Which is your favourite summer weight loss / anti-cellulite food?

  • If I had to choose a weight loss food, that would be lightly grilled wild salmon with wakame  seaweed and pomegranate seed salad with green tea. It makes a light and refreshing meal, full of healthy weight loss ingredients.
  • Oily fish is proven in human trials to help with weight loss and is one of the very few foods that do so - as opposed to foods like vegetables which just prevent weight gain by not containing too many calories
  • Farmed salmon contains too little long-chain omega-3 oil to have a good effect, so only wild salmon can deliver the goods
  • Wakame seaweed contains fucoxanthin, which is also proven in human trials to help with weight loss, especially if combined with pomegranate seed oil
  • Human trials have also shown that long-chain omega-3 fatty acids enhance the effect of fucoxanthin
  • Wakame can make a nice salad with some lemon drizzled over it and a few sesame seeds and pomegranate grains poured over
  • A cup of green tea is ideal with this food, as it contains the phytochemical EGCG that enhances the effect of fucoxanthin
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Acoustic wave therapy does NOT reduce fat and cellulite

  • A recently published study on the effectiveness of acoustic wave therapy (AWT) concluded that the application of either the radial and planar form of this technology reduced fat but the change was not statistically significant, i.e. it was so small it could be a statistical error. Non-statistical changes usually refer to a change of 1-2%, which basically mean that the treatment practically does not work.
  • This finding correlates well to the results of our extensive assessment of acoustic wave therapy almost 10 years ago. That was long before this technology became famous after a misleading PR marketing campaign by "a leading medi-spa" here in London, that specialises in selling miracles to it's customers.
  • After a month of applying the treatment on several of our customers (for several sessions each), the results were "nil". After the trial, being honest to our clientele we returned the machines and continued providing our normal treatments (we tried two different AWT machines, one planar and one radial, both the best in the industry).
  • Unfortunately, uninformed people still try to use a technology designed to treat hard tissues (bones, tendons and ligaments), in order to treat the softest tissues of all, fat and cellulite. It beggars belief...
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How fat cells damage muscles and lead to wasting and weakness

  • In a previous research paper presentation on this website, we reported that fat cells accumulating in muscle tissue undermine the muscle tissue, leading to weakness and wasting.
  • Now a new paper published in the journal diabetes shows how visceral fat (deep stomach fat, also known as "beer belly" or just "belly fat") also undermines muscle tissue throughout the body.
  • Specifically it was found that in obesity, visceral adipocytes (fat cells) secrete inflammatory proteins (IL-6 and IL-1β) that reduce the contractile proteins in muscles, leading to muscle weakness and muscle wasting. Superficial fat tissue (basically, fat under the skin) was much less potent in that respect.
  • In summary, this paper shows that belly fat is not only a risk factor for diabetes and cardiovascular disease but also for muscle weakness and muscle loss.
  • Stress, alcohol, a high carb diet and inactivity are the main reasons for the accumulation of visceral / stomach fat
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How hydrolysed collagen and astaxanthin improve skin elasticity

  • It is well known that hydrolysed collagen enhances skin firmness, as it provides peptides which are ready for use by skin cells in the production of collagen.
  • Furthermore, it is also well-known that most "antioxidants" (polyphenols and carotenoids) assist in the prevention of collagen and elastin damage and boost it's production.
  • Therefore, it is no surprise that a new food supplement that contains hydrolysed collagen and astaxanthin (a carotenoid contains in prawns and salmon) can help with skin firmness and anti-ageing.
  • Specifically, researchers in Korea have found that the combination of the two nutrients improve skin hydration and skin elasticity on sun-damaged skin, after 12 weeks of use.
  • At tissue level, the researchers have found that the precursor or collagen "pro-collagen type 1" increase and enzymes that break down collagen (the metalloproteinases MMP-1 and MMP-12) decrease with supplementation.
  • Unfortunately, the supplement did not make any difference with regard to UV-induced DNA damage.
  • As a take home message, derived from this and other studies, the supplementation of collagen, hyaluronic acid and antioxidants from vegetables, herbs and fruits (anything from tomatoes to blueberries) is ideal to prevent ageing and maintain skin firmness and elasticity.
  • Creams rich in the same nutrients can also provide the same protection externally, in addition to internal protection from food and supplementation.
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Whey protein is not that innocent - what to look for when you buy a whey protein powder

