The Only Real Strategy to Reduce the Appearance of Cellulite

Oh, cellulite. If it didn’t have nine letters, most would call it a four letter word.

Why don’t we want dimpled and lumpy skin?

Mainly, because we have a cultural belief that skin puckering represents ugliness and poor health, and it needs eliminating as quickly as possible! Cellulite showed up on our radar less than 200 years ago in France. Before that, this skin appearance would just start to show up in women after they birthed a number of children, had high oestrogen, or started aging.

Perhaps at one point this would have factored into whether a woman was still able to successfully mate or not  (think primal sexiness). More likely, it was rarely thought of and it is our ageist society that deemed cellulite bad. If you care about cellulite, you have most likely read that something like 80-90% of women experience some degree of cellulite in their lifetime.[1] And yet to many it is still a big deal!

In our WildFit 90 Day Challenge, it is often the case that those carrying a Y chromosome will release two times the weight or inches as us females. It is frustrating for some, but also accepted as biology. Men and women store fat differently, and the reason females get cheese curd thighs is because our fat cells and connective tissues stack vertically, rather than in a criss cross pattern like males, therefore larger cells can bulge up between the fibrous and elastic matrix under our skin. If we are storing a great deal of fat or our fat cells are holding on to lots of toxins and our connective tissue is not as tight as it once was due to a break down of collagen, lack of hydration or slowing circulation, then we end up in one of the various stages of cellulite.[2]

Now, because this ‘problem’ is occurring under our skin, it is common sense that any cream, serum, exfoliant or spa treatment that we slather onto the surface of our skin probably won’t fix the issue. However, marketers have convinced us that cellulite is shameful, and we are desperate to try ANY quick fix to get it gone. We buy in to the hype to get momentary relief. We usually forget about this ‘problem’ until we remember someone might notice it, like when getting naked with a partner or into our bathing suit. Our focus has become a short term esthetic issue with no bearing on our actual worth.

I propose that if cellulite is a reminder of anything negative to you, it might be that you are carrying more toxins than you would like to have in your beautiful body and your tissues may be suffering effects of poor nutrition. Your outer appearance is a reflection of your inner health.

Our WildFit Challengers have this crazy, shifted paradigm – that your body will do everything it can to heal and rejuvenate when you give it the resources to do so. I’ll share how we put it into practice to reduce cellulite:

Rather than opting for a superficial quick fix that does not offer lasting benefits, it is better to face the truth. Cellulite is a complex reaction and once started it can’t just be zapped or sucked out. However you can drastically reduce its appearance with improved circulation, proper fluid balance, good muscle tone, proper nutrition and the least amount of toxins possible.

In short, you need to take great care of your body!

Great circulation and good muscle tone:

Cellulite is a distinctive layer of fat layered on top of muscle. So, if the muscles in the stomach, hips, thighs and buttocks are weak it will contribute to the ‘uneven’ view of the skin surface.[3]

Intentional movement like hiking, yoga, pilates and other resistance exercise with tighten up the muscles and also increase circulation. Plan to do some kind of aerobic exercise for at least 30 minutes each day, even just a brisk walk, and resistance exercise 4 or 5 times each week for visual improvement in just a few short weeks.

Lack of exercise, too much sitting, clogged arteries and nutrient deficiency lead to a loss of circulation, which accelerates cellulite formation. So, move your body regularly throughout the day, hydrate yourself and eat supportive foods. Shift your habits and your body will shift with you!

Proper fluid balance:

If you are dehydrated, lymph fluid won’t flow properly and your tissues deflate. Lymph fluid is what carries away toxins from your fat cells, so plumping yourself up with water flushes fat out quickly. Hydration doesn’t just equal more H2O. It means a largely plant based diet that gives you the phytonutrients necessary to stop you from retaining water and give your cells what they need to thrive.

Proper nutrition:

It’s funny how the best advice is often what we don’t want to hear, right? We want a magic bullet to fix us, rather than accept that if we eat too many doughnuts we will look like doughnuts. Research shows that the major causal factor of cellulite is a breakdown of tissue caused by inflammation. Inflamed tissues are known to be caused by sugar and other refined carbohydrates, hydrogenated oils, trans fats, processed meats and excessive alcohol. If these foods were making up a large proportion of your meals for a while, chances are you have lots of cellulite. The good news? Eating foods that boost your collagen production and skin health can start to heal your tissues and as the swelling goes down, so will that lumpy appearance. So focus on bringing in more of the good like cilantro, parsley, fennel, citrus, ginger, olive oil, garlic, nuts and wild salmon. Our RECIPE is a tasty way to take the first step!

Least amount of toxins possible:

Toxins are stored in our fat cells, and the more we are exposed to environmental toxins from pollution, household and hygiene products, our food and otherwise, the more they accumulate in our body. This increases both the size of fat cells as well as overall inflammation in the body, meaning increased cellulite and degraded tissue. Pollution and contaminants are tough to get away from these days, but by following the advice in this article you are supporting your body in eliminating them from your system.

Another great cellulite hack to boost results is to start dry brushing, a form of self massage for the skin that encourages the lymph to flow properly.

Let’s be honest.

We don’t slather on cellulite cream to get rid of it. We do it because we hope that when it is gone self confidence will magically appear in its place. The truth is that when you take care of your body by nourishing yourself and moving as you were meant to, your body will love you right back.

As you focus on positive things about your body like strength, grace, and vitality, somehow the existing cellulite seems to fade away, and can even become invisible. Happy beach season!

References:
[1] https://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/facts.html
[2] https://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Article%20folder/cellulite2.html
[3] Rossi, A.B.R., Vergnanini, A.L. (2000). Cellulite: a review. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology & Venereology, 14, 251-262

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Ariel Richards

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