Endo Belly is often the least talked about the symptom that Endometriosis has on the body. I can definitely understand as talking about it and documenting it are showing a fake version of your body. This version of your body is not the real you, it’s just a temporary effect that Endo has on the body.
This picture is just one of many examples of Endo-belly. Less than 24 hours passed between these two pictures which just goes to show how fast it can come and go.
Sometimes you might even get asked if you’re pregnant and when the baby is due. This is very ironic as one of the symptoms that Endometriosis can have is infertility. It’s always awkward as well saying that you’re not pregnant.
I know of some fellow warriors that have a few larger sized outfits just for an Emergency Endo Belly Day. These larger clothes make them feel less self-conscious as they don’t hug the body as much and flow down elegantly.
So what exactly is Endo Belly?
Endo Belly is when the abdominal area swells and often mimics a pregnant belly. It is often the result of Endometriosis Implants but there are also other causes. These implants can sometimes detach and re-attach to other organs within the body. This new re-attachment often irritates whatever structures they attach to which can cause bloating. This symptom can decrease after surgery that removes the endometriosis implants.
Another cause of Endo belly could be from bacteria overgrowth in the intestinal system. This is called SIBO, Small Bowel Intestinal Overgrowth. The bacteria that is found in the large intestine moves up to the smaller intestine and starts to digest the food there. This causes an Excess of gas which will lead to bloating, pain, and indigestion.
Endo belly often shows up monthly and this is because it is Oestrogen driven. The changing of hormone levels within the body act as an on and off switch for Endo Belly. This is why some women experience it monthly for many years if not their whole lives.
So you’re probably wondering how you can prevent it. There definitely are some ways to help but everything is always different from woman to woman.
Exercise helps increase the circulation in the body
Drink lots of water as it helps the lymphatic system in draining and prevents constipation(often a symptom of Endo belly)
HEAT PACKS! Yes, this is probably the best one. They are amazing even when endo belly is not a problem. They help with cramps, spasms, pain, and distension.
Don’t Eat Dairy or Red Meat. These are usually big bullies when it comes to the intestinal system. Almost like a bull in a china shop. If you have a craving for either one, that’s fine, but maybe try to just reduce the amount you take in.
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