Alternatives to Liposuction

No-one wants to undertake a medical procedure unnecessarily, and, once the decision is made to go ahead, the procedure should be safe, efficacious, and cost-effective.

What are the alternatives, then, to liposuction at Peach?

Everyone would prefer to get the shape they want by diet ‘n’ exercise, and when this approach delivers the result you want *we are all for it*.

*Of course*, you should be eating healthily. *Of course* you should exercise to minimise body fat percentage, and build muscle proportionately. Health benefits of diet ‘n’ exercise are numerous & all-encompassing. You can lower your risk of heart disease, strokes, many cancers, diabetes, fractures, various colonic diseases, dementia, depression, anxiety. Via diet ‘n’ exercise you can genuinely improve mood, improve self-esteem (not just by looking better in the mirror either, but by raising intracerebral endorphins and serotonin, etc).

Liposuction is no substitute for diet ‘n’ exercise. There’s no competition, because diet ‘n’ exercise wins hands down.

But, but, but…

How can we help a person who exercises well and observes a healthy diet, and who has achieved a low body fat percentage in combination with toned generalised musculature, but who is troubled by specific and localised pockets of unwanted subcutaneous fat?

How can we help a person with a thin face, thin arms, a thin chest, a thin abdomen, and thin legs, but fatty upper thighs? (“saddle bags”).

Thigh exercises won’t help, in that they won’t help to reduce, specifically, upper thigh fat without reducing fat elsewhere.

For there is no diet ‘n’ exercise strategy that will help remove fat from one location without affecting other locations.

Belly exercises (sit-ups, plank, core, etc) will help build abdominal musculature but will not reduce abdominal fat specifically. Do enough, and you will lose fat, but from face and arms and legs and everywhere else as well. *Total* body fat rises and falls with diet ‘n’ exercise, but this won’t help if the problem is one of *distribution* of fat. This won’t help if there is a *disproportionate* amount of fat at one area as compared to the rest of you.

Everybody, absolutely, should work to optimise their dietary intake and their exercise regime. Liposuction is no alternative to this – it’s no “short cut”.

Then again, diet ‘n’ exercise cannot do what liposuction does: reduce unwanted fat at a specific body location in order to restore proportion and regularise body fat distribution.

Herbs and nutritional supplements

Forever, humans have sought remedies from herbs. Who wouldn’t like the idea of finding a special plant that makes problems go away? And, certainly, many modern pharmacotherapies arose from plant sources e.g. aspirin.

Still, no known herb or supplement can reduce unwanted fat from a specific body location.

Certain substances may reduce appetite, or may increase one’s sense of energy. Those who take such substances may lose generalised body fat, but the effect is similar to exercise – generalised body fat loss rather than location-specific fat loss. Of course, any substance bringing about such fat loss without exercise is undoubtedly harming you in other ways. Besides, none of the pharmacotherapies available have demonstrated to produce any weight loss sustainable more than a few months.

Hormones and hormone-like supplements

Young and otherwise-healthy persons who pursue fat loss through hormone supplementation are likely damaging their health, risking early heart disease. Not advised.

Middle-aged and older patients will sometimes have experienced age-related hormonal decline. They may find themselves with sub-optimal blood levels of certain hormones, and this relative hormone deficiency may be detrimental to them, inclusive of leading to fat accumulation. In such cases, careful hormone supplementation (in combination, as always, with diet ‘n’ exercise) can help reduce such unwanted fat. Persons interested in exploring this process further should come in for a formal consultation.

Body-wraps, saunas, passive slimming machines

Often promoted but not proven. Typically these are sold on the basis of a plausible-sounding biological mechanism accompanied by coloured diagrams. There are phrases like “give the system a boost”, “increase blood flow to wash away toxins”, “normalise the tissues”, and then there is an anecdotal testimonial from someone who had tried everything else and was doubtful at first but who has seen amazing results and is now telling friends.

To prove a treatment like this actually works, one must be able to compare a group of persons who have had the treatment with a similar group who have not. One must ensure that other factors that might confound the results, such as differences in diet ‘n’ exercise between the two groups, are held constant. The whole experiment must be done in a manner rigorous enough such that a reputable medical journal will (and does) publish the findings. Now, this might all seem expensive and time-consuming, but it isn’t as expensive and time-consuming for everyone as performing and charging for treatments that don’t work.

Endermologie and related treatments

Endermologie and related treatments help to smooth out the irregular appearance of cellulite. The suction aspect of endermologie helps stretch the collagen fibrils contributing to the dimpling of cellulite, whilst the compression and massage helps diminish the oedema. The effect, whilst considered worthwhile, is not permanent, and does not reduce actual fat.

Other treatment modalities offer an advance on the enderrmologie concept, and one of the most advanced is the Velasmooth Pro that we use here at Peach. Velasmooth Pro adds infrared and radiofrequency modalities to improve the effect on cellulite. We will often find Velasmooth hastens recovery and smooths the result of liposuction, but it is no *substitute* for liposuction as it doesn’t actually remove fat cells.

Ultrashape

Ultrashape uses focussed ultrasound to kill fat cells. And it works. A bit. But the treatments are slow, painful and expensive, and you can’t readily predict how much fat you will lose nor therefore how many treatments you will need to get the result you want. Expenditure rapidly adds up.

Cryolipolysis

This process freezes fat cells by suctioning a roll of fat into a large suction cup. It works, and you’ll be happy if you have a roll of fat to treat that is the same size as the machine’s suction cup. If not, then you’ll need multiple treatments with multiplied expense. As with Ultrashape, you won’t know how much fat you will lose with the treatments, so you can’t predict what your expenses will be. But it is fairly safe, and non-invasive.

Currently available American machines are extortionately expensive and the companies extract high ongoing usage fees from their doctor-customers, meaning that, for the end-user-patient, these treatments do not offer, in my view, a value proposition.

Lipodissolve

This we offer here at Peach. Injections of deoxycholate and phosphatidylcholine kill fat cells, and so treatments consist of multiple tiny injections to the fatty area. Overall it is quite inexpensive for small areas and facial areas, and is useful to help smooth out any irregularities following formal liposuction, but for all but the slenderest of patients with the thinnest areas of excess fat (e.g. bodybuilders seeking to finesse their results) lipodissolve is a bit slow as compared to liposuction, and once a number of treatments are envisioned the fee total becomes comparable to, and may exceed, a liposuction fee.

Worth considering.

Conclusion

Liposuction remains popular because it is reliable and safe and effective and affordable.

Whilst there are many ways to improve appearances, nothing else does quite what liposuction does, as well as liposuction does it.

Give Peach a chance

To talk to a member of our team or book a consultation, please contact us today.