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What Food To Eat If You Have Hypoglycemia?

Hypoglycemia

Hypoglycemia

Author: Frank W. Jackson, M.D. Purpose Hypoglycemia is the term for a blood glucose level that is lower than normal. When foods are digested in the body, they are broken down into many nutrients. These nutrients are absorbed into the bloodstream to be used in performing various body functions. One of these nutrients is glucose, a sugar that provides fuel to the body. The process that regulates the amount of sugar in the blood is complex. Adrenaline is a part of this complicated process. Everyone has experienced a rush of adrenaline at some time — that “love-at-first-sight” feeling, or the pounding heart after narrowly escaping an accident. Adrenaline is produced by the adrenal glands located on top of the kidneys. The sudden release of adrenaline is what causes the symptoms of hypoglycemia — apprehension, hunger, sweating, rapid heartbeat, and faintness. Hypoglycemia can occur from certain illnesses, such as liver disease and some types of tumors. These conditions cause a type of hypoglycemia called organic hypoglycemia. They usually require specific medical treatment or surgery. There is another type of hypoglycemia. In some people, the body simply responds differently to the digestion of foods. Some foods are digested and absorbed rapidly, resulting in a burst of glucose entering the bloodstream. In most people the body adjusts smoothly. It would be like two children trying to balance a see-saw. There may be a slight teetering or swinging up and down as the children shift their weight to achieve the balance. In some people, however, the response is like an actively rocking see-saw swinging up and down. The body over-reacts and sets the process in motion to reduce blood glucose. The result is a glucose level that is too low. Then the body releases adrenaline, i Continue reading >>

Low Blood Glucose (hypoglycemia)

Low Blood Glucose (hypoglycemia)

What is hypoglycemia? Hypoglycemia, also called low blood glucose or low blood sugar, occurs when the level of glucose in your blood drops below normal. For many people with diabetes, that means a level of 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or less. Your numbers might be different, so check with your health care provider to find out what level is too low for you. What are the symptoms of hypoglycemia? Symptoms of hypoglycemia tend to come on quickly and can vary from person to person. You may have one or more mild-to-moderate symptoms listed in the table below. Sometimes people don’t feel any symptoms. Severe hypoglycemia is when your blood glucose level becomes so low that you’re unable to treat yourself and need help from another person. Severe hypoglycemia is dangerous and needs to be treated right away. This condition is more common in people with type 1 diabetes. Hypoglycemia Symptoms Mild-to-Moderate Severe Shaky or jittery Sweaty Hungry Headachy Blurred vision Sleepy or tired Dizzy or lightheaded Confused or disoriented Pale Uncoordinated Irritable or nervous Argumentative or combative Changed behavior or personality Trouble concentrating Weak Fast or irregular heart beat Unable to eat or drink Seizures or convulsions (jerky movements) Unconsciousness Some symptoms of hypoglycemia during sleep are crying out or having nightmares sweating enough to make your pajamas or sheets damp feeling tired, irritable, or confused after waking up What causes hypoglycemia in diabetes? Hypoglycemia can be a side effect of insulin or other types of diabetes medicines that help your body make more insulin. Two types of diabetes pills can cause hypoglycemia: sulfonylureas and meglitinides . Ask your health care team if your diabetes medicine can cause hypoglycemia. Although ot Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia Diet

Hypoglycemia Diet

Source People with hypoglycemia have problems regulating their blood sugar levels, and most are advised to adopt a specific hypoglycemia diet to help minimize blood sugar swings. Some elements of the diet are common for all hypoglycemia sufferers, but there's also a certain degree of tailoring to fit individual situations required for optimal results. Your doctor can help with the fine-tuning, but here's a rundown of the basics. Cause of Hypoglycemia The cause of hypoglycemia can vary quite a bit, ranging from simply not eating or eating the wrong foods to taking certain medications and diabetes. Whatever the cause, the goal is to keep blood sugar levels as even as possible throughout the day. In many cases, this can be achieved by following a specific diet. What to Eat or Drink Some foods are better than others for preventing hypoglycemia. Many foods that help maintain optimum blood sugar levels are complex carbohydrates that are low on the glycemic index, a scale based on how fast blood sugar levels rise after consuming a food or beverage. Foods that are high on the glycemic index tend to cause rapid blood sugar spikes and plunges. Hypoglycemia Friendly Foods and Drinks Lean meat, poultry or fish Whole grains, which includes oats, barley, quinoa, buckwheat, brown rice and wheat Low-fat dairy products such as yogurt, milk and cheese Oats (avoid pre-sweetened oatmeal) Eggs Legumes Nuts (avoid honey roasted, chocolate covered or sugar coated varieties) Seeds Soluble fiber fruits including apples, bananas, oranges, peaches, grapes, prunes, pears, berries, avocados and plums Soluble fiber vegetables including potatoes, sweet potatoes, beets, onions, carrots, peas, mushrooms, cucumbers and broccoli Water Herbal teas Decaffeinated tea or coffee Foods and Drinks to Avoid Proc Continue reading >>

