Cellulite is one of those pesky problems that can affect women of any age or size. Although it’s thought to be hereditary nearly all women will have some cellulite with the tell-tale orange peel effect most common on the thighs and bum.
What Causes Cellulite?
Cellulite appears when the fat beneath the skin pushes against the collagen fibres that connect the skin to your muscles. As the fat cells grow or push up ‘pockets’ are created which form the characteristic dimpling associated with cellulite.
There are two main reasons why cellulite is more common in women than in men, the first is that men have a much thicker epidermis than women. The epidermis is the very top layer of skin, with men having a thicker epidermis it means that the skin is more resistant to structural change such as dimpling a common effect of cellulite.
The second is down to the structure of the fibrous bands. Whilst the bands run vertically for women they are in a crisscross pattern for men and are much thicker and therefore much better at keeping fat in place.
It might not be possible to get rid of cellulite completely (sadly there is no magic cellulite cure!) but there are tips and tricks that will help reduce the appearance of cellulite.
An unhealthy diet might not cause cellulite but a healthy diet is very important in helping reduce cellulite. Toxins from processed and refined foods are stored in fat cells which will make cellulite more prominent. Try to eat foods that are high in water content which keeps the connective tissue strong. Cucumbers, radishes and tomatoes and many other fruit and vegetables have a high water content. A few other foods that will help keep orange peel skin at bay are:
- Whole grains: including brown rice and pasta, these wonder grains are packed with antioxidants that help defend against cellulite causing toxins by expelling them from the body.
- Broccoli: love it or hate it this green veg is full to the brim with vitamins, minerals and most importantly in the battle against cellulite Alpha Lipoic. This substance stops collagen from hardening which leads to cellulite.
- Oranges: these tasty citrus fruits contain methoxylated bioflavonoids that improve blood circulation and correct cell imbalances, these imbalances can lead to cellulite.
- Berries: whether these are blueberries, raspberries or blackberries they are all rich in antioxidants which help to flush out toxins from your system. Add a generous portion to a smoothie for a healthy cellulite busting juice.
One thing to try and keep to a minimum is salt, salt causes water retention and fluid build-up which will make the appearance of cellulite worse.
Drink Lots of Water
Drinking plenty of water is a good rule of thumb for anyone wanting to lead a healthy lifestyle, a fully grown adult is roughly 60% water. Water helps to keep us hydrated which is crucial to normal bodily function and also helps your body get rid of toxins that naturally build-up.
Not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration which means that your body doesn’t have enough water to help flush out toxins that build up in your body. Toxins reduce the skins elasticity and also slow circulation both of which are causes of cellulite.
A good recommendation is to drink eight glasses of water a day, this will keep you hydrated throughout the day. Avoid alcohol and soft drinks where possible – these are toxin-rich!
Leading an inactive lifestyle is also one of the leading causes of cellulite, the lack of movement and blood circulation allows fat cells to become stored. Even if you have an office based job that involves sitting at a desk take the opportunity to get up and make a cup of tea, hopefully herbal, or take a walk. This will stimulate circulation and help your body budge those pesky fat cells.
If you are looking to workout, cardio is a great option. Cardio will get the heart pumping and massively increase blood circulation, if done on a regular basis this will help prevent the build-up of fat.
If the idea of signing up to a gym and using the treadmill fills you with dread then 20 minutes of brisk walking, jogging or swimming roughly five days a week will be enough. Strength training is also important as it helps to tone muscle tissue and reduce fat stores under the skin, the culprit of cellulite. To really target cellulite, focus on the lower body and do exercises such as dumbbell squats, lunges, step-ups and hip bridges. A general rule is to do one set of 10-15 reps three days a week, if you’re consistent it will help to keep dimply skin at bay.
Coffee Body Scrubs
Using coffee grounds or a coffee body scrub on your skin will help reduce the appearance of cellulite. The scrubbing action along with the caffeine will help stimulate blood-flow and improve circulation, tightening and plumping the skin and reducing that bumpy look. The antioxidants in the coffee will also increase collagen production.
Coffee scrubs also have numerous other benefits such as reducing stretch marks, psoriasis and eczema.
You might be new to dry body or skin brushing but its benefits include increasing circulation, unclogging pores, improving your immune system and helping to remove any toxins that your body expels. Body brushing should be done when your skin is dry, so before you shower. Always remember to brush towards your heart as this will improve your Lymph flow – a fluid in the circulatory system that contains white blood cells.
Start at your feet and work your way up, use either long strokes or small circular motions depending on the area. As the bristles are quite harsh, don’t use them on broken skin such as cuts or bruises or on your face.
The whole process should take roughly 5-10 minutes and if done daily will help to reduce the appearance of cellulite.