Saxenda is a weight loss medication that is injected once a day to help you lose weight as part of a calorie controlled diet.
Due to a national shortage, Saxenda is currently out of stock. We are working with the manufacturer to get stock as soon as possible. Our Customer Support team do not have any more information on this and will not able to help with any Saxenda stock enqueries.
Saxenda is a weight loss injection that works by reducing your appetite.
The active ingredient in Saxenda is liraglutide, and it’s similar to a hormone you naturally produce called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1).
Saxenda is made by Novo Nordisk as an easy to use pen injection. For Saxenda to be effective, you need to inject it once a day.
Saxenda is one of the only licensed medications that can be prescribed to help you lose weight. The active ingredient mimics the way your natural appetite hormones work. This gives you an effective way to improve weight loss, alongside more physical activity and a lower calorie diet.
Click & Collect: due to stocking limitations Click & Collect is only available on orders of 3 and 5 Saxenda pens.
Please note: orders for Saxenda are supplied with needles, but in order to reduce waste and be more eco friendly a sharps bin will not be provided as standard. If you need a sharps bin then you can request one within your questionnaire, and an addtional charge of £1.50 will be added to your order. Please consider using your local clinical waste collection services when disposing of needles.
1 pen pack (£55 per pen) - £55.00
3 pen pack (£48 per pen) - £144.00
5 pen pack (£46 per pen) - £230.00
Saxenda is a once a day injection you can use to help you lose weight.
Saxenda is the weight loss brand name for liraglutide. Liraglutide is also used to lower blood glucose in diabetes under the brand name Victoza but at a different dose. Liraglutide helps you lose weight by reducing your appetite so you do not eat as much as you usually do.
For effective weight loss, you should use Saxenda in combination with:
- a healthy, lower calorie diet
- being more physically active
If you are obese or overweight you’re more likely to develop health problems such as high blood pressure (hypertension), high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes. By losing weight, you can help prevent these in future.
Saxenda works by reducing your appetite which leads to you eating less. By eating less food you take in fewer calories, so your weight will go down.
Saxenda is a subcutaneous injection, the medication is injected with a short needle, just below the skin. The fatty layer in your skin is what helps you slowly absorb the liraglutide in Saxenda.
Liraglutide works in a similar way to GLP-1, which is a hormone that is naturally found in your body and controls your appetite.
When you eat, your body releases GLP-1 from your intestines and other organs. Your brain responds to GLP-1 by reducing your appetite, so you stop eating.
Natural GLP-1 is quickly broken down by the body’s enzymes. But with liraglutide acting as GLP-1, it lasts longer in your body. This means you will feel more satisfied and less hungry for a longer period of time, leading to weight loss.
You should use Saxenda alongside a reduced-calorie diet and increase how much you exercise. You should not use Saxenda on its own for weight management.
You can use Saxenda to help you to manage your weight if you have a high body mass index (BMI) which is:
- 30 or above
- between 27 to 30 with a weight-related medical problem, such as high blood pressure, diabetes or sleep apnoea
Saxenda starts at a lower dose which will be increased gradually, over the first 5 weeks of treatment. Your doctor will tell you how to increase your dose until you reach 3mg a day, which is the maintenance dose. As Saxenda has some side effects, it is recommended to start on a lower dose, until your body gets used to the medication. A common side effect is nausea (feeling sick) which can be lessened by taking gradual doses. Some people will not reach the maintenance dose of 3mg a day because of the side effects they experience.
Our doctors will take your BMI and all of your medical history into consideration and may prescribe off-label when making a decision about treatment.
When does Saxenda start to work?
Saxenda starts to work as soon as you begin using it, and you should start noticing its effects on your appetite within a few days. You will usually see weight loss results within the first few months of treatment.
How effective is Saxenda?
Saxenda is considered very effective in aiding weight loss. One study in 2015, which monitored the weight loss of 3,731 people (with a minimum BMI of 30, or 27 with additional health problems caused by weight-related health issues.) over 56 weeks, showed:
- 3 out of 5 participants lost 5% of their weight or more (average weight loss: 12lbs)
- 1 out 3 participants lost 10% of their weight or more (average weight loss: 23lbs)
- 6% of participants lost 20% of their weight or more (average weight loss 47lbs)
All participants used Saxenda combined with advice on diet and exercise.
How much weight can you lose on Saxenda?
When taking Saxenda, you're expected to lose at least 5% of your total weight after taking the maximum 3mg dose for 12 weeks. However, weight loss differs from person to person, and your results will also be affected by your diet and exercise habits.
How long can you stay on Saxenda for?
As long as Saxenda is working for you and you're not getting negative side effects, you can continue to use Saxenda until you reach a normal BMI or the threshold set out by your doctor.
