Epsom Salt for Arthritis

Epsom Salt Can Help in Arthritis

Epsom Salt can help in Arthritis an enlightening article published by www.naturalarthritistreatments.net

Arthritis has been one of the most common medical conditions in the elderly people. However, this disease is not specifically related to age as there have been reports of young people suffering from this condition. Arthritis occurs when the joints between the bones become inflamed due to some medical conditions.

The main causes for different type of arthritis include autoimmune response, wear and tear of the cartilage due to age, external infection, lack of fluid between the bones and degeneration of joint tissues. The patients complain of pain during mobility of the joints, stiffness in the joints and redness around the affected area.

There are many types of arthritis based on the causes the condition like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, etc. The treatment offered usually includes drugs which reduce the inflammation and relieve the patient from the pain and stiffness .

Epsom Salt for Arthritis

Epsom salt has been named after the bitter salt spring found at Epsom, England, where it was produced in the springs. The name of the compound can be misleading at times as it is not an actual salt. Instead it is a type of mineral compound which is made up of magnesium and sulfate. Epsom salt has been used for a long time for various health benefits and other purposes like beauty, gardening etc. It has also been used for treating various types of diseases and ailments.

The main components of Epsom salt are the magnesium and sulfate which play an important role in its unique healing properties. The most common form in which Epsom salt is used is the Epsom salt bath in which the salt is mixed with the bath water. The person should take this bath for some duration and the magnesium sulfate compounds get absorbed into the skin.

Magnesium is one of the major compounds required by the human body for everyday regulation of numerous pathways. It is known to regulate more than 325 enzymes and pathways. It is also required for other vital function like proper functioning of muscles and nerves, preventing the arteries from hardening and reducing the amount of inflammation caused due to numerous health conditions including arthritis.

The sulfate found in the Epsom salt also plays a vital role in imparting medicinal properties to the compound. These sulfates promote absorption of the nutrients, treat headaches caused due to migraine and also detoxification of the toxins by flushing them out of the body .

Magnesium sulfate comes under the category of inorganic compounds. The heptahydrate sulfate mineral epsomite is another name for the Epsom salt. When the Epsom salt bath is taken it has been observed that the heat generated in the water helps increase the circulation of the blood and reduction of the swelling caused in arthritis. Magnesium in the Epsom salt is known to possess anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic properties. Epsom salt can also be consumed as a part of the treatment .

Magnesium is the second most abundant element required in the cells of the human tissues. Deficiency in magnesium is very common among individuals who can lead to various types of arthritis, pain in the joints, osteoporosis and many other problems. The changes in the diet over the past few years have mainly led to increased deficiency of magnesium in the body. The industrial farming is one of the major causes of depletion of magnesium from the soil where plants are grown.

Other important element which can lower the magnesium in the body is calcium. If calcium is taken when there is not enough magnesium in the body, it can lead to shortage of both calcium and magnesium in the cells. In such cases, many prefer taking supplements of magnesium to overcome the deficiency.

However, it has been reported that magnesium is not easily absorbed into the digestive system if taken in the form of supplements. The acid present in the stomach makes the supplements of magnesium ineffective. The advantage of taking the Epsom salt bath is that it is more readily absorbed into the body .

In case of rheumatoid arthritis the patients experience soreness and stiffness in the tissues of the joint. The magnesium in the Epsom salt helps in the relaxation of the skeletal muscles but releasing the lactic acid which is accumulated in the muscles.

Epsom Salt

Epsom Salt

In addition to this, magnesium helps in increasing the rate of absorption of the vitamins in the body. Moreover, it plays a significant role in functioning of the muscles and nerves. All the above helps in reducing the soreness and stiffness in the joints and muscles .

It has been reported that magnesium is one of the required for normal functioning of the cells and tissues. In case of inflammation caused due to arthritis, there is a depletion of magnesium in the cells and tissues.

Intake of Epsom salt provides the body with sufficient magnesium to combat the inflammation and lessen the swelling in the joints .

A study done on rat models triggered with magnesium deficiency, found that this deficiency led to increase in the inflammatory components in the cells and tissues.

