Goodbye Cellulte

Now that we have addressed both skin and legs along our Body Project Journey, it’s seems quite appropriate to address another potential road-block in our pursuit to bare-it-all during the warm months….cellulite. Women of all ages and sizes are hassled with this skin nuisance and many partake in what seems a life time of discouraging battles to get rid of it.  Creams, treatments, wonder diets and supplements all take advantage of women’s determination banish cellulite…. But what can REALLY be done?

Cellulites’ pathophysiology is complex and no formula can ever fully reveal a universal plan to target its resolution.  Like most aesthetic and health concerns, the best actions are those which are premeditated with the understanding of the condition itself. With this post, I hope to give you the information you need to make the best decisions and, at the least, minimize the extent to which cellulite affects you. As most aesthetic specialists would certainly agree, cellulite has no cure and treatment can be difficult…. but solutions do exist! Below you will find a summary of the what, the why and the how to’s when it comes to understanding and treating your cellulite.

What is Cellulite?

Cellulite is really the symptom of a series of structural and circulatory morphologies and processes.  Some of cellulites’ attributes are due to subobtimal health, others, as explained below, are gender specific or due to hormone. In Summary, as a result of what is happening in the skin, the fat, your superficial circulatory system and muscles….. you display this visual condition referred to as Cellulite.

For those men and lucky women unfamiliar cellulite, I have posted a picture of it below!  It is the wavy, orange peel or cottage cheese-like appearance of the skin. It is most often experienced in the buttock, thigh and hip area but can occur almost everywhere on the body.

What is cellulite?

The Attributing Factors : A briefing

  • Sex: Your gender plays a big role in your tendency to form cellulite.  About 90% of women suffer from cellulite, while only about 5 % of men.

Here are 3 good but unfair reasons women suffer more.

1.  The structure and organization of the adipose layer (also referred to as the subcutaneous fat layer -SQ) predisposes women to cellulite. This is the most important factor attributing to women’s tendency to develop cellulite. Due to lack of male hormones, the connective tissue in the SQ layer develops very differently in women than in men. Women’s adipose tissue is constrained within chambers due to the orientation of the fibrous septae (connective tissue bands within the SQ). This chamber organization forces expanding volumes of fat to push up through the skin and cause dimpling  or uneven skin surface we see as cellulite. Men’s connective tissue is organized in the SQ in a way that allows the fat to expand horizontally, without causing superficial skin irregularities.

why women get cellulite

2.  Women tend to deposit fat in the hips, thighs and buttock, while men tend to gain more evenly adding less stress to any specific body part.

3.  The thickness of our skin: In general, men have thicker skin than women, especially in the area of the buttock and            thighs. Thicker skin is more resistant to the fat pushing up on it and also hides any structural deficits happening below            its surface.

  • Hormones:  Hormones affect every system in the body, tissues within the fat and skin are not exempt from their powers.  Tissue elasticity around and within the fat layer,  peripheral circulation and water retention all play a big role in cellulites appearance.  Those who suffer from abnormally high or unbalanced hormones do not adapt well to the structural and circulatory implications incurred from the hormones themselves.  These individuals more often suffer from abnormal accumulation and swelling of adipose tissue, impaired skin and fat circulation and toxin accumulation. All of these implications contribute to cellulites worsening appearance.

cellulite formation

  • Diet: Your diet is VERY important in maintaining a healthy fat layer.  You want to eat in a way which assures best microcirculation of the skin and fat, minimizes the accumulation of toxins and exogenous estrogens which are all stored in fat, and prevents retention of liquids in the fat.
  • Skin Quality: The  better, thicker and younger skin you have the less apparent everything that is happening below it will be. Genetic, sun damage and overall health can affect the quality of your skin. Genetics and gender you cannot control, but proper care of your skin and general health can help minimize cellulites appearance.
  • Muscle Tone: Since the SQ fat sits directly over muscle, muscle tone can affect the health of your fat layer and the appearance of cellulite. If you have toned muscles, you are actively and routinely massaging the fat layer, encouraging improved circulation and drainage of fluids and toxins. Toned muscles also help encourage a stronger connective tissue network throughout the fat and increase fat metabolism. All these sequels result in a smoother, more compact and healthier fat layer and reduced cellulite.

THE SOLUTIONS!

