How to Detox Your Body – Tea, Pills and Natural Cleanse

How to detox your body. Body cleanse, natural colon cleanse weight loss, and liver detox.
A 2003 study revealed that consuming green tea extract, a popular detox ingredient, could reduce liver damage from exposure to the carcinogen PCP.


Detox cleanses have been performed for thousands of years with herbs, saunas, scrubs, fasting or potions, often for religious reasons.5

In Ayurveda medicine, a traditional Indian medical system, detox cleanses have been used to treat chronic illnesses.2 Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has several procedures for cleanses that remove toxins from the body. Detoxing is the cornerstone of naturopathic medicine, which believes ‘toxic overloads’ are a major cause of illnesses today.4

Today, cleansing and detox supplements have become widely popular due to increased awareness of environmental toxins. Whether it’s synthetic chemicals, lead in toys, BPA use in plastics, smog, mercury in fish or pollutants in drinking water; the number of potentially harmful toxins humans encounter seems to be on the rise.

What is Detox

Before body detox supplements became widely available, detoxing only referred to medical procedures used to treat individuals with high or life-threating levels of alcohol, drugs or poison in their body.0

Today, detox cleansing is focused on removing environmental toxins in everyday individuals seeking to improve their overall health and has become a central part of alternative medicines.01

The Center for Disease Control estimates that over 80% of illnesses today are caused by environmental and lifestyle factors. Conditions such as cancer, asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome and many others are heavily influenced by environmental factors.2

Detox Definition

Detoxing, or a detox body cleanse is a short-term treatment designed to remove environmental toxins from the body, promote overall health or weight loss.3 This may include drinking large quantities of water or juice, taking specific supplements for detox or eating a restricted diet.6

How to Detox Your Body

Detoxification is an important cellular task that if impaired can lead to early mortality.7 While the body undergoes a natural process of detoxification daily, it’s well established that certain foreign chemicals can accumulate within the body. At high doses, they can become toxic and pose a threat to normal body functions.3

Do I need a good cleanse detox program? – In the United States, approximately 2000 new chemicals are introduced into food and consumer products every year, with many being untested for adverse effects prior.3 Cleanses and detoxing products aim to rid the body of these potentially harmful chemicals and support the body’s natural detoxification processes.

Even chemicals such as persistent organic pollutants (POPs), that have been progressively banned in the United States since the 1970’s, are still detected in almost all human fat, blood and breast milk samples.3

Many individuals feel that undergoing a body detox can help reduce or combat the daily exposure to these environmental toxins. Saunas, detox pills, multivitamin supplementation and juicing are all common methods used to detox the body.8


What is a cleanse? – A cleanse is the process of ridding the body of something unwanted or unpleasant, and to make it especially clean.10 Often the words cleanse and detox are used interchangeably.

While there are no absolute differences between a detox and cleanse, health care practitioners may associate a detox with a short-term treatment targeted towards eliminating certain toxins. Body cleanses may be considered a more long-term, overall lifestyle change.12

A good body cleanse is one that supports proper function of organs such as the colon, liver, kidneys and skin and attempts to rid them of various chemicals, rather than one specific toxin.

Cleansing methods include taking supplements to detox your body, chelation therapy, colonic cleansing, special diets, juicing, or fasting.11

Body Cleanse

Full body detox cleanse products are designed to remove toxins within the body, increase energy, improve skin appearance, boost the immune system and jumpstart weight loss.13

Detox cleanses, natural cleanse, liver detox, and colon cleanse work to eliminate toxins like PCB, DDT and BPA from the body through diet, exercise, body detox supplements or fasting
Toxic endocrine disuptors such as BPA are often used in containers that store food or beverages.

