Orange peel. Cottage cheese. Mum butt. Whatever you call it, we don’t want it. Yup, we’re talking cellulite: those pesky dimples that somehow made their way onto our legs and butt while we weren’t looking. That our desk mate just told us are the result of too much caffeine, cheese and wine. So pretty much all the fun stuff, then. But can you get rid of it? We caught up with nutritionist Ruth Tongue to sort cellulite fact from cottage cheese fiction. Let’s go.
Ruth, what the jeff can we do to get rid of cellulite?
Ruth: Although there aren’t any foods that see off your cellulite completely, there are ways to improve its appearance by focusing on what you do and don’t eat. Cellulite is caused by fat cells protruding through the connective tissue beneath the surface of the skin, so strengthening the connective tissue will reduce the appearance of cellulite. Connective tissue is made from collagen, so foods rich in vitamin C, which help to boost collagen, are essential.
What exactly should we be eating, then?
Ruth: Foods containing vitamin C, such as citrus fruits, any brightly coloured fruit and veg – peppers, tomatoes, carrots, berries – as well as all the dark-green leafy veg. Healthy fats found in salmon and mackerel, avocados, olives, nuts and seeds will also help to strengthen skin cells, reducing the appearance of cellulite.
Are there any cellulite no-nos?
Ruth: Crash dieting is one of the worst things you can do for cellulite. Not only will it affect your hormone balance (and we know that hormone imbalances are among the biggest causes of cellulite), but losing or gaining weight too quickly will also weaken the collagen and elastin fibres in the skin, again worsening the appearance of any dimples.
How can we keep our hormones stable?
Ruth: Make sure you eat plenty of foods that help to support the liver and keep hormones in balance, such as avocado, eggs, garlic, rocket and chard. French women swear by the diuretic effects of parsley for reducing cellulite, although chances are you’d have to eat it at most meals to see any noticeable effect.
And what about exercise? How should we be workin’ it?
Ruth: Exercise is one of the best ways to reduce the appearance of cellulite. Cellulite is caused by fat cells, so any exercise that helps to increase calorie burn and weight loss will help – HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), for example. Exercise that strengthens muscle and increases muscle definition will help to reduce the orange peel, so any strength training, using your own body weight or using weights, is essential.
What about products?
Now we’ve got your cellulite-blasting nutrition covered, what about the beauty bits? Introducing your so-long-cellulite beauty kit…
Superdrug Spaa Wooden Natural Bristle Bath Brush
Daily body brushing can help see off cellulite as it increases circulation, which helps your body to get rid of any toxins. The result? Smoother, softer skin.
UTan & Tone Firming Coffee Body Scrub
You don’t wanna drink your morning Joe to see off the celly – you need to scrub yourself with the stuff. Exfoliate three times a week in the shower with this body scrub, to help tighten and tone your skin.
Modelco Gradual Tan Everyday Body Moisturiser
If you can’t beat it, cheat it. A little coat of colour, courtesy of fake tan, is the fastest way to fake smoother skin.