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Was Kate Middleton Photoshopped to look pregnant? How far will tabloids go?

Does the Star cover of Kate Middleton look like she is pregnant? How does it compare to the photo below? Is the duchess of Cambridge pregnant with twins? Or has her oh-so-flat belly been subtly enhanced by the magical Photoshop skills of an American tabloid art director?

The American celebrity news magazine Star magazine recently ran an image of Kate Middleton on its cover alongside the headline, "Scandal turns to joy: it's twins!" Beneath that headline are the words, "Pregnant Kate gets thrilling news amid nude photo uproar... Up to 125lbs and showing."

Also see: Breastfeeding mom from Time magazine fights back with new magazine cover

In the image, Kate wears a flower print dress and toasts Mary Tan, the president of Singapore's wife. The Daily Mail went to the trouble of overlaying the cover photo with what is assumed to be the original image taken by Getty Images, and revealed that indeed, the cover photo appears to have been altered. The dress has been ballooned out around the waist and the ring on her hand has been mysteriously airbrushed away.

It should be noted that the original Getty photo appears to have been flipped in the cover photo. This creates the illusion that she is wearing a ring on her right hand, when in actuality it is her left hand. See the two flipped images posted in this story for comparison.

Even with the allegedly Photoshopped extra pounds, the duchess still looks far from pregnant, something that singer Demi Lovato took to Twitter to vent about.

The assumed original photo (flipped) of Kate Middleton. (Getty)"So apparently Kate Middleton (William?) is pregnant because of THIS picture... Are you KIDDING ME?!!" she wrote. "And people wonder why girls/guys have body image issues.. Whether she is or not, she still has a beautiful body. Shame on you Star magazine."

Also see: U.K. man proposes to flight attendant girlfriend in midair

Celebrity pregnancy rumours are certainly a tabloid staple.

Last November, In Touch erroneously claimed Kate was pregnant, saying she was planning three royal nurseries. Just this year we were falsely informed that George Clooney's girlfriend Stacy Keibler was pregnant, and the celebrity TV news show TMZ pondered whether Beyonce's actual pregnancy was in fact a fake, after her belly appeared to "fold over" during a television interview.

The lesson? When it comes to news about being "in the family way", it's best wait for the official announcement from the person who's actually carrying the child.

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