  • Whey protein is a great way to boost your protein intake and thereby ensure muscle tissue repair and growth and skin repair and firming (muscle and skin is made of protein).
  • However, whey protein is also an immune-stimulating protein as it contains many immune compounds. Most whey proteins that you can buy in "health food" and bodybuilding stores (probably 95% of the market) contain denatured (damaged) immune compounds due to it's harsh processing, such as cross-flow filtration, microfiltration, isolate filtration, hydrolysation and ion exchange.
  • Denatured immune compounds may irritate the immune system causing intolerance reactions on sensitive people, which although mild in most cases, in the long run are detrimental for the immune system.
  • For this reason it is essential to ensure that you buy pure, "native", non-denatured whey which is as close as to the original component of milk, as possible. Of course, whey produced from organic or grass fed cows is preferred to that produced with industrial farming methods that include hormones, pesticides and other pollutants.
  • A real, pure whey protein provides immunoglobulins / IgG (including among others bovine serum albumin, alpha-lactalbumin and beta-lactoglobulins), lactoferrin (which ensures proper iron supply into the cells that needs it) and cysteine which is a precursor of glutathione, the most important antioxidant and detoxification factor in the human body.
  • Because of it's powerful immune-stimulating effect, whey should not be used excessively or continuously without breaks. But even more importantly, denatured whey should not be used at all, as it can gradually lead to unwanted immune stimulation (intolerances, allergies, auto-immunity etc).
  • So in summary, pure, native, non-denatured protein is great as a protein supplement if it is not used excessively or without breaks, while denatured whey should not be consumed at all due to the damage of immunoglobulins contained in it during the manufacturing process.
  • Please note that whey protein also stimulates excessive insulin secretion, which can either be beneficial for muscle building or detrimental to health, according to the time it is consumed. We have analysed this aspect of whey on another article on this website.
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Whey protein, insulin, skin firmness and cellulite

  • Whey protein is the best whey protein you can use after weight or even cardiovascular training. It is the highest biological quality protein you can have, as it contains all the essential aminoacids in a very absorbable form. In addition, because whey significantly boosts insulin, it further boosts it's own absorption by muscle cells (insulin boosts the absorption of protein by muscle cells).
  • Most women today do not have enough protein and this is the reason so many women suffer from loose skin these days: skin is made of protein and with a low protein diet the body uses up the protein stores in the skin and never replaces them.
  • So, of most women, the addition of whey protein in the diet is recommended after training, at a daily dosage of about 20-30 grams. This will ensure that both muscles and skin are replenished with all the necessary aminoacids they need for tissue repair, muscle growth and skin firming.
  • However, although whey's insulin production stimulation is a blessing after training, it may prove a curse if you are sedentary. This is because when you are sedentary and eat carbs or fat, excessive insulin stimulates the absorption of carbs and fat by fat cells, leading to obesity and cellulite. On the other hand, if you are sedentary and on a low carb/low fat diet, excessive insulin will lead to hypoglycaemia, low energy and dizziness. In general, excessive insulin production at any other time except after exercise is not a good thing for health, as it leads to obesity and is a risk factor for diabetes and cancer.
  • You may reduce the insulin-stimulating effect of whey by mixing it with fibre (such as chia seeds, flax seeds) and healthy fat (such as coconut fat), which will slow down it's digestion and the consequent insulin release, but the total amount of excess insulin secreted will still remain the same, so this is not a perfect solution.
  • So, in summary, a high quality whey protein is ideal as a muscle-buidling, skin firming supplement, immediately after real vigorous exercise (gentle Pilates and Yoga do not qualify), with some carbs (immediately after exercise is the best time to have carbs). And it is detrimental to health, your fat stores and cellulite if it is taken when sedentary.
  • Whey is also a strong immune-stimulating food, which may be either beneficial or detrimental to health, depending on the quality of the product and how it is used. We have analysed this aspect of whey on another post on this website.
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How to reduce cellulite by fighting glycation, hypoxia and inflammation

