THE REALITY OF CELLULITE
By Georgia & Mark Garlick
Cellulite, the word that most just don't want to deal with,
What is it, where does it come from, can you actually reduce it? These are all the questions we ask ourselves on a daily basis.
But with over 85% of women and even 10% of men struggling with it, why do we still have questions?
Probably because anything you have seen involving cellulite, simply just highlights how socially unacceptable it is to wear a pair of shorts if you can see a hint of dimple on your thigh.
So, on todays blog our aim is to tell the truth and explain cellulite a little bit better for you, this we hope will answer some of your questions.
Let’s start with the basic foundations, What is cellulite?
By definition, cellulite occurs when a collection of your body fat pushes up against or breaks through your connective tissue in the hypodermis layer.
We have added a diagram to make it a little easier,
From Diagram A you can see that the white connective tissue is loose with no tension as the size and number of fat cells are reduced.
In Diagram B, the fat cells become bigger and in some cases increase (Have you ever crash dieted and then put the weight back on?) they stretch the connective tissue and push up against it, causing the dimpling effect on your skin.
In theory there are 2 types of cellulite (we thought having 1 was bad enough…)
Primary cellulite can be described as the growth of actual fat cells
Secondary is described as both internal and external factors such as, sun damage, weight loss and ageing.
There have been numerous studies done to research the driving factors behind cellulite, as you've probably found, cellulite is most common around your hip, thigh and buttock area.
But have you ever thought why?
Well, these areas of your body are naturally reserved for pregnancy, meaning they are more effected by your pregnancy hormones.
This is where we welcome, oestrogen, the hormone that has been proven to increase the appearance of cellulite.
Part of the role of oestrogen throughout pregnancy is to break down collagen in the cervix to make an easier passage for the baby.
So a woman having cellulite at some stage of her life is almost inevitable, especially if you have had a child.
Collagen on the other hand is also known to be one of the main contributors of cellulite.
The strong protein is naturally produced by your body, and the vital component of connective tissue as well as your skin, nails and hair.
It’s the reason your skin moves, and bounces back after you touch it. Without collagen there would be no glue to your body.
Before your collagen naturally starts to break down, the fat cells are held in tightly by connective tissue. This tissue slowly allows the fat cells to break free, increase in size and then multiply.
When fat cells multiply this sends a direct message to your ovaries to increase oestrogen production.
The excess oestrogen production in your body, further breaks down the collagen and the cycle of cellulite begins.
A few things that The Arrow Club recommend to help keep your oestrogen levels stable:
Avoid exposures to xenoestrogens, these are found in thing such as plastics and the birth control pill
Limit your intake of unfermented soy products such as tofu & soy.
If you can, use an infrared sauna as they are an incredible way of detoxing the body
Focus on improving your sleep, if you struggle with poor sleeping habits, you are likely to have a reduction in melatonin. This hormone protects against oestrogen dominance in your body.
Now we move on to the part you've all been secretly waiting for…
The debate on how to reduce or get rid of cellulite, with treatment ranging anywhere from nutrition and training to wraps, injections and rubs.
What actually works?
Seeing as cellulite is a build up of fat, it seems our most logical answer would be to lose body fat through a calorie deficit and training.
We have found it more beneficial to lift weights as opposed to just cardio, as this has shown to increase a women testosterone levels which helps manage estrogen levels.
Reducing the size of fat cells will help in the reduction of cellulite so we advise if that's your aim then a sustainable calorie deficit that you can adhere to for a long time ( including diet breaks.) will help.
From evidence based results, training and nutrition should be the most important factor in ‘reducing’ your cellulite before anything else.
Even with Excessive amounts of fat loss cellulite still occurs, so total elimination of cellulite in women is incredibly rare. We know that a good progressive strength training programme and a calorie controlled diet should always be the foundation to controlling cellulite .
Cellulite in 95% of cases cant be fully removed so the real focus should be on your mindset towards dealing with it.
Gone of the days where models and the instagram influencers heavily edited their photos to look abnormally perfect.
It’s clear that as a society we are trying to move more towards accepting ‘cellulite sally’ as this is a natural occurring process and nothing to be ashamed of.
So what we advise at The Arrow Club is to manage it to the best of your abilities with long term solutions (calorie deficit and weight training).
Until next time..