“tackle cellulite, obtain better looking skin, and create a new you”
Cellulite, also referred to as the “orange-peel skin”, is a common condition affecting both men and women globally. Data gathered from the American Skincare and Cellulite Expert Association has approximated that 90% of women, and to a lesser extent men, over the age of 20 suffer from some degree of cellulite. Whether it is the thighs, buttocks, and/or hips, the formation of cellulite can be regulated through the proper maintenance of various physiological factors and lifestyle changes.
While there is no real “cure” for cellulite, an individual can greatly impact the formation and spread of cellulite. Essentially, cellulite develops due to a variety of different factors. Most common of these factors includes hormonal imbalance, improper dieting, lack of physical exercise, and exposure to harmful external elements. Therefore, it is imperative to tackle each and every know aspect of cellulite formation to produce a successful treatment regime.
Cellulite can best be described as an orange-peel textured skin characteristic for affecting the lower buttocks, outer and posterior thighs, and hips. More precisely, the area composed of the orange-peel textured skin is actually a mixture of lumpy tissue and flabby skin. Due to its appearance, a common misconception exists which categorizes cellulite as a derivative of obesity; however, in actuality, millions of women, all weights and ages, are prone to developing cellulite at one time or another in their life.
What is Cellulite?
Cellulite is a multifactorial condition with a largely unknown pathophysiology, however, hereditary traits, malnutrition, lack of physical activity, bad venous and lymphatic circulation, and high oestrogen levels are known factors which aggravate the formation of cellulite.
Different Categories of Cellulite
Cellulite can be broken down into 3 different categories:
- Oedema cellulite – high proteoglycan concentrations draw excessive water to the affected area
- Microcirculation cellulite – produced by lymphoedema, lipoedema, or lipolymphoedema
- Fibrosis based cellulite – irregular collagen formation which impacts tissue and fat structure arrangement
Note: a patient can exhibit one form of cellulite or a combination of the above three.
Hormones are key molecules produced by living systems with the intent of physiological and behavioural regulation; therefore, the only successful way to treat the appearance of cellulite is to address the underlying hormonal imbalances responsible for weight gain and cellulite formation.
Note: while there are many hormones which affect the formation of cellulite, estrogen, the female sex hormone, has the greatest impact concerning cellulite formation.
Estrogen and Cellulite Connection
Estrogen works in the following ways to promote cellulite:
- It drives fat into adipocytes below the skin
- Fat cells enlarge and squeeze off blood flow
- Increased vascular pressure forces fluids out of vessels into the surrounding tissue space
- Building up of fluids produces swelling and stimulates the thickening of collagen and connective tissue
- Fibroblasts are recruited and continue to produce more connective tissue and further deregulate collagen
Cellulite and Dieting
There are many aspects of an individual’s diet which can impact the formation of cellulite. For example, a diet consisting of fast foods and other fatty contents increases the amount of bad cholesterol which circulates through the body. Excessive cholesterol leads to increased fat stores in the periphery which in turn drives the formation of cellulite. However, certain people who are not on the plus size also develop cellulite. Factors such as excessive smoking, drinking, and consumption of acidic food-stuff, can accelerate cellulite formation in people with no weight problems. Acidic cellular environments promote cellular death, loss of connective tissue, and oedema. These detrimental byproducts lead to declined elasticity and swelling. Eventually, the skin in the surrounding area becomes a mixture of lumpy and flabby tissue – the characteristic appearance of cellulite.
The Yo-yo Effect
- Dieter is initially successful in the pursuit of weight loss.
- Dieter becomes unsuccessful in maintaining the weight loss.
- Dieter begins to gain back the weight.
- Dieter tries to quickly lose weight and starts new diet.
- Steps 1-4 repeat.
- The short bursts of weight gain and weight loss reduce elasticity and muscle mass.
- Cellulite develops.
Note: if you can no longer keep up with a diet then give your body enough time to readjust before starting another diet.
These factors function to either increase the number or size of adipocytes, release hormones that affect appetite, and/or modify the structure of DNA and proteins.
Some factors include:
- Tributyltin (TBT)
- Monosodium Glutamate
- Cigarette smoke or second hand smoke
Other Predisposing Factors:
- Medications such as antipsychotic, antidepressants, anticonvulsant drugs, antidiabetic drugs, antihistamines, beta-adrenergic blockers, and steroid hormones
- Low birth weight
- Cushing’s Syndrome
- Caloric intake/physical activity imbalance
- Abruptly quitting smoking habits
During and after a diet, it is beneficial to use cosmetic products which inhibit/slow down the production of new fat cells.