Does Freezing Fat Actually Work?

Woman in white shorts top pinching the fat on her hips with the title "Does Freezing Fat Actually Work?"

Fat freezing, known medically as Cryolipolysis, is one of the hottest trends in non-invasive body sculpting. Cryolipolysis literally translates into cold (cryo) fat (lipo) dissolution or loosening (lysis). But what exactly does all this mean, and what does freezing fat achieve?

Body fat basics

Not all fat is created equal. We have two main types of fat in our body: subcutaneous fat and visceral fat. The body’s ability to remove subcutaneous fat decreases with age, which means we fight an uphill battle with each birthday we celebrate. Luckily, this is the type of fat that is treatable with Cryolipolysis.

How was Cryolipolysis discovered?

In 2009, a research team created a prototype freezing device for clinical testing on pigs to numb the skin before dermatological procedures. The goal was to develop an alternative to topical anesthetics for reducing pain during minimally invasive procedures. However, the team quickly noticed that the device worked for fat removal as well. They soon switched gears and began improving the device for targeting fat cells. 

The results were promising; approximately 1/2 inch reduction in the pig’s fat layer in the treated areas without damaging the overlying skin. By 2010, the first cryolipolysis technology approved for human use was cleared to treat love handles. Clearance for other parts of the body, including the thighs, belly, bra fat, back, the underside of the buttocks, and chin followed soon after.

How long does a fat freezing treatment take?

The treatment takes between 35-60 minutes per application, and multiple applications may be necessary to cover an area. For example, to ensure even fat removal from the entire front of the belly, four or more applications may be needed.

So, does freezing fat actually work?

It sure does! Results can be seen as soon as three weeks, with maximum results seen at approximately three months. The average reduction in fat ranges between 10 to 25% per round of treatment with no evidence of any body-wide side effects. A second round of treatment may be needed, depending on the desired results.

Who’s a good candidate for fat freezing?

Cryolipolysis is a safe and effective fat reduction procedure without the downtime of liposuction surgery. It is important to note that fat freezing is intended for fat loss, not weight loss. The ideal candidate for Cryolipolysis is already close to their ideal body weight but has areas of stubborn fat that are difficult to get rid of with diet and exercise. Fat freezing also doesn’t target visceral fat, meaning it won’t improve your overall health. But it may help you fit into your favorite pair of jeans.

If you would like to learn more about fat freezing and how you can get certified, contact The Body Sculpting Institute today!