Foods To Boost Low Blood Sugar

Foods To Boost Low Blood Sugar

People with diabetes try hard to keep their blood sugar from getting too high, but sometimes they succeed too well. Certain diabetes medications -- including insulin injections and pills such as chlorpropamide (Diabinese) -- can sometimes make blood sugar too low, a condition called hypoglycemia. People with diabetes can also get low blood sugar simply by skimping at mealtime, drinking too much alcohol, or overexercising. Low blood sugar is usually mild and easy to fix, but if you wait too long, you can lose consciousness. If your blood sugar level drops below 70 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) or if you notice signs of hypoglycemia -- shakiness, dizziness, light-headedness, confusion, anxiety, weakness, heart palpitations, blurry vision, hunger, or sweating -- you can bring your level up again with a quick, sugary snack. If you are away from home and experience symptoms, and you can't test your blood sugar first, it's better to have a small snack before you become even more ill. Here are some proven sugar-boosting options: One-half cup of fruit juice One-half cup of non-diet soda 1 cup of milk A small handful of hard candy 1 tablespoon of either sugar or honey 3 or 4 glucose tablets About 15 minutes after your snack, check your blood sugar again. If you're still below 70, try another dose of sugar. Check again 15 minutes later, and keep the pattern up until your blood sugar is in a normal range. It's important to treat low blood sugar as quickly as possible. If you wait too long, you could pass out. For this reason, you should keep a sugary snack within reach at all times. Even if you aren't able to check your blood sugar, you can head off hypoglycemia whenever you get that sinking feeling. References National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. H Continue reading >>

How To Treat A Low Blood Glucose

How To Treat A Low Blood Glucose

A blood glucose of less than 70 mg/dl in general is considered a low blood glucose. Because you may feel some of the symptoms of low blood glucose when your glucose is normal, be sure, if possible, to check your blood glucose when you think it is low. The symptoms of a low blood glucose are: Sweaty and shaky Weak Headache Confused Irritable Hungry Pale Rapid heart rate Uncoordinated If your blood glucose is low, follow the steps below to treat: Follow the 15-15 rule: Eat or drink something from the list below equal to 15 grams of carbohydrate (carb). Rest for 15 minutes, then re-check your blood glucose. If it is still low, (below 70), repeat step 1 above. If your next meal is more than an hour away, you will need to eat one carbohydrate choice as a snack to keep your blood glucose from going low again. If you can't figure out why you have low blood glucose, call your healthcare provider, as your medicine may need to be adjusted. Always carry something with you to treat an insulin reaction. Use food from the list below. Foods equal to One Carbohydrate Choice (15 grams of carb): 3 Glucose tablets or 4 Dextrose tablets 4 ounces of fruit juice 5-6 ounces (about 1/2 can) of regular soda such as Coke or Pepsi 7-8 gummy or regular Life Savers 1 Tbsp. of sugar or jelly Call your doctor Call your doctor or healthcare provider if you have a low blood glucose reaction and do not know what caused it. If you pass out If you have type 1 diabetes and you do not take care of low blood glucose, you may pass out. If you do, a drug called glucagon should be injected into your skin, like you do with insulin. This can be done by a family member or friend who has been taught how to do it. Since glucagon may cause you to vomit, you should be placed on your side when the injection is given. I Continue reading >>

