Once summer arrives, your wardrobe changes from thick jackets and pants to shorts, dresses and swimsuits. As much as you enjoy being outside during summer, unwanted bulges or extra fat may deter you from wearing your favorite seasonal outfits. However, there is a way to combat the problem of unwanted fat by undergoing a body contouring procedure, which experts explain are noninvasive treatments that destroy fat cells and permanently remove them from the body.
The basics of body contouring
Body contouring targets specific pockets of fat or bulges you want removed, such as love handles or extra fat underneath your arms, says Tiffany DiGiuseppe, the owner and founder of Admire Aesthetics in Medford. Body contouring helps with any place on the body you want sculpted or to create a desirable shape, she explains. “When we hit adolescence, we have as many fat cells as we’ll ever have, and we spend the rest of our time sculpting those,” she says.
Also, body contouring procedures are safe and approved by the Food and Drug Administration, according to Rebecca Snyder, who owns Illumined Body Medi Spa in Medford.
Snyder and DiGiuseppe agree that body contouring procedures dramatically reshape your body, and everyone could benefit from the treatments. For example, Snyder says a patient may come in wanting to get rid of a double chin. “Body contouring can shrink or dissolve the fat that causes the double chin,” Snyder explains.
However, DiGiuseppe and Snyder warn against confusing body contouring treatments with a weight loss procedure, such as gastric bypass or liposuction. The latter are invasive procedures which involve a significant recovery time, DiGiuseppe explains. “I wouldn’t do a body contouring treatment on someone who wants to lose a lot of weight. I’d advise them to lose the weight first, and then come in for sculpting,” DiGiuseppe says.
Snyder says if someone is carrying a lot of extra weight and thinks they are going to have large masses of fat removed through body contouring, that’s incorrect. She suggests you maintain a sensible diet during your body contouring treatments because a good diet encourages the process.
Choosing the right contouring treatment
If you are considering body contouring, there are two well-known methods you could choose from: VelaShape and CoolSculpting. There are differences in the procedures and how they are performed, so it’s important to research which one is best for your goals and body.
VelaShape uses ultrasound technology to target fat cells, says Snyder. “The cell is disrupted, destroyed and the fat is dispersed from the body,” she explains. Additionally, she advises patients to drink a lot of water because this helps disperse the fat from the body.
Snyder says VelaShape is a soothing, pleasant treatment that feels reminiscent of a hot stone massage. “It’s a gentle process with no pain involved,” she says, noting that people will usually require four to six treatments depending on their individual needs.
There’s also not much risk involved with VelaShape, says Snyder, because they first clear patients via a medical intake form. “If someone has a health conflict, then they wouldn’t receive the treatment,” she says.
Another body contouring option is CoolSculpting. This method crystallizes fat cells, which freeze at a higher temperature than the surrounding tissue, explains DiGiuseppe. During the procedure, a gel pad and applicator is placed on the target area and uses a vacuum to draw fatty tissue into the applicator cup, she says.
Because CoolSculpting stops the blood supply to the fat cells and destroys them, DiGiuseppe says your body will go through the process of having an injury and try to repair itself. She says the lymphatic system will take the dead fat cells and flush them out through urination, and the body will continue to flush out fat cells for four to six months after the treatment. “People will see results in about one month, and the treatment has no long-term risks,” she explains.
Creating your best shape
DiGiuseppe and Snyder agree that body contouring procedures successfully and permanently destroy fat cells and change the shape of the body. “Body contouring trims down bulges and creates a beautiful figure,” Snyder says.