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Cosmetic Dermatology

More than Cosmetic? Reducing Fat for Health

Posted on: January 23rd, 2018 by Dr. Jennifer Herrmann

Are you trying to lose weight? If so, you’re in good company. More than half of Americans are trying to shed pounds, which has fueled a multi-billion dollar weight loss industry. We’re constantly bombarded with the latest systems, supplements and breakthrough diets that promise the holy grail: quick and easy weight loss. But, weight loss is anything but easy. Studies show that keeping weight off is rare with nearly 95% of dieters regaining pre-diet weight. As a result, more and more Americans are opting for extreme solutions, including gastric bypass surgery or lap-band procedures, which aren’t without risks.

While science supports that healthy diets, regular exercise and balanced hormones are important to achieving and sustaining an ideal weight, why is it so difficult to lose pounds and stay at target levels? Is it really that Americans have poor perseverance and just can’t stick to weight loss plans? Not necessarily. Fat itself may be at fault.

Understanding Fat

It has long been known that fat is a metabolically active tissue that produces adipokines or cellular signals, which influence metabolism and appetite. The more fat someone has, the more adipokines are at play, and these messengers can actually make you gain weight through their effects on important hormones like leptin (think increased appetite), cortisol (think holding onto fat), and insulin (think storing fat). Fat can also beget fat through its storage of environmental toxins. Certain plastics, pesticides, and manufactured products contain harmful chemicals known as “obesogens” that mimic and interfere with weight-related hormones. Moreover, once they enter the body, these obesogens are stored in fat. So the more fat you have, the more these chemicals accumulate, increasing the size of fat cells and negatively affecting appetite-regulating hormones. Unfortunately, our bodies don’t detoxify obesogens well; they gradually build in number, encouraging continued weight gain. Vicious cycle, right?!

Fat Removal

So, if excess fat is a self-propagating condition, can removing fat have more than just cosmetic benefit? Liposuction, which surgically removes fat, and non-invasive fat reduction treatments like Vanquish ME are currently not considered weight loss procedures. But, because they remove adipokines and obesogens by permanently killing off and removing fat cells, they may make it easier to lose weight and keep it off. Moreover, reduction of excess fat through these procedures may even have health benefits. Excess belly fat is strongly associated with high blood sugar, rising insulin levels, elevated bad cholesterol, and heightened inflammation, all of which increase the risk for heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer. Recent research is beginning to show that eliminating fat through procedures like liposuction can lower blood sugar, insulin and triglyceride (fat) levels, reduce inflammatory markers, as well as decrease appetite in some treated patients. Although these treatments can’t remove deep internal fat, a decrease in total body fat may still be helpful. Our eyes are on additional research.

Using Science to your Advantage

Why not give yourself a jump-start at successful weight loss by removing excess fat and its associated fat-enhancing signals and chemicals? Permanent fat reduction procedures, including minimally invasive liposuction and non-invasive Vanquish ME treatments are perfect options to jump-start your better body contour goals. Liposuction is performed under local anesthesia for safety and requires minimal downtime. Vanquish ME uses heat to destroy fat cells over a series of treatments, all with no downtime, surgery, or pain. And because we are committed to your success, through partnerships with weight optimization, nutrition and fitness experts, our physicians can also customize comprehensive lifestyle packages that will help you embrace healthier habits life-long.

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