Is Freelee The Banana Girl Fake? New Details Lifestyle Blogger Instagram Banana Diet
She lives in the jungle — or does she?
All-natural Youtuber and blogger Freelee the Banana Girl is caught up in some drama that is, well, bananas.
The nudist vegan, whose real name is Leanne Ratcliffe, claims to live in the jungles of South America with her partner and is dedicated to sharing her story on social media. She obtained fame in 2014 when she released her diet, which consisted of 51 bananas a day, earning her the nickname “Banana Girl.”
Freelee, originally from Queensland, Australia, has been accused of faking her lifestyle by followers who think she actually lives in a mansion with a personal photographer. Users even went as far as to call her a fraud for using technology after moving to the jungle to be free of the “9-5 slave drive.”
She took to Instagram to shut down the claims and explain to her followers that she does, in fact, live the life she portrays in her posts — and it’s not easy.
“One commenter said I was lying and living in a mansion out here and have a photographer who follows me around taking all my pics. Not quite hunny,” the 37-year-old wrote to her 86,000 Instagram followers. “In reality, I’ve been living in a tent under a shed for many months, through monsoonal rains and gale force winds. It’s been REALLY tough at times.”
Freelee goes on to detail how she is able to keep her fans posted on what she is up to and denounce her haters’ accusations.
“No photographer but I do have Mr. Tripod enabling me to video myself and then take screenshots for Instagram,” she continued. “Another commenter said I’m a fraud for having a smartphone, internet, and electricity. Yes, I do have a smartphone (but no reception), laptop and internet made possible through a satellite connection. Necessary tools of communication and income. This means I can share with you what I see as an empowering urgent message.”
“At this stage, I can’t send you that message telepathically.”
“The electricity I use is 100 percent free and generated by six solar panels harnessing the sun’s rays. I don’t have any lights so go to bed on sundown and get up on sunrise, as nature intended. I drink from (and bathe in) pristine stream water free of cost and city pollutants. I eat a frugivorous diet which is mostly grown here organically with a goal of 100 percent free food in the coming years.
“Living off the grid doesn’t mean you have to exist like a hermit who doesn’t communicate with the outside world. We are creating a beautiful natural life here and I want to inspire you do the same.”
The self-proclaimed frugivore decided to leave the city and opted to live “off the grid” in February and gave up shaving her body hair, wearing makeup, and working 9-5.
“I renamed myself Freelee during a water fast because freedom is what I hold most sacred in life. Since then I’ve been shedding the layers that hold me back,” she explained on Facebook. “I freed myself from the 9-5 slave drive and moved to the jungle.”
“I spend most of my day nude; free of restrictive clothing. I feast mostly on organic fruits and vegetables I pick from the land. I shower in monsoonal rains and drink from pristine creeks. I quit an unhealthy relationship and found happiness. I haven’t shaved my body hair, dyed my hair, or worn makeup in over 6 months… I’m feeling more free than I ever have in my life, and I’m excited to inspire more of you to do the same.”
This isn’t the first time Freelee has made headlines for a controversy.
In 2016, Elizabeth Ribar said that Freelee was cyberbullying her “favorite YouTuber” pilates teacher Cassey Ho of Blogilates and POP Pilates. Ribar called the Banana Girl out in an essay published on XOJane, adding that Freelee was using her controversial posts to gain more views.
Another fitness guru got into it with Freelee and even sued her for defamation in 2015. Freelee and her partner at the time, Durian Rider, accused Kayla Itsines of promoting eating disorders with her “1600 calorie starvation plan.” She even claimed that Itsines’ boyfriend was using steroids and pimping out his girlfriend.
Freelee has previously shamed comedian Jenna Marbles for giving up her vegan lifestyle and criticized YouTuber Boogie2988 for choosing to follow a Keto diet to lose weight as opposed to a vegan one.
Has Freelee the Banana Girl’s new lifestyle given her a change of heart? She seems to have addressed the claims she is a fraud fairly maturely, so it’s possible she has given up attacking others along with the “concrete jungle.”
Sarah Gangraw is a travel-addicted cat lady who lives on black coffee and cheese. She has a degree in journalism and writes about all things news, entertainment and crime. You can follow her on Instagram and Twitter — she’s occasionally funny.