What is Cellulite
Cellulite is the word used to refer to the fatty deposits that cause a dimpled or uneven appearance of the skin, usually found around the thighs and buttocks and is wanted on the body about as much as a cockroach is wanted in your salad.
People often mistake cellulite for fat, however fat is an insulator for the body and cushions the organs, muscles and nerves and is smooth in appearance. Cellulite, on the other hand provides no padding, only occurs in certain areas of the body such as the thighs, buttocks, abdomen and breasts and is lumpy in appearance.
How does cellulite form
Gender and the nature of Fat
There are many believed reasons as to why people get cellulite; it’s most common in post-pubescent females since its thought the increased estrogen initiates and aggravates the cellulite. However studies show it could be due to the nature of females’ connective tissue that holds fat cells in place (called septa). The tissue in women is very inflexible, so as weight is gained the fat cells expand and bulge upwards towards the skin therefore giving the bumpy appearance (i.e. cellulite.) On the other hand men’s skin is thicker and is therefore able to obscure what is happening beneath the surface far better, men (generally) have less body fat and of course lastly men have less estrogen within the body.
Circulatory and Lymph System
Additionally another belief is related to the body’s ‘sewage system’ (called the lymph system) and the circulatory system. Basically the lymph system acts like a drain, taking all the waste products out of and away from the cells within the body whilst the circulatory system delivers vital oxygen and nutrients to the cells. However when they don’t function efficiently waste products and toxins ‘build up’ causing the connective tissue (septa) to harden. Once hardened again the fat has no where else to go but to the surface of the skin, which again produces the lumpy appearance of cellulite.
Ways to get rid of Cellulite
There are many weird and wonderful ways proposed to get rid of cellulite, so we have searched through them all and have just written down the most popular and most successful:
(1) Eat a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables such as blueberries, cherries, blackberries, citrus, cauliflower, broccoli, tomatoes, and peas since these contain anti-oxidants that help increase the flexibility of the septa, and an elastic septa ensures the cellulite stays beneath the surface.
(2) Avoid sugars in the diet since sugar produces the hormone insulin which not only stores fat but research reveals it has also been shown to participate in the development of cellulite.
(3) Avoid Saturated fats since these help build cellulite by blocking the arteries and becoming trapped in the tissue as well, thus preventing sufficient waste/ toxin elimination. And try to eat more Essential Fatty Acids like omega 3 and 6 since these help reduce cells sticking together.
As aforementioned cellulite can form when toxins are built up within the body and therefore harden the septa, so by avoiding creating those toxins in the first place we can stop cellulite forming. One way of doing this is by avoiding tobacco, caffeine, preservatives and spicy foods in our diets.
Obviously not great for the skin and lungs, but also it weakens the skin by causing constriction of capillaries and therefore the circulatory system, this in turn damages the connective tissue that causes the dimpling effect of cellulite.
Evidently regular exercise will burn fat and increase muscle tone, both of which will help to reduce the appearance of cellulite. But moreover exercise increases the activity of the heart and therefore circulatory system bringing ‘new’ nutrient rich blood to the skin whilst heavy breathing and muscle contractions stimulate the lymph system which then takes away the waste products. Consequently toxins are removed and the septa remains unhardened meaning cellulite is less likely to form.
Something as simple as deep and heavy breathing can help stimulate both the circulatory and lymph system, thus serving to eliminate toxins. Try this breathing technique; Breathe in, hold and out for a ratio of 1:4:2. So breathe in for 1 second, hold for 4 seconds and then breathe out for 2 seconds.
When stressed your body releases adrenaline a hormone that directs blood to our “fight or flight” muscles, such as the triceps, biceps and quadriceps, in preparation for defense or retreat. This means blood is redirected away from the skin, decreasing circulation and less toxins removed.
Drink a sufficient amount of water since this will help ‘flush’ toxins from the body and therefore help to maintain a healthy septa.