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FRAGILEWRITER SparkPoints: (5,132)
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7/15/11 11:05 A

Identify that food that is totally naughty that you just can't live without. (Mine is peanut butter). When it's late, you're bored and feeling deprived PLAN to indulge. Then, sit at a silent dining table, use good dishes (if necessary) and have one decent sized dose of your treat. Really enjoy it, make it last, don't get distracted.
Then clean up, make a hot cup of tea and go straight to bed.
Therefore, not too many calories, a feeling of indulgence and you get to keep your dignity.

JRZ4929 Posts: 105
7/15/11 10:22 A

Have a cup of decaffeinated herbal tea before you eat at night. Then eat some complex carbs, it will help put you to sleep.

MOPPET_REDUX SparkPoints: (0)
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7/15/11 10:16 A

I've found that finishing a meal with something sweet and then brushing my teeth works for me. Eat your planned meal, have a piece of something sweet, like 4 or 5 dark chocolate chips, and then brush your teeth and wash your face. It takes you out of eating mode and into getting ready for bed mode.

MEGAFEE Posts: 416
7/15/11 9:56 A

When I work late, there are a couple of things I do to help keep myself from that late-night "OMG, food now!" attack. I try and bring a snack with me to work, to eat about an hour or so before the end of my shift. Even something as simple as a cheese stick or a few bites of a meal replacement bar (I really like Larabars) is usually enough to take the edge off. I also try and pre-portion my meal for that night, and just have it ready to go (or throw in the microwave) when I walk in--it helps if I don't really have to think about it. Finally, sometimes when we eat, it's because we're actually thirsty. Try a big glass of iced tea, ice water, or (my fave) flavored seltzer over ice with your meal, then keep sipping on that once you're through eating.

Good luck!

LIZA0714 Posts: 56
7/15/11 9:50 A

Since you work until 10pm I would guess its just not your average late night munchies. If you are not eating at all at work it might be that your blood sugar is very low which causes intense cravings. Protein will not help with that particularly. Even if you cannot eat a meal maybe try having a complex carb/protein snack so that your body isn't crashing when you do finally have time to have a meal.



CALIFORNIA-GAL SparkPoints: (59,831)
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7/15/11 9:36 A

I find that if I take a healthy snack to work with me (I have a small ice chest that I take with small bottles of water, grapes, protein bar, etc.) and then drink some water and have a snack ON THE DRIVE HOME then when I get home I am not so tempted to overeat with my dinner. I think that might work for you too.

~ Candi

ES3255 Posts: 112
7/15/11 8:46 A

I so agree with ABCDHAK. Munching in the evening; it's a ferocious monster I have to fight every single evening. It feels like a reward to sit in front of the TV and snack. So I'm trying this instead: I brush my teeth after dinner. Sounds stupid but it helps me a lot. Also I have been having a soymilk and fruit smoothie about 9pm - very filling, takes a while to sip it down so it satisfies the mouth time. It's all about the mouth time and the reward for the day, isn't it.

MYRA34 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 271
7/15/11 8:32 A

Thanks for the pickles suggestion- I'd forgotten about them--totally hit the spot and stopped my munchies

Edited by: MYRA34 at: 7/15/2011 (08:32)
CHELSEA09_10 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 11
7/15/11 4:20 A

I have exactly the same poblem, probably because I used to do nothing at night..
Do some chores,
Options Low Cal hot choc (hot liquid so it fills you up and is sweet for any cravings)
Limit the telly you watch
Go for a walk
Spend time with your housemates/family, will help pass the time
Sleep earlier
Also Hoodia Lollies &
Drink lots of water!

Good Luck!



Edited by: CHELSEA09_10 at: 7/15/2011 (04:21)
BFMONICA Posts: 1,586
7/15/11 12:33 A

Chew gum.

NOBLECABOOSE Posts: 106
7/15/11 12:25 A

I work late one night per week and I used to do the same thing.
I don't know why, but herbal teas really help me with this.
I get some sweeter ones, like fruit flavoured or mint, but I don't add any sugar.
They help me unwind after work, and I'm not tempted to grab more food.
I also keep a bag of smokey almonds at work so I can munch a little bit before heading home.
This especially helps when there's chocolates around (which there always seems to be)!
Also, since your food of choice was grapes, have you considered that you might have just been thirsty?
To prevent a binge, I try to plan a meal sensibly, then drink two glasses of water before I eat. Then, when I'm done I have another glass of water.
Usually, if I'm craving sweets it often means I'm dehydrated and I haven't been drinking enough water. A few glasses and that sweet tooth disappears.
Sometimes I also have a glass of orange or berry Metamucil. It's kind of a gross texture, but it's sweet and it fills up my stomach so I don't want to eat anything else. Plus, the fibre is good.