How To Change Your Diet If You Have Hypoglycemia

How To Change Your Diet If You Have Hypoglycemia

Expert Reviewed Hypoglycemia, a condition characterized by lower than normal levels of glucose in the bloodstream, can be caused by many factors. Reactive hypoglycemia is defined as hypoglycemia which occurs when there is no underlying medical condition to explain an abnormal production and regulation of insulin, the hormone which lowers your blood glucose.[1] Your body overcompensates and reduces blood glucose levels too much after eating (postprandial). This tendency can be counteracted by changing your eating habits so that glucose enters the bloodstream at a slow, steady pace.[2] 1 See a doctor to rule out other causes of hypoglycemia. Organic hypoglycemia is caused by medical conditions such as liver or kidney disease, certain tumors, or hormone deficiencies; addressing the underlying cause is the treatment. Hypoglycemia also can be caused by some medicines, especially ones used to treat diabetes. Do not change your diet before a trained medical professional rules out other causes and diagnoses you with reactive hypoglycemia.[3][4] 2 Seek the advice of a registered dietitian. Your new diet should meet the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI) in terms of the calories, proteins, minerals, and vitamins needed for a healthy adult.[5] A dietitian can guide you as you add and remove foods from your diet. They will assist you with planning the content of your meals and snacks. 3 Monitor yourself for the symptoms of hypoglycemia. Let others know about your diagnosis. Everyone can look out for symptoms like anxiety, irritability, hunger, sweating, shakiness, rapid heartbeat, fatigue, tingling around the mouth, dizziness, and hot flashes.[6][7] Break your diet and eat sugary foods. The goal is to get your blood glucose back to a normal range as soon as possible[8] Let friends, fa Continue reading >>

Nondiabetic Hypoglycemia

Nondiabetic Hypoglycemia

What is non-diabetic hypoglycemia? Hypoglycemia is the condition when your blood glucose (sugar) levels are too low. It happens to people with diabetes when they have a mismatch of medicine, food, and/or exercise. Non-diabetic hypoglycemia, a rare condition, is low blood glucose in people who do not have diabetes. There are two kinds of non-diabetic hypoglycemia: Reactive hypoglycemia, which happens within a few hours of eating a meal Fasting hypoglycemia, which may be related to a disease Glucose is the main source of energy for your body and brain. It comes from what we eat and drink. Insulin, a hormone, helps keep blood glucose at normal levels so your body can work properly. Insulin’s job is to help glucose enter your cells where it’s used for energy. If your glucose level is too low, you might not feel well. What causes non-diabetic hypoglycemia? The two kinds of non-diabetic hypoglycemia have different causes. Researchers are still studying the causes of reactive hypoglycemia. They know, however, that it comes from having too much insulin in the blood, leading to low blood glucose levels. Types of nondiabetic hypoglycemia Reactive hypoglycemia Having pre-diabetes or being at risk for diabetes, which can lead to trouble making the right amount of insulin Stomach surgery, which can make food pass too quickly into your small intestine Rare enzyme deficiencies that make it hard for your body to break down food Fasting hypoglycemia Medicines, such as salicylates (such as aspirin), sulfa drugs (an antibiotic), pentamidine (to treat a serious kind of pneumonia), quinine (to treat malaria) Alcohol, especially with binge drinking Serious illnesses, such as those affecting the liver, heart, or kidneys Low levels of certain hormones, such as cortisol, growth hormone, glu Continue reading >>

