"Glucagon-like peptides" (GLPs) are hormones made in the intestine. GLP-1 affects your digestion and processing of glucose. The new medicines exenatide (Byetta) and sitagliptin (Januvia) increase the GLP-1 effect during your digestion.
In the end, these medicines change several things. They help your pancreas to release insulin after meals. They reduce the release of glucose by the liver. They make your stomach empty more slowly, so sugar enters the bloodstream more gradually. They also decrease your appetite slightly.
- These medicines are helpful if sugar highs after meals are a problem.
- These medicines do not usually increase weight. They may help you to lose a little.
- Hypoglycemia is not a usual side effect.
- Nausea is common. These medicines can't be used by people who have symptoms from slow stomach emptying (gastroparesis).
- Byetta must be injected.
- Long-term safety is not known.