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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Cellulite - The Ugly Truth

Cellulite is fat and causes the sexy dimpled skin that resembles 'cottage cheese' and can appear anywhere on the body; the abs, arms, calves, thighs, or booty. Awesome **said rolling eyes. Cellulite occurs when fat directly under the skin (subcutaneous fat) gets pushed up through the layer of mesh-like connective tissue, resulting in a lumpy and bumpy appearance.

It's normal to feel self-conscious about it but if you're a member of the Cottage Cheese Club (CCC) don't worry, you're not alone. Millions of people have it and you don't have to be overweight to be a member of the CCC.

THE TRUTH - Since cellulite is fat, improper diet and lack of exercise can cause excess fat to accumulate. But, if it will develop into cellulite depends on factors like genetics, gender, and hormonal levels.

It can happen to anyone! Thin, active people who maintain a healthy weight and low body fat percentage can have it too! By default, women get cellulite because estrogen causes us to store more fat than men. Women also have skin and fat cell structures that are slightly different than men. The structure of male skin prevents cellulite. There are some cases of men, particularly those with lower levels of male hormones, especially androgen. Overall, about 10% of men have cellulite (compared to over 90% of women).

Now that you know what cellulite is and how it occurs let's go over some common myths about getting rid of it:

Think you can prevent it? Exercise can and will reduce the overall amount of fat, minimizing the cellulite too. Tight, toned muscles also make cellulite less noticeable. But even the most dedicated gym goers can have cellulite because of the nature of their fibrous connective tissue. Unfortunately, if your genes have predetermined you to a member of the CCC, there is no way to avoid it.

Want to camouflage it with a tan? Tanned skin does conceal the appearance of cellulite in the short-term. UV radiation from the sun (or a tanning bed) actually weakens and thins the skin, making cellulite more noticeable over time. Use a self-tanning lotion instead of sunbathing if you want to minimize the look of your cellulite.

Think your lotion will get rid of it? Think again. Topical creams, with retinol and tretinoin, may increase collagen, firm skin, and improve the look of cellulite. Other lotions contain ingredients that temporarily cause the skin to swell which smoothes out the look of dimples. Unfortunately, all topical solutions aren't guaranteed affect everyone the same way. Even if they do work, the results are only short-term.

Have you heard a scrub or massage can reduce it? Using a scrub or loofah increases circulation and sloughs off the top layer of skin cells, but since it doesn't reach the deep layers where cellulite is found, it isn't effective. It may look better because exfoliation improves the appearance of skin's surface layers. There is an FDA approved procedure called Endermologie that produces visible results. The procedure consists of an electronic massage and suction device that compresses the affected tissue between the two rollers. Each session costs an average of $50 and it typically take 10 to 20 treatments to get the best results. Afterwards monthly maintenance treatments are required. Without maintenance, the cellulite will return. But, why dish out all of that cash for a temporary solution?

Hoping a wrap will zap it? Body wraps use plastic, rubber, or cloth material with lotions that cause you to lose weight and (supposedly) cellulite. But, the wrapping processes reduce water weight, not fat. Losing too many body fluids can cause electrolyte imbalances and possible heart failure. You will lose 'weight' and 'inches' but it can be potentially harmful to your health. Plus, as soon as your hydration levels are restored you can say, buh-bye to your results. Why waste money and risk your health on a procedure that isn't permanent?

Want to blast it off with Lasers? There are some treatments that break up cellulite using radiofrequency and infrared light. But, laser treatments require a significant investment of time and money before you begin to see results. How significant? Think movie star; hundreds of dollars and multiple treatments. Once again this is a temporary treatment. Results can last up to 6 months after results are achieved and maintenance treatments are required to prevent the return of lumps and bumps.

Like needles? Then Mesotherapy, a much more invasive procedure, may be for you. During a mesotherapy session, a solution of chemicals, hormones, enzymes, herbal extracts, vitamins, and minerals are injected into the affected areas. First, this treatment hasn't been around long enough to be researched for long term side effect, but there are instant side effects that can occur like infections, rashes, or uneven skin and bumps. Isn't that what you're trying to get rid of in the first place?

Thinking of getting is sucked out? Think again! Liposuction is a surgical procedure that removes stubborn pockets of fat, but it is not a cellulite cure. During lipo fat is extracted from between the skin and the fibrous bands of connective tissue. It's possible the channels may be left behind where fat was removed can emphasize the lumpy appearance and look even worse.

Now you know there isn't an easy button to get rid of it. Trying to cut corners to remove or reduce it can either waste your money, make it look worse, or not work. So what can you do to reduce the cellulite you have in a healthy, pain free way?

Accept that if you want to reduce your cellulite you have to lose fat, not weight from water or waste. As your fat cells shrink, so will the bumps and lumps.

Now that you know you have to take positive action. There are three ways body fat can be reduced:

1) Cardio exercise - Burns fat during the exercise

2) Strength training - Burns fat during and after the exercise

3) Proper diet

During exercise, you sweat. The act of sweating actually flushes toxins out of your body which reduces the appearance of cellulite.

Follow these dieting guidelines and you will shrink your fat cells quickly:
• Eat a balanced diet high in protein, complex carbohydrates, and vegetables
• Choose foods with healthy fats, essential fatty acids and avoid trans and saturated fats
• Drink plenty of water - at least 8, 8 oz. glasses a day
• Avoid the use of caffeinated, sweetened, carbonated, and alcoholic drinks
• Limit foods with preservatives and foods found in cans
• Reduce consumption of oil, sugar, and processed foods like candy, junk foods, fast foods

What's the fastest way to reduce fat safely? Consistently do a combination of all three. A healthy diet and exercise will accelerate the metabolism and reduce the toxins in the body. A fast metabolism burns fat and eliminating toxins reduces the appearance of cellulite naturally as your fat cells shrink.

When you start seeing your body change and know that you've earned it - there is no better feeling in the world. When you do, keep moving forward. Over time you will be able to downgrade your rank in the Cottage Cheese Club from a gold, to silver, to bronze member. With dedication you may even be able to resign from the CCC! But, you must take positive action to get results.

If you'd like a step-by-step guide to get your body tight check out the Mind Right, Body Tight program and Cook Book available exclusively at Get your copies now and begin losing weight today.

Practice makes perfect. If I can do it, you can do it!

Never Stop Trying -

Christina Carlyle

Author of Mind Right, Body Tight, Personal Trainer, Sports Nutritionist, Group Fitness Instructor, Your Coach and Friend

'Like' the Mind Right, Body Tight facebook page here:!/pages/Mind-Right-Body-Tight/121917931204826

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