It was observed that there was an increase in the overall amount of inflammatory cytokines after three weeks of magnesium deficiency. These inflammatory cytokines included interleukin-1 (IL-1), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-a). The neuronal tachykinin was noted to be produced from the neural tissues which led to production of these inflammatory cytokines .

Another study carried out by Lee et al. studied the effect of MgSO4 on the rat models artificially induced with the condition of collagenase-induced osteoarthritis. They had based their study on the reports stating that magnesium reduces the requirement of analgesic in knee surgeries.

After artificially induction with collagenase it was observed that there was destruction in the cartilage of the knee joints and there was inflammation in the synovial tissues. In addition to this, there was also an increase in the degeneration of the cartilage. Subsequently, there was an induction of the osteoarthritis condition in the rat models which lead to the formation osteophytes in the joints. It is known that during the condition of osteoarthritis there is an inflammation in the synovial fluid .

These animal models were then treated with intravenous MgSO4 and there was an observed reduction in the degradation of the cartilages. In addition to this, there was a significant decrease in the inflammation of the synovial fluid of the joints. Another point that was noted by the authors that most people suffering from osteoarthritis experienced pain near the joints, however there were numerous cases of people experiencing pain in adjacent and other parts of the body due to osteoarthritis.

The other characteristic conditions of osteoarthritis included mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia. Allodynia is a term given to the pain which occurs in other places then the stimulated area while hyperalgesia means increase in the sensitivity to pain which can be due to damage in the nerves .

However, all the symptoms for allodynia and hyperalgesia decreased after treatment with MgSO4. Moreover, this study reported increase in the concentration of glutamate in the synovial fluid in the arthritic condition of the inflamed knees. When the amount of magnesium is less in the body, this glutamate binds to the NMDA (N-methyl-o-aspartate) receptors which lead to allodynia and hyperalgesia. On treatment with Mg 2+ it was observed that these ions had preventive effect on the binding of glutamate to these receptors .

In addition to thus, the researchers reported that the deficiency of magnesium ions can lead to up regulation of the interleukins 1 and 6 (IL-1 and IL-6), cytokines and inflammation in the joints. It was reported in a study that increase in the IL-1 can lead to bone cancer in animal models by up regulating a factor known as p-NR1.

he scientists found that when given the treatment with magnesium ions, there was a down regulation of the p-NR1 factor, thus reducing the risk of bone cancer in the patients suffering from osteoarthritis .

Lastly, the study also reported that progression of osteoarthritis is also signified by increased apoptosis of the chondrocytes. The collagenase induced the apoptosis or cell death in the chondrocytes which when treated with MgSO4 was suppressed in the rat models. Thus, addition of magnesium to the body slowed down the progression of the osteoarthritis in the body .

How to take Epsom salt?

Epsom salt is most commonly available in the form of salt like crystals in the market. It is can be taken orally or in the form of Epsom salt bath. If it is taken orally it is highly recommended that it one should consult a doctor or a health advisor before taking it. The dosage should be taken as per prescription of the doctor. Since oral consumption of Epsom salt can give a bitter taste, it can be mixed with lemon juice to improve its taste.

However, it has been observed that Epsom salt is not easily absorbed into the elementary canal and into the blood vessels. In such cases many people prefer to take Epsom salt bath in which the salt granules are dissolved in the bath water while bathing. It has been reported that Epsom salt is readily absorbed into the skin making it easier for magnesium and sulfate to enter the body.

The label of the product should be referred to for the amount of salt to be mixed into the bath water. It is considered highly beneficial for people experiencing pain due to arthritis. It tends to relax the tissues and reduce inflammation if the bath is taken regularly .


The doctors recommend that Epsom salt should not be taken without doctor’s prescription or under guidance from a health supervisor. It is not recommended to consume this salt in high dosages as it can be harmful for health. In case of Epsom salt bath one can consult about the amount to be added by the doctor or as mentioned on the label .


Epsom salt is highly beneficial for arthritis however, as mentioned above; it should not be taken under supervision of the doctor. The doctors advise that one should not take Epsom salt orally if the person is suffering from stomach pain, constipation, colitis and nausea. It is also not recommended for pregnant women to take Epsom salt.

