A YouTuber who once claimed her vegan lifestyle cured her breast cancer has died of cancer, according to her niece.
Mari Lopez, who ran the YouTube channel 'Mari & Liz' alongside her niece Liz Johnson, died from the disease in December. Johnson, in a video posted to YouTube on Sunday, announced the passing of her aunt, saying her cancer spread to her blood, liver, and lungs towards the end of the year.
In a video posted to YouTube last January titled 'Cancer Transformation FAQ - SEE IMPORTANT UPDATE,' Lopez credited veganism and a faith in God as the cure for her breast cancer, adding, "The lemon-ginger blast helped me remove inflammation from my body." Additionally, Lopez went on a 90-day juice cleanse, which lead to "food withdrawals."
Lopez, at the time, also said she had skipped cancer treatment despite the recommendation of her doctors. "It's my choice, I've been okay, I haven't died, I haven't gotten to the hospital... I am going to continue on this path of going natural," said Lopez. "It's over, it is done with, I am healed."
Speaking to Babe, Johnson said Lopez remained a vegan until her passing, but that she was "wasn't completely consistent with what she had said" in previous videos. She alleged her aunt's demise came not from the cancer itself, but rather her consumption of meat and her use of a microwave.
"My family is not familiar with that style of living... What happened was, as Mari was living with my mom, my mom started to tell her that she needed to eat meat," said Johnson to Babe.
Johnson stood by this claim in a 23-minute video posted to YouTube on Sunday in a video titled 'The Truth about Mari - CANCER, JUICING AND FAITH.' However, Cancer.org disputes the claim microwaving foods poses a health risk to people: "When microwave ovens are used according to instructions, there is no evidence that they pose a health risk."
Johnson also said that Lopez requested for the removal of their videos in which she praised her vegan lifestyle as a cure to cancer upon realizing she was going to die from the disease. However, Johnson refused because she allegedly still believes in the health benefits veganism can offer.
Since Lopez's passing, Johnson has disabled the comments on their shared YouTube channel.