Cellulite: Myths and Facts

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Almost 90% of the women, no matter how fit they are, suffer from one ailment- cellulite. Cellulite is the bane of every woman’s existence. It is unsightly and ruins the appearance of your otherwise toned body. And the worst part is that there is no definitive cure for it. Yes, none at all.

Which brings me to the actual point of this article- the facts and the fiction. Cellulite is a rampant thing, and something no one wants. So obviously over the years, many weird rumors about its treatment have cropped up in the society. And because cellulite is undesirable, people believe it. But before you go to the end of the world to cure your cellulite, you need to know that your research is genuine. There are many myths and misconceptions people have about cellulite, which are actually utter nonsense. So here are some facts and some myths (busted) about our universal enemy, cellulite-

THE MYTHS

Cellulite is excess fat

That’s the impression almost everyone in this world has, but it isn’t true. Shocker, right? But think about it, even fit women with less body fat suffer from cellulite. The real culprit behind cellulite is the collagen fibers that attach the skin to muscle. When these collagen fibers are perpendicular to the skin, they create pockets of skin between them. If these pockets have excess fat cells or bulging fat cells, it causes cellulite dimpling. So, excess fat is PART of cellulite, but not the actual cause of cellulite.

Weight loss equals reduced cellulite

I don’t think I need to explain this point much since you have already read the above point. Excess fat is a part of cellulite, so obviously, fat people may be more prone to cellulite. But everyone, especially women, has some percentage of body fat. And this body fat too, may accumulate in the skin pockets and cause cellulite. If you are meant to have it, there is no escaping it. Being thin is not a cure. So if you are doing hours of cardio just to get rid of your cellulite, you are only wasting your time. Another precaution- liposuction isn’t the answer either. It will actually make it worse.

Very few people get cellulite

Nope. In fact, it is the complete opposite. There are few people in this world who actually DON’T suffer from cellulite. Everybody in this world has body fat, and everybody in this world has collagen fibers. So it is hard to come across someone who has extremely smooth legs and thighs with zero dimpling. The models whose bodies you admire so much also use Photoshop and makeup to cover their imperfections up. Cellulite is not a disease, so don’t treat it like one. It is extremely natural to have cellulite, and you absolutely don’t need to be ashamed of it.

Cellulite creams are the best remedy

This problem is internal and cannot be fixed by merely applying a cream externally. Most cellulite creams are just a hoax. There are a lot of recipes for cellulite fighting masks and scrubs. But applying them on your skin won’t make your cellulite vanish. Exfoliating and massaging helps even out the bulging skin pockets to some extent, but not completely. Creams like these only work (if at all) if you massage them on your skin very firmly and frequently. But even then, it WON’T make your cellulite go away. It is an internal problem of our body that can only be fixed internally. So don’t waste your money on those cellulite creams and scrubs, you will only regret it later.

THE FACTS

Men have less cellulite than women

Yes my ladies, unfortunately, this is true. Men do have a lot less cellulite than women. There are two reasons for this, both of which are in the difference of our body composition. The first reason is the pattern of collagen fibers beneath the skin. For men, most of the collagen fibers run parallel to their skin. Because of this layout, the fibers do not form skin pockets. Hence, little or no cellulite. Women, however, have more fibers that are perpendicular to the skin, hence more skin pockets. The second reason is body fat percentage. Women by nature tend to have more body fat percentage than men. They carry extra fat around their hips and thighs (fertility reasons). Men have more muscle and less body fat. So men don’t really suffer from the problem of bulging fat cells in their body. Women, unfortunately, do.

Strength training can reduce cellulite

I just said above that weight loss is not the key. It isn’t, believe me, especially not cardio. But if you strength train and work on toning your muscles and stretching them, you can reduce cellulite to some extent. If your body has less body fat percentage, you will have less cellulite. And if your muscles are firmer and smoother, it will even out the skin from below. Remember, you may still not entirely get rid of your cellulite. But to give an idea, if 90% of your thighs are covered with cellulite, you can reduce it to about 30% by strength training. Again, here muscle is more important than fat. If you have firm tight muscle beneath the skin, there is little room for fat. Hence cellulite will be reduced. Just being thin and doing cardio won’t do anything.

Cellulite is 80% genetic

This is 100% the truth. If your family members have cellulite, you will too. Even if you are sporty, active, and fit, you will have cellulite if your mom does. If you are lucky, the cellulite gene will be suppressed in your genetic composition. But if you aren’t, just like almost 90% of the world, you will have cellulite. You cannot do anything about it, just like how you cannot change your eye color. The best you can do is learn to accept it as a part of your body. If you don’t want to, then try toning your muscles more. For people who are even more desperate, you can try skin-fillers. And FACT- they do work!

Some dermatology methods do work

Methods like laser, radio-frequency, and massages help reduce cellulite. The results are not permanent, because the effect of radiation is shortlived on skin cells. But they do help reduce the appearance of cellulite way better than any cellulite-removing creams and scrubs. In fact, they can even show some permanent results if you get frequent treatments done. Remember, these methods are effective, but by no means permanent. These methods are analogous to hair removal methods like waxing and shaving. The results are always temporary, and more often than not, they’re flawed. So don’t depend on them as permanent solutions to your cellulite.

Society’s image of a flawless body is so flawless that we are ready to tamper with nature itself. Cellulite is a perfectly natural thing. It is not a sign that you are unhealthy. Even the healthiest, the fittest, and the most toned people have cellulite. So stop thinking too much about it, and accept your body with its flaws. Make cellulite a part of society’s definition of a flawless human body. And know that it is your flaws that make you unique, and not perfection.

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