  • At a recent research paper presentation, we looked into how glycation and hypoxia (low tissue oxygenation, caused by poor circulation) cause fat tissue inflammation throughout the body and cellulite, in particular. at skin level. On this article we provide a simple holistic strategy against hypoxia, inflammation and glycation to help improve the health of your fat tissue and reduce cellulite.
  • Hypoxia can be reduced by regular exercise and a healthy diet rich in oily fish, vegetables and fruits and poor in sugar and saturated fat. A highly concentrated anti-cellulite cream that enhances circulation and reduces fat can also be of help, as can a strong anti-cellulite treatment, such as high power radiofrequency or strong anti-cellulite massage.
  • Glycation can be reduced by seriously restricting sugar, refined carbohydrates or excessive intake of carbs (even the complex ones). Supplementing with the anti-glycation aminoacid carnosine is essential. Again, a highly concentrated anti-cellulite cream that contains in meaningful quantities the aminoacids carnosine and other anti-glycation plant extracts (such as centella, pine bark extract, green tea extract, dihydromyricetin and other) can also be of help.
  • Low grade inflammation can be reduced by a diet poor in sugar, trans fats and omega-6 fatty acids and rich in oily fish, vegetables, fruits and herbs such as turmeric. A highly concentrated anti-cellulite cream, rich in anti-inflammatory ingredients such as curcumin and 18-beta glycyrrhetinic acid may also be of help.
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Omega-3 in farmed salmon is not what it used to be...

  • It seems that farmed salmon may not be a rich source of omega-3 any more
  • Farmed salmon is fed with anchovies or other fish meal, which is naturally rich in omega-3. These omega-3 oils (EPA and DHA) accumulate in the flesh of the salmon and are responsible for the beneficial effects of this fish in health.
  • However, it has now been reported that the anchovy fishing near Peru, the largest in the world, has collapsed, due to adverse weather (the El Nino weather pattern). This means that salmon farmers had to replace anchovies and other small fish in the feed of salmons with vegetable feed, including vegetable oils, which salmon cannot convert into EPA and DHA.
  • As a result, farmed salmon at the moment and for the foreseeable future, contains highly reduced amounts of omega-3, which may not be updated on the label of pack salmon. For health-conscious people the solution would be to supplement their diet with wild salmon or other oily fish (mackerel, sardines, non-salted anchovies or halibut) or take a high quality fish oil.
  • Harry B Rice, PhD, VP of regulatory scientific affairs at the Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3s (GOED), agreed less fish oil was being used in fish feed. "As a result, we've seen a decrease in the levels of EPA and DHA in farmed salmon. If consumers enjoy farmed salmon, they just need to know that it's not the rich source of EPA and DHA that it used to be. Throughout the week, they should consume additional servings of other fatty fish and/or take a supplement."
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Retinol improves sun damage and reduces crow's feet wrinkles & skin pigmentation: one year clinical study

  • Retinol is a widely used natural anti-ageing compound that is used in many anti-ageing and anti-cellulite creams
  • Now, a high quality clinical study on humans published today shows that after one year of use, just 0.1% retinol improved and prevented sun damage, reduced skin pigmentation by 84%, and crow's feet wrinkles by 44%
  • Furthermore, on a separate skin tissue study by the same researchers, it was found that the 0.1% retinol boosts collagen & hyaluronic acid in the skin (of course, for faster results a higher concentration of .5% - the maximum recommended for face creams - would make more sense)
  • This shows the great potential of retinol and similar retinol-like compounds in anti-ageing and skin rejuvenation, as ingredients in creams and electro-mesotherapy products
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Why centella asiatica is the most important anti-cellulite cream active ingredient

  • Gotu kola / centella asiatica extract acts at multiple levels to fight cellulite: it has connective tissue repair, skin firming, lipolytic, anti-glycation and blood vessel-supporting properties, thereby acting in five out of seven aspects of cellulite.
  • Of course, not all centella extracts are the same, with some containing as little as .1%  of the plant's main active chemicals, asiatic acid and madecassic acids, while others contain as much as 100% of those two actives.
  • This means that the difference between a cheap and a high quality cellulite cream, each containing 1% centella extract but of different qualities, can be 1000-fold. Or, in other words, if you buy the wrong cellulite cream you may end up with 1000x less active ingredients!
  • So before buying a cellulite cream it makes sense to do your research and look for quality, highly concentrated creams
  • Furthermore, because of the many different facets of cellulite, one ingredient is never enough, so it is a good idea to use a cream with multiple actives, not the usual 1-2 actives, ideally including centella asiatica of course!
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Liquifying the fat? Are you serious?

