Tuesday, May 13, 2008

How to Diminish Cellulite Through Proper Nutrition

Diminishing Cellulite Through Proper Nutrition

This post is for people who are interested in how to diminish cellulite, but maybe not through the more "traditional" means (if you want to call it that) of buying some type of body sculpturing lotion or thigh cream, or even engaging in some sort of cellulite treatment procedure such as mesotherapy or ionithermie. While I'm not against any of those methods, and have covered (and will cover) a wide variety of ways to get rid of cellulite, I have always taken a special interest in adopting a more preventative method rather than something where you're "catching up from behind", so to speak. In other words, as I have stated before, the old adage is very true: "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

To this end I created two posts in April regarding how to prevent cellulite at its onset. Feel free to check them out at the links below:

Eight Methods of Cellulite Prevention (Part One)

Eight Methods of Cellulite Prevention (Part Two)

This post is going to follow in that same vein of attacking celluite by a more proactive approach, rather than a reactive approach. We will cover the importance of proper nutrition in helping to reduce cellulite, and how truly vital it is to feed your body the right fuel it needs to combat the ever-stubborn "cottage cheese thighs" that we're all trying to conquer.

One thing that must be cleared up before we even get started is the fact that there really is no known concrete absolute cure for cellulite. All we really have are methods and products that can treat cellulite, and hopefully reduce its appearance. That being said, there are ways to set yourself up to be a better candidate for cellulite reduction, and put the "odds in your favor", so to speak. Proper nutrition is one of those ways.

It must be noted that cellulite affects people that are underweight just as much as people that are obese. That being said, it is also widely documented that lower levels of bodyfat do dramatically improve the body's ability to combat the formation of cellulite. This is where diet comes into play. I would also be remiss if I didn't mention the importance of exercise; yes, like it or not, it's hard to get around the dreaded "E" word if you want to make some serious progress in getting rid of cellulite. The whole exercise piece is much too big to try and cover along with the diet piece, so I will have to devote several posts just to address the exercise portion of the formula. For now, however, diet takes the spotlight. This post will primarily discuss the different ways that diet affects the formation of cellulite. But before we can even get into the type of foods necessary to facilitate the right reaction in your body to create a cellulite reducing environment, we have to give time to discuss the very fat cells themselves that are the stubborn source of the whole problem.

The Role of Insulin in Body Fat Regulation

The level of insulin in your body directly affects the body's ability to store or metabolize fat. Increased fat storage is a result of increased insulin secretion levels. From this fat storage comes the wonderful blessing to mankind known as cellulite.

One of the best ways to regulate the body's insulin levels is to eliminate (or greatly reduce) the "simple sugars" that can so easily dominate the diet. These simple sugars are also known as simple carbohydrates, which most of the time skyrocket your insulin levels in a short period of time. Think donuts, cookies, soft drinks, and basically anything that actually tastes good. Of course, right after the "sugar high" comes the sugar crash, and you're left wandering around looking and feeling like a zombie. In short, these are not the kinds of carbs that you're after.

Adding the more complex carbohydrates (also known as "slow burn" carbs) to your diet is much more desirable, because they metabolize at a more "stable" rate. Combined with a healthy dose of vegetables and fruits, you have a much better recipe for an insulin-regulating diet, which can facilitate a slower fat storage rate, thus reducing the potential for cellulite to form.

Collagen Breakdown and the Foods That Can Help Slow It Down

Many people (especially women) experience cellulite because of collagen breakdown. As we age, the elasticity of the skin decreases, and this is primarily due to collagen breakdown as well. I covered the importance of collagen and elastin production in Part Two of my posts about how to prevent cellulite. Looking back on those posts, I still can't believe how long they are, but they're well worth the read if you have a couple of spare hours or so (LOL).

As I covered in my very first post, "Welcome to Getting Rid of Cellulite", estrogen is one of the primary hormones at work in the development of cellulite. Estrogen is also a major factor in the breakdown of collagen, and can wreak havoc on the overall strength of the skin. As a matter of fact, it's almost a zero-sum situation: The more estrogen present in the body, the weaker the skin, and vice-versa. It therefore stands to reason that as estrogen is reduced in the body, collagen breakdown will lessen as well.

That's all fine and dandy, but how do you apply this information to proper nutrition? Well, it just so happens that there are several foods that have properties that act as a "fortress" against the production of estrogen. Without getting ridiculously technical about it, foods such as bok choy, various whole grains, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, and various legumes contain a substance known in layman's terms as I3C. During the process of ingestion, I3C is converted into another substance with a handy acronym known as DIM (di-indollyl methane), which causes certain enzymes in the liver to effectively block estrogen production. Once the estrogen is "cut off at the source", so to speak, the body's collagen is at a much lower risk of breaking down, and the skin is strengthened as a result. So, in short, do what your mother always told you: "Eat your vegetables!"

It's no mystery that there's more to cellulite reduction than even what & how you eat. You have to implement some type of cardiovascular training to keep your muscles firm and your skin nice & toned. We will cover different types of cellulite reducing exercises in future posts. Until then...I hope this information has been informative and useful to you in your battle against that stubborn enemy known as cellulite.

1 comment:

eva said...

I was put on Nuvaring for another medical issue and after I was on the "pill" my cellulite worsened. how can i counter act this effect? if i come off Nuvaring will the cellulite diminish?