Many full body cleanse programs aim to remove obesogens and endocrine disruptors. Obesogens are chemicals that promote weight gain within the body. In animal and human studies, these chemicals have been observed to do the most damage during the prenatal or early periods of life. Suspected obesogens include nicotine, fructose, genistein (soy isoflavone), monosodium glutamate (MSG), and pharmaceutical drugs such as estradiol.11

Endocrine disuptors are also chemicals that can have dramatic effects on the human body in the early stages of life. These chemicals are known to interfere with organ function and can cause serious neurological, reproductive, developmental and immune damage.11

Known endocrine disuptors include polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB), dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and bisphenol A (BPA). Plastic bottles, metal food cans, cosmetics, detergents, food and toys may also contain endocrine disuptors.11

How do you do a body cleanse? – In clinical practice, factors of an effective body cleanse include excellent nutrition and hydration; attention to mental health and stress; adequate sleep; elimination of toxins through fat loss via exercise, saunas and chelation therapy; and avoidance of environmental toxins such as heavy metals, pollutants, and electromagnetic radiation.14

Large amounts of energy, macro and micronutrients are required to maintain the process of detoxification within the body. For permanent and ongoing change, cleanses should be considered as a lifestyle change rather than a temporary detox cleanse program.14

Colon Cleanse

Thinking of purchasing a colon detox? Read our latest Buying Guide to find out which detox dietary supplement is right for you.

Colon cleansing is a practice traditionally performed before a colonoscopy to help prep the body. But in alternative medicine, having a colonic cleanse or taking bowel cleansing products have become one of the most popular forms of treatment.16

During a colonic, also known as colon irrigation, a large amount of water (up to 16 gallons) is flushed through the colon through a tube inserted in the rectum. Herbs or coffee may also be added to the mixture.16

Colon cleansing products claim that toxins may become trapped in the digestive system and colon, which if left untreated, can manifest into asthma, allergies or other conditions. Taking intestinal cleansing products help to flush toxins from the body, improving energy levels and the immune system.16

Some colons may contract in an increased or abnormal fashion, which may lead to sensitivity or several health conditions. One of the most common forms of this condition is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). IBS affects between 25-45 million people in the United States. Preliminary research indicates that colon irrigation may provide relief to select individuals with this condition.17,18

IBS is a condition that effects the function of the gastrointestinal tract. IBS patients may be prone to chronic constipation or diarrhea, and both groups may experience an impact on the quality of life.17

In a 2016 randomized, clinical study, patients with IBS were administered colonic treatments for a period of 1-4 weeks. Patients performed colonic hydrotherapy twice a day for six consecutive days in a week.17

Colon cleanse may be most effective cleanse detox for patients with IBS.
Colonic cleansing reduced abdominal pain and discomfort experienced by IBS patients and increased bowel movement satisfaction.

At the end of the study, scores were observed for number of bowel movements, consistency, overall abdominal pain, and discomfort due to symptoms. Patient satisfaction had significantly improved. Although electrolyte imbalance is frequently listed as a potential side effect of colon irrigation, serum electrolyte (potassium, calcium and sodium) levels were within normal ranges both before and after treatment.17

Colon Cleanse Products

Science is still unclear whether bowel movements are enough to completely clear the colon. Colon cleansing products may be used to temporarily facilitate colon emptying.19

Unlike invasive colonics, taking a colon cleanse product is an easy way to flush the system at home. A colon cleanse product will often contain laxatives or herbal ingredients that promote excretion.

Whats a good colon cleanse product? Natural colon cleanse weight loss products can provide detox cleanse results.
Colon cleanse products work to flush out any waste contained within the colon and can lead to minor weight loss.

Purchasing colon cleansing products over the counter may be a more private and cost effective and method of treatment for users wanting to flush out their system. Colon cleanse detox products may come in the form of liquids, powders, chewable gummies or colon cleanse pills.19

What is a good colon cleanse product? – A good colon cleanse product will depend on the individual user’s needs but will generally rid the body of waste, provide relief, and a ‘lighter feeling’ sometimes accompanied by minor weight loss.

When taking colon cleansing products, it’s important to consume adequate amounts of liquids. This is critical as it will help reduce the risk of dehydration or electrolyte imbalance.20

Individuals with heart or kidney disease should exercise caution when it comes to taking a colon cleansing product. People with these conditions already have trouble maintaining fluid balance within the body and even a good colon cleanse product may cause adverse side effects.19

Natural Colon Cleanse

Promoting colon health may also be possible by taking natural colon cleansing products. In colon cancer research, supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids, curcumin and boswellic acids have shown some ability to reduce colon inflammation.21

Read More: Omega 3 Fatty Acids, Fish Oil Pills & Omega 3 Supplements. (Hyperlink once live)

Natural colon cleanse products may also contain additional ingredients such as psyllium husk or probiotics and may commonly be referred to as healthy colon cleanse products.