  • Many treatments - and even miracle pants or jeans - are presented as able to “liquify the fat, which is then expelled by the body”, by crafty marketers. However, it is unbelievable how one can squeeze three lies in such a short statement!
  • Firstly, no fat is expelled by the body due to any treatment, ever! This is biologically impossible. Fat has to be burned by the body, with exercise and diet and it is only "expelled" by the body in the stools of urine in disease states, such as liver or kidney damage.
  • Secondly, no treatment can liquify fat, because it is already liquid in the body, as any biology student knows. The fat in fat tissue in not in solid butter form, it's liquid, hence the the name "fat droplet" that biologists gave to fat stored inside the adipocytes.
  • Thirdly, this statement hides the notion that fat cells can be liquified, which is again a blatant lie. No treatment can do that expect vaser, bodytite or smart lipo/laser liposuction with a special heated cannula (yes, it's an intrusive surgery) and they can only do that on deep fat cells - not cellulite, which is fat enmeshed inside the skin itself
  • So wherever you see such fraudulent statement about a treatment or a piece of tights that liquify the fat you must recognise it as such: fraudulent.
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Don’t be fooled - it is impossible to flush down fat, with any treatment or method

  • “The treatment liquifies your fat/cellulite which is then processed by the liver/kidneys and flushed down from your system”. This is an all too common claim for anti-cellulite or fat reduction treatments and the it could not get more fraudulent than that.
  • For your body, fat is what money is for a bank, i.e. a very precious commodity, so it will never throw fat away in the urine, stools, or anywhere else, except in kidney or liver disease states
  • Any fat that is released by an effective cellulite/fat treatment has to be used by the body in the muscles and organs - otherwise it returns to fat cells somewhere in the body - nothing is wasted!
  • So please, do not fall victim to fraudsters, you CAN'T flush fat down the toilet with any treatment of any kind.
  • Furthermore, fat cannot be "liquified", as we explain on another article...
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Overeating, binge-drinking and cellulite

  • Cellulite does not develop if you overeat a little bit more each day - in that case metabolism takes care of the few extra calories. Cellulite is the result of binge-eating, binge-drinking or both, especially on sedentary days
  • Every time your body receives an excessive amount of calories due to binge eating/drinking, it uses whatever it can for energy and then dumps and traps the rest on your fat deposits, including those on the surface of your thighs, i.e. the “pre-cellulite” layer
  • Due to genetic and hormonal reasons, the fat cells in those area acts as fat traps which are "happy" to absorb fat but "hate" to release it.
  • With repeated binges, the initially invisible pre-cellulite fat accumulates and grows and in a few months/years it becomes visible, i.e. cellulite
  • Predictably, inactivity makes things worse, so if you intend to eat a rich meal or drink more than 3 units of alcohol, you can try to minimise the creation of cellulite by exercising on that or the next day
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How cellulite can be removed / cellulite: how to get rid of

  • Healthy diet and exercise are essential for cellulite reduction but as you may already know they are usually not enough - otherwise you would not be reading this post!
  • A very strong radiofrequency, cavitation, electro-mesotherapy, cellulite-specific massage or other treatment and a highly concentrated cream with multiple active ingredients in high concentrations are usually needed, in addition to diet and exercise.
  • However, most cellulite treatments are too weak to work.
  • Furthermore, most creams do not work because they typically only contain 1-2 ingredients in low concentrations (to maximise profits).
  • So you must choose carefully before deciding where to spend your money, by doing your research and due diligence first.
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How cellulite looks like

  • With cellulite, some parts of the skin protrude upwards while some others appear as they are pressed down, similar to the fabric of a mattress popping up with the buttons being pressed down
  • The appearance can range from mild to heavy mattress / cottage cheese / orange peel appearance. Puffiness (water retention), skin hardening or skin looseness usually accompanies cellulite, which is colloquially called puffy, hard or soft cellulite, respectively.
  • Quite often the areas that suffer from cellulite are also “fattier” than other areas. This “deep fat” is located under the “cellulite layer” and is quite distinct to cellulite, as it does not form a “mattress appearance”.
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Cellulite: how to get rid of it fast

