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Cellulite… what is it and can we get rid of it?

Did you know that 80-90% of women will experience cellulite?

Close up of woman grabbing cellulite on her thigh

What is cellulite and why is it more common in women?

Cellulite is very common and is a harmless skin condition that causes lumpy, dimpled skin predominantly on the thighs, hips and bum. Cellulite occurs when fat pockets are squeezed in between tissue bands that link the muscle to your skin, and is more likely to appear in women than men. But why is that?

There are a few factors that can contribute to cellulite, but it is near on impossible to predict who will have it. One key factor that makes women more susceptible to cellulite than men however, is the difference in the tissue bands. Men generally have thicker and a higher quantity of tissue bands that form a criss-cross pattern, whereas women have thinner bands which tend to be more vertical in appearance. It’s thought that the criss-cross pattern of the bands found in men, make it harder for the fat to squeeze through compared to the band make-up of women.

So what causes cellulite?

The exact cause of cellulite is unknown, however there are a few factors thought to contribute…

  • Enlarged fat cells as oestrogen levels fall with ageing.

  • Decreased blood flow to the connective tissue under the skin. This results in less oxygen reaching the area and therefore results in lower collagen production.

  • As we age, our skin becomes thinner and less elastic increasing the appearance of cellulite.

  • Genetics can be linked to a persons distribution of fat under the skin, circulatory levels and metabolism.

  • People that eat too much fat, carbohydrates, salt and too little fibre are likely to be at greater risk.

Can we get rid of cellulite?

There are plenty of creams out there claiming to get rid of cellulite and there are invasive medical procedures advertised as well. However, none have been proven to be long-lasting fixes.

Whilst the creams don’t remove cellulite (they can’t remove the fat cells) they can temporarily reduce the appearance of it. Creams help to tighten and provide moisture to the skin and caffeine, a common ingredient, increases blood flow to the area and can change the water content of the fat cells, which may reduce its appearance.

Take home…

Cellulite is a common condition in which 8/10 women have. It is normal to have cellulite and we shouldnt be made to feel embarrassed or ashamed by it. By leading an active lifestyle, eating nutritious foods and practicing self-care ac help reduce the onset or appearance of cellulite.