Read More: The Benefits of Probiotic Foods, Supplements & Pills

Users should not use natural colon cleansing products for long term periods as it may disturb natural bowel movements or alter the balance of microorganisms and healthy bacteria in the colon.22

Colon Cleanse Weight Loss

Due to the nature of intestinal cleansing products, users can expect minor weight loss due to loss of fluid and water retention. However, there are limited scientific studies that have examined the long-term results or side effects of colon cleanse weight loss products. When using these products, healthy adults should exercise caution and only use them for a temporary period.

Liver Detox

In the body, the liver acts as the main filtration system and processes everything we eat, drink, rub on our skin or breathe.23

Did you Know: Women process alcohol more slowly than men, making them more sensitive to alcohol-induced liver damage.24

As the most metabolically complex organ, the liver is involved in over 500 different bodily functions. Some of the liver’s most critical roles include cleansing blood, neutralizing toxins, metabolizing alcohol and drugs, regulating hormones, producing cholesterol, and regulating the production and supply of glucose (energy).23

While healthy livers can handle much of the detoxification process, chronic alcohol abuse or poor nutrition choices can leave the body unable to properly filter alcohol, drugs, pollutants or chemicals.25 Due to increasing awareness of the liver’s importance in the body, liver detox programs are gaining more popularity.

How to Detox Your Liver

Wondering how to cleanse your liver? – Liver cleanses and detox programs often start with a period of fasting. During this period, users may be instructed to restrict their daily intake to water, fresh juice, lemon juice, olive oil or other liquids. Fasting may last up to two days, at which point solid foods are slowly introduced. Emphasis is usually given to raw fruits and vegetables, then slowly food groups such as meats and dairy products are reintroduced.25

Advocates claim that a good detox cleanse will increase energy levels, relieve body aches, help regulate blood sugar and cholesterol.25

Natural Liver Cleanse

Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) has been used for over 2,000 years as a natural remedy for liver, gall bladder and kidney conditions. Today, milk thistle is used as one of the most common natural liver detox supplements for patients with cirrhosis (liver scarring), chronic liver disease or type 2 diabetes.1,2 Milk thistle contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. In select scientific studies, patients with alcohol-induced liver disease noticed improved liver function after consuming milk thistle.26,28

Another ingredient used in liver detox herbal supplements is yarrow.27

Popular in European folk medicine, yarrow contains flavonoids, chemicals found in plant sources that promote saliva and stomach acid production. While few scientific studies have examined yarrow, traditionally it was used to reduce inflammation in the digestive tract, heal minor wounds or taken to calm nerves.27

Yarrow is suggested to help with digestion, fight inflammation and act as a diuretic, which increases urinary flow.27

Liver Detox Supplements

Functional livers can naturally detox toxins from the body. But due to various biological and environmental factors, the liver can become damaged or overwhelmed, impacting functionality and its ability to process toxins. If left in this state, it may increase your risk of developing liver damage or disease.26,28

Taking liver cleanse products or a liver detox supplement may help improve or support liver health.

A supplement for liver detox will likely contain ingredients such as milk thistle, vitamin C, turmeric, L-glutathione, grape seed extract or N-acetyl-L-cysteine.29 Liver cleansing products may also contain a mix of dandelion root, red clover, vitamin B6 and vitamin C.

Supplements to detox the liver are available in pill, liquid, extract or tincture form.1 When purchasing supplements for liver detox that contain milk thistle, look for a concentration of 70-80% for the best results.1

Currently, there are no scientific studies demonstrating the safety of detox liver supplements in special populations such as pregnant women or children.26

Tea Detox

Tea has been grown and consumed all over the world for thousands of years. It is the second most consumed beverage in the world, with the first being water.30 In recent years, tea detoxes have become one of the most promoted forms of a detox cleanse for women.

Endorsed by celebrities such as Kylie Jenner, Kourtney Kardashian, Hillary Duff and Christina Millian, these products are marketed as a healthy detox cleanse. While many teas contain all natural ingredients, they often contain stimulants to help suppress appetite.31

How to detox your body. Tea cleanse detox (teatox) endorsed by Kylie Jenner, Kourtney Kardashian and Hillary Duff.
Tea Detox programs have been endorsed by celebrities such as Kylie Jenner and Kourtney Kardashian.