             OBJECTIVE #1: Improve Skin Quality, Make Skin Thicker

  • HABIT:
  • PRODUCT:
    • Use Topical Cream with Retinoids. Retinoids, like vitamin A has been shown to increase healthy cellular turnover of the skin and density of the epidermis with long term use. Some research also shows improvement of dermal thickness (the dermis is the collagen rich skin layer). The result of consistant use of a trusted retinol containing product is a smoothing, plumping effect, leaving the skin healthier, more radient and minimizing imperfections. \. Try ROC body products, they are famous for their effective retinol products.  For more body cream reccomendations check out my previous post The Body Project Skin Essentials.

RoC body products for cellulite

  • TREATMENT:
    • Radiofrequency– Will stimulate new collagen and elastin in both dermis and SQ layer. This will plump skin, improve elasticity and improve fibrous band integrity in the SQ. By shortening and tightening of fbrous bands within the SQ, RF can additionally improve wavy appearance attributed to cellulite condition.Try Thermage Monopolar RF, strengthens, tightens and improve skin quality in just one treatment, $2500-3000 per treatment.

Thermage Body

             OBJECTIVE #2 : Improve Circulation and Stimulate Lymphatic Drainage

  • HABIT:
    • Watch your diet– Avoid Alcohol, Salt, Preservatives, Non-Organic Meat and Dairy. These will all swell the fat, challenge proper circulation and drainage, make fat accumulation easier and fat loss harder. Also, make sure to incorporate foods which stimulate healthy circulation, fat metabolism and toxin elimination. Check out this link for some cellulite fighting breakfast foods.
    • Swim– Swimming is one  the best exercises to combat cellulite. Not only is it ideal to tone muscles, but massages tissues in a way favoring proper circulation and health. Swimming alone for 6 months has shown a immense benefits without any other method implemented.  I can’t tell you how many AntiAging and Dermatology conferences I have sat in that consistantly reported the benefits of swimming and lymphatic massage one of the best remedies for cellulite!

    Swimming benefits

    • Drink water lots of water, skip high sugar and unnatural beverages as this will contribute to fat swelling and toxin accumulation associated with cellulite.
  • TREATMENTS:
    • Manual Lymphatic Massage– Light Massage, when performed accordingly, can help activate the lymphatic system, allowing faster and better removal of lymphatic fluid, toxins and debris out of SQ fat. For more massage benefits check out my previous post  “5 reasons Massage Therapy is AntiAging”
    • Endermology– Uses mechanical rollers to mobilize fat and stimulate tissue. Studies of biopsies have shown increase production of elastin and collagen density in both skin and connective tissue in fat layer resulting in some softening of superficial irregularities and fat reduction.
      • Try Vela Shape– Classic Endermology results are not very impressive, however. the VelaShape device enhances its efficacy by combining it with suction, Infrared (IR) light and Radiofrequency energy. The additional heat created by the light and RF, enhances microcirculation, improves skin quality and induces tightening. All these benefits thicken skin and optimizes circulation helping improve cellulite.

               OBJECTIVE #3 : Work On The SQ Fat Layer

  • HABIT:
    • Incorporate Weight Training and Toning Exercises– As mentioned above, by keeping muscles tone, we can assure healthier overlying SQ tissue and minimize the extent at which cellulite appears. As mentioned, swimming is great, but the addition of  multi-dimensional muscle toning sequences can provide excellerated benefits.
      • I love this series for an amazing leg toning workout,  I literally discovered yesterday! Check it out here. It’s from a great website called GymRa which allows you to be your own personal trainer.
body toning for cellulite

Let’s help manage cellulite by keeping mucles toned

  • PROUDUCTS:
    • Use Topical Skin Products containing Methylxanthines (e.g., caffeine, aminophylline, and theophylline). Methylxanthines are agents that stimulate lipolysis, or fat breakdown.  While studies have reported consistent decrease in thigh circumference with use of these products, there have been mixed results concerning their efficacy for cellulite. With this said, Dr. Oz says those products containing over 5% of the mentioned ingredients work!! I have to admit…I love and trust the Dr. Oz team, so might be worth giving it a go!