To use Saxenda, a doctor will give you a plan on how much you need to inject each day. Each week the amount you need to inject will go up, so that you can get used to Saxenda. Always follow the dose plan that your doctor gives you.
Learn more about how to use Saxenda on our Saxenda patient information page.
Where should I inject Saxenda?
Saxenda can be injected into your:
- Upper arm
The abdomen is the preferred site, but you should inject it into different parts of your abdomen to avoid bruising or damaging the area.
When is the best time to take Saxenda?
You can take Saxenda at any time of the day, whenever is most convenient for you. However, you should try to make sure you take Saxenda at the same time every day.
What happens when you stop taking Saxenda?
When you stop taking Saxenda, you might feel a bit sick. This is because Saxenda affects the hunger hormones in your body, and stopping it can impact your digestive system. This should only be temporary, but if you continue to feel unwell, speak to your doctor.
Saxenda isn't addictive, so you shouldn't experience any withdrawal if you stop taking it.
Saxenda is a pen injection that you use once a day. The pen will last for different periods, depending on your required dose.
When you start using Saxenda you will start with a small dose and build it up over a few weeks of treatment. The goal is to get to a Saxenda dose of 3mg once a day.
Because your dose will change as your treatment goes on, it is not possible to give an exact measurement of how long a single Saxenda pen will last. You can expect a single Saxenda pen to last anywhere from a few days to 2.5 weeks depending on where you are within your treatment.
How many doses are in one pen?
When you first start taking Saxenda, your pen will provide up to 17 days' worth of doses, and your first pack of 5 pens should last up to 6 weeks
Saxenda comes with a varying amount of needles depending on the dosage required. The amounts of needles provided are:
- 1 Saxenda pen - 21 needles
- 3 Saxenda pens - 42 needles
- 5 Saxenda pens - 56 needles
As you progress through your treatment you will start to take larger doses of Saxenda. This means fewer needles will be used per pen, and this is why the amount varies across different packs.
You can buy Saxenda online through trusted retailers like Asda Online Doctor. All you need to do is:
- Complete a short medical questionnaire to make sure it's suitable for you
- Upload 2 pictures as evidence of your current weight with your first order
- If suitable, a doctor will prescribe treatment
Is Saxenda available without a prescription?
Saxenda is a prescription-only medication and can not be purchased without one. If you want Saxenda, you need to speak to your GP beforehand.
Can you get Saxenda through the NHS?
Yes, you can get Saxenda for free through the NHS if you have a BMI over 35. It is also sometimes considered for people with a BMI over 30 with weight-related health issues. It can also be considered for people with a BMI of 27-30, but this depends on whether they have other medical conditions.
Serious side effects listed below, are rare and uncommon.
The most common side effects of Saxenda are:
- feeling sick (nausea)
- being sick (vomiting)
These side effects are likely to disappear after your body gets used to Saxenda, normally within the first few weeks of treatment.
Less common side effects of Saxenda are:
- injection site reactions such as irritation, rash or bruising of your skin
- feeling bloated
- dry mouth or a change of taste
- dyspepsia (heartburn)
- difficulty sleeping
- feeling dizzy
- feeling tired
Uncommon side effects of Saxenda are:
- a faster heart rate than usual
- feeling unwell
If you get an allergic reaction after injecting Saxenda, stop using the medication and contact 999 immediately. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include face or throat swelling, difficulty breathing or a fast heartbeat.
If you experience strong abdominal pain after using Saxenda, this could be a sign of an inflamed pancreas (pancreatitis). Stop using Saxenda and contact your doctor immediately.
Saxenda can be used by adults and children over 12 years old and must be prescribed by a doctor, such as Asda Online Doctor. You should not use Saxenda if you are over 75 years old.
If you are pregnant, planning to have a baby or are breastfeeding, do not use Saxenda.
If you have any of the following medical conditions, speak to your doctor before using Saxenda:
- heart failure
- liver problems
- renal or kidney problems (including dialysis)
- inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
- gastroparesis (delayed stomach emptying)
- inflammation of the gallbladder or gallstones
- thyroid disease, including thyroid tumours
Saxenda is generally safe to use if you are taking other medications as it has very few drug interactions. But if you take medication to treat diabetes, you may have a higher chance of hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) when using Saxenda.
Speak to your doctor or pharmacist for further information or read the patient information leaflet.
You should take weight loss medication while you are on a reduced calorie diet and exercising regularly. If Saxenda is not right for you, there are other types of weight loss medication you can try, such as orlistat.
Orlistat is another medication you can use to manage obesity and weight loss. Xenical is the brand name for prescription strength orlistat (120mg) and Alli is the brand name for over-the-counter orlistat (60mg).