Sample Menu For Reactive Hypoglycemia

Sample Menu For Reactive Hypoglycemia

Sample menu The following sample menu provides ideas on how to plan meals and snacks to help prevent reactive hypoglycemia. The amount of food that you need each day depends on your age, gender, and activity level. Choose a variety of foods and eat a small snack or meal about every three hours. Sample Menu 1 Breakfast Cinnamon oatmeal cooked unsweetened oatmeal chopped pecans cinnamon ground flax seed Blueberries or diced apples Low fat milk (skim, 1%, 2%) or fortified soy beverage Water or coffee or tea Mid-morning snack Hard-boiled egg with cucumber, celery and carrots sticks Lunch Chicken tortilla wrap whole wheat tortilla wrap diced chicken sunflower seeds shredded lettuce mayonnaise Carrot and green pepper sticks Plum Low-fat milk or fortified soy beverage Mid-afternoon snack Hummus (chickpea and sesame seed spread) Brown rice crackers Cherry tomatoes Dinner Fish baked with lemon and green onions Quinoa Steamed broccoli sprinkled with sesame seeds Coleslaw salad with oil and vinegar dressing Water or coffee or tea Evening snack Low fat cheese (less than 20% M.F.) on dark rye crisp bread Pear Sample Menu 2 Breakfast Poached egg Whole grain pumpernickel bread Low fat milk or fortified soy beverage Peach Mid-morning snack Low-fat plain yogurt with almonds and a sliced banana Lunch Salmon stir fry diced salmon pieces brown rice red pepper broccoli kale Low-fat milk or fortified soy beverage Water or coffee or tea Mid-afternoon snack Unsalted seeds or nuts (handful) and dried fruit Dinner Vegetarian chili served over whole wheat bulgur Spinach salad spinach raspberries walnuts salad dressing. Low-fat milk or fortified soy beverage Water or coffee or tea Evening snack Low fat milk and a whole-wheat blueberry muffin Other examples of healthy snacks Trail mix with nuts, ra Continue reading >>

Type 1 Diabetes Diet

Type 1 Diabetes Diet

Type 1 diabetes diet definition and facts In Type 1 diabetes the pancreas can do longer release insulin. The high blood sugar that results can lead to complications such as kidney, nerve, and eye damage, and cardiovascular disease. Glycemic index and glycemic load are scientific terms used to measure he impact of a food on blood sugar. Foods with low glycemic load (index) raise blood sugar modestly, and thus are better choices for people with diabetes. Meal timing is very important for people with type 1 diabetes. Meals must match insulin doses. Eating meals with a low glycemic load (index) makes meal timing easier. Low glycemic load meals raise blood sugar slowly and steadily, leaving plenty of time for the body (or the injected insulin dose) to respond. Skipping a meal or eating late puts a person at risk for low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). Foods to eat for a type 1 diabetic diet include complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, whole wheat, quinoa, oatmeal, fruits, vegetables, beans, and lentils. Foods to avoid for a type 1 diabetes diet include sodas (both diet and regular), simple carbohydrates - processed/refined sugars (white bread, pastries, chips, cookies, pastas), trans fats (anything with the word hydrogenated on the label), and high-fat animal products. Fats don't have much of a direct effect on blood sugar but they can be useful in slowing the absorption of carbohydrates. Protein provides steady energy with little effect on blood sugar. It keeps blood sugar stable, and can help with sugar cravings and feeling full after eating. Protein-packed foods to include on your menu are beans, legumes, eggs, seafood, dairy, peas, tofu, and lean meats and poultry. The Mediterranean diet plan is often recommended for people with type 1 diabetes because it is full of nut Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Hypoglycemia For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Hypoglycemia is a condition you definitely have to pay attention to, but once you get in the habit of choosing healthy foods and avoiding processed foods that can wreak havoc with your blood sugar levels, you can enjoy a healthy lifestyle without too much thought. Making the transition can lead to cravings for the “old, bad” foods, but you can come up with strategies to deal with those and find that the cravings weaken over time. Foods to Choose if You’re Hypoglycemic You can help manage your hypoglycemia, often referred to as low blood sugar, by choosing foods that improve your condition. You can enjoy a variety of foods, and the foods in the following list are tasty and healthy: Organic meats (grass-fed, if possible), vegetables, and fruits whenever you can High-quality protein (fish, poultry, lean meat, free-range eggs) Fresh fruits, preferably with a meal or half an hour before. Eat blueberries and raspberries often; stone fruits, such as peaches and nectarines, are also good. You may not be able to tolerate fruit initially. If that’s the case, wait several months before trying again. Fresh vegetables, especially dark, leafy greens, lightly cooked or, as much as possible, raw Raw, unsalted, unseasoned nuts and seeds Alternative sweeteners, such as stevia Foods to Avoid if You’re Hypoglycemic Controlling low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, is easier if you just say no to foods that can throw your blood glucose levels out of whack. The following list of foods and food groups are those to avoid: Processed foods Fried foods MSG (monosodium glutamate) All soft drinks Artificial sweeteners such as aspartame (NutraSweet), sucralose (Splenda), and saccharine (Sweet’n Low) Hot dogs, sausages, and deli meats Having arguments or debates or discussing unpleasant topic Continue reading >>

