Cellulite is a substance that gets trapped in the connective tissue found underneath the skin. It is basically little clumps of fat cells that give the skin a lumpy, orange-peel appearance. Although it is not life threatening, its appearance on the legs can cause a person to feel self conscious. To reduce cellulite, you must treat it the same way you would treat regular fat while placing an emphasis on the legs. According to the Mayo Clinic, losing pounds and strengthening muscles in your legs, thighs and buttocks can diminish the appearance of dimpled skin from cellulite.
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Cut down on calories. Reducing weight reduces the appearance of cellulite. Cut your calorie intake by 500 per day and you can lose a pound per week. You must burn 3500 calories to lose one pound.
Eat healthier foods. Cut back on the fast foods, deep-fried foods, processed foods and refined carbs, which can produce fat. Following a diet that consists completely of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, low-fat dairy products, fish, beans, nuts, seeds and whole grains will reduce cellulite.
Increase your intake of water. Eliminate high-calorie beverages such as soda, fruit juice, sweetened tea and alcohol from your diet. Drink water instead, as it has no calories and it will help keep you well-hydrated. The Institute of Medicine recommends that women drink approximately 3.7 liters of water per day.
Perform cardiovascular exercise. This type of training burns a significant number of calories, which can help reduce weight and diminish cellulite in your legs. Choose cardio exercises that place the emphasis on your legs such as hill running, stair climbing, stationary biking, rowing and water aerobics. Perform cardio 3 times per week on alternating days for 45 to 60 minutes.
Perform squats. Squats are compound exercises that work your quads, gluteal muscles, hamstrings and calves. Stand with your feet approximately shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees and squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Stand back up and repeat 10 to 12 times. For more resistance, hold dumbbells in your hands.
Perform lunges. Start with your feet together. Step forward with your right foot and come into a split stance. Bend your knees so that your front knee is 90 degrees and your back knee is just off the ground. Stand back up, bring your feet back together and step forward with your left foot. Lunge and bring your legs back together again. Do 10 to 12 reps. You can hold dumbbells in your hands to increase resistance.
Perform sliding exercises. Find a slippery surface such as hardwood or linoleum floor. Place a towel down on the floor. Step on the towel with your right foot and slide it out to your side as far as you can. Slide it back to meet your other foot and repeat 10 to 12 times before switching sides. Strengthening the leg muscles reduces the appearance of cellulite.