GLP-1 medications are meant to be long-term treatments for diabetes or obesity. Both are considered chronic conditions that need to be managed over an individual’s lifetime. 

GLP-1 for Diabetes

If you are using a GLP-1 for diabetes management, do not stop the medication without speaking to your doctor first. They can determine if GLP-1 is still an appropriate treatment for your diabetes management or if you can transition to a different medication. Do not stop the medication cold turkey, as it may cause your blood sugar to increase.

GLP-1 for Weight Loss

Many people use GLP-1 medications for weight loss and are unsure what to do once they reach their goal weight. A conversation with your provider is always the best place to start. 

If you are looking to transition off a GLP-1 medication because you have reached your goal weight, proceed with caution. A 2022 study found that when people stopped taking the medication they gained back about ⅔ of the weight they lost within a year.  Additionally, all of the metabolic improvements while on the medication were also reversed.

There is no specific protocol for transitioning off of a GLP-1. There are no harmful effects from simply stopping the medication. GLP-1 medications have a 7-day half-life, which means the medication will likely be out of your system within 2 weeks. Once the medication is out of your system, you may experience an increase in appetite. 

If you prefer to taper the medication slowly, you can try moving to a lower dosage for a period of time. It is best to speak to your doctor about the best way to stop the medication. 

If you have struggled with obesity for a long time, it is not recommended that you stop taking GLP-1 medication. These medications are a long-term treatment for obesity management, they are not a temporary solution. 


  1. Wilding, J. P. H., Batterham, R. L., Davies, M., Van Gaal, L. F., Kandler, K., Konakli, K., Lingvay, I., McGowan, B. M., Oral, T. K., Rosenstock, J., Wadden, T. A., Wharton, S., Yokote, K., Kushner, R. F., & STEP 1 Study Group. (2022). Weight regain and cardiometabolic effects after withdrawal of semaglutide: The STEP 1 trial extension. Diabetes, Obesity & Metabolism, 24(8), 1553–1564.
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