Best Bites To Boost Low Blood Sugar

Best Bites To Boost Low Blood Sugar

Picture this: You're in the mall, shopping with friends, chatting and having a great time when suddenly you start to feel a bit strange. You might become irritated or nervous, your skin may feel clammy or sweaty — and your vision may even seem blurred. If you have diabetes, you'll recognize these as the warning signs of hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. “Hypoglycemia occurs when blood sugar levels in the body drop too low,” says Kelly O'Connor, RD, a dietitian and certified diabetes educator at LifeBridge Health's Northwest Hospital in Baltimore. “Glucose [sugar] is your brain’s main energy or fuel source. If the level of glucose in the body is too low, it can begin to affect your brain’s functioning. The resulting symptoms are more or less your body’s warning system that you need to take quick action in order to correct the problem.” Recognizing the Signs of Hypoglycemia O’Connor says there are a number of warning signs that indicate you might have low blood sugar. “The symptoms can range from very mild — shakiness, clamminess, feeling irritable or jittery, and having temporarily blurred vision — to much more severe, such as [experiencing] seizures and loss of consciousness or passing out, although these are less common,” she says. These symptoms can occur because of many other circumstances, so if you are diabetic and are having symptoms that could be due to low blood sugar, check your sugar levels to see what’s going on, she adds. Certain things can also put you at higher risk of hypoglycemia, especially if you skip or put off a meal or snack, take too much insulin, don't eat enough carbohydrates, exercise more than you regularly do, or drink alcohol. In addition, people with type 1 diabetes experience hypoglycemia more often than those wi Continue reading >>

Diets And Treatments For Hypoglycemia (low Blood Sugar)

Diets And Treatments For Hypoglycemia (low Blood Sugar)

Dear Alice, I need general information on hypoglycemia and about diets and treatments. Sincerely, Not So Sweet Dear Not So Sweet, You're probably sweeter than you think! Hypoglycemia is the medical name for an unusually low blood sugar (a.k.a., glucose) level. Excess insulin, along with glucose deficiency, usually causes hypoglycemia. Glucose is vital for health because it provides energy for the brain, central nervous system, and all of the body's cells. If a person is unable to maintain adequate blood glucose levels, major organs such, as the brain, are deprived of the fuel they need. When someone has low blood sugar, they may experience: Heart palpitations Fatigue Pale skin Shakiness Anxiety Sweating Hunger Irritability Tingling sensation around the mouth Crying out during sleep Over time, it’s possible to experience more severe symptoms as hypoglycemia worsens. Symptoms could include: Confusion, abnormal behavior or both, such as the inability to complete routine tasks Visual disturbances, such as blurred vision Seizures Loss of consciousness Hypoglycemia may be caused by several factors. One cause is type I diabetes. Type I diabetes is a chronic disease that impairs a person's ability to produce an adequate amount of insulin to control glucose levels. Insulin must be injected and hypoglycemic drugs can be taken in order to lower the glucose level in the body. Other causes include certain medications, excessive alcohol consumption, illnesses affecting the liver (such as hepatitis), an overproduction of insulin, and hormone deficiencies. Treatment of hypoglycemia may involve treating any underlying causes, monitoring blood sugar levels, and consuming glucose tablets or simple carbohydrates to manage immediate symptoms. Determining how much food is needed to raise b Continue reading >>

What Is The Best Diet For Hypoglycemia?

What Is The Best Diet For Hypoglycemia?

