowering insulin resistance, a frequent disease linked to obesity.

Metformin inhibits Lipogenesis—the process of producing new fat cells. It may help people lose weight by halting the growth of new fat cells.

Despite not being a weight loss medicine, studies indicate this drug can help you lose weight. A 24-week trial on diabetic patients proved Metformin’s contribution to weight loss. Due to metformin intake, patients consumed fewer calories than in the pre-metformin phase. As a result, they lost weight. The maximum weight loss reported was up to 18 lbs. 

How Rybelsus Aids Weight Loss?

How Rybelsus Aids Weight Loss

Adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus can regulate their blood sugar levels using Rybelsus tablets. Studies have also shown Rybelsus to aid in weight loss. 

Semaglutide, the main component in Rybelsus, replicates a naturally occurring substance that regulates blood sugar levels and delays digestion. A delayed or slower digestion reduces hunger and aids in losing weight.

Rybelsus aids in increasing insulin sensitivity, making it possible for the body to utilize insulin more efficiently. This process may cause weight loss.

The way the body stores fat may be impacted by semaglutide as well. It lessens fat buildup in adipose tissue and aid in weight loss. According to a proteomic investigation, Semaglutide affects the expression of lipogenic proteins in the epididymal adipose tissue of obese mice.

In a trial, Rybelsus was tested on 667 adults. The results showed that after 68 weeks, people taking 50 mg of the drug, on average, lost more than 17% of their body weight.

Can Non-Diabetics Use Metformin for Weight Loss Only?

The answer is yes. But FDA doesn’t recognize Metformin as a weight loss drug. You can not buy it without a prescription. People without type 2 diabetes are not eligible to use it.

On the other hand, a 2018 study found that metformin significantly lowered the body mass index (BMI) in both adults and teenagers. This trial investigated the drug’s effectiveness for weight loss in individuals who were overweight and obese without diabetes.

Medication is one way to help control blood sugars and reduce weight. However, food and lifestyle modifications should be explored first because they can considerably help you lose weight. It’s vital to discuss your choices to take it for weight loss with your healthcare professional.

Can Non-Diabetics Use Rybelsus for Weight Loss Only?

Just like Metformin, Rybelsus also doesn’t have FDA approval for weight loss management. When used in accordance with a healthcare professional’s instructions, Rybelsus is usually regarded as safe for weight reduction.

Patients with insulin resistance particularly benefit from it. If you are taking it only for weight loss, do it after discussing it with a doctor for accurate guidelines.

Depending on the person, using Rybelsus for weight loss will provide different outcomes. Although Rybelsus has been demonstrated to be beneficial for weight loss, you must maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet plan along with this medicine.

According to the available information, it may take six months or longer to start noticing weight reduction outcomes. If a person has a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or above and at least one weight-related condition, such as high blood pressure, they may take it off-label. To reap the most advantages, you need to use it in conjunction with a balanced diet and exercise program.

Side Effects of Metformin

You need to be careful about these potential side effects of Metformin: 

  • The gastrointestinal system is the area of metformin side effects that are most frequently reported. These include the potential for nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, pain in the abdomen, and gas. Usually present at the beginning of treatment, these symptoms may become better over time.
  • Some people who use metformin might find they have less of an appetite. This may cause a decrease in food intake and, as a result, weight loss.
  • The tongue taste that metformin might leave behind is metallic or unpleasant, which can make it difficult to enjoy food or beverages.
  • Metformin’s long-term usage has been linked to a possible risk of vitamin B12 deficiency. This may result in symptoms including weakness, exhaustion, and tingling or numbness in the extremities.
  • Lactic acidosis is a rare and dangerous side effect. People who have severe infections, impaired kidneys or livers, or illnesses that might deprive the body of oxygen are more prone to experience it.
  • Usually, metformin alone does not cause hypoglycemia. However, there is a chance of hypoglycemia when used with other drugs that might drop blood sugar, including insulin or sulfonylureas.

