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As the winter months drag on, you may notice the cold weather taking a toll on your mind and body.

While many people take the time to care for their skin, some forget about their hair and scalp. This isn’t a mistake you want to make.

Here are a few winter hair care tips to keep in mind at all times:

·      Protect your hair when possible, as you don’t want to expose it too often to the cold, wet weather. This can be as simple as wearing a hat or hood.

·      Hydration is essential. Just the same as your skin, you need to keep your hair and scalp hydrated during the winter months.

·      Over-styling can cause discomfort. It may look good, but the more product you add to your hair the more problems you’re causing.

·      When washing your hair, opt for cool or warm water. That scalding hot shower may sound like a good idea, but it’ll zap all the moisture from your hair and scalp (not to mention your skin).

As you can see, it’s easy to follow these winter hair care tips. It may take a change in approach, but most people find that it’s well worth it in the end.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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It’s something we’ve discussed in the past, but it’s well worth tackling again: there are things you can do to prevent the flu.

While there’s no guarantee you won’t find yourself fighting this illness in the near future, there are steps you can take to improve your chance of remaining healthy this winter. Here are five tips to keep in mind at all times:

·      Avoid close contact with anyone who has the flu (if at all possible)

·      Cover your nose and mouth

·      Clean your hands after contact with other people and objects

·      Don’t get into the habit of touching your mouth, nose, or eyes, as this is often how germs are spread

·      Keep good health habits in mind, which can include getting more sleep, disinfecting your home often, and eating healthy

Again, there is no guaranteed way to prevent the flu this winter, but there are always things you can do to improve your odds of success.

By taking these five tips, you may be one of the lucky people who avoid this illness altogether – and there’s no better feeling than that.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Are you concerned about the health of your skin during the winter months? Are you already beginning to struggle with dryness and cracking? Are you hoping to eliminate dry skin before it becomes too big of a problem?

Preventing dry winter skin is easier said than done, however, there are some tips you can follow to help yourself feel better over the next few months:

·      Moisturize as often as necessary. If nothing else, this is the one thing you need to do. Moisturizing two to three times per day can do wonders for your skin.

·      Use a humidifier at home. It doesn’t matter if you have a whole house humidifier or a portable unit, this can be the difference between dry skin and remaining healthy (and comfortable) this winter.

·      Don’t shower in hot water. This may feel good when the temperature drops, but it’s one of the quickest way to pull the moisture out of your skin. If you’re going to shower in super hot water, make it a quick one.

These three tips don’t guarantee you will never suffer from dry skin this winter, but they can definitely help. Don’t hesitate to use each one to your advantage until the spring months roll around.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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With the cold weather here to stay for a few months, it may be time to adjust your approach to working out.

Rather than hibernate until the weather breaks, there are a few cold weather workout tips you can implement. Here are several that are sure to work in your favor:

·      Get in a good stretch before you do anything. Without this, you’re taking a big risk with the health of your muscles. It only takes 10 minutes to stretch, so make sure you add this to your schedule. You’ll be glad that you did.

·      Begin your workout with light cardio. This can include everything from brisk walking to riding a stationary bike. With this, you can raise your core temperature and ensure that you’re ready to take on anything your workout will throw at you.

·      Dress appropriately. This is a tough one, as it’s cold outside but you’ll be sweating in no time at all. The best thing you can do is dress appropriately for the temperature, as you don’t want to expose yourself to cold weather when you’re soaked in sweat.

There is no denying the fact that cold temperatures can have an impact on your body, such as forcing your muscles to work overtime. Subsequently, it can result in more muscle tissue damage, longer recovery times, and additional soreness.

With all this in mind, you’ll want to follow the tips above at all times. These will ensure that you get the most out of every cold weather workout.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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With 2017 coming to a close, it won’t be long before you turn all your attention to the new year. This means many things to many people, including setting a New Year’s resolution.

While your New Year’s resolution can be pretty much anything you want, 2018 may be the year for you to focus on your health. If it is, here are three resolutions to consider:

·      Lose weight. Even if you only shed a few pounds in the new year it could go a long way in improving your overall level of health. There’s no better time than January to get moving in the right direction.

·      Get more exercise. It may be something you’ve struggled with in the past, but once it’s part of your daily routine you’ll feel much better about your health and well being. More exercise can be as simple as taking a couple laps around the block at lunch.

·      Quit smoking. A top New Year’s resolution, use the new year to give you the boost you need to put smoking in the past once and for all. By the time 2019 rolls around, this will be a distant memory.

So, there you have it. These are a few of the best New Year’s resolutions for your health. What do you think of these ideas? Are you considering any others?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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With the holiday season in full swing, it’s only natural to feel a bit of stress every now and again. Of course, if this becomes too much for you to handle, it could begin to have an impact on your daily life.