Various diets have been proposed for hypoglycemia over the years. The earliest treatment was a high-protein, high-fat diet with a minimum of carbohydrates, in the belief that all carbohydrates stimulated the pancreas to produce insulin. Such diets had mixed results and are certainly not healthy in the long run. They have largely been abandoned but variations still exist, such as the Atkins diet and more recently Barry Sears’ “zone” diet which involves a 30/30/40 ratio between protein, fat and carbohydrate. The prominent American nutritionist Paavo Aerola started a change in thinking about hypoglycemia treatment in the 1970s when he advocated a largely vegetarian diet with an emphasis on complex carbohydrates. Aerola’s diet was popular for many years and very successful. However, it relies heavily on dairy products for protein – which doesn’t suit everyone. More recently, a concept known as the “glycemic index” of foods has been developed. The glycemic index represents the amount by which a food raises the blood sugar level, with glucose having an index of 100. It is interesting that foods such as white bread can raise the blood sugar almost as much as ordinary white sugar, whereas as whole-grain breads cause a much slower rise in blood sugar. I have proved this myself – before I knew anything about glycemic indexes. When I was experimenting with the high-carbohydrate, low-fat diets I often had a white bread roll with a small amount of low-fat cheese (no butter) and salad for lunch. I would always get a headache during the afternoon following such lunches but I persisted because I thought it was a “healthy” low-fat meal and it had no-sugar. Occasionally, I would have a thick cheese sandwich on wholemeal bread (with butter) and a glass of milk – su Continue reading >>

Diet For Hypoglycemia Without Diabetes

Diet For Hypoglycemia Without Diabetes

The type of hypoglycemia that occurs in people without diabetes is referred to as reactive hypoglycemia. Reactive hypoglycemia would be the results of too much insulin secreted or not enough glucagon released after a meal, which lead to low blood sugar levels a few hours after eating. If you blood sugars are too low -- below 70 mg/dL -- you may feel dizzy, light-headed, tired, hungry and confused. A few changes to your diet can help you prevent reactive hypoglycemia. Video of the Day Instead of eating two to three large meals, split your food intake into five to six smaller meals. Eating too much at once can stimulate the overproduction of insulin and increase your risk of experiencing an hypoglycemic episode. Space your meals evenly throughout the day, every two to three hours, and don't forget to reduce the amounts of food you eat at each meal to avoid gaining weight. For example, if your lunch usually is a sandwich, an apple and a yogurt, divide your meal into two parts. Have the first part at one time and save the remaining for later. Choose Low-Glycemic Index Carbohydrates Carbohydrate-containing foods with a high-glycemic index make your blood sugar levels peak, overstimulate the secretion of insulin and can often result in reactive hypoglycemia within a few hours. Avoid processed and refined carbohydrates such as white flours, white bread, breakfast cereals, crackers, baked goods, sweets and desserts. Replace these foods with low-glycemic index carbohydrates that will help you stabilize your blood sugar levels. Low-glycemic index carbohydrate foods include old-fashioned oatmeal, steel-cut oat, stone-ground whole grain flour, sourdough bread, temperate climate fruit, barley, quinoa, basmati rice and whole-grain pasta. Never eat carbohydrates on alone. Protein help Continue reading >>

Hypoglycemia And The Myth Of Eating Frequent Small Meals

Hypoglycemia And The Myth Of Eating Frequent Small Meals

In a previous newsletter and blog post, I wrote an article about the dangers of eating frequent small meals. You can read it here. Most people believe they need to eat frequently to avoid hypoglycemia. In fact, eating small, frequent meals has never been proven to accelerate weight loss despite what many experts claim. In fact, there are many more studies that suggest that less frequent eating promotes more rapid weight reduction. And further, most people who claim they are hypoglycemic (and attribute feeling uncomfortable if they skip meals) really don’t experience true hypoglycemia. Many of the people I’ve worked with have discovered that their blood sugar is actually up when they experience the out of balance feelings they were misled into believing were symptoms of low blood sugar. Many people do experience what’s known as “reactive hypoglycemia”, where their blood sugar plummets after being high, triggering too much insulin secretion, then going too low because of the over clearance of sugar from the blood due to high levels of insulin. Why It’s Best to Space Your Meals 5 – 6 Hours Apart The first three hours after you eat, your body produces a hormone called insulin. Insulin’s job is to clear the sugar from your blood and pass it on to your muscles and liver so they can do their job. About an hour after eating, if your insulin level and blood sugar levels are starting to come down as they should, then growth hormone is released. Growth hormone, in the early post-meal stages, triggers the build up of muscle protein, which is enhanced by the presence of insulin. When insulin is activated, and when your body is functioning normally, your liver and muscles take on as much glycogen (your body’s storage form of sugar) as possible. While Insulin is Acti Continue reading >>

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