Brands often recommend drinking the cleansing tea multiple times a day in addition to a healthy diet and exercise plan, some even offering accompanying meal plans for users. To date, little scientific research exists for examining a ‘teatox’ against a placebo program. However, some preliminary research exists for ingredients frequently used in tea formulas.31

In a study conducted on mice, researchers investigated the effects of a common tea detox ingredient, dandelion root. The in vitro and in vivo study observed the liver-protecting effects of Taraxacum officinale (dandelion root) against alcohol-induced oxidative stress and liver damage.32

They found that mice that only received ethanol saw a 39% decrease in cell viability. However, in mice that received ethanol and dandelion root saw significant increase in antioxidant activity which helped maintain cell function.32

Supplement Analyst recommends to always check the label for listed ingredients in every detox supplement. Caffeine sensitive individuals should exercise caution when starting a tea detox that contains caffeine and should avoid consumption six hours before bedtime, as sleeplessness could occur.31

Green tea has been claimed to contain the highest amount of antioxidant properties, known as polyphenols. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), green teas have been used to improve heart health, promote digestion, regulate blood sugar and to heal wounds.33

In recent years, green detox teas have been highly promoted to give your body a good cleanse from lifestyle and environmental toxins.

Green tea detox shown to be an effective natural detox. Detox teas help cleanse and detox PCPs from mice in 35-week experiment.
In 35-week clinical trial, green tea extract was shown to help detox and cleanse the liver from toxic levels of PCP.

Green tea has been largely studied for its ability to promote weight loss, lower cholesterol and help prevent plaque buildup in arteries. Clinical studies suggest that green tea extract may help burn fat and boost metabolism.33

In a 2003 study, researchers wanted to examine the effect of green detox teas against the environmental pollutant, pentachlorophenol (PCP). PCP has been commonly used as a wood preservative, herbicide and insecticide but is now known to pose a risk to humans.34

It’s estimated that in the United States, the average PCP concentration in human fat tissues is 17.4mg per kilogram.

While the carcinogenic risk of PCP is very real in humans, due to the nature of the research it had to be conducted on mice.34

The male rodents were separated into groups and all received the same dose of PCP through their drinking water for the first 8 weeks. However, some mice were given regular drinking water, others received a 2% green tea infusion with their drinking water.34

PCP at this high of dose has been known to cause liver cancer, but in this study resulted in cholangiocellular (bile duct cancer) and the formation of tumors.34
At the end of the study, mice that received the green tea extract experienced reduced levels of oxidative damage in the liver, excessive liver cell growth and inhibited lesion growth caused by PCP exposure. The 35-week experiment demonstrated that regular intake of green tea may reduce the carcinogenic risk of PCPs.34

Natural Detox

In 2007, natural detox supplements generated nearly $20 million dollars in revenue worldwide.35

Today, ongoing research has indicated that coriander, citric acid (citrus fruits), succinic acid (contained in apples and blueberries), malic acid (grapes and wine) and chlorella may have metal eliminating properties and supplement detox.3

Emerging science indicates that starting your day with a glass of lemon water may be a simple, natural detox cleanse that can provide benefits for overall health. Acid from the lemon can help aid digestion and provides a good source of vitamin C. Lemon also contains phytonutrients that have antioxidant properties within the body.36

A natural detox cleanse with lemon water provides hydration, may help increase your consumption of water and is a healthy beverage choice compared to sugary pop or fruit juice. Increased hydration also prevents the buildup of kidney stones.36

Natural Cleanse

The human body contains a highly developed system of detoxification. The liver, colon, kidneys, lungs and skin all contribute to the excretion of unwanted chemicals or substances.3

Preliminary research has begun to identify that select nutritional ingredients may also work as natural cleanse products and assist the body’s natural detoxification processes.3

Chlorella is one of the most well-known natural cleansing products that has demonstrated the ability to enhance lead and mercury excretion in animal studies. Made from unicellular green algae, chlorella contains metal binding proteins, known as metallothionein’s.3 Chlorella can be found in select cleanse products, but is not featured in every cleanse formula.

