Set for success: how to get the best results from medical weight loss treatments

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With 60 per cent of Australians currently trying to lose weight1 and 23% on some sort of diet2, finding a lasting solution to weight management is easier said than done. However, as the experts at Juniper know, diets and exercise alone aren’t always enough to achieve lasting weight loss.

“Sometimes we see patients in our practice who might go too hard, too fast when they attempt to lose weight,” says Juniper’s Clinical Director, Dr Matthew Vickers. “They might make a lot of really great lifestyle changes, but in a way that might not be sustainable for the long term. Instead, the research shows, it’s better to take a slow and steady approach; focusing on long-term lean muscle maintenance and sustainable lifestyle changes.” 

How does Juniper’s program work?

Although Juniper has always been about an entire lifestyle change rather than just medical treatments, its latest program moves the focus from short term weight loss to muscle maintenance for longevity. “This new program will be built around a high protein diet, targeted exercise plans, and strength building to ensure patients maintain and build lean muscle mass while losing fat and enhancing overall health,” explains Dr Vickers.

It’s this 360-degree approach that sets Juniper apart from traditional weight-loss programs that focus solely on cutting calories and dietary restrictions3. To get started, Juniper pairs patients with practitioners who do an initial telehealth assessment. This preliminary consult assesses whether the patient is eligible for treatment, and if so, they’re offered a program that incorporates medical treatments as well as diet and lifestyle support. Patients receive hands-on support from accredited dietitians and health coaches, as well as access to Juniper’s supportive online community.

Eligible patients start a treatment plan which includes a clinically proven treatment that suppresses appetite, slows stomach emptying, and reduces hunger signals, leaving them feeling fuller for longer. Dr Vickers says while this treatment alone can be effective, for real long-term success a 360-degree mindset is essential. “The mentality we like our patients to come in with is that the treatment is a really safe and fantastic tool to support weight loss, but we know that lifestyle changes made alongside it are really what sets them up for success in terms of weight loss and also sustained weight maintenance,” Dr Vickers explains.

Delivered via Juniper’s award-winning app, the program offers a levels-based framework that helps patients begin life-long behaviour change across three pillars: fuel, burn and build. It’s this strategy that has yielded the best results from patients. In clinical trials, women using a holistic approach incorporating movement and a healthy diet achieved better weight loss results than those relying solely on treatments.

What results will I see on Juniper?

Many Juniper patients see results early in their health journey. Along with weight loss, Juniper patients experience improvements to their eating habits, relationship with food, and feelings of control, as well as their confidence, sleep, mood, energy, mobility, and endurance. Juniper patients have also reported lower blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels, along with reduced health risks4. “Something that I love about Juniper is that we’re a pharmacotherapy assisted, weight loss program, using medical treatments alongside our support offering of health coaching and medical support to help our patients achieve sustainable weight loss,” says Dr Vickers. “We work with them to create habits that will hopefully help them maintain that weight loss beyond the program.”.” 

What makes Juniper different to other weight loss programs?

In addition to medical treatment and lifestyle changes, the expert advice and community support is what sets Juniper apart. Once a patient has been approved and begins the program, they can access the award-winning members-only Juniper app which contains on-demand health, nutrition and movement videos and articles, dietitian-approved recipes, plus 1:1 dietitian chat to support them on their journey. They’re also welcomed into a community of thousands of likeminded women sharing the same journey. This community approach helps with accountability and motivation to achieve a long-term change.

“We know that everyone’s weight-loss journey looks different and having an individualised approach to your weight loss journey can be really helpful,” Dr Vickers says. “That’s something that Juniper does really effectively, by providing our patients with a personalised holistic offering.”

Science shows the importance of building and maintaining lean muscle for sustained weight loss. Greater lean muscle-to-fat mass means your basal metabolic rate (BMR) is faster, improving your body’s ability to burn calories – even when you’re not exercising7

Unfortunately, many traditional “fat-burning” workouts (think: high intensity cardio) not only burn fat, but also reduce fat-free mass9. Strength training may seem like the obvious solution, but strength training alone has been shown to have a minimal effect on weight loss

So what is the solution? Research suggests combining both cardio and strength training can help generate fat loss without compromising vital muscle and bone strength9. It’s this evidence that informs Juniper health coaches’ approach to exercise within the program. Patients are typically encouraged to follow a progressive overload strength routine, in conjunction with at least two hours of Zone 2 cardio training per week, where the patient’s heart rate sits at 60-70% of their maximum heart rate range. In designing these programs, Juniper’s multidisciplinary team takes every patient’s health profile and preferences into account. In addition to making sustained weight loss more difficult, research shows a lack of lean muscle mass also puts you at greater risk of developing critical illnesses, and contributes to a longer recovery period from acute conditions5. This is due to the role muscle mass plays in keeping the body’s vital tissues and organs healthy, enabling them to respond effectively to stress6. Prioritising lean muscle is just another way Juniper is committed to improving the wellbeing of Australians, not just helping them lose weight.


Exercise is only part of the answer. Research shows a protein-rich diet is essential to building lean muscle mass. In fact, a recent study demonstrated that resistance training performed without adequate protein consumption resulted in insignificant gains in lean muscle mass10 . Protein is also an important factor in building and maintaining bone health 11,12. It’s this science that informs Juniper’s health coaches and dietitians approach to protein – with patients encouraged to eat 1.2g to 1.6g of protein per kilo of body weight, per day. By keeping your protein up, your body will have the fuel it needs to maintain fat-free mass while still losing weight.

Learn more about Juniper and start your 30-day trial today at
  1. Sakzewski, Emily. The Australia Talks survey has revealed 60% of us are trying to lose weight; 2021 [cited 2023 Apr 5] Available from: ABC.
  2. Wallis, Sophie. Diet Statistics Australia; 2022 [cited 2023 Apr 5]. Available from: Finder.
  3. Australian Institute Of Health And Welfare. Diet. 2023 [cited 2023 Apr 5]. Available from: Australian Institute Of Health And Welfare.
  4. Juniper Lifestyle Survey of 203 current patients, December 2022
  5. Prado, C., Purcell, S., Alish, C., et al. (2018) Implications of low muscle mass across the continuum of care: a narrative review. Annals of Medicine, 50: 675-693
  6. Wolfe, R. (2006) The under appreciated role of muscle in health and disease. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 84: 475-482
  7. Victoria State Government (2020) Better Health Channel: Metabolism. Retrieved from
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  10. Tagawa, R., Watanabe, D., Ito, K., et al. (2021). Dose-response relationship between protein intake and muscle mass increase: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. Nutrition reviews, 79: 66-75
  11. Zittermann, A., Schimdt, A., Haardt, J. et al. (2023) Protein intake and bone health: an umbrella review of systematic reviews for the evidence-based guideline of the German nutrition society. Osteoporosis International, 34: 1335-1353.
  12. Groenedijk, I., den Boeft, L., van Loon, L., et al. (2019). High versus low dietary protein intake and bone health in older adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Computational and Structural Biotechnology Journal, 17: 1101-1112.