School friends of under-fire Whole Pantry founder Belle Gibson now query whether the health guru invented stories ‘to get sympathy’ and warned people against vaccination while she was in high school.
Ms Gibson, 23, is in the spotlight this week after doubts were raised about her remarkable cancer survival story – and the book, Apple Watch app and website that it inspired. There have also been questions about donations made to charity.
The mother-of-one attended Wynnum State High School in Brisbane and former classmates describe the health guru as a ‘drama queen’ who constantly reinvented herself and backed medical cannabis.
Former school friend Chris Green said Ms Gibson was ‘a drama queen. There was always something going on with her.’
‘At one stage she was an emo, then a skater girl then she was a surfer chick; she was always something different,’ Mr Green told The Courier Mail.
Mr Green also said that Ms Gibson never mentioned an autistic brother or a mother with multiple sclerosis, who she had previously claimed to be a carer for.
One anonymous school friend said that Ms Gibson would often post information advocating against vaccinations and pushed the viewpoint quite hard.
Former classmate Meg Weier said that Ms Gibson was quite strange.
investigation of belle gibson
A former Brisbane schoolgirl who claimed to have survived cancer due to a healthy lifestyle is facing accusations she fabricated the story to help develop a business.
Belle Gibson, 23, founded an app called The Whole Pantry, which is marketed as the world’s first health, wellness and lifestyle app community.
Ms Gibson was diagnosed with multiple cancers from 2009 but claimed to have beaten the illness by shunning conventional medicine in favour of a healthy lifestyle.
She has since admitted she may have been misdiagnosed.
Ms Gibson was also due to release a book based on her story this year, but publishers in the US have now suspended their plans as they investigate the veracity of the story, News Corp Australia reports.
Friends of the 23-year-old have cast doubt over her claims, and former colleagues at a Brisbane catering company have described her as a ‘lost soul’.
MEGA blogger in hiding Belle Gibson encouraged people against vaccinating their children and backed medical cannabis, as new details about her childhood emerge.
Friends say she was too “embarrassed” to allow them to visit her childhood home, believed to be in Wynnum, in outer-eastern Brisbane.
The 23-year-old founder of popular wellness app and book The Whole Pantry has deleted all references to her health on social media after it emerged she may never have suffered from a range of illnesses she claimed to have beaten.
An old school friend, who wished to remain anonymous, said Ms Gibson was always posting to her friends about the dangers of vaccinating your children.
“She was always posting things saying that vaccinations were bad,” the friend said.
“She would just repost information she found and would really push it hard.”
The pair attended Wynnum State High School where they shared a drama class.
“She had a brother that was autistic and morbidly obese and was picked on a lot.
“I remember asking her if I could come over to her house after school but she was always quick to say no.”
The friend believed she may have been embarrassed about where she lived.
Belle Gibson, the Whole Pantry app founder who is under fire for allegedly fabricating her cancer survival story – was featured in a recent Tech Guide podcast where she admits to being diagnosed with cancer – twice.
At the time of the recorded interview Ms Gibson was in Cupertino after she was handpicked by #apple to become the first Australian to develop for the upcoming Apple Watch.
The award-winning Whole Pantry app, and the business behind it, was created on the back of her response to overcome terminal brain cancer with natural and nutritious foods.
A former friend of controversial Whole Pantry founder Belle Gibson has called on her to ‘come clean’ on whether her remarkable cancer survival story was based on a misdiagnosis.
Mother-of-two Jayme Smith, 28, from Sydney, became a confidant of Ms Gibson’s after they met on a parenting discussion page on Facebook around 2010.
They forged an online friendship and confided over their experiences with cancer – Ms Smith having lost her mother to lung cancer in 2003 and Ms Gibson saying she had brain cancer.
Ms Smith told Daily Mail Australia she was ‘baffled’ when reports emerged this week where friends raised doubts about Ms Gibson’s medical diagnoses and charity donations.
‘I am just so shocked and I feel betrayed, that we all fell so hard for the illusion that she created,’ Ms Smith said.
‘It has hit all of us, who I know, (who) also know Belle, like a tonne of bricks.’
We only knew her online, but we all believed to a point that she was a genuine pioneer, who was surviving aggressive cancer.
‘Belle and I talked quite a bit about my feelings about (cancer), how she could empathise with me, the feelings I felt about my mother dying and how I’d wished I was more responsible when it happened, that I’d wished I had tried to explore more ideas, like Belle did.’
Ms Smith said Ms Gibson ‘pushed’ – and nearly convinced her – not to vaccinate her children, but that she did not blame her for nearly making that choice, which she ‘backed out of at the last minute’.
‘That was my own choice, based on information provided by Belle. I regret that choice (to nearly not vaccinate), but it was my own. I’m not here to place blame.’
In November 2014, Ms Gibson told Sunday Style magazine she blamed the cervical cancer vaccine Gardasil for her cancer.
She told her social media followers last year her brain cancer had spread to her blood, liver, spleen, uterus and that she did not expect to survive.
After friends and medical experts cast doubt on her medical claims in various media stories this week, Ms Gibson told The Australian she may have been ‘misdiagnosed’.
‘It’s hard to admit that maybe you were wrong,’ she told the newspaper, adding that she was ‘confused, bordering on humiliated’.