10. Lipedema: The Diagnosis and the Treatments

Nichole Smokoff



Often misinterpreted as obesity, lipedema is a chronic and painful condition where fatty tissue excess builds up  in the legs, hips and sometimes arms. Eleven percent of the female population is suffering from lipedema—an estimated 17 million Americans— and it is almost unknown in the medical community; A 2004 Stanford study showed that most medical students spend less than thirty minutes studying the entire lymphatic system. (I know, it’s shocking.) It is unclear whether the lymphatic system is negatively affected by lipidema or vice versa, but, either way, the lymph nodes are getting strangled by the fat deposits and the greatest suggestion Nichole has is to MOVE YOUR BODY. In order to drain those lymph nodes (that are busy storing all of the icky stuff our body is desperate to expel), the body needs movement. If you think you may have lipedema and want more information, go here. 

Nichole Smokoff:

“You have to be smarter than the person in the room who has the higher education than you.”

Nichole stumbled upon a website that showed a photo of a woman with lipedema and couldn’t believe that other people looked just like her. At ten years old, Nichole realized that her body was starting to look different from her friends. It took another three decades to stumble upon that photo and get a diagnosis. She has since made it her mission to educate herself and take control where she can over this disease—and that includes educating the public.

You can contact Nichole directly at golden13ratio@gmail.com

You can find her on Facebook: http://facebook.com/UniversalRatio
 And on Instagram: FitFat Love

Resources in this Episode:

Listen to this Episode if you are Especially Interested In:

  • Lipedema
  • Disorders associated with being overweight
  • The role depression plays in lipedema and obesity
  • What it’s like to go to the doctor when you’re an overweight woman
  • How to love your body no matter what
  • How to navigate a lipedema diagnosis
  • How to self-advocate at the doctor
  • How to treat lipedema
  • Self-love in the face of lipedema
  • Water-only fasting
  • Nutrition and an anti-inflammatory diet
  • Liposuction
  • The lymphatic system
  • All of Nichole’s advice to people with lipedema

Happy listening!




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