Does a glimpse at your legs and backside cause you to frown? It could be you’ve spotted some dimpling there, otherwise known as cellulite. It tends to crop up on the upper legs and buttocks. But don’t worry, you’re not alone. Somewhere between 80 and 90 percent of women report having cellulite, much to their chagrin. Do you know what it is? And more importantly, what you can do about it?
Cellulite is harmless, except perhaps to your self-esteem. It’s more common among women than men – sorry, ladies! – and it tends to run in families. So if your mother or sister has cellulite, there’s a good chance you will too. Cellulite is nothing more than normal fat beneath your skin, and here’s a news flash – even thin people aren’t immune!
So how does cellulite form? Basically, fat pushes against the connective tissue that stores it, causing the skin above to pucker and assume that infamous orange peel look. The reason cellulite appears less frequently in men is because their connective tissue runs on the diagonal while women store fat in a vertical honeycomb-like structure. Fat pushing through a honeycomb network of connective tissue tends to be more visible. Women have thinner skin as well, which doesn’t help matters.
Is there an easy fix? Unfortunately there’s no permanent solution when it comes to cellulite. Topical creams may reduce its dimpled appearance for a short time, and laser treatments may diminish lumps and bumps for a few years. But the reality is, there’s no cure. How much cellulite you have and just how prominent it is depends on a lot of factors. If you’re serious about lessening its appearance, here’s a series of questions to ask yourself and the reasoning behind them.
Do you eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and fiber? Poor diet is a leading cause of cellulite.
Do you follow an established exercise routine? A combination of regular aerobic exercise and strength training does much to diminish cellulite.
Do you drink enough water throughout the day? Poor hydration can prevent the body from effectively ridding itself of excess fat causing an increase in fatty deposits beneath the skin.
Do you smoke? Studies suggest that smoking can weaken the skin and damage the connective tissue contributing to the dimpling effect.
Are you overweight? Even though thin people are prone, excess pounds can increase the odds of cellulite’s development.
Do you regularly wear tight undergarments? Limited blood flow can prevent the body from getting rid of excess fat.