Other side effects of consuming the salt include diarrhea, allergic reaction, swelling of lips, tongue and redness .

In the end..

Not many people are aware of the numerous benefits of Epsom salt as a treatment for arthritis. This salt has been reported in many studies to reduce the inflammation and swelling in the joints in many types of arthritis.

The main component of Epsom salt is magnesium and sulfate which play an important role in treating inflammation and prevent the degradation of the cartilages.

There is very few studies done on the benefits of Epsom salt for arthritis and there is scope for more studies to study its effect on various inflammatory diseases.



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Floating and Sensory deprivation are concepts frequently associated with a dark and somewhat scary place. Much more so after watching the recently released Netflix movie Stranger Things where they don’t do justice to the art of floating and sensory deprivation. And yes, I call it art, because like Thomas Merton, the well-known Trappist Monk, writer and mystic,  said in his book “No Man is An Island”. Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time. And that is exactly what happens when experience floating and sensory deprivation: you find and lose yourself at the same time. In the same way that many people enjoy different art expressions, the art of floating can be achieved in many different ways.

Floating and sensory deprivation


There are lots of people that are looking for sensory deprivation to go deep into their inner self. These people are looking for a dark, silent, quiet, zero gravity place where to float. Silence is one of their main requirements and the slightest sound can interfere with their experience. For them, water has to be exactly at skin temperature, not one degree warmer nor one degree colder.

At the other end of the spectrum, are those that are looking for pain relief. They suffer from an inflammation or have some of physical injury. These people usually have dealt with chronic pain and discomfort for a long time. Pain relief and some TLC is what they are looking for not necessarily sensory deprivation. Some are looking just for relaxation and a way to deal and, if possible, to get rid of their pain. They want the warmer water, relaxing music, and some would rather float with the top open than close. People dealing with chronic pain and sore muscles are the most grateful, with a big smile and wanting to float again.

Right in the middle of these two groups, are the curious individuals and the ones that want to float because they heard about it or just because it is trendy. They are willing to try Sensory Deprivation because it is cool, but they are also open to listening to music during the whole experience. They want the top open and also want to try closing it. Some others like total darkness but the changing lights in the pod are worth giving a try. It is hard to know what to expect from this group of individuals. They can either turn into wonderful floaters and discover their inner selves through sensory deprivation, they can be the ones that walk out of the pod saying “it was fun, but this is not my thing”, or they can find physical relief to some injury that they had not been paying too much attention to.

Find or lose yourself while floating

Each person finds a different and unique answer in a float pod. We can safely say that they find the answer to their question. Some find themselves, others find solutions to their emotional or physical challenges while others lose themselves into the world of meditation and self-discovery.

We can safely say that Floating is an Art.


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Disinfection System

The disinfection system is floater’s main concern. Specially for first time floaters, getting inside a float pod raises many questions. “Do you change the water after each client?”  How is your disinfection system?”

The water is not changed after each session. The time and the cost of replacing 800/1000 pounds of Epsom Salt water would make the operation impossible to run. However, the cleaning and disinfecting protocols followed are as good. Something to bear in mind is that the extreme salt content of the water is not favourable for micro-organisms to grow and survive in.

Disinfection system

Crystal Clear Water

Disinfection System Procedures

Once a float session is over, the automatic pump starts the filtering cycle. The water passes through the filter 2.5 times. The filter has a 10 micron filtering bag, capable of filtering debris in the water as small as 1/4 the size of the diameter of a human hair. In addition, the Dreampod’s injection system dispenses Chlorine and, following Fraser Health protocols, pumps small dosages of Chlorine into the water after each float session.

At night, the disinfecting system pumps an array of UV light in order to complete the cleaning and disinfecting cycles. To further ensure our clients a safe and clean environment, SensaFloat Spa has one staff member dedicated to the water, pods, showers, and facility cleaning, maintenance, and disinfection. This staff member has extensive experience in water management, even for human consumption.

