Home Pharmaceuticals Anti-obesity Medication Market Projected to be USD 30.1 billion by 2032

Anti-obesity Medication Market

Anti-obesity Medication Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Approved, Off-Label), By Mechanism of Action (Peripherally Acting Drugs, Centrally Acting Drugs), By Distribution Channel (Retail Pharmacies, Hospital Pharmacies) and By Region(North America, Europe, APAC, Middle East and Africa, LATAM) Forecasts, 2024-2032

Report Code: SRPH56105DR
Study Period 2020-2032 CAGR 25.9%
Historical Period 2020-2022 Forecast Period 2024-2032
Base Year 2023 Base Year Market Size USD 3.7 billion
Forecast Year 2032 Forecast Year Market Size USD 30.1 billion
Largest Market North America Fastest Growing Market North America
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Market Overview

The global anti-obesity medication market size was valued at USD 3.7 billion in 2023 and is projected to reach  USD 30.1 billion by 2032, registering a CAGR of 25.9% during the forecast period (2024-2032). The rise in obesity prevalence, the number of drugs in the pipeline, and the increase in R&D efforts are the primary reasons driving the anti-obesity drugs market share.

Anti-obesity medication is a class of pharmaceutical treatments that are prescribed to help people lose weight and manage obesity-related health issues. These drugs act in various ways, including lowering hunger, reducing fat absorption, and improving metabolism. They are often administered as part of a multifaceted treatment strategy that includes dietary adjustments, increased physical activity, and behavioral therapy.

The important factors driving the expansion of the anti-obesity medicines market analysis include the rising incidence of obesity, which has resulted in a huge patient population suffering from chronic and debilitating disorders, hence increasing demand for anti-obesity pharmaceuticals significantly. Furthermore, pharmaceutical companies' increased investments in R&D activities to develop more effective anti-obesity drugs and an increase in demand for weight-loss medicine as people become more aware of the health risks associated with obesity drive the growth of the anti-obesity drugs market share. 

However, the tight regulatory compliance required for anti-obesity medicine approval, as well as potential side effects such as higher blood pressure and heart rate, impede the growth of the anti-obesity drugs market. Conversely, rising obesity rates and increased knowledge of obesity treatment in emerging economies such as India, China, Mexico, and Brazil are expected to open up new prospects during the projection period. 


  • Approved account for the largest share of the market by product.
  • Peripherally Acting Drugs influenced the market growth through mechanisms of action.
  • Hospital pharmacies generate the highest revenue share of the market through distribution chhanels.

Market Dynamics

Global Anti-Obesity Medication Market Drivers

Rising Prevalence of Obesity

The rising prevalence of obesity worldwide is a significant driver of the anti-obesity medicine market. Sedentary lifestyles, bad food habits, and genetic predispositions all contribute to increased obesity rates around the world. As obesity becomes more common, there is a greater need for effective medical interventions that can help people manage their weight and prevent obesity-related health concerns. 

According to a 2023 World Health Organization (WHO) report, nearly one-third of primary school-aged children in Europe are overweight or obese. The survey also predicts that the number of boys living with obesity will climb by 61% between 2020 and 2035, while the number of girls living with obesity will rise by 75%. Obesity, as defined by the WHO, is "abnormal or excessive fat accumulation that poses a health risk." According to the World Obesity Atlas 2023, more than half of the world's population will be overweight or obese within the next 12 years, with over 4 billion likely obese or overweight by 2035. In 2016, 1.9 billion adults, or 39% of the global population, were overweight, and 650 million, or 13%, were obese.

In addition, in 2023, the CDC estimates that 41.9% of adults in the United States will be obese. Black and Latino individuals had the highest obesity rates (49.9% and 45.6%, respectively). Obesity rates are higher in rural regions than in cities and suburbs. This tendency is also seen in other areas, such as Europe, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America, where obesity rates are increasing at an alarming rate. 

