Cellulite is one of the most common beauty complaints as we age. It’s actually an entirely normal condition that results from the body holding on to subcutaneous fat to ensure that enough calories are stored up for pregnancy and lactation.
But we sure don’t like how cellulite looks! It seems superficial, but it’s actually not just an aesthetic concern. A healthy layer of fat is necessary and wonderful, but when it appears lumpy as in the case of cellulite, this hints at a number of potentially serious health issues that lie beneath.
Let’s look into the underlying reasons for cellulite so that we can have our beauty and our health too, from the inside out.
You’re accumulating toxic waste products
The problem isn’t simply being overweight or having poor genes. According to dietitian Jennifer Reilly, “Even thin women and men can have cellulite. Cellulite is formed from fluid retention and the accumulation of waste products and toxins in the body.”
Toxins are stored in fat tissues to keep them away from vital organs where they could cause damage. We can encourage those toxins to move out of the body by increasing circulation and detoxification.
Dr. Sandra Cabot, Medical and Executive Director of the Australian Women’s Health Advisory Service, explains, “Restriction of the blood circulation through the tiny capillaries supplying the fat cells reduces oxygen supply to the fat cells, thus reducing their metabolism.
The connective tissue bands become tougher and less elastic, trapping fluids and waste products between them. Eventually, in well-developed cellulite we see stagnation and hardening of all structures in the fat layers, so that the tissue takes on a lifeless quality.”
Using techniques such as ayurvedic dry brushing and massage with textured scrubbing gloves can help improve microcirculation—blood movement in your smallest vessels. This helps oxygenate the tissues and collect waste products to help ship them out. The liver’s main job is to filter and process our blood, and then create bile to carry the waste to the gallbladder, which sends it to the colon. Improving circulation kicks off this process.
You may be lacking some vital nutrients
We can continue to help the body remove toxins and improve the appearance of cellulite by consuming important nutrients that support liver function and collagen synthesis.
First, imagine a net, like the safety net under a tightrope. Then imagine lots of balloons filling up the net, and as they pile up and expand, they push through the holes of the net, bulging into the other side. This creates the dimple effect of cellulite.
The net represents the collagen framework of our skin, and the balloons represent fat cells. If we strengthen our collagen network then we can keep those fat cells from bulging through.
Consuming collagen-rich foods like bone broth made from organic pastured animals can help fill in for natural collagen production, which typically tapers after age 35. We can also support collagen synthesis by eating building blocks like leafy greens and vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables.
Returning to our analogy, now that we’ve powered up the collagen “net,” let’s detox to reduce the size of those fat “balloons”!
We can consume foods like parsley and cilantro that help to chelate (“package up”) and export these toxins out of the body. Fiber-rich foods such as root vegetables help to create healthy bowel movements that ship out those toxins.
Your body needs more movement
Did you know that you actually have two circulatory systems in your body? We often only think about the blood, being pumped around by the trusty heart. However the other circulatory system is the one that moves around lymphatic fluid. This system doesn’t have a pump to move it around, it relies solely on your movement!
Lymphatic movement is another key part of the detoxification pathway. Activities as simple as gentle hopping on the spot, or jiggling and shaking your limbs around will stimulate the lymph system and help remove cellulite-causing toxins.
Beyond lymph movement, sweating is another key way that the body eliminates toxins. Lots of stuff is shipped out through poop, but it’s a commonly ignored fact that the skin is actually our main organ of detoxification. Sweat is not smelly or gross, it’s a beautiful and natural way to keep the body clean and healthy!
So the next time you look in the mirror in the fitting room, don’t just resign yourself to a life of covering up those dimpled thighs. Try these simple methods to help your body detox and build lasting health and beauty instead.
-The Alternative Daily