VRALLEN SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 2
7/14/11 11:55 P

I just brush my teeth, drink a big tall glass of water (suppose to curve the appetite) and then go to sleep.

ABCDHAK SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 50
7/14/11 11:55 P

I swear 70% of my weight problem is the munch monster I become at night. It's awesome to know I'm not alone...and what awesome suggestions I've read here! I have another one too. Edamame is high in fiber and protein, so it's really filling. If you buy it in the shell it's hard to eat it fast too, so your brain has time to catch up with your stomach.

KICKINGIT@56 Posts: 2,865
7/14/11 11:40 P

I dislike flossing so I try and do it after my last meal for the evening. That helps curb any urges to eat before going to bed.

POODLEZ Posts: 100
7/14/11 11:30 P

What awesome suggestions!! I just need to write them all down now..

YMKELLEY SparkPoints: (3,705)
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Posts: 2
7/14/11 9:41 P

I eat most of my calories at night as well. Partly from working until 11PM and from feeling like "I'm home, let's have dinner!". I asked my PT and he suggested having a protein-based mini dinner for when I get home and one for when I'm at work. It's like two dinners for the price of one! (Caloriewise) It works on the nights when I plan it out, not so much on the nights when I don't. Wanting dinner changes into wanting dessert if I'm left to forage or I end up with two dinners! I also find doing relaxation yoga poses at night distracts my cravings and helps me wind down so I can get sleepy.

50SDIVA SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 76
7/14/11 7:35 P

Thank you for the tips! This has become a major problem for me. In the past two weeks of being on plan I've eaten late at night about three or four times. I'm going to try and save some calories for the night time snack. enough to make me full but not go over board! emoticon

DDESERTDDAWN Posts: 801
7/14/11 6:26 P

What a great THREAD! Thanks so much ALLY and all of yall. Super advice. Even when not working late, sometimes it is just THAT time when the cravings come, so planing ahead makes sense. Some good good ideas one what to have.

If i'm really hungry and need something refreshing to, i do one of my newfound wonders: simple smoothies. Frozen Strawberries and Blueberries blended into plain yogurt hit the spot. It helps me sleep too. An addded treat is when i put some diet sprit it in, yummmy.

Going to find my airpopper-- it really is the WAY to do it.

cheers,
dDawn

40ISHHUBBY SparkPoints: (21,745)
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Posts: 460
7/14/11 6:21 P

keep fruit around

ELISELA2011 SparkPoints: (93,742)
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Posts: 270
7/14/11 6:15 P

I get like that when it's been too long since I last ate, for me it helps to have a small snack about an hour before it's time to fix dinner, is there any way you can have a snack packed and ready to go in your purse to eat in your car before you get home from work? Also try drinking 2 large glasses of water before your dinner to be sure you're hydrated, and go ahead and have your regular dinner instead of trying to eat light because it's night time. If you finish eating and you're still hungry try watching the clock and waiting about 20 minutes for your brain and stomach to get all caught up with each other, sometimes we eat fast and our brain is still getting the HUNGRY NOW message even though our stomach is actually pretty full. Remember it's OK to be hungry, it's OK to eat when you're hungry! Just give your body a chance to let you know what's really going on with it so you don't mistake thirsty for hungry, or keep eating because you didn't give your stomach time to tell you you're full.

I have my days and nights all turned around sometimes so for my late night eating I realize when I'm still awake by 3am it's probably time for another small meal or snack. I have insomnia that sometimes keeps me up for over 48 hours and I find when I'm tired all the time I think I'm hungry all the time too, like my body is trying to substitute food for sleep and keep me going. Try to see how you feel after your dinner is settled in your stomach and you might find you're having a drive to eat because you're in need of sleep!

MIRAJOTOM Posts: 138
7/14/11 4:43 P

I'm in the same boat--especially Thursdays, when I work late. It seems as soon as I get home I want to EAT! In the cooler weather, I can slow myself down with soup, but I have more trouble in the summer. I've found that when I eat more protein, I do better, so I'm trying to stock up on canned tuna, salmon or other lean protein that doesn't require cooking. It also helps if I go for a walk or do a brief workout as soon as I get home from work. I'm more energized and less likely to eat mindlessly.

