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| By Wellvyl Media Editorial


In this photo, Arianna Dantone was just taking a moment to appreciate herself and her accomplishments by the power of the hashtag.  She created the hashtag #gainingweightiscool during a pause to look in the mirror after a workout. With more of a mindset stemming from the mental battles she tried to overcome to get to this point, she bravely posted a double picture on Instagram showing her pride in the before and after photos.  Specifically,  the difference between the photos was weight loss to weight gain.  

[caption id="attachment_60250" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Instagram original post #gainingweightiscool @ariannadantone[/caption]

Yes, I know. To most of us, this is a confusion. Other parts of the world might find weight gain adorable or even as a luxury.  (I have been called “gordita” a loving term in Spanish loosely translating to “pretty chubby girl” many of times by host families while living in Central America. ) I knew they were coming from a place of love but growing up in The States I have been conditioned to see gaining weight as a negative. 

Sadly in our society eating disorders and body dysmorphic disorders have been rampant for generations. But there is a shift that is happening in our society.  Modern culture is embracing true body positivity and acceptance more and more each day. We are beginning to slowly make our way towards the understanding of unity between body and mind.  

This notion is what sparked Danotone to share her hashtag #gainingweightiscool with the world. “The hashtag kind of came as an accident, I was not expecting this at all. I was just posting a transformation and I was thought, ‘Wow, gaining weight is cool’." says Danotone.  "I looked at my body and started to think about how much I’ve changed in the past year and thought, ‘This has been cool’ this whole experience. At first, I really hated it, and it was awful. Why did I gain this weight? Why did this happen to me? Now I’m so happy that that happened to me and that I’ve learned from it.”  

Danotone is sharing with the world a bond she has formed with herself that is deeper than skin and bone.  Through her post, she has invited others to begin to look at themselves and embrace what is staring back at them. She mainly does this through social media.  As with most movements, the platform of Instagram has been a catalyst for spreading her message like wildfire. But, as we know humans are humans with their own human interpretation of things. So with over 100,000 followers, there has also come some questions and controversy around this trend.


Modern Day BBA (Body Builders Annonymous)  

There has been some conversation that this hashtag is a support for people who have traded eating disorders for overused gym passes.  As most of the photos that are connected to this hashtag are in the fitness community. (With poses that might intimidate some I might add.)  Dantone simply says that isn’t so. She just notes that fitness is the community she is mainly in so that is where it began to circulate first.  Her ultimate hope is that the hashtag continues to promote body positivity allowing others to embrace the true joy of self in life. Specifically through emphasizing the mental health benefits.


Mental Health is Key 

Danotone shares that she has struggled with depression since she was a teenager. With depression comes serious lack of sense in self.  This tends to be one of the main factors in people developing negative mindsets about their bodies.  And we haven't even factored in our social media society that is always aiming towards perfection!  When Danotone uploaded that photo she was committing an act of resistance against the status quo. She was taking the time to appreciate slaying the demons of doubt and gaining a sense of pride in herself. Her tag actually said, “hey, wait a minute, maybe the things I hear in my mind and from society is bull.  Maybe I can just work on listening to my body and being the best me I can be.”  And this is revolutionizing.  

Danotone is hoping her hashtag will help move the movement of self-love along.  She wants everyone to embrace themselves and embrace this trend by loving themselves as they are.  The key to this work is mental. When we take time to reflect on the journey of life we gain many things.  Weight, wisdom, experience, patience, and hopefully a deeper sense of self and love for who we are. So the next time you're taking a moment to reflect or celebrate yourself and the comfort you are bravely finding in your skin try out the hashtag #gainingweightiscool  and share your story with the movement. Don’t forget to include to tag us at Wellvyl!


More stories for the soul in search here.

More stories about body image here.