In addition to the filtering and disinfecting systems, we follow strict cleaning protocols. After each client finishes a float session, our designated staff member thoroughly cleans the inside and outside walls of the float pods in order to get rid of slime and to prevent any fungus growth; this staff member also cleans and disinfects showers, and mops and dries floors. As a result our spa is not only clean but also free of slippery salty water.

Water Cleanliness

See the bottom of the pod

The transparency and cleanliness of the water is mentioned time and time again in our client’s reviews across social media. The  fact that that you can see the pod’s bottom ensures our clients that the water is completely clean and that there are no “floaters” floating around.


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Isolation Tanks just for Stress?

Isolation tanks are well known for the effects they have over stress and anxiety and the benefits associated with it. It is actually becoming trendy to say yes when someone asks if you have been inside a sensory deprivation or isolation tank. Everyone is talking about the benefits that floating has reducing stress, anxiety, calming the mind and reaching the Tetha state.

Floating in sensory deprivation or isolation tanks also has a wide range of benefits for another segment of the population which sometimes we neglect to mention. Individuals that are dealing with chronic pain, Fibromyalgia, sports injuries and lower or back pain, just to mention a few, also benefit from a float session in an isolation tank or pod. Many of these individuals walk into our float center, after having tried everything, including traditional and non-traditional medicine, looking less than hopeful and saying something along the lines of “Someone told me to give this a try and who knows….”. Some individuals are not looking for Sensory Deprivation, they are looking for pain relief and relaxation in an isolation tank.

As owners and managers of SensaFloat Spa, we don’t make any promises or give anyone higher than normal expectations of what they can or cannot achieve during the float session. It is a unique experience. In floating nothing is written in stone. We just give the new floaters the tour of the premises, and let them be. We explain the benefits of Epsom Salt and Magnesium, answer any questions that they may have and we leave them to enjoy their float.

Isolation tank

Isolation Tank

Isolation Tanks have other Benefits besides Stress Relieve 

It is such a wonderful experience to see, after the end of each session, how the new floaters come out of the sensory deprivation or isolation tanks, with very few exceptions, smiling and rejoicing about their new experience. In some new floaters, it is easy to detect, even a change in the facial expressions. A change that says “I am Pain-free”. It is at this moment, that as owners and managers we can brag about the benefits of floating in enriched Epsom Salt water and we can confidently say that isolation tanks have multiple benefits.

Carolina Barreneche
SensaFloat Spa


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Why Seek Sensory Deprivation?

Sensory deprivation seems like the opposite of everything we have been taught

Sensory Deprivation seems to go against what we are exposed to and expected to react to. The world welcomes us with light, music, voices, and lots of information. As we grow up, we continue to be overloaded with information, lights, music and tons of noises and an increasing amount of input.

Our brains go from being a clean slate to having to continuously process a multitude of inputs, store information and, in a demanding world, produce high quality results. In an ever-changing society, our minds have to adapt to the changing technology and to different forms of communication. How different life was 50 years ago; few hours of television, few telephone calls and no mobile phones. At night, people were able to rest. Now a days, many people don’t even have eight hours of uninterrupted sleep. Cell phones ring, text messages give notifications and we communicate with people on different time zones.

Our brains are constantly working. that is why we seek Sensory Deprivation, to allow our senses time to rest. A calm and quiet hour for the mind, for the body and the soul. One hour without lights, music or external inputs.

An Hour of Sensory Deprivation

Every night, when we go to sleep, we let our body rest and our muscles take a break, our senses also need to rest. Rest according to the Merriam Webster Dictionary is “A bodily state characterized by minimal functional and metabolic activities”. No mention of the senses; The senses also need to rest and that is when R.E.S.T. comes into play through flotationSensa Float Spa-6728 therapy.  R.E.S.T. meaning Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy. While floating in an isolation pod or tank, the sensory input is restricted and the senses can take a much needed REST when we float in a isolation pod or isolation tank.


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Sensory Deprivation Tank vs Float Pod

A question we frequently get asked. Are float pods and sensory deprivation tanks the same? Can I achieve the same results that I achieve in a Sensory Deprivation Tank inside a Float Pod?

