There are so many products on sale to help you with weight and figure problems that it is easy to become confused or even to be misled. The prevalence of 'cottage cheese' thighs in Ireland is a boon to the cosmetic industry. Anti-cellulite creams abound, all making different claims as to how they deal with the problem. Some claim they break down cellulite to release the toxins it contains. Others claim to increase circulation to carry away the toxins that 'are the main cause of cellulite', or to release water trapped in unsightly ripples under the skin. Some go as far as to claim that their creams will remove cellulite altogether.

Yet as Dr. Peter Fodder, president of the Lipoplastry Society emphasises, there are no toxins, and there is no trapped water. Cellulite is just ordinary body fat sitting under the skin in tiny pockets separated by connective tissue. Creams or lotions cannot remove a molecule unless they contain a drug that can penetrate the skin and enter the fat underneath. All such drugs are still experimental and it will be years before the American licensing body, the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) approves one. Then it will be strictly on prescription. That leaves changes in your lifestyle -in your diet and exercise levels in particular - as the only sure way of beating cellulite.

Lotions, Potions, Drugs and Gadgets

Over-the-counter weight loss remedies don't have such a good record either. Recently the FDA banned as ineffective or unhealthy more than one hundred substances that were being sold for weight control, including teas, pills, artificial sweeteners. Nor should you be tempted to use drugs to lose weight.

The majority of people who take drugs to remove body weight quickly put the weight back on. And with possible side-effects such as increased blood pressure, nausea, insomnia, permanent nervous feelings and heart palpitations - its just not worth it!.

Another alarming development of the slimming business has been to convince people that attaching machines to themselves at home and lying back to watch TV will help them lose weight. It just isn't true. At best these machines will keep the body toned. No such machines will ever burn off body fat and it is a shame that people are gullible enough to believe it.

For permanent results you have to change your lifestyle, eat a low fat diet, exercise with light weights and aerobic exercises, cut down on tea, coffee, alcohol, sugar and junk food. Have regular massage to help to break down the waste and fat that has accumulated over a long period. It may take a while to achieve the desired results, but see your progress as a long term project. Allow yourself one year to reinvent yourself with your new figure or physique.

Remember, if you have a lot of fat on your tummy, hips or legs, the only real way of reducing the fat is to stop eating it. Fat builds fat.

Always avoid all low calorie diets, starvation diets and liquid diets. They will never yield permanent results.


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