Diet & Exercise
Results from Lipoedema UK’s Big Survey show that 95% of women with lipoedema report that although they can lose weight from dieting, they do not lose it evenly from their whole body.
Areas affected by lipoedema, such as the hips, thighs and ankles, are particularly resistant no matter how few calories are consumed and very low calorie diets and under-eating will not prevent lipoedema. Women prone to lipoedema should aim to eat nutritious foods and a well balanced diet and as far as possible avoid putting on unnecessary weight.
Some women report that their symptoms worsen after eating products containing yeast, processed foods or after drinking alcohol, especially red wine.
Watch Emily Iker present “Eat Nutritiously to Reduce Inflammation” (link & video will open in YouTube)
Low impact exercises such as swimming, walking and cycling are recommended because they increase lymphatic drainage and improve blood flow through the affected limbs.
High impact exercising (i.e. jogging, step-aerobics) should be avoided as they may exacerbate join pain.
Exercising in water is particularly beneficial. It supports painful joints and the pressure of deep water on the legs helps improve lymphatic and venous function. Walking in chest-high water (in a safe place) is especially good because it provides graduated, painless compression to the legs.
Many women with Lipoedema are reluctant to take part in group or public exercises, but it is worth persevering as lack of exercise can lead to increased lack of mobility, which in turn limits the ability to exercise and makes it harder to keep fit.
People with lipoedema should avoid sitting or standing for long periods and always try to build some form of exercising into their daily routine.
Watch this introductory video about Lipoedema and Exercise:
Here is a Lipoedema-specific short exercise video. Please remember to consult with your GP or specialist prior to beginning any exercise routine.
Following Edely Wallace’s presentation at Lipoedema UK’s conference in 2015, twelve of our members participated in a 30-minutes-a-day-for-30-days trial of her methods of lymphatic yoga. Several of the members reported very positive results and a decrease in their symptoms and overall measurements. Edely also demonstrated her methods at the US Fat Disorders Research Society’s (FDRS) Conference 2016. (see video below). In another recent study by Lymphcare UK, lymphoedema patients also reported very positive results from lymphatic yoga classes.
Click here to Watch Edely Wallace discuss Lymphatic Drainage and lead a Yoga Session (link & video will open in YouTube)
Deep breathing is an important part of lymphatic yoga, and can be practiced at anytime, anywhere, see Edely Wallace’s video below also courtesy of the US Fat Disorders Research Society.
Click here to watch Edely Wallace video below (link & video will open in YouTube)
NOTE: Any specific diet or exercise regimen should be done under the guidance or supervision of your physician. Please discuss it with your physician before trying any of the diet or exercise regimes laid out above. Lipoedema UK is neither responsible nor liable for any injuries or related health complications resulting from you trying or following advice laid out on this page or other pages of the Lipoedema UK site.