Vichy CelluDestock for Cellulite

  • PROCEDURES:
    • MesoTherapy– Involves use of micro-injections of biological agents to promoting breakdown of fat and hopefully appearance of cellulite. Doctors combine substances such as vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes in hopes to stimulate fat breakdown improve cellulite. The most common and most important ingredient studied in cellulite treatments is known as Phosphatidycholine.
      • Although this practice is widely accepted in Europe, it is NOT FDA approved due to lack of consistency in methods and consequently results. With so many other better developed procedures, I don’t feel worth the risk.
    • Subscision- A minor surgical treatment that uses a needle instrument to break irregular connective tissue bands within the SQ fat layer. By releasing these bands the fat is released into a more natural position and therefore less likely to bulge causing the classic dimpling and skin elevations associated with cellulite.
      • Note: Although subcision can offer substantial improvement of cellulite after only one session, the technique isn’t well documented and therefore success of treatment can be variable. Furthermore, you must be prepared for weeks to months of recuperation and the possibility of side effects such as skin pigmentation. Success of treatment is totally dependent on your doctor’s experience, only trust an expert!.Here a YouTube Video of the procedure being done.

Subcision

  • LASER/US ASSISTED TREATMENTS:

    NON-INVASIVE OPTIONS:

  • SmoothShapes SV: This device incorporates a 915nm laser and a vacuum component to help more specifically heat and treat fat.  Additionally, it uses a 650 LED light source to mobilize treated fat and fluids in the SQ into the lymphatic circulation. The rollers in the handpiece provide massage while the suction helps bring the fat into the handpiece for better treatment. A total of eight treatments are needed over a span of 2 months. Treatments are fast and low on pain. For those who are seeking professional, predictable and safe treatment of mild cellulite, SmoothShapes may be the right treatment for you! Average cost per treatment is $400.

SmoothShapes for Cellulite

     INVASIVE OPTIONS: Like liposuction, these modalities target fat reduction with added benefit of restructuring SQ layer. The laser or ultrasound is incorporated to soften or liquefy fat for easier removal.  A pen-like instrument helps deliver laser/US energy in to the fat layer while mechanically breaking collagen fibers within the SQ fat. The heat created tightens skin  by improving elasticity and thickness of the underlying connective tissue. These procedures are considered minimally invasive, but, DO require anesthesia and have down time. They offer impressive results after only one treatment. Treatment cost run about $5500 per session.

  • Cellulaze by CyanosureThis Lipo-sculpting device uses  1440 nm side laser fiber sub-dermally.  Works mechanically to smooth protruding fat pockets by subcising them and releasing the fibrous septae. The laser creates heat from within the fat layer, softening fat and stimulating dermal collagen remodeling and production.  Currently Cellulaze is considered the most effective the treatment for moderate to severe cellulite therapy.

Cellulaze

  • VaserSmooth– This is the newest ultrasound assisted liposuction device. The use of ultrasound to allows physicians to work quicker than ever and promise their patients less downtime and side effects than any other modality used for fat or cellulite.  Those experienced with the device are betting VaserSmooth takes over as the newest Cellulite superstar!

vaser smooth cellulite results

CONCLUSIONS AND MY BASIC GUIDE TO CELLULITE 

I hope with this little Cellulite Review you better understand the nature of this bikini season nightmare! Prior to investing costly quick fixes, I encourage you to take a couple of months and focus of the basics.

My formula is one which consists of the essential 4 points below. As always, I stress healthy practices which will bring to your life much more than aesthetic benefits! Remember if you focus on health, the beauty will come naturally! I guarantee if you stick to the plan for 3 months you will see significant improvement SANS expensive devices and treatments!

  • Avoid foods sources harboring exogenous estrogens and preservatives!– Eat organic and mostly vegan foods.  Diet sodas and sugary, fried and packaged foods must be eliminated.  Since your fat harbors all toxins and excess hormones, you will see a tremendous improvement just by cutting out harmful food sources! See toxin and fat relationship in my previous post “Your Waistline and Health”
  • SWIM!! If cellulite is a major concern for you, I will again highlight the benefits of swimming! Swimming at minimum 3 times a week can do wonders for your lymphatic system and overall connective tissue health!
  • Get Weekly or Bi-Monthly Lymphatic Massages. Again, massage is a preventative health method consistently overlooked!  As mentioned, healthy lymphatic circulation is required to help flush the fat of toxins and liquids which cause disfigurment and dysfunctional processes associated with Cellulite. The aesthetic benefits of lymphatic drainage alone may be temporary, but, in combination with improved diet and excercise, could be key in preserving cellulite free skin!
  • Make sure getting Daily Fiber and Purified Water quota. This will help flush out toxins, improve circulation and health. All this will assure maximum energy levels, enhance immunity, stabilized mood and physical sense of “lightness” we need to stick to our healthy diet and lifestyle plan!

If you have tried these tips and still feel need extra support from treatments and products go for it!!

Cheers to smooth, tight and toned lower bodies!!!

Lovely cellulite free legs