Are you blighted with dimpled thighs and 'orange peel bum'? This 'mattress effect' gets more common as we age, but there are tonnes of brilliant natural and nutritional ways to fight it without spending hundreds on specialist creams or treatments.
- Find out the underlying reasons why cellulite develops
- Eat our recommended cellulite fighting foods
- Learn how to support your skin structure
Cellulite is the appearance of subcutaneous fat (upper layer of fat) tissue protruding through our connective tissue, which is thinner in women than men. To combat cellulite, it’s helpful to understand how it develops and the elements involved.
The four main factors involved in cellulite are:
- Fat storage
- Weakening of the elastic fibres of the skin and connective tissue
- Fluid balance and water retention
- Accumulation of toxins
Rubbing on a crazily expensive cream isn’t the OB approach to dealing with these underlying factors, so let’s attack them one by one with our top nutritional and topical tips:
Get your Smooth on – eating to reduce fat storage
The more fat we have, the more potential there is for it to become visible as cellulite, so remaining slim and eating in a way that switches off the body’s fat storage mechanism is a great place to start to attack the dreaded dimples. Sugar, trans fats and processed meat are all highly inflammatory foods, which stimulate hormones that tell our bodies to lay down fat. Instead of cakes, biscuits, bread buns, burgers and all heavily processed foods, eat more alkalising, anti-inflammatory vegetables and fruit. Several (3-5) portions of green vegetables every day is an incredible way to switch up your metabolism.
How to pack in the greens through your day?
- Add spinach, kale or cucumber to your breakfast smoothie.
- Eat a big green rocket salad for lunch.
- Snack on some seaweed chips.
- Drink a glass of water with a teaspoon of Organic Burst Wheatgrass powder and lemon juice.
- Include asparagus and broccoli with your evening meal.
Welcome to the Matrix
Weakness in our collagen matrix (the fibres that give our skin and connective tissue strength and structure) plays a huge role in cellulite’s ability to sneak into sight. As we age our tissue becomes thinner, but we can slow and prevent this as much as possible by providing our bodies with the right building blocks for skin structure, as well as combating free radicals (unstable compounds that can damage our body’s tissues) with antioxidants. Some of the important nutrients for collagen production include Vitamin C, protein and sulphur compounds.
How to do it:
- Eat more greens! Green veg and berries are excellent sources of Vitamin C and antioxidants.
- Eat good sources of protein with each meal, such as natural yoghurt, nuts, seeds, organic meat, fresh fish and seafood.
- Foods containing sulphur include garlic, onions, leeks, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower.
- A sulphur supplement containing MSM (methylsulphonylmethane), could also be helpful.
- Organic Burst Chlorella contains iron, Vitamin B6 & 12 which are important co-factors in forming new cells in our bodies, which can greatly benefit skin. Take 4 tablets with a glass of water each night and 4 first thing in the morning.
Plump it up
Holding onto fluid (fluid retention) and lymph blockages cause a bloat effect and push the connective tissue outwards, putting extra strain on the elastic fibres and weakening them. Despite the puffed up feeling we have with fluid retention, this is usually caused by dehydration and imbalanced electrolytes. Eating too much processed salt that is full of chemicals and ‘flow agents’ causes fluid to accumulate in the body, whereas natural salt such as sea salt flakes and Himalayan pink salt contains far more minerals and potassium. Eliminating table salt and choosing only natural versions can help to keep the proper electrolyte balance, therefore fluid and pH in the body. Also don’t forget to drink lots of water through the day and minimise dehydrating caffeine and alcohol, this leads us into talking about how toxins can build up in the body and contribute to cellulite.
The build up of toxins is partly caused by consuming or being exposed to too many chemicals, pollutants, etc. but also occurs when we are dehydrated, constipated or don’t move our bodies enough with exercise. Toning the skin, lymph system and blood vessels (as well as having brilliant liver and digestive function – see our Summer Detox article) encourages the elimination of toxins so they don’t park up in the fat cells and contribute to cellulite.
How to do it:
- Dry skin brushing is possibly the best thing you can do for toning, it deserves a whole article to itself (coming soon!) but we highly recommend this therapeutic process for exfoliating the skin, helping to eliminate waste from the body, improving circulation and lymph movement.
- Jump around on a rebounder, similar to body brushing, bouncing on a mini trampoline is not only fun, but moves the lymph around the body, improves circulation and muscle tone.
- Drink a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar or the juice of half a lemon diluted in a tumbler of water (approx 350ml) before meals – the enzymes encourage good digestion, breaking down fat and it is widely used as a cleansing tonic.
- Try birch juice, which is traditionally used in France and Russia to tone and cleanse the body – warning, the taste is not the best!
- Self massage with essential oils in a base of olive oil or coconut oil have also found to be effective – you don’t need to splash out on expensive, chemical or invasive treatments.
The great side effect of following our cellulite fighting tips is that you’ll be ridding your diet of some of the things that zap your energy and increasing the nutrients that rev you up, so even if you don’t have the skinny thighs of a teenager, you won’t be on as much of a downer about it!