MISSTEAH Posts: 150
7/14/11 4:23 P

I have this same issue. I like air-popped popcorn with cinnamon on it (no butter or salt) because it satisfies the need for a snacky crunch without all the calories. Usually I try to keep enough calories at the end of the day to have a yogurt cup and an ounce of almonds. That really help me sleep better and not wake up feeling hungry. If you track your food on sparkpeople, it's good to add the snack you want at the end of the day first thing in the morning so you can moderate the rest of your meals to allow room for it.
Cut off times for eating have never really worked for me either. It just makes me aware of not being allowed to eat, which makes me crave a snack even more! Oh, and remember to stay hydrated because often craving something late at night is your bodies way of saying "I'm thirsty!"
emoticon

RUBYLIPS10 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 18
7/14/11 3:53 P

freeze those grapes and only eat a cup, they will last longer and frozen grapes are like candy!

RUBYLIPS10 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 18
7/14/11 3:50 P

I have had this same issue recently. For me, I have found that I am not really hungry, it was just a bad habit I was getting into. Now, I tell myself that if I want something after 8 pm (that is my personal cut off time) that it has to be a drink like a protein shake or flavored water, no food. I have been doing this for 2 nights now and I wake up less hungry in the morning for some reason so it is working for me.
If you are going to save a little snack, make sure it is protein. Greek yogurt with a tsp of sugar free jam or splenda with a dash of cocoa added to the gy is a good treat. Stay away from the empty calories, those 100 cal packets dont have any nutritional value! Sometimes 10 almonds will do the trick too.
Good luck!

GOTHICLOLLIPOP Posts: 196
7/14/11 3:36 P

If you know you're going to be hungry when you get home from work, just plan ahead. There's really no particular harm in eating at night if you don't go crazy; calories are calories no matter when you eat them. So just plan ahead on eating a full, balanced meal, instead of starting with a one that is too small to satisfy you and then losing control. Also, remember to take it easy on the fruit, despite the fact that it is good for you, it's got a lot of natural sugar and calories! Five cups of grapes have almost five hundred calories. Instead, eat a small serving of fruit and then eat something more satisfying: a baked potato (about 160 calories for a medium sized potato) or some rice (about 200 calories in a cup).

JIMMIESOPH SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 44
7/14/11 3:22 P

I always have one ounce of cheese at night. It turns off the hunger and leaves me satisfied.

FFSFABTNE SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 1,247
7/14/11 3:11 P

yOU & i ARE IN THE SAME BOAT. Try try to set a schule & come as close to those times as you can & only at those times eat. Because of my medication times I set my times around that. As the day get later lower the calories of your snacks. I can't take my h.s. meds on an empty stomache I have a YOUGET CUP & aGLASS of DIET SODA. & see how you feel. Keep me posted on how your doing

SAXYSAI Posts: 664
7/14/11 2:27 P

Try portioning out snacks into ziplock baggies or in tupperware, and keep it where you can grab one easily. I find I'm less likely to overeat if I have things that are pre-portioned.

HELZIE Posts: 509
7/14/11 2:02 P

I'm a huge fine bean devotee...100 grams, 50 calories. If you want to snack at night, there is nothing wrong with it at all. Just make sure it's something worth the snacking!

PIXIESTIX6669 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 1,465
7/14/11 1:54 P

Instead of curbing your night hunger, go with it...like people have mentioned here, doesn't matter what time u eat (there are some nites I'm eating at midnite, as much as 300-350 cals)...If I had to snack on carrot/celery sticks I'd slit my wrists...Coming from an Italian family, we were brought up on fresh veggies, fruits and other healthy stuff...my problem was that I'd forgo eating enough so that I'd save room for the junk...and believe me, I was a junk food/sugar ADDICT...It took me 2 weeks to end the sugar addiction and stop eating junk...for good...but I'm still a huge snacker, only what I snack on now is totally healthier, and way more interesting, than the usual carrot/celery mundane "diet" stuff...you may want to try...

Spicy organic pepitas - 1/4 cup will satisfy even the most stubborn cravings, and the heat is addictive...

Organic sunflower seeds - 1/4 cup and you're good to go

Roasted chick peas - we used to get these at Italian feasts years ago, now I get them online at nutsonline.com...the skin on type are way hard and crunchy...the skinless variety, less so - again, 1/4 cup is very filling...

Air popped organic popcorn - yes, you CAN get used to it and actually crave it...at 150 cals for SIX cups, it's worth not having the fat...sprinkle with garlic powder, cayenne, basil, cinnamon, any spice/herb of your choosing...or just eat it plain...or for some Paleo indulgence, a tbspn of organic butter is fabulous!

