Cellulite is an unknown word to most men and at the top of many women’s minds. Cellulite is “technically” a persistent subcutaneous fat causing dimpling of the skin. In reality it is the lumpy, bumpy stuff on our thighs that we dread when bathing suit season comes.
Why does cellulite form in the first place? Fat, you may be thinking, blame it all on the fat cells. Let’s not get too hasty, as it turns out fat cells are only a part of the equation. We see cellulite on people of all shapes and sizes from the obese to normal weight and even thin individuals. As you see, it can’t only be fat causing those dreaded dimples.
It must be genetics then! Blame it on your Mom, she has cellulite too. Yes, genetics play a crucial role in our body’s make-up, including predisposing us to developing cellulite. But there is yet another factor that plays a crucial role in the formation of cellulite – and get this, we can control it and change it! What is it? To sum it up in one word, toxins!
Many toxins are fat soluble, meaning they dissolve in fat and are stored in our fat cells. Normal, healthy fat cells (yes there are such things) are a nice round shape and allow the skin above them to lay smooth, indicating healthy circulation and minimal toxicity. When toxins and fluid are added things get a little crowded and these unhealthy fat cells begin to bulge. This bulging, honeycomb shaped fat cell causes the bumpy appearance of cellulite on the outside of the skin.
With toxins at the root of this problem, it makes sense to detoxify your bodies to help reduce cellulite. Toxins come from many sources including makeup, perfumes, high alcohol consumption, cigarette smoke, drugs, workplace and household chemicals, pesticides and herbicides and heavy metals. Your body uses many detoxification pathways to eliminate waste including your liver, gallbladder, bowel, kidneys, urinary bladder and skin. Following a few good principles will help these organs function in tip-top shape and reduce the signs of cellulite.
Limiting your toxic load is the first place to start. Keep your home chemical-free by using environmentally friendly cleaning products. Eliminate the toxins you put in your body by drinking plenty of water, choosing organic food, avoiding trans fats, unhealthy fast foods, white sugar and white flour. Consume alcohol in moderation and quit smoking (this includes second hand smoke). Next eliminate the toxins you put on your body by choosing soap, cream and make-up that are more natural and opt for essential oils instead of perfumes.
In addition to limiting our toxic load there are many things to be done to help support detoxification pathways. For centuries many cultures have used cleansing diets, saunas, steams and fasting as a way to purify the body. Dry body scrubs with loofah sponges or an exfoliating scrub are also a great idea. Make a simple scrub at home by mixing one cup of sugar (use that white sugar in your cupboard that you will no longer be eating) with half a cup of extra virgin olive oil. Try adding some lemon, grapefruit, ginger, peppermint, and cinnamon essential oils to help further support circulation and detoxification. Special therapeutic blends of these oils taken internally can also help reduce cellulite. A word of caution make sure your essential oils are designed for internal use before doing so.
Taking herbs and supplements that detoxify the liver have been shown to reduce cellulite. The cruciferous family of vegetables, and beets are especially helpful for liver detoxification. Eat plenty in your diet or take a whole food vitamin containing these vegetables. Herbs including milk thistle, dandelion root, gotu kola leaf and panax ginseng can help smooth those lumpy, bumpys away.
If you are looking for that fast and easy fix for cellulite, I am sorry to say it does not exist. If you truly want to reduce cellulite it will take time, effort and some significant lifestyle changes. However, if you are willing to put forth the effect you will be rewarded with a healthier body and less cellulite!