Vibration machines have been popular for a long time, and most of us probably have an image of the machines that use a belt to vigorously shake our fat away, or steamrollers to flatten fat to smithereens.
Massage and Body Contouring
However, the idea of ‘non-invasive body contouring’ still remains a thriving industry. There has been recent question if mechanical massage, much like vibration, could help us lose fat. Popular mechanical massagers, such as Endermologie, suggest that, “mechanical stimulation on the surface of the skin sends a signal deep down to the cells (ex: fat cells and fibroblasts) to provoke a physiological response (ex: activation of collagen and elastin production or activation of lipolysis).”
Research that supports the effectiveness of such a physiological process in promoting fat loss. There is evidence that hard enough massage can damage fat cells, causing loss of a small percentage, while deforming the remaining 80%. However, just because the cells are damaged, does not mean that the body will automatically use the fat for energy purposes – leading to fat loss.
There are many wonderful benefits to massage, such as stress reduction, muscle relaxation and relief, and improved mood. However, based on the current research evidence, the myth that mechanical massage is an effective treatment for fat loss is busted.
In many studies, diet or exercise were not controlled for, and the change in circumference was also associated with weight loss – making it very difficult to determine if any effects of the massage were actually due to these other things. Also, perception of changes are tricky, because of a potential ‘placebo effect’, where participants ‘believe’ that it worked, but it really did nothing. Unfortunately, research in this area has not investigated a potential placebo effect.
Studies have shown changes from about 0 cm to 3 cm average reduction in total body circumferences from some form of mechanical massage (1 cm = length of 2 grains of rice).
For comparison, a healthy diet and moderate intensity physical activity 3 days per week for 5 months in overweight women has shown an average weight loss of 27 pounds, with 18 pounds of fat loss, 9 cm lost in the waist, and 10 cm lost in the hips!
As always, regular physical activity and healthy eating will win every time. Choose wisely.
At Beauty & Laser Clinic, Our experienced qualified therapists will advise you based on your skin type, Condition and the nature of the treatments that you are receiving to assure your needs and budget by providing an honest and realistic outcome in the consultation.