How to get rid of unwanted fat: Here’s why the targeted workout videos you’re following at home don’t work

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Singapore’s Phase Two of reopening has just commenced not too long ago, and most businesses are now up and running again.

However, the gyms have been closed for a good part of the year and to lose weight and maintain your svelte figure, you have diligently subscribed to exercise routines online five to six times a week, followed a strict low-calorie diet, and even laid off alcohol and soda.

You can finally see the fruits of your labour, but there’s still excess fat pockets going on in the thigh zone, tummy area, upper arm, and your buttocks doesn’t seem to be as perky as you would’ve hoped.

What’s worse is that you noticed your face looks sunken and your breasts appear deflated. What could possibly be wrong?

That’s when you saw your Instagram feed filled with #fitspo that talked about how they attained the body shape and curves of their dreams by following YouTube videos that focus on slimming down or building up certain areas of the body, effectively “sculpting” the body shape you want by working out.

SPOT REDUCTION IS A MYTH

Targeted workout essentially are exercises that supposedly target fat in a certain area of the body for reduction by engaging specific muscles in that desired area. The most classic example: exercising the abdominal muscles in an effort to lose weight in or around the midsection.

You may have seen viral social media posts from fitness trainers who addressed the problem of spot reduction through working out – the promise given by some of these popular YouTube home workout videos. Long story short: working out can’t do that for you.

Daily Vanity asked Dr. Ivan Puah, medical director of Amaris B. Clinic who has received Sports Medicine training, for his medical opinion on this debate.

“Working out just one part of your body probably won’t slim it down. When you work out, your whole body – from top to toe – will benefit from the exercise. However, it is not the solution to effectively address localised excess fat.”

One study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that six weeks of intensive ab workouts did nothing to slim the exercisers’ midsections. A related study found that 12 weeks of single-armed workouts resulted in less loose skin in the trained arm, but zero fat loss. Yes, you read that right – zero.

As a matter of fact, the scientific consensus among fitness researchers and experts such as American Council on Exercise (ACE) is that some commonly held beliefs and practices – like spot reduction and feeling the burn – are myths and misconceptions fed vigorously to consumers for marketing purposes.

GET RID OF EXCESS FAT WITH A PERSONALISED BODY CONTOURING TREATMENT: VASER LIPO

While working out may not be effective for reducing fat in specific parts of the body, there’s one medically proven way that does: body contouring procedures such as VASER Lipo.

Developed by plastic surgeon Dr. Alfredo Hoyos from Columbia, VASER Lipo is a contemporary procedure that shapes and sculpts the body by utilising ultrasound wave technology to target and remove stubborn fat tissues effectively. Doctors who wish to conduct the procedure are required to complete VASER Fundamental and Advanced Body Sculpting training.

VASER Lipo was first introduced in Singapore in 2008 by three medical aesthetic doctors, including Dr. Ivan Puah who is well-known in the Asia-Pacific region for performing this procedure for more than 12 years. So how does VASER Lipo exactly help you tackle excess fat?

Less intrusive than the traditional method and can be performed under local anaesthesia, VASER Lipo is a targeted procedure that’s powerful enough to eliminate at least 90% of localised stubborn fat immediately. This makes it suitable for sculpting small and large areas including jowls, chin, abdomen, waist, hips, male breasts, arms, back, buttocks, thighs, knees, and calves. Another advantage of VASER Lipo is its ability to stimulate collagen production for skin firming.

If you’re worried about pain and recovery time, you can cast all your fears aside as VASER Lipo only targets the unwanted fat tissues. This body sculpting treatment leaves other vital connective tissues relatively untouched,  giving you the smooth and contours that you want with minimal pain and downtime as compared to other methods.

Additionally, many opt for VASER Lipo because the fat tissues removed are permanent. As long as you can maintain a balanced diet and active lifestyle, the treated areas should be able to maintain their sculpted appearances.

Another benefit from removing all the excess fat: you can “recycle” them to fill the saggy parts of the face and body.

“RECYCLING” THE EXCESS FAT TO REPLACE VOLUME LOSS IN THE FACE AND BODY

As mentioned by Dr. Ivan Puah, when we embark on a weight loss journey through exercise and dietary control and exercise, we tend to lose mass and fat throughout the body and not to a specific body part. And unfortunately for many, the face and breasts are commonly the first areas that succumb to volume loss.

So what can be done to save aged, sunken cheeks?

“You can reverse the effect by reintroducing the fat removed from unwanted areas to areas where fat is needed through fat grafting via ADR-C Facial Enhancement,” shared Dr. Ivan Puah. He was trained and mentored by renowned plastic surgeon Dr. Pierre François Fournier, and has been performing fat grafting procedures for more than 15 years.

ADR-C Facial Enhancement is a minimally invasive procedure where your own fat tissue from donor sites such as the abdomen or thighs are harvested, and injected onto the face using small blunt needles. As these deposits of fat are injected as little droplets onto areas where needed, it helps restore volume into the face safely and has no risk of rejection as compared to implants.