Orlistat comes in capsules and you take 1 capsule with a meal up to 3 times a day. It works by reducing the amount of fat you absorb from your food.
Like Saxenda, you should not use Orlistat for more than 12 weeks (3 months) if you do not lose at least 5% of your starting body weight.
You may want to consider whether the regular medication you are taking may be causing weight gain or making it difficult to lose weight. Certain medications that can cause you to put on weight include lithium tablets, sodium valproate for epilepsy, and some antidepressants. Speak to a doctor or pharmacist to review your medications if you think you might be getting weight gain as a side effect.
It’s possible that you might have an underlying condition that makes it difficult to lose weight, like hypothyroidism. You can request a thyroid function test to check if your thyroid is not working as it should.
If medication for weight loss has not worked for you, your doctor may refer you to a specialist to consider weight loss surgery known as bariatric surgery. This is where you have part of your stomach made smaller, bypassed or partially removed to restrict how much you can eat. You may want to consider weight loss surgery if your BMI is over 35.
The content of this website page has been created by Asda/ZAVA. Novo Nordisk has checked the content of this page for medical and factual accuracy only.
Please note, we may occasionally provide imported medical products. This is to ensure timely fulfilment of prescription requests in case of stock issues.
Saxenda vs Orlistat
While Saxenda is a weight loss injection that reduces your appetite, Orlistat is a weight loss tablet that changes the way your body absorbs fat. Both are effective treatments to help you lose weight. Rather than being taken once a day, Orlistat is taken before each meal (up to 3 times a day). It works by stopping your body from absorbing the fat from these meals, leaving your body as waste.
Saxenda vs Alli
Alli differs from Saxenda as it is a non-prescription weight loss medication. This means you can buy Alli over the counter without getting a prescription from your doctor. Alli capsules also work differently from Saxenda. They work by stopping you from absorbing fat from each meal instead of reducing your appetite. Alli is considered an effective weight loss medication that can help you lose up to 50% more weight than when trying to lose weight without it. It contains the active ingredient orlistat 60mg.
Saxenda vs Xenical
Xenical is a branded version of Orlistat. This means it contains the same active ingredients (and the same dose as orlistat), and works in the same way but is sold under a brand name. It stops your body from absorbing fat from meals and can be taken up to 3 times a day. Unlike Saxenda, which reduces your appetite and is injected once a day.
Pencycle is a service we’re partnering with that enables us to recycle your used weight-loss injection pens. All you have to do is:
- Select Pencycle during your consultation
- Receive a Pencycle collection box
- Return your used pens to your nearest Asda pharmacy or post in any Royal Mail box using the prepaid label provided
Reducing plastic waste is one of the world’s biggest environmental challenges. And now, with over 550,000 plastic injectable pens being distributed a year, we want to make sure we’re doing everything we can to help reduce waste. With Pencycle, we can be certain our materials are being recycled safely & effectively. So if you're wondering what to do with your used pens, think ‘Pencycle’ and help us reduce waste together.
Why am I still hungry on Saxenda?
Saxenda doesn't stop you from feeling hungry altogether. You will still feel hungry, you will just feel less hungry than you did without it, and you should get fuller quicker and for longer.
Will I gain weight if I stop taking Saxenda?
There is currently no evidence that shows you will gain weight as a direct result of stopping using Saxenda.
Can you drink alcohol while taking Saxenda?
Alcohol can interact with weight loss medication, and it's recommended to avoid it while using it. Drinking too much alcohol while on Saxenda can increase your risk of low blood sugar or hypoglycemia. Heavy alcohol drinking while on Saxenda can also increase the risk of pancreatitis.
Can Saxenda affect your period?
As Saxenda causes weight loss, it can also cause irregularities in your period. Fast weight loss is a common cause of irregular periods and amenorrhea (getting fewer periods).
As you're losing weight with Saxenda, your periods should become more regulated alongside your weight. If you haven't lost weight, but your period is changing, it might be because your weight loss just isn't showing up on the scales yet.
You should speak to a doctor if:
Your periods are suddenly irregular, and you're under 45
- There is at least a 20 day difference between your shortest and longest cycles
- You have periods more than every 21 days
- You have periods less than every 35 days
- Your period lasts for over 7 days
Saxenda 6 mg/mL solution for injection in pre-filled pen (SmPC) EMC [Oct 2021] [accessed Dec 2021]
Saxenda 6 mg/mL solution for injection (PIL) [Oct 2021] [accessed Dec 2021]
Saxenda® (liraglutide injection 3mg) overview [Nov 2020] [accessed Dec 2021]
Liraglutide (BNF) [accessed Dec 2021]
Obesity treatment, NHS [May 2019] [accessed Dec 2021]