Furthermore, obesity is predicted to cause approximately 280,000 fatalities per year in the United States for all subjects and 325,000 for nonsmokers and never-smokers combined. A 2023 study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association discovered that cardiovascular fatalities related to obesity tripled between 1999 and 2020, with Black women having the most significant mortality rate. As obesity rates rise worldwide, the market for anti-obesity pharmaceuticals is expected to expand further, providing potential for innovation and better patient outcomes in the fight against obesity. 

Global Anti-Obesity Medication Market Restraints

Safety Concerns and Side Effects

Many anti-obesity treatments are associated with potential adverse effects and safety issues, which may discourage patients and healthcare providers from prescribing or using them. Common side effects of anti-obesity medicines include gastrointestinal problems, elevated heart rate, sleeplessness, and mood swings. Furthermore, some drugs have been linked to more severe side events, such as cardiovascular risks or psychiatric issues, prompting regulatory scrutiny and limited use. Sibutramine was a popular appetite suppressant used to manage weight. However, it was linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular events, including heart attacks and strokes, especially in patients with pre-existing cardiovascular illness. Due to these safety concerns, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requested that sibutramine be removed from the market.

According to one study, 11.4% of persons taking sibutramine experienced a nonfatal heart attack or stroke, compared to 10.0% of those taking a placebo. Most countries, including the United States, Australia, and the European Union, ceased using sibutramine in 2010, citing an increase in cardiovascular events and strokes. Sibutramine is no longer recommended for those with a history of cardiovascular disease, according to the product labeling. 

Thus, worries about the safety and adverse effects of anti-obesity drugs can have an impact on patient adherence, healthcare provider prescribing patterns, and regulatory choices. Adverse occurrences may result in black box warnings, restricted usage, or withdrawal from the market, restricting therapy options for obesity patients and hampering the development of new drugs.

Global Anti-Obesity Medication Market Opportunity

Digital Health Integration and Specialized Care

Integrating digital health technology, such as mobile apps, wearable devices, and telehealth platforms, into obesity treatment regimens can improve patient participation, monitoring, and support. Digital treatments, such as behavior modification programs, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and virtual coaching, supplement medication interventions by encouraging long-term lifestyle changes for weight management.

Additionally, weight loss medications such as Ozempic, formerly used to treat diabetes, have captured the public's attention. The DTC telemedicine businesses have quickly adopted this class of drugs. By the end of 2022, U.S. health providers had written 9 million Ozempic and Wegovy prescriptions, representing a 300% increase in three years. Approximately 7% of people in the United States now use a GLP-1 medication. The medications' rapid popularity has prompted food and beverage businesses to reevaluate their goods to cater to GLP-1 users. 

Moreover, pharmaceutical companies are increasingly collaborating with digital health startups to incorporate digital treatments into their anti-obesity pharmaceutical portfolio. For example, Novo Nordisk worked with Noom to integrate Noom's behavior modification platform into their weight management medications, such as the anti-obesity medication Saxenda (liraglutide). This collaboration seeks to provide patients with individualized coaching and assistance to supplement drug therapy, boosting treatment adherence and long-term results.

Regional Analysis

The global anti-obesity medication market analysis is conducted in North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and Africa, and Latin America.

North America Dominates the Global Market

North America is the most significant global anti-obesity medication market shareholder, estimated to grow at a CAGR of 26.0% over the forecast period. North America dominated the market, with a 40% revenue share in 2023. North America's supremacy is evident for various reasons, including a high obesity rate and favorable government regulations. Market participants like Novo Nordisk, Pfizer, Merck & Co., and F. Hoffmann-La Roche strengthen their position. Strategic mergers, acquisitions, and alliances among pharmaceutical behemoths actively alter the competitive environment. 

For example, Roche's USD 2.7 billion acquisition of Carmot Therapeutics in December 2023 exemplifies this trend, as it seeks to gain access to promising clinical-stage obesity medications such as CT-388, CT-996, and CT-868. Furthermore, a study published in the Cureus Journal of Medical Science reveals a considerable obesity burden in rural America, attributed to various reasons. While progress has been made, genetics and rural-focused research remain critical for developing effective preventative and control techniques.

