A revolutionary new machine has arrived in Ireland, which its makers claim can shrink love handles and wobbly bits by simply freezing fat cells. Sounds too good to be true? Georgina Heffernan tried the Cooltec treatment out for herself.

Tried and tested: Cooltec at Therapie Clinic

Ask almost any woman what her biggest body hang-up is and she'll probably tell you her stomach. And like many so many of us, I’d do almost anything to get rid of my jelly belly. To say that the size of my stomach bothers me would be something of an understatement; I’ve never worn a bikini, avoid looking in the mirror and have been asked on more than one occasion if I’m pregnant.

My ‘muffin top’ also means that, when it comes to fashion my choices are limited to flowing dresses and baggy shapeless tops.
I’ve always been a size 12 and, although that’s not exactly in the morbidly obese category, it’s not supermodel slim either. Despite numerous gym visits and a relatively healthy diet, my belly just won’t seem to budge. In the past, I have been tempted to try liposuction but I’m too much of a scaredy-cat to go under the knife. However, when I discovered a new non-invasive fat removal procedure called Cooltech, I finally decided to take the plunge…

What does it claim to do?
This is a non-invasive technique for eliminating unwanted fat in various areas - the abdomen, "love handles," back, inner thighs, under the chin, and upper arms. Using "cool sculpting" technology, its developers say it can reduce fat by 20 per cent by cooling problem areas for an hour.

The extreme cold causes fat cells to die but does not harm skin or muscles, they claim. All the patient feels is numbness. Far from the fat "melting" away, it actually is frozen into oblivion and excreted naturally by the body over a six week period – leaving a slimmer, more defined shape.

The machine was designed by researchers in California, who developed the technology after scientists noticed children who sucked ice lollies developed concave depressions in their cheeks over time. The treatment has proved a massive hit since being introduced in the U.S. Experts are heralding the non-invasive procedure as a revolutionary new concept in weight loss.
But enough of the science, what was it actually like?

The Treatment:
I had Cooltec performed two weeks ago. The only pain during the procedure was when they put the applicator on; the device definitely felt like it was trying to suck the insides out of me at first. It was a huge pinch, but it passed in under a minute, and once the cooling started, the procedure was quite comfortable. My treatment lasted for over two hours and when the applicator was removed my stomach looked very red and irritated. The whole area was very swollen and bloated for the next 24 hours with minimal bruising.

The Result:
A few days afterwards and I experienced an uncomfortable feeling in my lower abdomen, which could best be described as an odd ‘pins and needles’ sensation. My nurse told me that I can expect to see minimal changes within 15 days but the final result will be fully visible four to three months, when my body has completely eliminated all of the dead fat cells. I’m very excited to see what the result will be but, as of yet, there has been no significant change in my body shape.

Four Months Later: Although the results are not as dramatic as I’d hoped, I’ve certainly lost an inch or two around my midriff and the area is more ‘shaped’ than before. I’m fitting into my skinny jeans again but I don’t have a washboard stomach and doubt that I ever will. That said, I’m pretty pleased with the results.

Cost: Cooltec is available at Therapie - €550 for 1 treatment, €850 for 2 treatments.

For further information visit http://www.therapieclinic.com/cooltec-body-sculpting/