Cellulite and Gender


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Rather unfortunately for women, it is them that largely have to suffer from cellulite issues. However it is a myth that cellulite is simply a problem that is confined only to women. Men may also be affected by the condition. Although this is a very rare occurrence and the severity is typically not as great, it can and does still happen.  The way in which cellulite can have an effect on aspects of your being such as self esteem can be just as detrimental for men who suffer cellulite as it is for women. 

Body size and weight are not the sole causes of cellulite. Even the women with the slimmest physique, not just the more voluptuous plus size women, can suffer from cellulite. This lack of discrimination is due to the fact that cellulite is more to do with a change in the structure of the skin rather than the amount of fat cells present in the first place. The larger you are though, the more prominent the problem is likely to be thus perhaps explaining why the perception that the problem is confined to obesity arose.

Why do more women get cellulite than men?

Approximately 85% of all women are affected by cellulite. This is a huge percentage, vastly more than when compared to the percentage of men that are affected. Why is that the case? One major source of variation between the female body and the male body is the different composition of hormones, especially when it comes to the sex hormones, which are known as androgens. Levels of the hormone oestrogen are far higher in females than they are in males and this is believed to be a largely contributing factor to whether or not you get cellulite. Oestrogen is exceptionally important when it comes to body shape determination and is the primary reason why women have a higher percentage of body fat in comparison to men. The healthy range of body fat for women is between 20 and 25 percent whereas the body fat range of men is between 10 and 15 percent.  

Hormones are not the only thing that is different when it comes to your gender. The actual structure of the tissues that the skin is made up from varies depending on whether you are male or female. Men often have their connective tissue fibres deep within the skin arranged differently to women. A horizontal crisscross type of pattern is seen in men whereas the connective tissue fibres form more of a honeycomb like formation in female skin.  Clearly the way the male skin is arranged is far more effective at preventing cellulite from emerging in contrast to female skin. For this reason there is a highly distinctive disparity in the prevalence of the condition between men and women.

There is one more major structural aspect that helps explain why more women get cellulite than men.  How thick your skin is plays a part in cellulite because the thinner the skin is, the easier the fat pockets will be able to poke up through the upper layers. Generally speaking, female skin is comparably thinner than the skin of men although individual difference is often seen. The first two layers of the male skin, the epidermis and the dermis, are considerably thicker than the female equivalent. Crucially this means that even if in men the fat cells did start to migrate and push up toward the surface it will not be as noticeable as the skin is thicker in the first place. Skin thickness will most certainly begin to change as you age but it provides an explanation as to why the condition is more prominent in women.

Can children be affected by cellulite?

Children that are at an age before puberty has begun are not usually affected by cellulite. Even obese children whom you would expect to suffer from cellulite due to their increased body weight do not tend to suffer the same fate as adults in terms of cellulite. Both boys and girls are equal in this respect with obese young girls being none the more likely to have cellulite than obese young boys. With this in mind the contribution that body fat makes to whether or not you have cellulite is not as great as other factors such as differences in body structure and hormones appear to be.

The type of cellulite commonly found when a person is in an upright position is very rarely found in younger girls. Some degree of pinch cellulite present when the girl is sitting down may be visible but otherwise she is cellulite free, even if she is overweight. The changes that occur during puberty are extremely significant in cellulite formation, resulting in cellulite tending to appear more often in adolescents.


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