Knowing the top causes of holiday stress may be able to help you avoid trouble in the days and weeks to come. Here are some things to think about:

·      Financial worries. It goes without saying that you’ll probably need to part with some money during the holiday season. From gifts to hosting people at your home, there’s always money to be spent.

·      Friends and family. Like many, the more time you spend around friends and family the more stress you feel. Don’t be surprised if this doesn’t ramp up during the holidays.

·      Large crowds. Do you find yourself fighting large crowds at local stores? How about on the roadways? Outside of staying home, there isn’t much you can do about this.

These are just some of the many top causes of holiday stress. If you’re having trouble with any of these (or something else), it’s time to search for a solution. After all, you don’t want stress to ruin this wonderful time of the year.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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The cold winter season can impact your health in a number of ways. While many people focus on preventing a cold and the flu, there should be other things on your mind as well.

For example, there are a few winter skin care tips you need to follow until the weather turns. These include the following:

·      Use a moisturizer as necessary. With this, you can slow the loss of water from the skin, thus avoiding a situation in which it becomes itchy and dried out. Get into the habit of applying a moisturizer at least once a day.

·      Protect your skin from harm. Did you know that your skin can burn even when it’s cold outside? This can be the result of the sun reflecting off of snow, for example. If you’ll be outside for an extended period of time, make sure you apply sunscreen.

·      Change your bathing habits. If winter itch has you down in the dumps, it may be time to change your bathing habits until the weather breaks. An example of this would be shortening your showers and turning down the water temperature just a bit. A hot shower may feel good, but it can dry you out in no time.

These aren’t the only winter skin care tips to follow, but they are definitely among the most effective. You should keep these in mind over the months to come.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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For many people, there is nothing more exciting than shopping during the holidays. Conversely, there are people who do whatever it takes to avoid this (although it’s not always possible).

If you’ll be hitting the stores in the days to come, it’s imperative that you keep your health and well being in mind at all times. It’s up to you to do your best to avoid illness and injury. Here are some basic tips to keep in mind:

·      Avoid the rush (if at all possible). For example, if you can shop early in the morning to avoid the largest crowds, do your best to arrive when the doors open. The fewer people you run into the greater chance you have of avoiding illness and injury.

·      Use hand sanitizer often. Think about everything you touch when shopping. Now, think about everything that other people are touching. It’s easy to contract a cold or the flu during this time of the year, so you need to protect yourself.

·      Be careful when driving (and walking). There are more people than usual on the roads during the holiday season. This alone can increase the odds of an accident. Also, not everyone is paying attention when behind the wheel, so pedestrian accidents are also more likely (such as in a shopping mall parking lot). You need to be aware of your surroundings at all times.

Following these tips can’t guarantee that you will avoid illness or injury this shopping season, but they can definitely help.

Final tip: if the stress of the holidays is weighing you down, don’t hesitate to book a massage. This may be just what you need!  

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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There are few things more enjoyable than good food during the holiday season. While you may be looking forward to feeding your face and enjoying every last bite, you don’t want to go overboard.

Here are a few tips you can follow to ensure that you don’t overeat, thus leading to a situation in which you don’t feel your best:

·      Eat smaller meals. It’s tempting to eat big meals – especially on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day – but don’t push yourself past the point of no return. Eating smaller meals gives you time to digest your food.

·      Eat breakfast. Many people “save their appetite” for dinner. When the time finally comes to eat, they scarf down everything in sight. Of course, within a matter of hours, they’re regretting the decision. You can help prevent this by eating a good breakfast.

·      Control your stress. While some people eat because they are hungry and/or simply enjoy food, others do so because they are bogged down by stress. This is common during the holiday season, as you can have a lot going on both in your personal and professional life.

If you’re hoping to avoid overeating this holiday season, don’t hesitate to follow these tips. Doing so will allow you to better enjoy your food!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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It doesn’t matter who you are, there will be times when stress gets you down. Maybe it comes into play during the busy holiday season. Or maybe it comes into play when you get overwhelmed at work.

While stress is a part of life, there’s something you need to remember: it can have a negative impact on your health and well being.

Here are some of the most common physical effects of stress on your body:

·      Chest pain

·      Fatigue

·      Headache

·      Upset stomach

·      Muscle tension

Along with these, stress can also impact your mood in a variety of ways:

·      Lack of motivation

·      Irritability

·      Depression

·      Restlessness

·      Anxiety

Along with all the above, don’t be surprised if stress also impacts your behavior, such as leading to fits of anger, social withdrawal, and/or drug or alcohol abuse.

As you can see, stress is never a good thing. While there is no way to completely do away with it, don’t hesitate to take action if you get the feeling that it’s taking a toll on your life.

