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Carbon dioxide injections significantly reduce abdominal fat

How injections of GAS can blast away your muffin top: Carbon dioxide jabs can significantly reduce abdominal fat after just ONE WEEK, study claims

  • Minimally-invasive procedure decreases people’s muffin tops after just one week
  • The ‘safe’ therapy may be preferred by patients who ‘like natural treatments’
  • Carboxytherapy changes people’s abdominal circulations, damaging fat cells
  • This avoids the scarring and long recovery times of weight-loss surgeries
  • Yet, the fat-reduction effects do not last seven months after injections  

Carbon dioxide injections reduce abdominal fat without dieters having to go under the knife, new research suggests.

Known as carboxytherapy, the minimally-invasive procedure significantly decreases people’s muffin tops after just one week, a study found.

According to lead author Dr Murad Alam, from Northwestern University, the ‘safe, inexpensive’ therapy may be preferred by patients ‘who like natural treatments’.

Carboxytherapy is thought to cause changes to the abdomen’s circulation, which damages fat cells, without the scarring or long recovery times of traditional weight-loss surgery.

Yet, the study found the fat-burning effects of carbon dioxide injections are not maintained seven months after their administration, as well as the treatment having no effect on body weight or waist circumference.

Carboxytherapy is widely available at spas in the UK but is rarely performed in the US.  

Images show an unnamed patient, who was not involved in the study, with a noticeably flatter abdomen after undergoing carbon dioxide injections to the torso. The picture was taken from the Centre for Medical Sciences and Research, London 

A second patient, who was not in in the study, had carboxytherapy on her backside, causing it to become smaller. Image was taken from the anti-ageing clinic Aesthetic Health, Leeds


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Carboxytherapy uses carbon dioxide to supposedly reduce fat, ease the appearance of scars and diminish dark circles under the eyes.

It involves a series of small injections with a very fine needle into the affected area.

Carbon dioxide causes cells to disperse their oxygen to the affected area, before absorbing the CO2.

Cells then carry the carbon dioxide back to the lungs where it is breathed out. 

The procedure is widely available at spas in the UK but is rarely performed in the US.

How does it reduce fat? 

When used for fat reduction, the treatment claims to dissolve fat cells, causing them to release their fat.

This may lead to weight loss, fat reduction and cellulite treatment on hard-to-shift areas such as love handles, saddle bags and double chins. 

What else is it used for? 

Carboxytherapy is also thought to reduce dark circles under the eyes by stimulating the production of collagen and increasing blood flow to the treated area.

This causes the skin to return to its natural colour.

Is it safe? 

The treatment is thought to be safe with no recovery time.

Mild swelling and redness are the only known side effects. 

Source: EF Medispa

‘Carboxytherapy could be a new and effective means of fat reduction’

Speaking of the results, Dr Alam said: ‘Carboxytherapy could potentially be a new and effective means of fat reduction.

‘It still needs to be optimised, though, so it’s long lasting. 

‘If carboxytherapy can provide prolonged benefits, it offers patients a noninvasive option for fat reduction.

‘But we don’t feel it’s ready for prime time.’

Dr Alam adds the treatment’s temporary effects suggest it works by reducing the size of fat cells rather than killing them.

The findings were published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 

How the research was carried out 

The researchers analysed 16 people of a healthy weight.

The participants received five weekly infusions of carbon dioxide to one side of their abdomens and five placebos to the opposite side. 

Ultrasound measurements were taken one and 28 weeks later to determine the participants’ fat volumes.  

May give patients a ‘psychological boost’ to be healthier

Previous research by the University of Siena found carboxytherapy reduces fatty tissue on the thighs, knees, and abdomen by 2cm, 1cm and 3cm, respectively.

Professor Nick Finer, former chairman of the UK Association for the Study of Obesity, previously warned the treatment is not a permanent fix and is therefore unlikely to reduce the risks of carrying too much weight, such as developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

He added, however: ‘If this can give patients the psychological boost they need to adopt a healthier lifestyle, then it can only be a good thing.’

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