  • As cellulite takes years to develop there is no solution that can be characterised as “fast”, so don't fall victim to clinics that promise instant results with one session - or even with 3-4. With the strongest possible treatment available, cellulite will typically take 6-12 sessions to be reduced to satisfactory levels.
  • The fastest results will be achieved with a combination of any or all the following: high intensity exercise (such as interval training); vibration plate training; vegetable/berry fruit juicing; a low carb / high protein / high vegetable diet; a strong, skilfully provided radiofrequency / electro-mesotherapy / ultrasound cavitation treatment; very strong, cellulite-specific massage; a highly concentrated cream with multiple (not just 1-2) anti-cellulite actives in high concentrations
  • Any other measure, treatment or cream will yield slow or no results and a combination of many or all of the above measures will provide the fastest, most impressive results.
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Vegetable juicing, vibration plate training and interval training: the top ways to beat cellulite

  • As cellulite is very stubborn to treat, drastic diet and exercise interventions, beyond the basics of generic exercise and “a balanced diet” are necessary to make a difference
  • At our clinic we suggest to our clients 20’ of interval training thrice/week for a strong metabolic boost, twice daily vegetable / berry fruit juicing for a strong biochemical boost and 20’ vibration plate thrice/week for a strong mechanical stimulation, necessary for circulation and skin firmness
  • This lifestyle intervention, together with a highly concentrated cellulite cream that contains multiple actives, can work wonders!
  • A good anti-cellulite treatment, such as high power radiofrequency, high power ultrasound cavitation, strong cellulite-specific massage or a good electro-mesotherapy treatment with highly concentrated anti-cellulite formulations can yield impressive results in a short period of time, but are difficult to find and are more costly than creams or lifestyle changes.
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How cellulite is formed / How cellulite occurs

  • Poor diet and inactivity make fat cells enlarge.
  • Skin on the surface of the thighs, hips & butt, contains fat cells encased in collagen “pouches” which are attached firmly to the base of the skin by collagen strands.
  • As the fat pouches enlarge, collagen strands get overstretched, injured and inflamed, but not all of them stretch enough to accommodate for the fat pouch enlargement.
  • As a result, fat pouches push the skin up, while certain collagen strands pull the skin down, shorten and harden, creating the mattress appearance, also known as cottage cheese or orange peel skin appearance.
  • Due to poor circulation, caused by poor diet and sedentary living, water can accumulate inside and outside the fat pouches, making cellulite appear worse.
  • Due to lack of exercise and poor diet, skin also becomes loose, exacerbating the appearance of cellulite.
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Which cellulite creams work?

  • As cellulite is a multifaceted skin condition, multiple natural actives in high concentrations are necessary to treat all aspects of cellulite and make a difference.
  • When doing your research you must look for a cream that contains skin firming and lipolytic and circulation-enhancing and skin repair and anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-glycation active ingredients, to work on all seven aspects of cellulite. Examples of such ingredients are hydroxyproline, forskolin, escin, centella asiatica, curcumin, pine bark extract and carnosine, respectively.
  • The creams must also contain those ingredients in high concentrations to make maximum impact.
  • Low concentrations of actives, a small number of ingredients or targeting just one aspect of cellulite (typically water retention for faster but not very long-lasting results) will mean less effectiveness or even zero results.
  • Using the creams for more than 60 days and following a healthy diet & exercise regime are essential too, as cellulite cannot be effectively be reduced long-term in just 2-4 weeks, neither can be reduced if the mistakes that led to it's creation are continued.
  • In summary, the cellulite creams that work are the ones containing multiple actives in high concentrations and the ones that you apply twice a day for 90+ days while following a healthy diet and exercise regime.
  • So please do your research on what to buy and after you buy it be diligent with it's application and responsible your lifestyle.
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Why most cellulite creams don’t work?

  • Cellulite is a combination of fat accumulation, inflammation, water retention, skin looseness, scar tissue formation, oxidative damage and glycation and due to this multi-faceted nature, it is very stubborn to change.
  • Therefore multiple active ingredients in high concentrations that will work on all aspects of cellulite are necessary for good results.
  • Multiple ingredients in high concentrations increase costs, especially after distribution costs, marketing budgets and profits are considered.
  • To be profitable, most cellulite creams contain just 1-2 actives in low concentrations and as a result they simply “don’t work”.
  • Not following a healthy diet/exercise regime & using the cream for just 2-4 weeks are other reasons cellulite creams don’t work. Usage for 90+ days and a healthy exercise and diet regime are essential for good, long-lasting results.
  • So in summary, most cellulite creams do not work either because they are not concentrated / comprehensive enough and/or because you do not take the necessary responsibility to make positive changes to your lifestyle. It takes two to tango!
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