Being bootylicious is nothing to be ashamed of (just look at Beyoncé's hot bod!), but in today's image-conscious society it's no wonder that even the slightest dimple triggers a near meltdown. Though women may be the fairer sex, men get a fairer deal in this area: Men's connective tissue effectively holds fat together under the skin, whereas women tend to have a shortage of this connective tissue, which causes excess fat to bulge out toward the skin's surface in the form of cellulite. Women also tend to have a thinner outer layer, making each bump easier to see.
Before you begin envying your boyfriend's cellulite-free legs, however, lighten up-because there are ways to fight back against those pesky fat pockets before resorting to doctor-prescribed laser treatments and fat-blasting devices. The first thing you can do to reduce cellulite and its unsightly appearance is to tweak your diet accordingly. Limit your salt intake-salt absorbs water and too much of it can result in your body retaining the water it consumes. Next, try supplementing meals with more protein and fiber, as these help to firm-up the muscles that keep fat stores in place. Bioflavonoids found in foods like tomatoes, cabbage, and citrus fruits are also favorable allies since they strengthen capillaries and blood flow (increased circulation loosens cellulite). Lastly, never underestimate the healthful benefits of green tea; a potent antioxidant, the herb has been shown to heighten the rate at which the body burns unwanted calories and fat.
In addition to adopting an anti-cellulite meal plan, exercise is required to burn fat and increase blood flow to skin cells. Manually stimulating the circulatory and lymphatic systems that break down fatty tissue is also suggested; exercise alone doesn't always target problem areas like the inner knees and upper thighs, so massaging them with your hands will prove handy. For extra fat-busting capabilities, add an anti-cellulite cream to the mix: Though the visible results will only last so long (think less than 24 hours), formulas that contain caffeine, seaweed, herbs, spices, and/or bioflavonoids may temporarily lessen evidence of cellulite. Another quick cosmetic fix: Self-tanner. After exfoliating and massaging, apply a tanning product to the skin to mask imperfections.
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