Food blogger Belle Gibson has admitted that her hugely successful food and lifestyle blog was all based on lies.
Belle attracted hundreds of thousands of avid followers by claiming she had beaten malignant brain cancer through diet and lifestyle changes alone, quitting chemotherapy after just two months.
Last month the 23-year-old was accused of fabricating both her illness and subsequent recovery in order to attract readers and make a profit.
Now Belle, whose blog had a spin-off app and book called The Whole Pantry, has spoken out about the scandal for the first time. When asked by The Australian Women's Weekly if she had ever had cancer, Belle responded by saying, "No. None of it's true."
Before coming clean about the lies, Belle had tried to defend her story by saying her brain cancer was a misdiagnosis and that the doctor in question was a fraud.
Now though, Belle admits she's unsure if anything she wrote was based on truth. "I am still jumping between what I think I know and what is reality. I have lived it and I’m not really there yet," she said.
"I think my life has just got so many complexities around it and within it, that it’s just easier to assume [I’m lying]."
In an attempt to explain what she had done, Belle says she often makes up explanations when she simply doesn't know the correct answer to a question. “If I don’t have an answer, then I will sort of theorise it myself and come up with one. I think that’s an easy thing to often revert to if you don’t know what the answer is.”
We're glad to see Belle facing up to the truth, but it sounds like she still has a lot of personal issues to address.