There are many steps you can take to reduce or eliminate stress, such as working out or getting a massage. Once you find something that works for you, stick with it.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Most people are familiar with the benefits of stretching before a workout, however, there’s something else you need to know: it’s imperative to stretch afterwards as well.

It’s tempting to end your workout by sitting down and catching some rest, but you need to stretch before you do this. Here are the benefits of doing so:

·      Improved flexibility. If you want to improve your flexibility, one of the best things you can do is stretch for five to ten minutes after every workout. Once you do this a few times it will become second nature.

·      Eliminate the build of lactic acid. Soreness is a direct result of the lactic acid that is produced during your workout. By stretching, you eliminate lactic acid and the soreness that often comes along with it.

·      A gradual way to cool down. After a good workout, it’s safe to assume your heart rate has increased. While you want to bring it down, you need to do so at a gradual pace. This is exactly what stretching allows you to do.

So, the next time you finish a workout, make sure you get in a good stretch. Yes, it will take a few minutes, but it will benefit your body in many ways – and there is no better feeling than that.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Although you may not be the type of person who enjoys sleeping, here’s something to remember: getting an extra hour or so at night could do wonders for your life.

If you continue to neglect yourself in regards to how much sleep you get, here are a few reasons to change your ways in the near future:

·      Improved health. Did you know that getting the proper amount of sleep could protect your body against health concerns, such as diabetes, obesity, and heart disease? Enough said.

·      Less pain and more healing. Your body has the opportunity to heal when you are sleeping. For this reason, if you’re facing an injury or illness, you need to get as much rest as possible. This could be the key to making a fast and full recovery.

·      Clear thinking. Are you the type of person who struggles to think clearly during the morning hours? Do you often “hit a wall” sometime during the afternoon hours? If clear thinking is important to you (and it should be), it’s time to look at how much sleep you’re getting.

These are just a few of the many benefits of getting more sleep. If you’re able to improve in this area of your life you’re sure to reap a variety of rewards. It may be time for a change!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Are you suffering from a headache? Does this ailment continue to drag you down, one day after the day? While there’s nothing wrong with consulting with a doctor – just to make sure you aren’t dealing with a bigger issue – you should also look into the many natural treatment methods that could bring relief.

It’s easy to believe that modern medicine is the only way to overcome your pain and discomfort, however, nothing could be further from the truth. Here are a few of the better ways to treat a headache without the use of medicine:

·      Hydrate. There’s always the chance that your headache is related to dehydration. Protect against this by drinking as much water as possible.

·      Take a warm bath to reduce tension in your body. This is one of the most relaxing steps you can take if you’re suffering from a nasty headache.

·      Use lavender and peppermint essential oils. These have long been known to relieve the pain associated with headaches (among other ailments).

·      Use an ice pack on your head or neck. This may be uncomfortable at first, but it can bring relief soon enough.

The next time you’re suffering from a headache, don’t hesitate to experiment with one of these natural treatment methods. You may find that one or more of these bring you fast relief.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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If you’ve ever had a muscle cramp in the past, you know just how painful it can be. While it doesn’t last a long time (typically), this type of cramp has a way of slowing you down.

There are several steps you can take to both prevent and treat muscle cramps. Let’s start with two tips for prevention:

·      Stay hydrated. Generally speaking, you need to drink enough liquids every day to remain hydrated. If you neglect to do so, don’t be surprised if muscle cramps, among a variety of other issues, begin to set in.

·      Stretch your muscles. It’s important to do this both in the morning and evening. Also, if you’re taking on any physical activity, such as jogging, be sure to stretch.

Here are some of the things you can do if you need to immediately treat a muscle cramp:

·      Experiment with cold or heat. For example, taking a warm bath may provide immediate relief. The same holds true with applying ice.

·      Massage the area. Gently rub the muscle in an attempt to help it relax. It may take some time, but this can help relieve the pain and get you back on track.

So, there you have it. These are a few of the many things you can do to prevent and treat muscle cramps.  

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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There could come a time when your medical team suggests physical therapy. While this may not be appealing to you at first, it’s important to become familiar with the many benefits.

Once you realize what physical therapy can do for you, it won’t be long before you’re excited about getting started. This may be just what you need in order to feel better.

Here are some of the top benefits of physical therapy:

·      Reduce or eliminate pain

·      Avoid surgery or other medical procedures

·      Improve mobility and flexibility

·      Recover from a sports injury

·      Improve your balance

·      Manage a variety of health concerns

Going into your first physical therapy session you may not have any idea of what to expect. While it can be a challenge to get up and running, once you’re in the swing of things you’ll feel good about the progress you’re making.

For many people, the benefits of physical therapy are apparent after one session. Others, however, need to stick with this over the course of several weeks (or longer) to see progress and reach their goals.