Toasted organic sesame seeds in organic, unsalted peanut butter...yummy!

Canoli cream - mix organic ricotta, stevia, organic vanilla and a sprinkle of cinnamon...use a dollop on top of berries

Lupini beans - an Italian bean dating back to Roman times, they're packed with protein...again1/4 cup will end your snack cravings

Organic 85% Dark Chocolate - 6 small squares off a bar of this wonder, and you'll think you died and went to heaven...full of antioxidants, fiber, and even a bit of protein...let it melt on your tongue and savor the fabulous taste...you'll forget all those cheap, hardly any cocoa bars exist! And believe me, those 6 small squares will absolutely satisfy you!

Espresso Granita - brew up some espresso, add organic milk/cream, stevia, organic vanilla, cinnamon...freeze, stirring occasionally...YAY!

Slice some organic sweet potatoes, toss with olive oil, garlic powder, cayenne and bake til crispy and golden...you'll never want those garbage fast food fries again... Enjoy!



Edited by: PIXIESTIX6669 at: 7/14/2011 (13:56)
CHARLOTTE1947 SparkPoints: (43,804)
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Posts: 1,751
7/14/11 1:52 P

This is my downfall. The only way I can control it is to save 100 calories for a snack right before bed. Then brush my teeth and go to be EARLY.

CRICKET_93 Posts: 37
7/14/11 12:42 P

Make sure that you are eating enough calories during the day and not depriving yourself too much. Also a problem I had to deal with was not rewarding myself for dealing with a stressful day with food. Reward yourself with doing your nails, or a nice relaxing bath. If you need a sweet make sure it is low calorie. A nice reawrd is when you get to go shopping for new clothes when you have lost weight!!!

ATTACKCAT Posts: 379
7/14/11 12:13 P

The whole "don't eat after 6 p.m / 7 p.m. / whatever time" is a myth. There are articles about it here on sparkpeople, and it has been addressed by several reputable experts on more than one occasion. Calories consumed after a certain hour do NOT magically turn into fat, any more than other calories do. Your body does not care what time you eat, and trying to starve yourself at night will only lead you to overeating more in the morning. So if you really need to eat, then do it! Just plan for it so you aren't going over your daily range.

However, eating before going to bed (or just eating certain things) CAN be a problem for some people--too much sugar can make it difficult to fall asleep; overeating can make you uncomfortable, and if you have GERD, lying down too soon after eating can make it worse. In general, it is better to avoid things that are too fatty or have too much sugar--and cut off the caffeine several hours before bed if possible.

With that said, I know exactly how you feel because I have the same problem, especially the nights I work late. It took me a while to realize that I am doing it simply because I am (a) too hungry if I have skipped multiple meals or (b) overtired--I am trying (unconsciously) to fight fatigue with food.

I'm still not perfect, and I slip up at times, but a few things have really helped me to slow down the binging.
1) a light snack earlier to keep you from getting as hungry. First choice is clearly a healthy snack, but if you can' t have one but can have a water bottle, maybe fill a water bottle with one of the protein/fiber add-to-water mixes (crystal light, south beach, special K all have mixes). The fiber and protein will hopefully take the edge off the hunger.
2) slow down. It's so easy to hurry at that time--you want to finish up and get what you need done before going to bed. But your body is not getting enough time to register that you are full. If you can't slow down between bites, eat your regular serving, then get up and do something for a while before going back for the extras. You may find that you don't need them after you do.
3) If you find that you are really that tired, just go to bed. Think about what you are trying to get done, and decide what can wait until morning. Chances are, something can wait.

KELLYDRESCHER SparkPoints: (43,591)
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Posts: 229
7/14/11 12:12 P

I'm going to echo the person who said not to worry if you're under your calorie count. If you've upped your exercise, your body is going to hit this point where it needs more food. It's a sudden and demanding little voice that wants food... now.

Have you checked to see if you have any vitamin deficiencies in your diet? You may not be craving food in general but certain nutrients in specific, and it just manifests as a general hunger urge.

MOMOF2JS0408 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 29
7/14/11 12:09 P

It seems like a lot of people have a problem when they start eating in the evening and cant stop. I am they exact same way. Why does weight loss have to be so difficult?!

BODYBUILDER45 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 30
7/14/11 11:52 A

It helps me to make sure I eat enough fiber and whole grains early in the day with also enough protein to sustain me until bed time.

MAMI249 SparkPoints: (713)
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Posts: 8
7/14/11 11:50 A

oooo I never thought of pickles (I love them!).

