The Popsicle Inspired Weight-Loss Treatment

April 21st, 2016 by Dr. Michael Glass

From Popsicles to Cryolipolysis

For those of us who maintain a fit lifestyle, we do not cloud our thoughts with sugar-filled desserts as a means to lose weight. But in recent years, there has been a profound weight-loss discovery that may not have been possible without many among us indulging in such sweet treats. This strange phenomenon that sparked one of the most in-demand cosmetic treatments to date is known as popsicle panniculitis. And without good old-fashioned popsicles, the exciting new fat-freezing technology CoolSculpting might have never been developed.

Do you remember the feeling inside your cheeks the last time you indulged in a popsicle? The way your cheeks tingled with almost a soreness to them? Well, what you didn’t realize then is that a strange phenomenon was occurring. (Kinda makes you want to test it out again to refresh your memory, doesn’t it?)


Think of the way that your cheeks look right now. Do you have dimples, especially when you flash those pearly whites? There may be an actual reason for those pronounced dimples on popsicle lovers of the past, and we’re not talking about lucky genes. Never in a million years would anyone have thought popsicles would launch a weight loss technique that is being used by celebrities and people all over the world today—but it certainly has.

After a medical study revealed that excessive cold works to deaden subcutaneous fat cells in small children’s mouths, it sparked the creation of something we know today as CoolSculpting. The strange phenomenon known as “popsicle panniculitis” was enough inspiration for Dr. Rox Anderson and Dr. Dieter Manstein, affiliates of the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, to create an innovative technology to rid people of pesky pounds in those hard-to-lose areas of the body. And how did they do this? Simply by learning from their study that you can use controlled temperatures to freeze off unwanted fat from the body.

Doctors discovered that for children who experienced the effects of popsicle panniculitis, the insides of their cheeks would suddenly become red and swollen after repetitious contact to a frozen substance, and the subcutaneous fat cells would diminish. The most important takeaway of this revelation was that the cold could work to target fat cells, that is, without damaging the surrounding tissue or skin.

These findings set in motion the eventual creation of CoolSculpting, a non-invasive fat-freezing treatment that can show amazing results with little to no downtime, by working naturally with your body to rid itself of the dead cells post-treatment. It’s an ideal procedure for those who have spent hours in the gym, or skipped out on the bread basket more times than they can count in the hopes of shedding those pesky pounds that just won’t seem to go away.woman saying no to sweets and breads

CoolSculpting Kills Fat Cells

By applying a controlled cold treatment to subcutaneous fat, CoolSculpting kills fat cells — by reducing subcutaneous fat at the treatment site by 25% after just the first session. Bet you weren’t thinking of that when you were sucking on those popsicle sticks years ago—or even just yesterday!

Now for one final take-away. If you are going for a run, in which conditions would you burn more calories—on a hot, humid day, or when the temperature is rather chilly, around freezing? With the knowledge you gained above, that answer may seem more obvious to you. It’s been discovered that for those who spend time outdoors in chilly weather, calorie burn may be boosted by up to 30%!

That certainly gives new meaning to the term, “freezing your butt off!”