If you have reason to believe that physical therapy could help improve your health and well being, now’s the time to learn more.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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There are many benefits of sleeping in a cooler room at night, including the potential to cure insomnia, reduce stress, and treat depression.

If all that sounds exciting to you, now’s the time to make a change to the temperature in your bedroom. Here are some of the many ways to cool yourself down when you sleep (all without jumping through hoops):

·      Open a window. Depending on the outdoor temperature, this may be the best way to lower the temperature in your home to the perfect level.

·      Use a fan. For some, this is just what they need to cool them down. Even better is the fact that the feeling of air blowing on you can be calming.

·      Don’t wear socks (and stick your feet out of the blankets). This one trick can go a long way in releasing excess heat, thus lowering your body temperature.

You may not like the thought of sleeping in a cool room, especially during the fall and winter months, but it’s something you should experiment with. Once you make this change, you may soon realize that it’s benefiting your health in a number of ways – and there’s nothing more important than that.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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The pain and discomfort associated with a muscle strain can linger for many weeks or longer, especially if you don’t implement the right treatment strateg

Conversely, if you receive prompt treatment after suffering a strain, you put yourself in position to make a fast recovery.

Here are the many benefits of prompt treatment after this type of injury:

·      Reduced pain and discomfort

·      Easier to make a full recovery without taking prescription or over the counter drugs

·      Quicker return to action, such as exercising, playing sports, etc.

·      Less chance of the injury lingering over the long run

·      Less chance of recurrence

With all this in mind, you should never wait to treat a muscle strain. The moment you suffer this injury is the moment you should plan out your treatment, which typically includes both rest and ice.

The longer you wait to initially treat a muscle strain the more difficult it becomes to control the pain and make a fast recovery. Is that a risk you want to take?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Now that summer is in the past, it’s time to turn your attention to the many things that make the fall season so enjoyable.

Just because it’s cooling down and the leaves are changing doesn’t mean you have to spend any less time outdoors. Some people continue to work outdoors, such as in their garden, while just as many enjoy exercising in the colder temperatures.

Here are three fall season injuries to be aware of, as you don’t want one of these to sneak up on you:

·      Back injury as the result of heaving lifting, pushing, or pulling. As you ready your yard for fall, it’s common to overexert yourself. Don’t push too far, as it could lead to a back or neck injury.

·      Dehydration. Just because it’s cooler outside doesn’t mean you can’t become dehydrated. Keep this in mind when cutting the grass, working out, or doing any other type of physical activity.

·      Neglecting your body on cool mornings. An example of this would be forgetting to stretch before a cool, early morning workout.

What are your thoughts on these three fall season injuries? Has one or more of these impacted you in the past?

If you have any personal tips for avoiding these types of injuries, be sure to share your feedback below.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Unlike the flu, symptoms of a cold typically arrive over the course of several days. For this reason, if you know the early warning signs, it’s often easy to see this coming (giving you time to prepare).

Here are some of the more common early signs of a cold:

·      Sore throat. A common symptom of viral infections, this is often the first sign that a cold is on the way.

·      Runny nose. Is mucus building up in your nose and throat? Are you finding it more difficult to breathe? This is another common sign of a cold.

·      Sneezing. As your body attempts to rid itself of anything that could cause harm, it’s natural for you to sneeze (and cough) more often.

·      Fatigue. The cold virus has a way of dragging you down, making you feel tired and under the weather in an overall sense.

While there is no cure for the common cold, if you begin to experience these symptoms you can ready your body to fight it off. For example, make sure you get plenty of water as to remain hydrated at all times.

Now that the fall season is closing in fast, it may only be a matter of time before you begin to experience the early signs of a cold.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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If you want to look and feel your best, it’s imperative that you get enough sleep at night.

For most adults, seven to eight hours is the sweet spot. While it sounds easy enough, you may find yourself coming up short time after time.

Here are three reasons why you may not be getting enough quality sleep at night:

·      Poor diet. Are you drinking coffee before retiring for the evening? How about eating a boatload of spicy food? What you eat and drink in the hours leading up to bedtime will impact whether or not you fall asleep quickly (and stay asleep all night).

·      The use of electronic devices. Do you spend time watching television before bed? How about browsing online on your smartphone or tablet? All of these things can stimulate you, which makes it more difficult to fall asleep in a timely manner.

·      Uncomfortable mattress. Let’s face it: a comfortable mattress is important to getting a good night’s sleep. If you don’t like your current mattress, it’s time to pinpoint the problem and make a change.

These are just a few of the many reasons why you may not be getting enough quality sleep at night.

If you make changes in one or more of these areas, you may find it easier to get more sleep when the time comes – and there’s no better feeling than that!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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