Former E! News and E!’s Daily Pop host Catt Sadler saw a social media fire storm brewing in the comments section of a bikini photo she shared in celebration of the Fourth of July. The anchor – who left the entertainment news show last year amid much controversy over a pay gap with her male co-anchor – hit back on Instagram after she showed off her tiny frame in a bikini while celebrating the holiday, only to be told by several social media users that they thought she was looking too thin.
Catt shared the snap with her more than 526,000 followers on July 4, which showed her celebrating Independence Day on Manhattan Beach, California, with some girlfriends who were also sporting their swimwear for the holiday.
Sadler could be seen on the end of the row of five ladies, sitting on a beach chair with one hand on a cooler as she posed in a tint string bikini.
“My friends, real friends, better than your friends. — The Carters,” Catt captioned the beach photo, adding the hashtag #HappyBirthdayAmerica and a Statue of Liberty emoji to her message.
But fans were more focused on Catt’s body than on the U.S. holiday, as the comments section of the anchor’s post was flooded with comments about her small frame. One person dubbed Catt as being “too skinny” as she showed off her flat stomach while her protruding ribs were also visible in her two piece swimwear.
“Whhhhhhhy is your rib sticking out though,” asked Instagram user @apacheco81 in the comments section of Sadler’s Instagram post showing her coking a bikini. “Love you but seriously you look a little TOO skinny.”
Another then told the journalist to eat a burger and some fries to gain weight.
“You don’t look well an all the guys here telling you otherwise are lying,” wrote @beatambutei, who added that they thought Catt should “eat some [fries and] a burger.”
“Love you to death but the skinny rib look is just [sick],” @shawna_grateful then commented on Sadler’s bikini snap over the U.S. holiday.
But while many opted to call out the star on Instagram this week, others were quick to defend Catt amid the barrage of negative comments and body shaming that were posted in the comments section of her latest photo.
“You look amazing Catt. The most important part of your body is your smile and you look like a million bucks because of it,” Instagram user @iamsamm17 told Sadler. “Don’t let these low life’s get you down.”
The heated debate over her body in the comments on her Instagram account got so intense that Sadler then shared a powerful message herself about body confidence in the comments section, calling out those who body shamed her and refusing to delete her post.
“Is this the part where I’m supposed to delete my post to make ya’ll feel more comfortable with my body? It’s the way I’m sitting, I didn’t even notice the rib,” Catt hit back after seeing all the negative comments posted on her bikini photo in regards to her body and thin frame.
“But thank you for the rude comments and body shaming… Just curious though, like what do you get out of talking s***? Feel better?” she continued on the social media site on July 4. “What if I was depressed and hurting and sick? Would you feel bad for what you said?”
The body shaming and “too skinny” comments come after Catt confirmed back in December that she had quit her co-anchor gig at E! after 12 years with the company because she was only being paid half the salary of her male co-star, Jason Kennedy.
Per New York Times, Sadler went public with the pay gap dispute last year, claiming that she asked E! Entertainment for a pay rise to make her equal with her male co-worker but decided that it was time to quit her job when they refused that it was time to leave.
A spokesperson for the network denied that the pay difference had anything to do with Catt and Jason’s genders and said that their salaries were not comparable.
Per Us Weekly, Sadler revealed two months later in February that she has “a lot of things in the works” since leaving the network.