Diet and exercise are crucial components of a healthful lifestyle. They make you feel happier, improve your skin tone and texture and help to keep your waist trim. But what if you work out regularly, and are in really good shape except… you have a pesky bulge of fat under your belly button? Or beneath your chin? Or around your bra strap?
Personally, I call this kind of fat “Fit Fat”. Just because you are extremely buff does not mean that you are immune to fat bulges. We are all genetically inclined to carry extra fat cells in certain areas. So, you could live on lettuce leaves and hit the gym twice daily, and still have a pooch in your lower abs if that’s where your genes tell your fat to settle. Is it fair? No. Is it fixable? Definitely.
Body Contouring with Liposuction for Fit Fat
The great thing about living in our current era, other than Amazon Prime delivery, is that there are so many options when it comes to body contouring. The gold standard is still liposuction. It’s a surgical procedure in which I place a cannula or small, metal tube through a tiny poke in the skin of the treatment area, and remove your unwanted fat.
Depending on the size of the treatment area, and with Fit Fat patients the size is typically small, this can be done under local anesthesia in the office. But it is still a surgical procedure. So, it does require some downtime. You also will need to wear a compression garment. Both of these things can be deterrents for patients who are avid exercisers. They just don’t want to give up the training time. As a runner myself, I understand which is why I am so excited about the non-surgical options for body contouring such as SculpSure, CoolSculpting, and Kybella®.
Non-Surgical Body Contouring for Fit Fat
Coolsculpting works by freezing the fat cells in the treatment area while SculpSure works by heating the fat cells until they are destroyed. Both are fast, easy and effective. But I prefer SculpSure for a couple of reasons. It delivers:
- up to a 24% reduction of fat cells in the treatment area
- the heat of the laser gives the best chance for the skin to tighten
One of the main drawbacks of any kind of fat reduction is the potential for loose skin. Think about it. You’ve taken away the bulge, but if your skin has lost elasticity thanks to age, pregnancy or weight gain/loss, it may not “bounce back” in order to conform to your new shape. This is something that I always discuss with my patients during their body contouring consultation.
Since SculpSure is a laser that uses heat to literally melt the fat cells, it has been shown to have the additional benefit of skin tightening in some patients. I have also personally gotten fantastic results with SculpSure. It typically takes 2 or more sessions, but once those fat cells have melted, they are gone for good. These session are spaced 6-8 weeks apart with no down-time and no need for a compression garment. So, you can melt the fat without ever missing a workout.
Kybella® for the Double Chin
Kybella® is slightly different in that it is injectable like Botox™ or fillers. Although it was designed to specifically treat the submental fat under the chin, I have had great success using it to treat other small areas like the bra rolls, knees and outer thighs. It isn’t an ideal option for larger areas as it can become cost prohibitive. Like SculpSure, the treatment takes less than 30 minutes and can be scheduled during your lunch hour. So, if you are tired of doing crunches and not seeing the results that you’d like, schedule a consultation to come in and talk with me about body contouring. That way, instead of being Fit Fat, you’ll just be Fit.
To find out more about treating Fit Fat with liposuction, SculpSure and Kybella® with Dr. Sean Doherty at his Boston or Brookline office, contact us today or call (617) 450-0070 to schedule a consultation.