Emerging research has also begun to establish chlorella’s ability to help eliminate select persistent organic pollutants (POPs).3

Herbal Cleanse

Herbs are considered a plant, or part of a plant that can be used for therapeutic purposes. Used for thousands of years, herbs have been use to help cleanse organs, relieve everyday symptoms and increase energy. Herbal cleanse often combine multiple plants or substances to produces teas, tinctures, ointments or liquid remedies.47

Aloe vera, a plant used to treat sunburns, wounds, and psoriasis, has also been known to have laxative properties when taken orally. Aloe contains strong laxative compounds, which allows for a natural cleanse that flushes the colon.48

Previously, aloe was found in numerous over-the-counter natural cleanses. After 2002, the FDA mandated that any herbal detox supplement formulas that contained aloe vera provide more clinical data to support its effectiveness. Today, fewer all natural cleanses may be available with aloe vera due to this ruling.48

Weight Loss Cleanse & Detox

Although detox weight loss supplements often do result in minor weight loss through excretion, fluid loss or calorie restriction, this is often temporary unless subsequent lifestyle changes are made.

Weight loss detox cleanse products may be a useful tool to jumpstart a weight loss period, providing a day or two for the body to pass waste, reset and mentally reevaluate eating habits. Due to a lack of daily calories and nutrients, weight loss detox programs should only be done for a short-term period.

Read More: Weight Loss Supplements, Diet Pills & Fat Burners.

Beyonce does full body cleanse using weight loss cleanse and detox drink from Master Cleanse. Detox drink for weight loss helped beyonce drop 20 pounds.
Beyoncé, at the 2006 premier of Dreamgirls. She used the Master Cleanse to shed 20 lbs for her role.

Detox Drinks for Weight Loss

Since the 1940’s drink detox cleanses have been a popular way for celebrities and individuals alike to shed pounds quickly.

Published in 1976, The Master Cleanser was made popular several years ago when pop idol Beyoncé announced on the Oprah Winfrey Show that she dropped 20lbs for her role in Dreamgirls by following the Master Cleanse.38,39

Following the appearance, ‘Master Cleanse’ became the most searched recipe on Google in 2007, according to the Los Angeles Times.39

While she claimed this was the most effective cleanse detox, the master cleanse is an old modified juice fast that lacks many nutrients.37

In recent years, nutrient-packed specialty juices and drinks have become the latest liquid detox supplements for weight loss. With the designer juice industry reaching $5 billion in revenue sales, people are wondering “are detox drinks the new, healthiest detox cleanse?”38,39

Juice cleanses are typically short term (average 3 day) interventions where solid food is replaced with fruit and vegetable juice. These cleansing detox drinks claim to boost energy, be easier on the stomach and digestive track. While no scientific studies have been conducted on juice cleanses, the body detox supplements may allow you to hit the ‘reset’ button and help mentally change your view on nutrition.38

While high in vitamins and minerals, most juice cleanses will not contain enough protein or fiber to sustain appropriate calorie intake for a long-term period. While consuming detox drinks for several days is unlikely to cause dangerous nutritional outcomes in healthy individuals, consuming only detox cleanse drinks indefinitely may result in nutritional deficiencies, fatigue and place stress on the body.38

In 2015, a clinical study investigated the weight loss effects of a lemon drink detox program. 84 overweight Korean women participated, with a portion of women consuming the all natural cleanse for weight loss, which consisted of a mixture of lemon juice, maple syrup and palm syrups for one week.40

During the short-term intervention, a significant decrease was observed in body mass index, hip-waist ratio, insulin resistance, body weight and percentage of body fat in the lemon detox group. In addition, high levels of C-reactive protein (a response to internal inflammation) were decreased with the detox diet supplements.40

Kidney Cleanse

In the body, the kidneys act as a natural filter which cleanses and detoxes excess fluid, waste and toxins from the blood. The kidneys are also responsible for maintaining electrolyte balance, and releasing hormones that produce red blood cells and stabilize blood pressure.42

Properly functioning kidneys are self-regulating and are effective at naturally detoxing the body. Yet, when kidneys are put under excessive stress, they may not be able to perform crucial roles within the body.