An ambiguous answer. Yes and no. Float Pods and Sensory Deprivation Tanks are not the same; each have their own unique characteristics. However you can achieve the same results in a Float Pod as you do in a Sensory Deprivation Tank.

Sensory Deprivation practices started as a therapy that attempted to provide the individual with Sensory Deprivation. The best way to enjoy Sensory Deprivation was by being inside an isolation tank or isolation chamber. Tanks provide auditory and visual isolation, b1072274_556723667718325_713930947_olocking outside stimuli while the individual floats in Epsom Salt and enjoys zero gravity. Isolation of the senses and zero gravity. Tanks definitively provide this Sensory Deprivation.

As time went by, many individuals began to appreciate the benefits of floating in Epsom Salt and zero gravity. Individuals with chronic pain, fibromyalgia, sports injuries, stress, anxiety, and addictions began to seek Float Therapy as an alternative therapy.

As the needs of the population changed, so did the industry. Different Float Pods appeared to fulfill those needs. Float Pods provide individuals with the same benefits of an Isolation or Sensory Deprivation Tank with some added features that cater to those individuals not necessarily looking for sensory deprivation or that want to ease slowly into it.

Float Pods, just as the Sensory Deprivation Tanks, provide auditory and visual isolation, block outside stimuli and allow floating in Epsom Salt at zero gravity; however, Float Pods provide additional features that can be controlled by the floater and give the floater a sense of empowerment.

  • Lights that can be turned on and off from inside the pod by the floater
  • Music that can be programed in advance for the whole session or for part of it
  • The possibility to float with the lid completely open or half way open. Ideal for those that are claustrophobic

Back to the initial question “Are Float Pods and Sensory Deprivation Tanks or Sensory Deprivation Chambers the same?

Yes and No

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Claustrophobia and Floating

1072274_556723667718325_713930947_oThree or four years ago, I didn’t know what an isolation tank was and was not really interested in any of the health benefits associated with it. Once I became acquainted with flotation therapy, as many people do, my first words were “There is no way in the world that I am going to get inside one of those things, I am claustrophobic”. Nowadays, I hear my clients repeating these same words and I sympathize with what they say.
Very valid assertion. If you consider yourself Claustrophobic a sensory deprivation tank is not very appealing; however, today people suffering from Claustrophobia can enjoy the same sensory deprivation experiences as people who are not afraid of being “locked up” in a tank.
Today the sensory deprivation chambers have evolved into beautiful, modern and technologically advanced pods where the floater can control the lights and the music. However, the most important feature the new pods have is that the floater can control whether to float with the top open or closed.
Once the claustrophobic person floats for the first time and overcomes his/her fears they become great floaters. I have noticed the following behaviours tend to develop:
1. They become more self-confident and feel proud of themselves
2. They tell everyone how they were able to conquer their claustrophobia and start helping other people do the same
3. They can fully relax and enjoy their float while being liberated of the fear and the anxiety caused by Claustrophobia. In addition and most importantly, they start enjoying all the health benefits associated with the high content of Epsom Salt and pain relief achieved while floating
4. Usually the newly acquired confidence leads them to try new things such as floating with the top half closed or moving into closing the top completely
5. At the personal level, they start taking more risks. I have heard many stories of people feeling so confident that they decide to start that project that they had been thinking about for a while or to change jobs, or move to another city
Definitively Claustrophobics make great floaters!

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Jet Lag

Jet lag is experienced by almost any individual after a long flight over different time zones. The body is used to some sleeping patterns and when the biological clock or this sleep patterns are disrupted, there is an overall feeling of tiredness, uncontrollable desire to sleep, fatigue, irritability and difficulty concentrating just to mention a few of the symptoms.

The nap pods provide in 30 minutes the ability to catch up on sleep through an energizing a relaxing nap. This nap will allow the individual to synchronize the  biological clock more easily and adapt to the new time zone in a less traumatic way.

A symphony of music and vibration combine to give you a neuromuscular massage. The neuromuscular massage travels through the nervous system allowing mind and body to relax and fight insomnia, fatigue and jet lag.

“The comforting vibration fills your body, leaving you in a state of peaceful tranquility” Is how the Neurospa official website describes the sensation experienced. It’s a revitalizing experience.


