Painful Cellulite: Why Does My Fat Hurt?


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When your dimples are no laughing matter, you may be experiencing the phenomenon of “painful cellulite.”  Here’s the skinny on why your fat hurts and the best treatments for banishing painful cellulite.

Most women will fall prey to the cosmetically unappealing effects of cellulite at some point in their lives, irrespective of age, race, or socioeconomic status.  The dreaded dimpling doesn’t discriminate!  Some of the world’s sexiest, A-list starlets struggle with cellulite, forever seeking the latest skin-smoothing solutions.  Generally, cellulite doesn’t pose any major health concerns, nor is it painful for most, save for its aesthetic annoyance and occasional angst towards one’s body image.  However, cellulite in its advanced stages amongst older females may begin to cause physical discomfort, especially during therapeutic massage or sitting for extended periods of time.

Do I Have Cellulite? What it Is and Its Key Causes

Cellulite is not hard to notice.  It’s the undesirable dimpling of the skin that typically plagues the buttocks, backs of thighs, hips, tummy, and upper arms in roughly 90% of all women.  The unsightly lumps and bumps are most commonly caused by:

  • excessive fat accumulation in the lower layers of the skin’s hypodermis region
  • abnormal water retention
  • free radical damage/oxidative stress
  • skin laxity/aging
  • fibrosis (connective tissue irregularity)
  • glycation (breakdown of skin-supporting collagen and elastin fibers due to high sugar consumption)

Water retention due to trapped, unflushed toxins and waste products leads to inflammation, tension, pressure, and pain and is one of the most common causes of the “cottage cheese thighs” condition, hence the suggestion for massage and movement to help mitigate the lumpy look on the legs.  Fat tissue, or adipose tissue, becomes inflamed if left unchecked or not removed/diminished either through diet, exercise, lifestyle changes, or surgical intervention.  All this progressive inflammation can be found in advanced dimpling, hardened cellulite.  The beauty burden is not only emotionally daunting but can be physically discomforting as well.

Smooth Curves Ahead:  Treatment for Painful Cellulite

If dimpling and discomfort are getting you down, don’t despair. There are viable treatment options, both non-invasive and surgical, to help you get a leg-up on combating the lumpy look and mitigate debilitating pain.  While there is no magical cream or at-home device to completely cure cellulite, there are a number of innovative ways to help dramatically diminish its appearance:

  • Get moving and don’t derail on your diet!  Increase your daily physical activity and implement a clean, healthy, well-balanced eating plan you can stick to.
  • Start lifting, lunging, and squatting.  Introduce strength/resistance training to help tighten and tone the underlying muscles and diminish the dimpled look.
  • Guzzle 8-10 glasses of healthy H20 daily to help flush toxins and waste products from your bloodstream that have the potential of becoming trapped, causing build-up and subsequent pain.
  • Stay away from the sweet stuff STAT!  Satisfy that seemingly insatiable sweet tooth by swapping the Snickers for a bowl of body-benefitting berries instead.  Your skin will thank you, too.
  • Ditch alcohol for a tall, refreshing glass of decaf iced tea.
  • Come across a brush with greatness and try the ancient ritual of dry brushing before bath or shower.  Starting from the feet and working your way upwards toward your heart, vigorously brush body with a coarse-bristled body brush to boost blood flow and skin-smoothing circulation.
  • Get rubbed the right way with massage therapy and/or injectables to help encourage fat cells to “shrink.”
  • Heat therapy, laser therapy, targeted ointment/creams
  • Surgical liposuction to remove fat cells and re-sculpt the body

While millions of frustrated women feverishly wait with bated breath for a long-overdue, conclusive cure to their cellulite sorrows, you don’t have to take the pain sitting down.  Contact Total Lipedema Care to schedule a consultation and learn how you can get your look – and your life – back.

To learn more, please contact our Beverly Hills, California office to schedule a consultation with any of our highly trained specialists.