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Can Liposuction Help With Weight Loss?

Liposuction is an exceptional procedure for fine-tuning your shape and sculpting your body to perfection.

Skilled plastic surgeon Rafael C. Cabrera, MD, FACS, at Plastic Surgery Specialists of Boca Raton, can dramatically improve your appearance using liposuction to carefully remove fat and create a new, attractive body contour.

But there’s one result liposuction can’t produce: It doesn’t help with weight loss. While liposuction safely removes more fat than noninvasive body contouring, it’s not a weight loss treatment.

Liposuction and weight loss

Decades ago, when liposuction first arrived on the market, the only thing most people knew was that it suctioned out fat. They (reasonably) assumed it was for losing weight, and that reputation still sticks today.

While liposuction does use gentle suction to eliminate fat, it never was — and still isn’t — a weight loss procedure. Here are five important facts to help you better understand liposuction, weight loss, and body contouring.

1. Liposuction eliminates subcutaneous fat

One reason liposuction isn’t good for weight loss is because the procedure only removes the fat located just below your skin and above the muscle. If you’re carrying excessive weight in your abdomen, much of the fat is under the muscle and around your organs. We can’t remove that fat with liposuction.

2. Liposuction targets pockets of fat

Liposuction works well for removing problem areas of fat (like love handles) that don’t go away despite limiting your calories and getting regular exercise. But don’t count on losing a lot of weight.

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons reports that most people lose 2-5 pounds with this procedure. If that sounds discouraging, read the next fact.

3. Don’t think about pounds; consider inches

The amount of weight you might lose with liposuction doesn’t reflect the impact on your body. Why? Because one pound of fat fills nearly two cups.

Envision artistically removing the equivalent of two cups of fat from your tummy, upper arms, thighs, or wherever you carry unwanted fat. That’s a weight loss of just one pound, but it represents significant inches off of your body and makes an incredible difference to your body shape.

You don’t need to lose a lot of pounds to be thrilled with your appearance — as long as you’re near your healthy body weight before having liposuction.

4. Consider liposuction after you lose weight

If you need to lose weight because you carry more than a few areas of nagging fat, you should focus on dropping the pounds through diet and exercise before considering liposuction.

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons recommends being within 30% of your healthy weight. You can determine your healthy weight using a BMI calculator (a BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 is healthy for most people) or checking a weight chart.

Or, you can schedule a consultation and we can let you know if liposuction will achieve the body changes you want to see.

5. Liposuction permanently removes fat, but you can regain weight

Liposuction can deliver long-lasting results because it permanently removes fat cells. However, there are other fat cells in the area. If you gain weight, they will expand and you may end up with the same nagging fat problem. 

Call Plastic Surgery Specialists of Boca Raton or connect online to request a consultation to learn if liposuction is the best procedure for sculpting your body.

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