Cellulite is the bumpy-looking skin that often can be seen on the hips, buttocks and thighs of individuals, particularly women. Most people find it unsightly, but you may not know what causes this pesky problem. In general, cellulite is just fat that is pushing against the connective tissue of the skin and leading to the puckered look of the skin at the surface.
Decrease in Estrogen
The vast majority of people who have this condition are women. Approximately 90% of women have it, as opposed to only 10% of men. The reason for this is likely due to the decrease in estrogen women face as they age and near menopause. Cellulite most often appears in women sometime between the ages of 25 and 35. A decrease in estrogen leads to the loss of receptors in blood cells, causing impaired circulation. This often occurs in the thigh area.
Circulation decrease means that less nutrients and oxygen are delivered to the area, which inhibits collagen production. Fat cells increase during this period and push against the thin collagen walls, producing the dimpled look on the skin’s surface. Other hormones can also have an impact on the development of cellulite. These are insulin, thyroid hormones, noradrenaline and prolactin.
Genes play a large role in whether or not you have cellulite. Many factors inherited from family members play a role in the conditions required for this puckered skin to appear. Fat distribution beneath the skin, circulation insufficiency and metabolism rate are just a few contributions to the formation of cellulite that can be acquired through genetics.
Daily lifestyle habits can have an effect on your likelihood of developing cellulite. For example, smokers are more inclined to be affected with the issue, as well as those who stand for long periods of time, as this can impede blood flow. Along these same lines, people who get little exercise also tend to accumulate cellulite. Even the clothes you wear can lead to its development. Underwear with elastic, pantyhose and other tight or restrictive garments cut off circulation, which is a known contributor to the condition.
As more processed foods, carbohydrates, fat and salt have been introduced into modern diets, cellulite has become more of a problem. Poor fiber intake also contributes to the problem. All of these factors encourage weight gain and excess fat to push against the muscle tissue and form the condition.
Though cellulite cannot always be deterred, there are certain aesthetic treatments available at The Dermatology, Laser and Vein Center in Cincinnati that can significantly lessen its appearance. Contact us today to schedule a consultation to learn about your options for treatment.