THE FAT BUSTERS
Non-invasive procedures to shape the waist and tone the thighs have gained ground in the past decade. New tools, techniques and technologies that break down fat cells are now available to either complement or potentially replace traditional liposuction.
What’s out there are briefly described below:
LipoLight. This treatment is easy, painless, and carefree. The noninvasive device uses 8 pads with LED light to "flatten" fat cells to reduce inches. Two to three sessions per week for a minimum of 4 weeks is recommended. The treatment targets the waist, thighs, and arms.
UltraSlim. This body-contouring device uses low frequency ultrasound waves to break up and dissolve fat through ablation or fat-cell disruption. It stimulates the natural drainage of the lymphatic system resulting to a primary fat loss, body sculpting and improvement in cellulite appearance.
CryoLipo. This refers to a controlled cooling device for localized reduction of fat deposits. The cooling is set so that it causes cell death of subcutaneous fat tissue without damage to the overlying skin. The results are not rapid. Gradual reduction starts at about 6 to 8 weeks.
Thermage. This radiofrequency (RF) device, intended for body contouring and facial firming, uses high level of monopolar heating to penetrate tissue, with the intent of tightening existing collagen and stimulating new collagen growth. There maybe some redness and swelling after the procedure, which will go away in a few hours.
ThermaShape. This works by delivering controlled amount of radiofrequency (RF) energy using both multipolar and monopolar handpieces. The procedure has less discomfort than Thermage, and achieves skin firming and tightening by encouraging collagen production. After the treatment, the fat cells shrink in size. The skin will be smoother, eliminating the dimpled effect.
There are two types of fat cells - Subcutaneous and Visceral. Subcutaneous fat is located directly above the skeletal muscle and below the skin. Its superficial placement makes it vulnerable to the fat busting procedures described above.
If you have high percentage of visceral fat (fat below the skeletal muscle), you are not an ideal candidate. You should make lifestyle changes simultaneous with the fat busting procedure. You should engage in exercise to keep yourself fit and try to actively reduce weight.
Overall, you can expect long-term effect in one key area: The fat cells that are removed or destroyed do not return, at least not in the area treated.
This was published in the February 26, 2013 issue of Manila Bulletin, Lifestyle Section. The author , Fred C. Reyes, is the CEO of SkinStation. He received the 2011 Outstanding Chemist Award from Professional Regulations Commission for his achievements in the field of cosmetic chemistry. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.