Fat Removed From Liposuction Reappears in Mysterious Places

Far too often people have the propensity to look for an easy way out when losing weight. While most of us lead busy lives and find it difficult to include exercise, ultimately it’s up to all of us to prioritize our health.

One example of how some people do not address the real issues associated with being heavy is through weight loss surgery. Liposuction has become the most popular plastic surgery, with more than 450,000 operations every year. While the vast majority of liposuction surgeries are done safely by highly trained physicians, there seems to be almost eerie side effect of having the procedure done.

A new study, led by Dr. Teri L. Hernandez and Dr. Robert H. Eckel of the University of Colorado, has found that while the surgery successfully removes the fat in the trouble spots, the fat comes back in different areas of the body. The fact that it took a year for the fat to come back may help explain why this hadn’t been noticed before since possibly in that time people may blame themselves for the “problem.”

“It’s another chapter in the ‘You can’t fool Mother Nature’ story,'” said Dr. Rudolph Leibel, an obesity researcher at Columbia University.

It appears that there is a defense mechanism in our body that wants to hold onto our fat. So, if you remove it from one place, the body will create new fat cells and place it elsewhere.

For instance, in the study, women who had fat removed from their thighs would see new fat in their abs, arms, or shoulders. One theory for why it doesn’t just reappear in the original areas is that the liposuction destroys the structure under the skin where the fat cells reside.

Even after knowing the results of the study, more than half of the women in the control group who did not get liposuction opted for it later.

Liposuction Risks

While generally safe, liposuction does come with some risks. Some of the more serious potential side effects include permanent numbness in the area operated on, heart problems, or a fat embolism (where loosened fat breaks away and is trapped in a blood vessel, in the lungs or even the brain).

The safest bet is to lose weight the old-fashioned way: a healthy diet with moderate indulgences and regular exercise. Maybe just as importantly, if you eat right and exercise, accept any minor imperfection you may have and enjoy your life!

(via: New York Times & Mayo Clinic)

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