There has been considerable debate through the years over exactly what “cellulite” is. For all practical purposes, what is commonly called cellulite is simply excess adipose tissue or bodyfat, not some unique type of tissue.
Due to natural physiological differences, women normally have more bodyfat than men and the excess is stored in different areas, namely the hips, thighs, and buttocks. The distribution of a woman’s fat deposits is determined largely by hormones, which play a major role in the buildup of excess bodyfat.
As a natural consequence of an imbalance in the “pure energy equation,” when you take in more food than your body needs to function, what is not needed for energy is stored as bodyfat. Over time, this excess can take on a lumpy, bulging appearance. It is at this stage that women commonly refer to the dimpled tissue as “cellulite.”
The main reason that fatty tissue has a different appearance in women than men is that women have thinner skin. A widely accepted theory is that the dimply appearance is due to fat pushing up between restrictions formed by connective tissue that separates the fat cells into small compartments, giving the visible fat a lumpy appearance under the skin.
In addition, as a woman ages, the skin begins to lose its elasticity and the underlying supporting network of fibers gradually loses its resiliency. Regardless of what name excess body fat goes by, it is basically another indicator or warning sign letting you know that something is out of balance in your lifestyle.
Although “cottage cheese thighs” may seem like a frivolous, cosmetic concern to some, having an abnormal amount of excess bodyfat represents a very real, unhealthy, confidence-eroding problem for millions of women.
For many women, having a large amount of excess body fat is a constant source of frustration that can make trying on a swimsuit a traumatic, depressing experience. Excessive bodyfat can also have such a negative effect on a woman’s self-confidence that she is embarrassed to participate in activities that would help reduce the problem.
As a woman who has experienced fluctuations in body fat levels throughout her life, I can personally sympathize with anyone who feels that fighting cellulite is a never-ending battle. What is commonly called “cellulite” is a very frequent topic of conversation among women and a source of enormous profit for a few opportunists promising miracle cures. When it comes to this situation, however, there are no miracle cures.
The simple truth is that there is no single, isolated factor that is solely responsible for causing excess bodyfat to accumulate. It is necessary to evaluate each aspect of your lifestyle individually, and make positive, permanent changes, when needed, in your overall lifestyle--not just one part of it.
It is very important to remember that having some bodyfat is healthy and physiologically necessary. This important component of our body’s structure gives the female form its sensual, attractive curves and softness. As I often have to remind myself, you are not unfit or unhealthy simply because you have some visible fat or jiggly areas.
Be cautious of crossing over the line toward unhealthy obsession when it comes to losing bodyfat. Keep in mind that the half starved waifs smiling seductively from the pages of the fashion magazines often sacrifice their health and sometimes risk their lives to maintain their physical appearance.
Also keep in mind that the images we see in magazines and advertisements have been digitally altered so much that they sometimes bear little resemblance to the real thing. Try not to lose sight of the fact that true, optimal health comes from the inside.
So what if you do not have a perfect, rock hard body? You can start feeling good about your true self right now, knowing that you are treating your body with the respect it deserves. When you lovingly nourish your body and soul and strive to maintain a healthy balance in your life, people will notice it in your attitude, your eyes, and even your smile.
In today’s world, it can be hard to find time to squeeze in the things that you instinctively know are good for you. You may be thinking “But it’s just so hard. I barely have enough time and energy to clean the house, go grocery shopping, cook dinner, do laundry, and take care of everything else as it is.”
It is truly amazing that women get so much done in twenty-four hours, and wake up the next day and do it all again.
Caught up in the swirl of your “superwoman” days, it is easy to forget this simple truth; by doing all the things you need to do to eliminate excess body fat, you will create more energy to get through those long days, and make your journey through life more enjoyable along the way.
There will always be hurdles and stumbling blocks along your path to health. There may be times when you feel that rather than living your life, you are simply struggling to survive. At times like these, the quality of your health often becomes a low priority.
Another time when taking care of yourself often takes a back burner is during the low points of the female menstrual cycle. Unfortunately, the negative effects of ignoring your health during these challenging times are cumulative and can become part of a vicious cycle. You may be familiar with the cycle. You overeat or eat poorly because you are feeling a little down, which causes you to gain weight, which makes you even more depressed, which causes you to eat more.
The good news is that exercise can help curb your appetite and break this negative cycle. Consistent exercise can result in a marked improvement in your emotional health and even decrease premenstrual symptoms. You will find yourself with more energy to deal with the kids or the bills, and discover an increased sense of self-confidence and inner strength when exercise, movement and physical activity are an integral part of your everyday lifestyle.
Information and statements regarding dietary supplements have not been evaluated by the FDA. Dietary supplements are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Dr. Suzy is a retired Doctor of Chiropractic and active Health And Fitness Educator. The information and suggestions that she shares on this website are for reference purposes only and not intended to be diagnostic in any way nor a substitute for consultation with a physician or other licensed health-care professional. Always obtain a complete physical examination and discuss your specific conditions, limitations, and health history with the qualified health care provider of your choice before making major lifestyle changes.