The European anti-obesity drug market is a profitable opportunity for pharmaceutical companies, with tremendous growth potential in the region. Despite significant advances in defining obesity as an illness, patients continue to face substantial barriers to accessing drugs and therapies. Many individuals cannot afford weight management treatments due to a lack of coverage from government healthcare programs such as Medicare and private payers. 

Currently, the European Union has four medications registered to help people lose weight: long-acting GLP-1 analogs and orlistat, a combination of hydrochloride naltrexone and hydrochloride bupropion. These drugs provide promising answers for people suffering from obesity, but their lack of availability restricts their usefulness in fighting the obesity pandemic.

The Asia-Pacific anti-obesity drug market is expected to increase significantly, driven by rising obesity prevalence and government initiatives in countries such as China, Japan, and India. Pharmaceutical companies are investing in research. For example, in February 2024, Innovent Biologics reported NMPA approval of mazdutide NDA for overweight treatment in China, demonstrating Phase 3 trial effectiveness with weight loss and cardiometabolic advantages, potentially changing anti-obesity pharmacology.

Furthermore, advances in medication development technologies improve therapy possibilities. Co-occurring health concerns connected to obesity highlight the critical need for advanced treatments. This collaborative endeavor represents a booming market fueled by regional dedication to combating obesity and pharmaceutical innovation, ready to fulfill the growing need for effective anti-obesity medications.

Report Scope

Report Metric Details
By Product
  1. Approved
  2. Off-Label
By Mechanism of Action
  1. Peripherally Acting Drugs
  2. Centrally Acting Drugs
By Distribution Channel
  1. Retail Pharmacies
  2. Hospital Pharmacies
Company Profiles Novo Nordisk A/S GlaxoSmithKline plc Novartis AG VIVUS LLC Currax Pharmaceuticals Kintai Therapeutics Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH Rhythm Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Gelesis
Geographies Covered
North America U.S. Canada
Europe U.K. Germany France Spain Italy Russia Nordic Benelux Rest of Europe
APAC China Korea Japan India Australia Singapore Taiwan South East Asia Rest of Asia-Pacific
Middle East and Africa UAE Turkey Saudi Arabia South Africa Egypt Nigeria Rest of MEA
LATAM Brazil Mexico Argentina Chile Colombia Rest of LATAM
Report Coverage Revenue Forecast, Competitive Landscape, Growth Factors, Environment & Regulatory Landscape and Trends
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Segmental Analysis

The global anti-obesity medication market is segmented based on product, mechanism of action, and distribution channel.

The market is further segmented by product into Approved and labeled.

The approved product segment accounted for the majority of total revenue. This dominance is attributed to the availability of therapeutically effective weight management treatments, the increasing prevalence of obesity, and the widespread use of approved anti-obesity medications. FDA-approved drugs include Zepbound, Wegovy, Saxenda, Orlistat, and Qsymia. These medications are mainly developed and indicated for treating weight-related medical disorders, ensuring their safety and efficacy profiles are thoroughly documented. The authorized segment's dominance is partly related to the efficacy and safety of these medications and pharmaceutical companies' focus on strategic efforts and more advanced product launches, which increase drug uptake. 

The off-label section of the anti-obesity medicine market includes medications not approved by the FDA but given by doctors for weight loss. Off-label drugs include Semaglutide (Ozempic), Liraglutide (Victoza), Dulaglutide (Trulicity), and Topiramate (Dulaglutide). This segment's growth is being driven by low prices and pharmacological efficacy that is comparable to that of branded drugs. For example, Naltrexone and bupropion are combined in Contrave, an FDA-approved weight-loss prescription; however, the two pills can be prescribed independently off-label.

Based on the mechanism of action, the market is fragmented into Peripherally Acting Drugs and Centrally Acting Drugs.

