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Saturday , August 14 , 2010
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The slim dream

So you want to be whippet thin like super model Gisele Bündchen, but buffing your body is a lot of hard work, right? And, if slogging away at the treadmill for hours or sweating it out with a mountain of weights is not your cup of tea, there’s a bevy of new and cutting-edge body sculpting procedures doing the rounds of spas and fitness outfits across the country.

On offer are über-cool blubber loss techniques which use anything from infra-red radiation and low frequency ultrasonic waves to radio frequency energy and inch loss wraps.

It’s true that slimming treatments hit Indian shores a couple of years back but with technology changing every day, the new therapies are more sophisticated and some offer visible changes in just one sitting.

Clearly, one size does not fit all and there are several customisations to a single treatment depending on your height and weight. But every procedure is carried out under the expert guidance of a medical practitioner so that you’ll be safe rather than sorry.

The good news is that the effect is almost instantaneous though some ‘battling the bulge’ packages may require multiple sittings for people who need to work some serious weight off. But the silver lining to the fat loss cloud is that you don’t really have to huff and puff your way through a series of workout regimens in order to get a streamlined appearance. Just a spa membership will do the trick.

The downside is that some of these procedures have a temporary effect and the blubbery look will definitely return if you don’t keep a check on your consumption levels.

So join us as we hit some body sculpting facilities to check out new treatments that promise to put up a serious flab fight.

Ultra Cavitation

The Drain removes extra cellular fluids from the body

One of the new buzzwords in the fitness domain, the ultra cavitation technique, uses a simple process to help the body shed excess fat — by breaking down the walls of fat storing cells or lipocytes. Need to flaunt a sizzling shape for a beach vacation? This happens to be your best bet.

This is how the whole thing works. The lipocytes are subjected to ultrasound waves with frequencies between 25kHz and 40kHz, which break down their cell walls, releasing triglycerides in the blood as free fatty acids.

So, what happens to the fat cells that have been zapped by ultrasound waves? Dr Veena Aggarwal, head of R&D at VLCC, that offers the treatment to its patrons, maintains that the free fatty acids let loose in the blood are drained out of the body by the lymphatic system, a process aided by body massages. So, for a svelte new look, combine the ultra cavitation service along with the lymphatic drainage treatment, also offered by VLCC

Says Aggarwal: “On an average one can lose almost 200gm and 3cm-4cm per session. And there’s no end to the benefits of this versatile procedure. Apart from fat removal, it also helps in cellulite reduction.”

One would do well to attend the comprehensive counselling sessions offered by VLCC before taking the fat-free route. There’s specific advice for people with certain medical conditions. Aggarwal also suggests that you follow up your treatment by ditching that junk diet and couch potato syndrome. Or you may end up saying hello to your former bloated self.

Pocket pinch: For the Ultra Cavitation treatment, a single session per week will cost you anything between Rs 2000 and Rs 3000.

Body Shaping Suite

Slim-up Ultra comes with infra-red lamps that help the body consume huge quantities of energy and subsequently burn more calories

The body beautiful goes hi-tech at Leo Juventa, a swank spa in Hyderabad which has what’s called a Body Shaping Suite.

This futuristic contraption actually consists of four machines that help you get into drool-worthy shape. One of the key devices in this set is the Slim Up Ultra, a piece of equipment that comes with what are called electro muscle stimulators (that help stimulate muscles and replicate a real workout) along with an ultra sound device and infra red lamps that emit rays that enable the body to use up more energy.

This heavy duty flab blaster melts away those love handles like this. Inside the confines of the Slim Up Ultra, infra-red radiation is applied to the body, helping it consume huge quantities of energy and subsequently burn more calories.

Says Dr Nina Pradhan, assistant medical director at Leo Juventa, who strictly supervises all the body sculpting procedures in the facility: “You can imagine how this treatment hits the nail exactly on its head. Since the positioning of infra-red radiation and the electro muscle stimulators are highly flexible, slimming is concentrated exactly where it is required.”

Indeed, this mean machine is way more advanced than a battery of slimming regimens offered a decade ago.

“The Body Shaping Suite has an edge over cosmetic surgeries that merely offer a face lift by getting rid of excess skin. This one actually stimulates the facial muscles, toning and tightening them from within,” says Pradhan.

Pocket pinch: For a Body Shaping Suite package lasting between 10 and 21 days, the cost could range from Rs 35,000 to Rs 1 lakh per person.

The Inch Loss Wrap

The Alpha Oxy LED body capsule has several programmes for weight management and body sculpting

Size does matter at Iosis MediSpa, the business venture of Bollywood hotbod Shilpa Shetty and cosmetologist Kiran Bawa, which has several outlets in various parts of Maharashtra.

The duo has introduced the Inch Loss Wrap (ILW), which could be your hot ticket to a drop dead gorgeous figure without actually losing the pounds. “This is a very effective method of reducing inches in a quick and natural manner without any side effects,” points out Shetty, adding that brides-to-be and aspiring models could look their best on their D Day by opting for this treatment.