Not just for those who had recently lost a significant amount of weight, fat grafting is also suitable for those who are looking to regain youthfulness in the face. Due to environmental factors and natural ageing process, collagen begins to deplete as early as in our mid-twenties. This is when you notice that your skin starts to sag and age, and wrinkles and frown lines become more noticeable.

In addition, the face tends to thin over time and changes from a heart-shaped face to a more rectangular shape with lesser volume. The loss of elasticity, coupled with the effects of environmental factors, adversely impacts skin quality, and many are now turning to ADR-C Facial Enhancement to counter this decline.

The beauty of this treatment is that you can “spot increase” on specific areas that are needed without worrying about rejection as it is essentially transferring your own fat source from one spot to another. Results may vary with each individual, but often times are long-lasting and natural.

But what about the volume lost in the breasts due to overall weight loss? Can’t you just perk up your breasts with spot-increasing workouts such as pectoral muscle training, suggested by some of the YouTube videos you’ve seen?

WHAT IS SPOT INCREASE? DOES IT WORK?

You may have seen online videos or articles that claim that you can make your breasts more lifted by doing bench press – this unfortunately is nothing but a myth too. As your breasts are made up of fat tissues and sit above your pectoral muscles, training your pecs isn’t going to perk up your breasts or even increase your breast size.

According to Dr. Ivan Puah, such exercises have a reverse effect because your breasts will actually shrink due to fat loss. “Toning workouts such as weight lifting or push-ups only serve to tone up the muscles, and are not able to replace the fat lost. It is important to remember that muscle and fat are two different components altogether, so there is no way to increase breast volume via workout.”

HOW TO TONE UP THE BREASTS SUCCESSFULLY: ADR-C BREAST ENHANCEMENT

For fuller breasts and better breast shape, you can consider the ADR-C Breast Enhancement. This procedure involves removing fat tissues from parts of the body such as the abdomen via VASER Lipo and purifying the harvested fat before injecting it into areas of the breasts. Over time, the fat cells integrate into the surrounding breast tissue, giving you a perkier and more natural look.

As it utilises your own body fat, ADR-C Breast Enhancement is generally considered as a safer alternative to breast implants because it eliminates the risks of rupture, leak or shift. Implants are not life-long devices, so surgery will eventually be required again in the future – this means you’ll have to set aside money and time to accommodate additional surgery costs and lifestyle interruptions.

With Dr. Ivan Puah, the surgical approach for ADR-C Breast Enhancement is to distribute the fat across various planes within the skin and breast tissue so that the results will have a natural feel and shape.

With the development of advanced medical technology, total face and body sculpting has become more efficient. However, it is the experience and degree of meticulous face and body sculpting performed by Dr. Ivan Puah, who is VASER certified, that distinguishes the results you’ll achieve at Amaris B. Clinic from other body contouring treatments elsewhere.

ASK DR IVAN PUAH ABOUT TOTAL BODY REDEFINITION

The Ministry of Health in Singapore is extremely strict about which health professional is allowed to perform liposuction. This is why they issue licenses based on strict criteria and only accredited doctors are allowed to perform liposuction in Singapore.

At Amaris B. Clinic,patient’s safety and results are always their top priority. Founder Dr. Ivan Puah will advise patients on the appropriate treatment plans based on their clinical conditions, needs, and expectations.

With more than 15 years of experience in performing body sculpting procedures, you can count on Dr. Ivan Puah to recommend the treatment solution that gives you the best possible results.

Dr. Ivan Puah is a VASER® Certified Physician and is accredited by the Ministry of Health Singapore to perform liposuction. He obtained his VASER® Fundamental and Advanced Body Sculpting training in Colorado and Argentina in 2008. He was trained and guided in syringe liposculpture and fat grafting by renowned French plastic surgeon, Dr. Pierre François Fournier.

He was the only doctor in Singapore to have further pursued his surgical training in gynecomastia surgery in San Francisco.

Under his stewardship, Amaris B. Clinic has received the recognition as the “2019 Body Sculpting Provider of the Year in Asia-Pacific” by GlobalHealth Asia-Pacific.

This accolade is given to entities that have been identified to have maintained high standards in quality care, and is judged based on market research, consumer survey, and by a panel of industry experts. The clinic also recently won the “Best Weight Management” award by Tatler Singapore.

Over the years, Amaris B. Clinic has also gone beyond providing only medical aesthetics and cosmetic surgeries such as body sculpting. They are now supporting their true passion with integrative medicine such as weight loss and fitness assessment, pain management, sports injury rehabilitation as well as physical therapy and myotherapy.

A medical practice like no other, Amaris B. Clinic’s ultimate goal is to help you enhance your look, improve your body shape and boost your confidence, health and fitness on every level through fully personalising their approach to your treatment.