I do cereal with soymilk. I agree with carb meals (no matter how small) give you a fuller felling *at least for this carbavore* :)

ALLYCROC SparkPoints: (38,436)
Fitness Minutes: (31,387)
Posts: 46
7/14/11 11:48 A

YOU ARE ALL emoticon !!! Thanks so much for the great tips! emoticon emoticon

LINLOUTOM Posts: 143
7/14/11 11:14 A

The evening is my hard time also. I will have popcorn or sugar free fat free instant pudding,depending on my tastes at that time salty or sweet. emoticon

AMBERXLYN Posts: 448
7/14/11 11:13 A

If you are craving salty, try popcorn. It's lighter in calories than other salty snacks. If you crave chocolate, dark chocolate tends to curb my sweet tooth. Just saying what works for me here. Maybe one of those will help =]

Edited by: AMBERXLYN at: 7/14/2011 (11:13)
NELSKIBING Posts: 10
7/14/11 10:39 A

I eat a couple of pickles!!! They are tasty, but no calories so they help me feel like I've satisfied that craving to eat!

THEREIAM SparkPoints: (7,813)
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Posts: 58
7/14/11 10:38 A

I eat the most in the evenings. After dinner when I have a craving I ask myself, "Are you REALLY hungry?" The answer is usually "no." If I am, I'll check my total caloric intake for the day, and choose a snack to keep me within my limits. Most of the time, I only have enough left for an orange emoticon

VTARTPSYCHO SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 11
7/14/11 10:01 A

What helps me is KNOWING that I'm going to have CRAVINGS, so I plan ahead. I need more fiber and often crave sweet so I grab a caramel or chocolate Fiber One bar. If I want crunchy I go for baby carrots with yogurt style ranch dressing (saves half the calories and fat) or celery and low fat peanut butter. Another love of mine is flavored applesauce, get in fruit and flavor.

READY2CHNGE Posts: 147
7/14/11 9:56 A

I have this problem, too. I get off of work at about 10:30 every night, and I come home starving! I'm like a tornado going through the kitchen. I find that if I make a fruit salad, it helps the hunger.

CABIT1977 Posts: 76
7/14/11 9:49 A

Though I have heard that eating after a certain time is bad, if you stay under your calorie intake for the day it shouldn't matter. So grab a healthy snack. The key is to cleanse your home of all the unhealthy snacking options and only have the good stuff. One of my favorites is fresh fruit with yogurt mixed in. It is a total of 200-250 calories and it tastes delicious. If it's a salty treat that you want try some soy nuts or edimame. Good luck.

SAMRUNSMILES SparkPoints: (2,524)
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Posts: 12
7/14/11 9:48 A

I have this problem a few nights a week, too. Is it truly IMPOSSIBLE for you to eat at work? Sometimes I'll keep a protein bar in my bag so I can grab a bite whenever I can and consider that my dinner. That way, I can get home and relax and fall asleep. I find if I start eating at night, I just can't stop! I end up eating waaayy too much and then I have trouble sleeping.
Try eating more during the day so you can have a light snack (if needed. Think vegetables and hummus or a piece of fruit) and some tea (I love roiboos with a splash of unsweetened vanilla almond milk. Its delicious and tastes like dessert!) when you get home, then call it quits.

ABETTERJILL Posts: 277
7/14/11 8:16 A

Chew gum, drink water, go for walk to get your mind off of food.

NBETTYB SparkPoints: (13,678)
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Posts: 239
7/14/11 7:36 A

Try a carb snack (like cereal) instead. I usually find that carb meals make me feel sleepier in the evenings, whereas, protein meals are more likely to keep me awake

ANPRA89 SparkPoints: (22,203)
Fitness Minutes: (33,315)
Posts: 91
7/14/11 3:59 A

Eat the maximum after 7 pm. Help......

ALLYCROC SparkPoints: (38,436)
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Posts: 46
7/14/11 12:46 A

Hello my fellow sparklers!
I was doing really great for the last 3 months or more being able to control my night eating. I work late(until 10pm). So once I get home I am hungry and need to eat something...so I usually try to go for protein...I am not looking for a snack but a light late dinner because those are the shifts I work and I have little time to eat at work. The problem is that once I start eating, I want to eat more...last night I ate some roasted chicken and then about 5 cups of grapes and I was beyond full...grapes are not the worst to pig out on but it can be other things...not bad for health but just way too much. I had a handle on it before and was able to control myself..but i am feeling out of control these days...I've put on 5lbs in three weeks!!! NEED HELP!
Thanks!
Alison

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