Wanaka nutritionist Kate Callaghan has died, seven months after she was diagnosed with cancer.

Callaghan, a mother of two children, was 36 years old.

She died in Wanaka on Thursday surrounded by loves ones and family and without pain, her friend Emma Simpson said on social media.

Kate Callaghan, 36, died on Thursday in Wanaka. She was diagnosed with cancer in November - a shock given her age and fitness. Photo / Instagram
Kate Callaghan, 36, died on Thursday in Wanaka. She was diagnosed with cancer in November - a shock given her age and fitness. Photo / Instagram

"I know this news is utterly devastating," Simpson wrote.

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"I know how heart-wrenching it is that someone we all love, as well as a stunning mother of two that fought so bloody hard, could be taken so early. I also know there's a hell of a lot of cliches that could be said here.

"But that's not our Kate's style. She fought, hard. Bloody hard. And her many, many victories, her impact on others and the legacy of knowledge and successes she has left behind are cause for celebration."

Callaghan was described as a "ball of resilience, an absolute knowledge fiend, beyond empathetic, loving to the core and above all, a fighter".

View this post on Instagram

(Part 1/2) To the wonderful, abundant collection of humans in Kate's life. I have been given the honour personally by Kate to write this post, should the time come. I remember thinking that it would be more likely she would eventually write mine. Because this woman is a ball of resilience, an absolute knowledge fiend, beyond empathetic, loving to the core and above all, a fighter. It is with a very heavy heart that I report that Kate passed away on Thursday afternoon in Wanaka, completely surrounded by loved ones, family and was free of pain. I know this news is utterly devastating. I know how heart-wrenching it is that someone we all love, as well as a stunning mother of two that fought so bloody hard could be taken so early. I also know there's a hell of a lot of cliches that could be said here. But that's not our Kate's style. She fought, hard. Bloody hard. And her many, many victories, her impact on others and the legacy of knowledge and successes she has left behind are cause for celebration. This is the woman who upon finding out about her Stage 4 Cancer diagnosis bought the biggest, heaviest, peer reviewed book on treatment and ravaged through it. The woman who never allowed 'the elephant in the room', promptly named her cancer "Sharyn" (sorry to the Sharyn's out there) and would verbally tirade against her - as she damn well should. This is the woman who allowed us the privilege to follow her physical journey and the emotions behind it. Kate always remained humble, with humility and her sense of humour fully intact. She refused to be a statistic, challenged and BEAT every prognosis, all whist continuing to work on her business helping people and being the most incredible mother, wife, friend and pun master (oh, that dry sense of humour). (Continued)

A post shared by Kate Callaghan-Hormone Healer (@theholisticnutritionist) on

Callaghan first felt a lump in her breast last June, Stuff reported.

Her healthy lifestyle led doctors to believe she had a very low chance of having breast cancer and she was not pushed to be tested, she said last year.

A specialist also thought it was unlikely she had cancer.

But in November, scans showed she had stage four breast cancer and that it had spread to her lymph nodes and liver. That meant she was not eligible for surgery and could only get palliative chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

"This is not right," Callaghan said on Instagram at the time. "This is not how it's supposed to be. I'm a healthy, 35yr old mum of 2. I'm not done here yet."

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Simpson said that after getting her diagnosis, Callaghan "bought the biggest, heaviest, peer-reviewed book on treatment and ravaged through it".

She named her cancer "Sharyn" and would "verbally tirade against her".

Earlier this year, Callaghan travelled to Mexico for alternative cancer treatment at a centre called Hope4Cancer, after crowdfunding for the trip.

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She came back home before New Zealand went into Covid-19 lockdown. After getting radiation therapy and trying further medications, she told doctors she no longer wanted a prognosis, Stuff reported.

"I feel good at the moment – I feel really good. I don't see myself dying anytime soon."

Callaghan described herself as a holistic nutritionist and was an author and blogger with a large following online.

She leaves behind her husband, Aaron, and two children Olivia, 5, and Ed, 3.