Side Effects of Rybelsus

Patients taking Rybelsus reported experiencing side effects like these:

  • Rare incidences of pancreatitis have been associated with users of GLP-1 receptor agonists like Rybelsus. Pancreatitis symptoms might include excruciating stomach pain, ongoing nausea or vomiting, and back discomfort.
  • Long-term usage of GLP-1 receptor agonists, such as semaglutide, has been associated with an increased incidence of thyroid C-cell tumors, according to studies in rats. However, this discovery’s importance in people is not yet obvious.
  • Taking Rybelsus can cause stomach discomfort, gas, diarrhea, and vomiting. Over time these symptoms generally go away.
  • Rybelsus can suppress appetite and reduces food intake.
  • Rybelsus can raise the risk of hypoglycemia, especially when used with other drugs that reduce blood sugar. Hypoglycemia can cause headaches, shakiness, dizziness, disorientation, and sweating.

Which One Is Better for Weight Loss Metformin or Rybelsus?

As you already know from the information mentioned above, Metformin and Rybelsus are not permitted for use in weight reduction. You can use them off-label for weight loss because both of these drugs have been clinically proven to cause weight loss.

In comparison to metformin, semaglutide provides a more noticeable weight reduction.  However, patients might choose to mix these medications to increase their effects when using a suitable treatment strategy suggested by their doctor.

Let’s have a look at the comparison table of Metformin vs Rybeslus:

Topic Metformin Rybelsus
Medication Type Oral Oral
Action Mechanism Improves insulin sensitivity, lowers intestinal glucose absorption, and decreases liver glucose production Reduces hunger, slows stomach emptying, improves insulin sensitivity, and decreases fat storage via activating GLP-1 receptors in the brain.
Purpose Used mostly to treat type 2 diabetes Used to treat type 2 diabetes, but also helps people lose weight
Effect on Weight Loss As a side effect, it could cause a slight weight reduction. Even in the absence of diabetes, it assists weight loss 
Apettite Control Potentially suppresses appetite  Enhances fullness and decreases appetite
Insulin  Improves insulin sensitivity Improves insulin sensitivity

A study was conducted on 12 obese type 2 diabetic women. They were not taking insulin and were given either 1700 mg or 850 mg of metformin or a placebo three times a day. It continued for three long days. 

Three times throughout the trial, each subject received the placebo in addition to the various dosages. Participants completed a meal test and a questionnaire on their hunger levels before to each meal every third day. Particularly when the 1,700 mg dosage was contrasted to the lower metformin dose or placebo, researchers found that the metformin group’s hunger levels were significantly lowered.

Metformin may cause some weight reduction, but it’s not a miracle drug for weight loss.

Rybelsus use may cause weight reduction. In a 52-week trial, an average of 4.4 kilos (nearly 10 pounds) of weight was lost while taking Rybelsus (the dosage was raised to 14 mg). Patients in the research were already taking metformin for their type 2 diabetes at a consistent dosage.

We leave the choice to our readers. You can analyze all the information regarding these two medicines, talk to a doctor and decide the best option for you. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can Rybelsus be Used for PCOS?

No, not yet. Unlike metformin, Rybelsus is not used to treat PCOS. However, clinical trials are underway to find out Rybelsus.s effectiveness regarding PCOS treatment.

Can You Lose Belly Fat with Metformin?

Yes, it can. Metformin can cause weight loss by reducing visceral fat in the muscles and liver. Visceral fat is kept in the abdominal cavity, which also houses the liver, stomach, and intestines, among other internal organs.

Does Metformin Harm The Kidneys?

Kidney damage isn’t a side effect of metformin. Through urine, the kidneys digest and eliminate the drug from your body. There is a chance that metformin may accumulate in your system and lead to a condition known as lactic acidosis if your kidneys aren’t functioning correctly.

Bottom Line

Weight medicines are the easiest solutions to shed some extra pounds. However, we should first try exercise and diet plans to lose weight naturally. If you are looking for a solution in form medicine and need clarification about which one to select, then I think this article has made the choice easier for you. Weigh all the pros and cons of these two medicines to select. After that, go for the best one according to your requirement and health condition between Metformin vs Rybeslus for weight loss.

Samira Dilshad
Samira Dilshad

Samira Dilshad here. I'm passionate about health and believe that leading a healthy lifestyle is the key to living a balanced life. By imparting the knowledge I have amassed over the years and greatly profited from by putting things into practice on a daily basis, I hope to help others. Food and nutrition have long played a significant role in leading a healthy life. I make an effort to connect through my articles with like-minded individuals who are looking for simple yet beneficial ideas to better their life.