Adiposis edematosa, dermopanniculosis deformans, status protrusus cutis, and gynoid lipodystrophy,  orange peel syndrome or cottage cheese skin all point to one dreaded skin change that affects 85-98% of women- cellulite.

Cellulite (not cellulitis) is a descriptive term, not a condition, that causes skin dimpling and nodular formation around the abdomen, pelvis and lower extremities of many women. Underneath your skin you have a natural layer of fat. For an unknown reason, this fat can herniate, or break through connective tissue underneath the fat layer, which gives your skin the dimpling, nodular appearance. Medline Plus states that “Cellulite is a normal condition that affects many women.”

While the cause of cellulite has not been identified, fad diets (yes, the quick weight loss schemes in which you diet too hard or too much), a poor diet, slow metabolism, hormonal changes, genetics  and dehydration are possible links, according to The Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy. Further, if your mom has it, chances are you will. A high stress lifestyle may also play a role.cellulite

So how can you get rid of cellulite?

At this point, there is no outstanding treatment for cellulite

– Dr. Molly Wanner, New York Times (2008)

Without leaving you in suspense (or despair) with the above quote, there are a few things you can do to help get rid of cellulite:

  1. Do not lose weight too fast! A healthy rate of weight loss in 1-2 pounds per week will help you get rid of cellulite. Any faster and you may increase your risk for cellulite.
  2. Improve your overall diet with fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, legumes and low-fat dairy to get rid of cellulite.  Remember, one-half a plate of fruits and vegetables, one-fourth a plate of whole grains and a piece of meat the size of a deck of cards for most meals.
  3. Exercise! Performing lower body and abdominal resistance training workouts will help you tone the areas prone to cellulite, which may improve the appearance of your skin. Think about it, if you have toned muscles underneath fat, it has less room to dimple. Further, incorporating cardiovascular exercise into your regimen will help you lose the fat underneath your skin. (Of course, Exercise Menu has the perfect workouts for you here!)
  4. Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. If you are thirsty, you are not drinking enough.
  5. Don’t smoke. Period. You won’t get rid of cellulite if you smoke. Toxins from smoke likely weaken soft, connective tissue that helps to hold fat in place.

And remember… Up to 98% of women have “cellulite” so don’t let it bother you too much. A few dimples in your skin can’t touch your overall beauty!

What have you done to get rid of cellulite? Share your thoughts below!