Fitness + Well-being

Woman shares photo of her bloated belly to prove how normal it is

Anyone who has dealt with belly bloat understands how uncomfortable it can make you feel about your body. But one fitness blogger wants women to know they're not alone — and that, if they're healthy, what they're going through is likely totally normal.

On Instagram, Celena Kinsey posted two photos taken within 24 hours of each other — one showing her bloated stomach and another showing a flatter version of her tummy.

These pictures are from this Monday/ Tuesday and show what one of my bloating episodes look like. No I’m not pushing my tummy out, I actually have abdominal distension during these episodes, as pointed out by a doctor (and you can see I'm totally not feeling good). For as long as I can remember, I’ve suffered from these episodes of intense pain and bloating. It started a few years ago and it was upper right quadrant pain, bloating, and discomfort once every few months. Then it progressed to every month, and now it seems to hit me every few weeks. Doctors are just as confused as I am and so far all I’ve gotten diagnosed with are “gastritis” and possible IBS- which we know means there really isn’t a known cause. I’ve been doing everything I can to modify my diet, to identify any food triggers and to just deal with it when it happens but it’s NOT easy. I’m not sharing for sympathy, but instead to be real with you all. Sharing a photo like this is never easy because when you’re bloated you feel pretty down on yourself and you’re uncomfortable in your own skin. But I’m sharing this to show that you’re not alone, and that we all have things that we’re battling and that’s normal. Bloating is so common and affects about 10-30% of the general population, with women TWICE as likely to experience it. So nope, I don’t walk around with abs 24/7, and I’m totally ok with that!  Right now my priorities are to share my journey, and to one day at least find out what the heck this random pain is. So the next time you’re bloated, don’t think you look “fat or disgusting”- that’s unhealthy behavior and you know that bloating comes and goes. Instead, make yourself a hot water bottle, drink water, turn on some netflix and rest easy. Always remember your body responds best to positivity and love. . . . #bloated #bloating #beforeandafter #screwthescale #ibs #squatspo #fitnesslifestyle #gymlife #cleaneating #vlogger #paleoish #liveauthentic #healthylifestyle #fitnessbody #healthyishappy #fitnesspageforall #mindovermatter #girlswithabs #womenshealth #mindbodysoul #girlswhoworkout #paleofood #fitfood #absaremadeinthekitchen #bebetter #strongnotskinny #fitliving #bodyunderconstruction

A post shared by Celena Diane (@celenakinsey) on

“Sharing a photo like this is never easy because when you’re bloated you feel pretty down on yourself and you’re uncomfortable in your own skin,” Kinsey shared on her post, which had over 6,900 likes by Monday afternoon. “But I’m sharing this to show that you’re not alone, and that we all have things that we’re battling and that’s normal.”

WHY YOU'RE ALWAYS BLOATED, PLUS 7 FOODS FOR A FLATTER TUMMY

As Kinsey points out, bloating isn't unusual. Research suggests somewhere between 10 to 25 percent of healthy people experience bloating. It can be caused by a number of factors, including hormones and food intolerance, according to the National Institutes of Health

Kinsey ends her post with words of encouragement for anyone who might be dealing with something similar.

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“So the next time you’re bloated, don’t think you look ‘fat or disgusting’- that’s unhealthy behavior and you know that bloating comes and goes. Always remember your body responds best to positivity and love,” she writes.