Body Contouring after Holiday Weight Gain

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With festivities for every occasion often involving boundless feasts, the holiday season has become nearly synonymous with weight gain. While gaining a few temporary pounds is most likely harmless, recovering your pre-weight gain figure may be more challenging to achieve than just by cutting back on Christmas cookies alone. If you’re struggling with a few isolated problem areas that don’t respond to hitting the gym or skipping the extra eggnog, body contouring procedures such as liposuction and abdominoplasty can often bring you the final step toward achieving your cosmetic goals.

Liposuction
Liposuction is a fat removal method that effectively targets stubborn deposits of fatty tissue. While the procedure is not a substitute for weight loss, liposuction can help fine-tune your figure where a healthy lifestyle falls a little short.

Diet and exercise are the most effective methods of shedding visceral fat, which wraps around the internal organs and is commonly associated with weight gain and secondary health conditions like Type II diabetes. Subcutaneous fat, on the other hand, while relatively harmless, tends to lodge itself in unflattering locations like the love handles and is notoriously difficult to get rid of.

This is where liposuction comes in. After breaking down fat cells located directly under the epidermal layer, the procedure permanently removes fatty tissue from hard-to-treat areas using a suction device called a cannula. Liposuction is most commonly performed on the love handles, abdomen, thighs, back and neck, but can treat virtually any area of the body.

Abdominoplasty
More commonly known as a tummy tuck, abdominoplasty can restore a fitter and trimmer appearance to the abdomen by treating some of the most common problems associated with weight fluctuations. After weight gain, whether due to diet, age or pregnancy, the abdominal muscles often become separated and the skin stretches out. These changes are rarely reversed with subsequent weight loss, so men and women who have lost significant weight can end up with excess, baggy stomach skin and lax abdominal muscles.

A tummy tuck can resolve these problems by repairing the abdominal muscles, removing excess fatty tissue and finally pulling the skin taut over the newly tightened abdominal frame, excising any remaining skin. Combining liposuction with a tummy tuck can further enhance your results, as well as improve contours in transition areas near the abdomen. As a result, the stomach can take on a beautifully contoured and healthy appearance that complements your weight loss efforts, making this procedure extremely popular with post-weight loss and post-pregnancy patients alike.

Weight Loss and Body Contouring As with any body contouring procedure, a tummy tuck does not serve as a weight loss alternative and patients should reach their goal weight before undergoing either a tummy tuck or lipo.

Body contouring procedures are cosmetic by nature, so while they can help you look and feel much better about your body after battling the holiday bulge, the procedures themselves do not improve your health and are no substitution for diet and exercise.

On the other hand, some studies suggest that tummy tucks may help maintain sustained weight loss results for several reasons, not least of which is that body contouring procedures can improve self esteem and provide motivation to maintain your new look long-term with a healthier lifestyle. At least, until next holiday season’s treats and sweets come back around!
Article by
Denver Plastic Surgeon