Skin is incredibly elastic. Consider what a woman will go through during pregnancy, her skin stretching to accommodate the child in the womb. Your skin has the ability to expand and contract far more than most people probably imagine.
There are some things to keep in mind about skin elasticity. Skin elasticity can be influenced by age. The elastic properties of your skin may be reduced as you get older. This can mean that if you are older and lose an extreme amount of weight, more than 20 kg., you can expect some loose skin that simply cannot return to normal. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule.
There are countless creams advertised as restoring tightness or youthfulness, these don’t work. Skin creams don’t work well enough to provide measurable results. Don’t waste your money. These factors below will give you a lot more mileage than the money spent on creams.
Factors that can impact how well your skin can bounce back.
How long did you carry that extra weight?
Carrying baby weight for 9 months is vastly different in terms of skin damage than carrying 50 kg. of fat for 10 years. For this reason, establishing a goal and acting early is your best strategy.
How much extra weight did you carry?
It is much easier for your skin to bounce back from losing 5 kg then it will be from 50 kg. Having realistic expectations can help you stay positive in reaching your goals.
How fast did you lose the weight?
Many doctors and health experts advise losing no more than 1 kg a week. If you decide to jump into an extreme dieting method and drop 5 kg. in 2 weeks, then you should have the expectation that your skin will take more time to snap back. Skin simply doesn’t return to normal that fast. Losing weight slowly and steadily can allow your skin to tighten back more naturally.
Having Realistic expectations
Keep in mind those factors which are listed below in working towards your goal. Also, keep in mind what it takes to get to that ripped and lean look versus healthy. A healthy body fat for a man is 10% to 12%, the average is more around 16% though. For a man to get that ripped ab look, he would need single digit body fat.
For a woman, getting that ripped ab look occurs more around 15%, women typically have higher body fat percentages than men in a healthy state.
Genetics do play a role in skin health. How much genetics play a role is unique to each person. Some people can gain 50 kg at 50 years old, lose it and have their skin tighten like they were 18 all over, other people would be left with drooping skin hanging from their arms. Genetics play a role, understanding your genetic predispositions can help you recognize areas that may need additional attention early.
Strategies for skin rejuvenation
Nutrition is always everything.
Everything starts with nutrition. Nutrition is key to losing weight and it plays a huge role in your skin’s health. If you aren’t getting the vitamins and minerals through food that your skin needs, then you can’t expect it to look and act healthy.
Protect your skin from the sun.
The sun is great, except that it can damage our skin and seriously inhibit your skin’s ability to tighten back up. While you are meeting your weight loss goals you should be regularly applying sunblock. I know you probably want a nice tan to go along with the new image, but the sun is the enemy of skin elasticity. Disregard this advice at your own peril.
Outside of extreme cases, you will not see someone with loose skin who has super low body fat. Your skin is crazy good at tightening up and will literally cling to your abs. This will only happen though once your body fat percentage goes from average to awesome. A person with legit single digit body fat percentage and a ton of loose skin is very rare. In these very rare cases, surgery may be the only option to remove the loose skin.
Before going the surgery route though give your skin time. Loose skin is one issue, remaining body fat is another. Be honest about what you have to work on. Is it skin or body fat. There are calipers and electronic measuring tools to help you determine which one. A lot of gyms seem to keep them handy now too.
The key to getting tighter skin is to lose more body fat. You need to lose enough body fat that your body is no longer average, but great. After you reach that goal, if at that point you see excess skin that isn’t tightening you could consider skin removal. Surgical skin removal shouldn’t be considered before. Unless you are really really lean, you aren’t going to be able to get a clear enough picture of what is fat and what is skin.
Doctors no doubt will recommend surgery early. Why? Because the doctor probably has a BMW payment to make, a mortgage and a kid in college. The doctor is a business man and provides a service that you could use if your willing to part with your money.