If you’ve been committed to consistently following a healthy eating plan and exercise routine yet still find that you can’t get rid of certain areas of body fat, then this post is for you. Below we’ll be discussing why diet and exercise-resistant fat develops and what you can do about it.
Why do fat cells become resistant?
In order to explain why diet and exercise-resistant fat develops, it’s important to first understand how fat cells form in the human body. In 2008, Kirsty Spalding, a molecular biologist studying fat at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, discovered that from infancy to our early 20s, the number of fat cells in our bodies increase. However, once we hit our mid-20s the number of fat cells stops increasing and we maintain relatively the same amount throughout the rest of adulthood. The distribution of those fat cells is primarily genetic and cannot be changed. Some people are genetically predisposed to have a high number of fat cells in specific areas of the body, such as the abdomen, thighs, or chin. For these individuals, no amount of dieting or exercise will get rid of those areas of fat.
There are two types of receptors on fat cells, alpha and beta, that play a role in the development of diet and exercise resistant fat. Alpha receptors cause fat cells to stay present while beta receptors signal fat cells to break down in order to provide fuel for energy. When fat cells have more alpha than beta receptors they tend to be more resistant to diet and exercise and vice versa, the greater the number of beta receptors versus alpha receptors the easier it is to get rid of fat. Additionally, women have estrogen receptors on fat cells, which helps balance fat distribution during pregnancy. However, estrogen receptors can also contribute to the development of diet and exercise-resistant fat, which may persist after pregnancy.
What you can do about resistant fat
Diet and exercise-resistant fat affects many men and women despite their healthy eating and exercise habits, which can be frustrating and discouraging. Luckily, modern technology has lead to the development of procedures that can safely and effectively eliminate stubborn body fat. Dr. Jessica Krant in New York City offers the following nonsurgical body contouring procedures to smooth away the appearance of resistant fat:
- Kybella®: The first FDA-approved injectable treatment to smooth away the appearance of a double chin.
- CoolSculpting®: The only FDA-cleared non-surgical fat reduction treatment that uses controlled cooling to eliminate diet and exercise-resistant fat.
- CoolMini™: The miniature model of CoolSculpting® that reduces fat in the submental, or “double chin,” and neck areas for a smoother, slimmer facial profile.
- Sculpsure: An FDA-cleared, non-invasive body contouring laser treatment to eliminate stubborn fat in the hip and belly areas.
If you’re bothered by areas of stubborn fat, schedule a consultation with Dr. Krant to discuss which treatment option would be best to help you get rid of your diet and exercise-resistant fat.