The National Kidney Foundation estimates that 1 in every 3 American adults is at risk of developing kidney disease. 26 million American adults already have kidney disease, and many of them may not know they even have it.42

Many kidney cleansing remedies will include a mix of natural herbs, vitamins or minerals. The most common include:41

Certain ingredients within kidney detox supplements have been noted to naturally maintain blood pressure, support the immune system and assist in removing toxins. However, studies have not directly connected kidney cleanse formulations to the prevention of kidney stones or drastically improved kidney health.41

While there are naturally good detox supplements, you can take additional lifestyle steps to improve kidney function and reduce the risk of kidney disease. These include:42

  • Staying hydrated
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Avoiding smoking
  • Regulating your cholesterol
  • Avoiding excessive alcohol consumption
  • Avoiding excessive caffeine consumption
  • Maintaining normal blood sugar and blood pressure levels
  • Decreasing sodium intake
Did you know: Healthy kidneys filter your blood every 30 minutes.42

It should be noted that pregnant or breast feeding women, children or those with kidney disease are not recommended to take kidney cleanse products.41

Heavy Metal Detox

Although the body can naturally cleanse and detox itself, some metals and foreign chemicals are not as easily removed. Within the body, heavy metals can accumulate in adipose tissue and take years to break down. Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), a now banned pesticide that was used in agriculture for years, has a half-life of 7-8 years and is still found in animal tissues as far North as the North Pole.3,43

Heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, arsenic and cadmium are by-products of industrial practices and are increasingly present in our modern environments.3 So much so, that it’s estimated that one in every four Americans has some level of heavy metal poisoning.3

While clinical trials on commercially available heavy metal detox supplements are ongoing, preliminary research indicates that many organic nutrients may also work as natural metal detox supplements and help to eliminate the presence of toxic heavy metals.3

For lead, modified citrus pectin has been used in a pilot study in hospitalized children with toxic blood serum levels of lead.3

The patients took a divided daily dose of 15 grams of modified citrus pectin. By the end of the trial, there was a dramatic 161% decrease in blood serum levels of lead. With no observed adverse side effects, more research is needed for this heavy metal detox supplement.3,44

Did you Know: In bones, lead has a half-life of 20-30 years.3

The trace element selenium has been observed to promote mercury excretion after three months of taking an organic selenium supplement in long-term mercury-exposed residents.45

Brain Detox

In an increasingly digital, fast-paced world, our brain always seems to be on the go. But it turns out, the brain, like other organs, needs to naturally detox to function normally.46

In a 2012 study, researchers found that brain activity creates neural waste or by-products within the brain. When the brain is not properly cleared, the accumulation of these waste products or toxins may be a contributing factor of brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s.46

Read More: Nootropics, Smart Pills & Brain Supplements – The Ultimate Guide

GNC Detox & Other Retailers

Over the counter colon cleanse products are widely available and can often be purchased at supermarkets, supplement stores or pharmacies.

Colon cleanse products at Walmart are affordable, and come in a variety of forms such as pills, powders and specialty teas.

Whole Foods cleanse products may also include organic or alternative options for those who have dietary restrictions. Whole Foods colon cleanse products offer select brands that come free of any artificial colors or flavors, for those with food sensitivities.

For a simple shopping experience, many customers prefer to buy their supplements online. For great deals, a large selection, and hassle free shipping, is a highly recommended online retailer for cleanse and detox products.

GNC Cleanse Products

With nearly 100 detox cleanse products, GNC offers one of the largest varieties of body detox supplements available in store or online.

GNC colon cleanse products come in an easy-to-take pill or liquid form to support colon health, making it convenient even for the busy individual. GNC cleanse products may be used as preventative nutrition or for short term uses. GNC cleansing products come in a wide selection, to meet a variety of consumer needs.

Homemade Detox

A quick search for homemade detox cleanses or body cleanse products results in millions of remedies, homemade supplements or programs.

While often tried by individuals with similar symptoms, many of these of these at home detox cleanse programs are not based on any scientific evidence. And although they may seem harmless, it’s important to remember that even ‘natural’ or homemade detox cleanse supplements can interact with regular medication.

What is a good cleanse? – Detox Supplements Reviews

Click here for the most comprehensive detox supplement reviews.


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