Today nap pods / neurospa stations are being used in many airports to help passengers and airline personnel overcome the symptoms of jetlag.


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Floating a Growing Trend For 2016


Last night, I attended a business network event where, for a voluntary contribution to a charity, we could promote our businesses. Everyone seemed very excited setting up. All the ladies around me seemed to know each other and there I was trying to promote my new business and feeling uncertain as to what the reaction was going to be.

When I started looking around, I realized that I just had some brochures and some business cards that I had somewhere in my purse, that was it. The other ladies at the other booths had great displays with lots of products and colours, they even had ordering pads. “Wow” I thought “this is going to be a long night and I don’t think it is going to be the best because I don’t have much to display”.

As time went by, I noticed that more and more people gravitated towards my not so well decorated booth. People started gathering around my table and not only talking to me but also talking among themselves. Here I was, with my business speech prepared, and suddenly I realized that rather than asking me lots of questions, of course there were some questions asked, they were telling each other about the experiences they had while floating.

So many people knew about it. Some said that they loved it and wanted to do it again while others, just two to be fair, said that they had already tried it and where thinking if they wanted to repeat the experience or not. Most of them agreed with the fact that the two determining factors for having a good floating experience were being able to see and confirm that they were floating in clean water and that they didn’t feel claustrophobic. “What a relief” I thought “our float pods meet both factors, we pass the test with flying colours”

Some people talked about the benefits of floating, the Epsom Salt and the Magnesium. But I never expected what happened next. When my turn came to present my business, we were all siting down in a circle, I started to give my speech and suddenly this young and very trendy lady interrupted me and started talking about floating. But not about what we usually talk when we talk about floating. This is pretty much what she said.

“Floating is going to be In thing to do in 2016. It is going to be the trendy thing for next year. Last Saturday, I was looking it up on the internet because I was curious about it and found that it is what all the actors and actresses in Hollywood are doing. It is the new thing to do, and what people are talking about. If any one of you needs something interesting to talk about on a date or when out with a group of friends, floating is the thing.  Make sure you know what it is, give it a try and read about it; otherwise you are going to be the quiet one on the corner without knowing what to say. Besides it has lots of benefits and it is natural, you are not putting any chemicals in your body.” After she finished her speech, I didn’t have much to add. Needless to say, more and more people came over to my booth after her speech.

Then I realize that 2016 is going to be one of the best years for the Float industry.



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At First Sight – a Movie About Sensory Deprivation??

Well not really, but it gives us a wonderful perspective about the senses and visual overload.   I had never seen this movie or even heard about it. The closest I had gotten to it was when a friend’s daughter had a cochlear implant and she full of joy informed me that her daughter’s implant would be turned on and off until she got used to “hearing”.

Here I am watching this movie, all excited to see how this man is soon going to recover his sight. He has gone thru a lot during his lifetime being blind and suddenly this great opportunity opens up. Yes, he recovers his sight. Wonderful! That is what I thought. But was I wrong.

This man that had always been blind, was overwhelmed by sensory, in his case visual overload. His brain couldn’t process so much information, he couldn’t handle it either. We hardly ever think about this. We go thru life “seeing”.  Seeing so many things.

Sometimes our eyes get tired, if it is too bright our eyes get teary and we close them but we never stop to think about the amount of information that our brain has to process when we simply “See”. Just look around you and “see” all the objects that surround you, tables, pencils, lamps, carpet the list can go on and on, the little things, every little tiny object that we see is seen by the eye but processed by our brain.

This is where Deprivation Therapy comes into play. Deprivation therapy gives your senses a rest. The beauty of it is that while awake, the senses can REST Restricted Environmental Stimulation Technique, meaning that in a restricted environment with almost zero stimulation you can have your senses get a deserved temporary rest.

In the same way in which in the movie, Virgil Adamson, is overwhelmed by the visual overload and needs to close his eyes to let his brain rest, not his eyes so much but his brain, we also need to give our senses some rest in order to recharge and continue our journey.   The Theta state achieved during floating therapy allows us to achieve this REST. Our Senses can REST.

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