Cellulite And Why It Is Alright To Have It

What Is Cellulite?

Cellulite is a condition where fat sitting under our skin causes lumpy appearance and as we age, the skin becomes thinner and the lumps and bumps become more visible. Some of the factors which may contribute to develop cellulite are genetic, hormonal, ageing and eating habits. Excess intake of fat and carbohydrates can lead to the condition of cellulite. 

In a more scientific yet simpler term, Kanta Jethwani, CEO of Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic explains, “Every person has a network of connective-tissue strands, called septae, that hold the fat in place. In some people, the septae aren’t strong and tightly woven together due to genetic factors, which results in fat bulging out between them. As a result, the skin appears to have ripples that are scientifically referred to as cellulite.”

We are most likely to get cellulite where we have high concentrated fat and in the case of most of the women, the problem area non-arguably lies around thighs and buttocks.

“In simpler terms, cellulite is a condition of enlarged fat cells that sit under the skin making it look bumpy. This type of fat is most commonly accumulated in areas where there is a high fat-to-muscle ratio, especially the buttocks, hips and thighs”, adds Kanta Jetwani. 

Dr Vimi Ponnamparambath, Specialist Dermatologist at Aster Beauty Clinic, Warqa says, “Cellulite occurs when underlying fat deposits begin to push through layers of collagen fibers, or connective tissue, under the skin. It is often present in the buttocks and thigh areas, but also on the arms and stomach as well.” It is a myth that your lifestyle and weight gain has nothing to do with getting cellulite. However, you should not confuse cellulite with obesity. Kanta Jethwani of Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic further explains, “When a person gains weight, the accumulated fat deposits under the skin become larger, creating the dimpling effect on the body referred to as “orange-peel” or “cottage cheese”. As people get older, their skin becomes thinner and therefore exposes the appearance of cellulite.”

Who Is More Likely To Get Cellulite?

Three common determinants of who gets cellulite are gender, age and lifestyle. Commonly, women are more vulnerable to cellulite because of frequent hormonal imbalances and it’s a rare occurrence in men. The condition can be only be seen in men when they face intense hormonal changes in their body.

Dr Vimi Ponnamparambath, Specialist Dermatologist at Aster Beauty Clinic, Warqa says, “The condition affects nearly 90% of women at some point during their lives, even women who are otherwise slender and fit. Women tend to carry more fat around their hips and thighs and have less supportive connective tissue compared to men Hormones also seem to play a role in the appearance of cellulite: As women age, their bodies produce less estrogen a hormone that helps keep blood vessels flowing smoothly. Less estrogen can mean poorer circulation, which can also mean a decrease in new collagen production and the breakdown of older connective tissue leading to the formation of cellulite.”

Nisha Praveen, Laser Therapist, Aesthetica Clinic, Dubai says, “Cellulite can affect both men and women but it is more common in women due to the difference in distribution of fat muscle and connective tissue in them.”

Women's body structure is also one of the reasons that women are more likely to get cellulite than men. “Women are more likely to get cellulite because they have fewer and less tightly arranged septae, which are more noticeable due to their thin skin. Additionally, the strength of their septae and size of fat cells are affected by hormones. While cellulite can also be found in men, its occurrence is rare and mostly found amongst men with severe hormonal change”, says Kanta Jethwani of Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic.

What Is The Most Important Thing About Cellulite That People Should Know?

Cellulite is considered to be a worse word than it really is. Therefore it is important to know that it is only a cosmetic condition and has no fatal consequences or health complications at all.

Nisha Praveen of Aesthetica Clinic, Dubai says, “Cellulite does not necessarily impact overall health of the person. It is a cosmetic condition which the affected person may feel embarrassed in front of others.”

One of the most important things people need to understand is that cellulite does not only occur to people who have some extra body weight. It could happen to anybody even somebody who is lean, although it does become more noticeable if you are overweight. Another common misconception people have is that self-medicating with the use of skin tightening and firming creams will help with treating cellulite. This is definitely not true because no cream has shown to have permanent effects on cellulite. Consult with a dermatologist and understand what can be done to manage the condition.

How To Avoid Getting Cellulites?

The only dimples we really want are the ones on our cheeks. To avoid others, there are a number of thing we can do to avoid them.

“A healthy diet, exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight will help in the prevention of cellulite formation. Your diet alone can't determine whether you will or will not get cellulite but eating a well-balanced diet will help you maintain a healthy weight. Staying hydrated, both by drinking water and by eating plenty of foods with high water content, will also keep your connective tissue strong and supple, and may even help you slim down. A regular exercise practice cannot cure cellulite, but in many cases it can help prevent or reduce its appearance. Cellulite occurs when connective fibres underneath the skin become weak or lose their elasticity but stretching and strengthening those areas (in addition to burning away excess fat overall) can help. Firming and toning those muscles will in turn tighten the skin, giving the illusion that cellulite is less noticeable” advises Dr Vimi Ponnamparambath of Aster Beauty Clinic, Warqa.

What Cellulite Treatments Are Available?

There are a number of treatments available which can reverse the cellulite effects temporarily. The choice of treatment depends on the severity of the cellulite and also the desired results. To improve cellulite, you can consult with a doctor to choose one of the following methods that best suit your needs.

Kanta Jethwani of Bloom Aesthetic and Laser Clinic suggests a few non-surgical treatments available at her clinic:
Coffee wrap: Boost natural collagen and elastin production through the penetration of coffee into the skin.
Acoustic wave therapy: Reduce fluid retention and break down solid fat molecules through low energy shock waves that are sent through fat tissue.
Radio-frequency treatment: Improve production of collagen and reduce appearance of cellulite through skin heating radio waves.
Mesotherapy: Significantly reduce the appearance of cellulite by undertaking 10 sessions of mesotherapy

Other non-invasive treatments suggested by Dr Vimi Ponnamparambath of. Aster Beauty Clinic, Warqa include:
Endermologie cellulite treatment, which is a non-invasive procedure which uses a hand-held machine, equipped with rollers and gentle suction, to massage the problem areas and stimulate the skin for collagen production
Cellulaze, approved by the FDA in 2012, is a procedure in which an optic laser melts fat, breaks up fibrous connective tissue and stimulates the growth of new collagen.

Dr Luis Ayala, Specialist Plastic Surgeon at CosmeSurge says, "I have my own technique to treat cellulite which involves a simple procedure, performed under local anesthesia to avoid any pain. As part of the procedure a special needle is inserted in the problem area that will treat the root cause of the problem. I cut what I call "the guitar strings" these "strings" pull the skin down after I inject a little bit of fat which is extracted from the same patient. The procedure has witnessed a success rate of 75-80%, which is higher compared to traditional techniques (30-45%) All the patients treated using this technique have experienced positive results."

Home Remedies To Treat Cellulites

Even though, no science backs up the healing effects of home remedies, however, a few natural remedies without any severe side-effects claim to reduce cellulite that include:
• Drinking apple cider vinegar can reduce cellulite and some creams containing caffeine and seaweed are effective against cellulite.
• Dry brushing your skin can help liquify solid fat deposits and facilitate an even distribution. Consistently using this method may help reduce the appearance of cellulite. • Water is essential for the survival of all living beings and cells. Keeping an optimal hydration level by drinking water and herbal teas will help reduce and prevent the appearance of further cellulite.
• One of the most effective ways to prevent and cure cellulite is to lead a healthy lifestyle and maintain a diet that is low in carbohydrates but rich in 
healthy fats. 
• Massaging the problem area with coconut oil helps.

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