The peripherally acting anti-obesity medicines segment had the highest revenue share of 60% in 2023. Peripherally acting medications use physiological processes outside the central nervous system (CNS) to cause weight loss. These drugs primarily target the gastrointestinal tract or peripheral tissues involved in appetite regulation, energy metabolism, and fat absorption. This mechanism's ability to improve nutrient absorption and lessen hunger is responsible for a significant portion of the share.

Additionally, these medications inhibit fat absorption in the intestines, resulting in reduced calorie intake and weight loss. The domination of this category is also due to the efficacy of these medications in producing a sense of fullness while avoiding the harmful effects often associated with appetite suppressants. Furthermore, their mode of action requires less calorie restriction and physical exercise, making them suitable for patients looking for convenient and long-term weight management treatments. 

The market for centrally acting pharmaceuticals will expand at a healthy CAGR over the forecast period. Centrally active anti-obesity medicines use the central nervous system to decrease hunger and promote weight loss. These medications, such as Bupropion (Wellbutrin) and Naltrexone, stimulate specific receptors, reducing hunger and increasing energy expenditure. The dominance of centrally acting medications can be linked to their capacity to produce a sense of fullness, potentially lowering overall calorie intake while maintaining physical activity levels. 

Furthermore, their action is consistent with lifestyle modifications essential to weight control programs, making them a popular choice among many. The recent exclusion of several amphetamines from the market due to harmful side effects has also aided in the trend toward safer, centrally-acting medicines, strengthening their market position.

The market can be further bifurcated by distribution channels into Retail and hospital Pharmacies.

Retail pharmacies led the distribution channel segment, accounting for 50% of total revenue. Retail pharmacies, often called community pharmacies or drugstores, are frequently found in residential neighborhoods, shopping malls, and retail chains. These pharmacies serve the general public, offering over-the-counter (OTC) pharmaceuticals, prescription drugs, and healthcare items. Patients can visit retail pharmacies to complete prescriptions for anti-obesity medications provided by their doctors. Retail pharmacies provide convenient, accessible, personalized services such as medication counseling, refill reminders, and patient education. Patients can connect directly with pharmacists and pharmacy staff to get their drugs, seek advice on medication use, and express any concerns or questions about their treatment.

Hospital pharmacies also play an essential role, particularly in the treatment of extreme obesity or patients with comorbidities that require specialist care. Hospital pharmacies are placed in healthcare institutions such as hospitals, clinics, and outpatient centers and offer pharmaceutical services to inpatients and outpatients. These pharmacies are staffed by certified pharmacists and pharmacy technicians working with healthcare practitioners to ensure patients' medications are administered safely and effectively.

Additionally, hospital pharmacies dispense prescription pharmaceuticals, including anti-obesity medications, to patients receiving therapy or having surgery in a hospital setting. Pharmacists play an essential role in medication reconciliation, monitoring drug interactions or adverse effects, and offering specialized therapeutic services to patients. Hospital pharmacists may provide compounding services, sterile preparations, and pharmaceutical counseling for patients with complex medical needs.

Market Size By Product

Recent Developments

Top Key Players

Novo Nordisk A/S GlaxoSmithKline plc Novartis AG VIVUS LLC Currax Pharmaceuticals Kintai Therapeutics Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH Rhythm Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Gelesis Others

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How big is the Anti-obesity Medication Market?
The global anti-obesity medication market size was valued at USD 3.7 billion in 2023 and is projected to reach USD 30.1 billion by 2032, registering a CAGR of 25.9% during the forecast period (2024-2032).
North America has the highest growth in the global market.
Key verticals adopting the market include: Novo Nordisk A/S, GlaxoSmithKline plc, Novartis AG, VIVUS LLC, Currax Pharmaceuticals, Kintai Therapeutics, Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH, Rhythm Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Gelesis
Rising Prevalence of Obesity is the key driver for the growth of the global market.
Approved account for the largest share of the market by product.

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