Dr Sushant Shetty, COO of the MediSpa gives a blow by blow account of how the ILW functions: “It is all about draining the toxins that are accumulated in our body for a long time.”

Toxins are just metabolic waste generated by the body that’s stored between fat cells, helping create the beached whale appearance.

ILW does not alter fat cells, which means there is no breakdown of fat cells in the manner of ultra cavitation. What it does, instead, is reduce the size of fat cells by extracting the toxins, bringing about inch loss. “It must be clearly understood that this wrap does not induce weight-loss but only inch loss,” says the doctor. Oh stop quibbling, folks!

For that sculpted look, bandages soaked in a special solution are wrapped around the body for an hour. The toxins in the body are attracted to this solution. As the toxins are removed along with the bandage, the fat cells get compacted. “We assure a minimum of six inch loss (from head to toe) in one session; these results will remain for a month as long as the weight is maintained”, points out Dr Shetty.

On the same lines, even Leo Juventa offers the Swedish Miracle Wrap that cleanses the body of toxins and results in inch loss. Pradhan claims that this wrap also cranks up body metabolism along with making the flab do a disappearing act.

Pocket pinch: A full body ILW at Iosis is priced at Rs 12,750 per session, with a minimum guarantee of losing six inches. The number of sessions depends on the number of inches you need to lose.

Anti-Cellulite Wrap

The Inch Loss Wrap reduces the size of fat cells by extracting toxins
Pix: Gajanan Dudhalkar

Yes, thunder thighs are not in, especially as hemlines go up. So, ladies zap the cellulite fast and show off those super sexy legs. Extending a helping hand is the LC 24 Anti-Cellulite Wrap offered by Quan Spa at JW Marriott Hotel, Mumbai.

A session lasting 75 minutes here will involve wrapping your thighs, hips or other problem areas with a mixture of several active ingredients that fight unsightly localised cellulite.

Once the anti-cellulite products kick into action, expect to lose inches and smoothen away the lumps in that area. So, you possess a firmer, blemish free skin and a toned body as well.

The principle behind shedding the cellulite is again, to target fatty deposits in your skin. The treatment is a combination of massages and a powerful mask consisting of cellulite fighting ingredients. “The wrap actually manages to remove the ugly lumpy bits that you wanted to conceal all the time,” says Dr Manauj Suvarna of Quan Spa.

Pocket pinch: The Wrap is tagged at Rs 3,500 per sitting while 10 sittings are recommended for effective results. Also on offer at Iosis Medispa is a Cellulite Combat Massage that doesn’t exactly promise to melt the fat away but claims to reduce cellulite considerably by helping increase blood circulation in the affected areas.

Laser Treatment

Mesotherapy uses the TMT Machine to inject homeopathic medicines and vitamins painlessly

The I-lipo machine (inset) has made a grand entry on the fitness red carpet and is already gaining currency among slimming freaks. Though laser treatments have made their presence felt in the cosmetic field for some time now the I-lipo is the latest entrant that produces immediate results.

Available at Three Graces, the Capital’s new spa destination, this machine aims at the fat cell walls using laser light and makes them porous in the process. Fatty acids and glycerol are subsequently released into the blood stream and finally drained out into the lymphatic system.

Take note: This too is a body sculpting technique that reduces the fat cells and does not destroy them. Translation: You go for celebratory binge sessions and they fill up again.

The outfit claims that one can get rid of almost two inches to four inches over the course of the treatment, depending on the depth of the fat layer, diet and lifestyle.

An ideal treatment period is a course of eight sessions, at the rate of two sessions per week. A typical session of I-lipo usually lasts for about 20 minutes and one is advised to concentrate on any one treatment area at any given point of time. However people with certain conditions such as pregnancy, light activated brain disorders like epilepsy, uncontrolled hypertension and much else are advised to stay away.

Pocket pinch: Expect to shell out about Rs 10,000 per session, excluding taxes.


The Anti Cellulite Wrap fights localised cellulite around the thighs, hips and other problem areas
Pix: Gajanan Dudhalkar

In recent times, even the age-old mesotherapy has got a technology facelift. In earlier times the practice involved injecting a cocktail of homeopathic medicines and vitamins in the middle layer of the skin or mesoderm to help you lose weight, fight cellulite and tighten sagging skin. The new process is cutting edge and absolutely painless.

Says Dr Nina Pradhan of Leo Juventa, where the therapy is available, “The process of injecting the mixture into your skin is now achieved through the TMT Machine rather than inserting needles. So pain is history now.” She adds that cosmetic aberrations like a double chin, cellulite, acne, stretch marks and even wrinkles can all be corrected through mesotherapy.

The icing on the cake is that the effect is almost instantaneous. So after a 10-minute mesotherapy session, you end up walking away with zero cellulite and an impeccably smooth skin.

Pocket pinch: Mesotherapy sessions can cost you approximately Rs 3,000 per sitting, depending on the problem addressed.

Truly, looking beautiful is just a piece of cake in this day and age. We just have one word of caution as a parting shot. Staying horizontal post these therapies will make you pile on the pounds again. So, get a move on to help your makeover last a lifetime and yes, give those extra calories a miss too.

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