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Author Topic: Zero Carb Interview: The Andersen Family  (Read 23027 times)
Rammstein
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« on: June 10, 2015, 07:09:24 AM »

Taking it to extremes?

http://web.archive.org/web/20150508150639/http://zerocarbzen.com/2015/03/09/zero-carb-interview-the-andersen-family/

Quote
Zero Carb Interview: The Andersen Family
Posted on March 9, 2015
image
The Andersen Family: George (age Cool, Charlene (age 42), Charlie (age 10), Joe (age 57)

Please note: Joe is the primary speaker in this interview.

1. How long have you been eating a Zero Carb (No Plant Foods) diet?

My wife and I have been eating a Zero Carb diet since 1998. My boys have been eating Zero Carb since they started eating solid food.

2. What motivated you to try this way of eating? Weight? Health?

I experimented in the mid 1990’s with Vince Gironda’s steak and egg diet and with Rheo Blair’s cream, eggs and protein powder diets. I knew that I could manage just fine on a zero-carb diet. I used these diets to put on muscle and lean out a bit. Rheo Blair and Vince Gironda were well known in the bodybuilding community for their unusual methods in training and nutritional advice.

In 1998, my wife became very sick. Eventually, we learned that she had Lyme disease. This spiral shaped bacteria was suffocating the life out of her. Digging in and entrenching itself into her weakened body. Her immune system was completely shot. She couldn’t eat anything without having horrible severe reactions. Did I say she couldn’t eat anything? She could eat meat! The fattier the better! This blew us away: fatty red meat, the very thing that had been demonized by the entire health community was giving her strength. We spent the next few years reading every book, study, or article we could find on meat diets (specifically fatty, red meat) to try and understand why this “extreme” diet was working so well.

3. How long did it take you to adapt to a Zero Carb diet, both physically and psychologically?

There were problems. The earlier forms of Zero Carb diets that I had tried weren’t clean. By this, I mean they included non-meat foods (eggs, cheese, whey). Once I tried a specific, fatty, meat-only diet I felt miserable at first. Massive headaches, depression, fatigue and nausea were common. By the end of two weeks, however, the veil lifted and I felt great! I discovered that eating this clean meat-only diet was very healing, and I had my own demons and ill health that had to be expelled. Charlene’s path to healing has taken considerably longer. Although she felt great immediately removing all the fibers, vegetables, and grains that she had been eating for years, she also felt the effects of starving out her Lyme bacteria. Her body would cycle back and forth from feeling great as the Lyme died off, to feeling horrible because the Lyme was dying off. She gritted her teeth, dug in, and stayed on plan.

image
Charlene today! (age 42)

4. What books or people were most influential in guiding you to this way of eating?

Initially, the writings of Vince Gironda and Rheo Blair. Once we began the zero-carb diet, and saw how successful it was we read everything we could get our hands on that was low-carb, very low- carb or zero-carb. We were fascinated as to why this diet would produce such significant improvements in Charlene’s health. We read so many books, articles and web-sites! Here is a quick list of works that stood out the most:

“Neanderthin” by Ray Audette

“The Fat of the Land” by Vilhjalmur Stefansson

The Type A / Type B Weight Loss Diet by H. L. Newbold

“Calories Don’t Count” by Taller

“Not By Bread Alone” by Lutz

“Strong Medicine” by Donaldson

“Eat Fat Grow Slim” by Mackarness

“Nutrition and Physical Degeneration” by Weston A. Price

“Hormonal Enhancement” by Rob Faigin

Although not a book, Stefansson and Andersen’s 1928 Bellevue all-meat diet study was fascinating to read as well!

5. Do you eat only meat, or do you include eggs, cheese, and cream in your diet?

We only eat meat. I had used eggs and cream early on when I was lifting heavy and working out. But I noticed that eggs and dairy gave me puffy eyes, frequent headaches and a stuffy nose. It wasn’t difficult to stop eating them!

6. What percentage of your diet is beef verses other types of meats?

We are 100% beef and have been almost from the beginning. If I have a desire for chicken or pork I’ll eat it but the desire is seldom if ever there. We didn’t set out to be “beef only”. When we started we ate fish, bacon, chicken and lamb as well. However, we quickly noticed that we never felt as good with other meats as we did with beef. The more we ate beef the less we desired other meats.

7. When you eat beef, do you cook it rare, medium, or well done?

Medium and medium well.

image
George (age Cool and Charlie (age 10)

8. Do you add extra fat to your meat? (i.e. butter, lard, tallow)

We don’t add extra fat. We prefer to eat the rib-eye cut of steak. We ask the butcher for untrimmed rib-eye. There is so much fat on this cut of steak that I swear I hear angels sing every time I’m eating one.

9. Do you limit your meat consumption or do you eat until satisfied?

We all eat until we’re stuffed. I mean literally “Thanksgiving full”. Every night is an all out gorge fest!

10. Do you eat liver or other organ meats? If so, how often?

No, we don’t eat organ meats. We did early on believing that organ meats would be beneficial but stopped eating them when we noticed how bad we felt and how inflamed we’d be the next morning. On a side note, pig brains fried in bacon grease were exceptional!

11. Do you consume bone broth? If so, how often?

We tried bone broth once but didn’t notice any benefits to make it worth our while.

12. How many meals do you eat per day on average?

We eat one large meal at night. We love our energy during the day when our bodies are free from the work of digestion and assimilation.

image
Joe taking a “Selfie” (age 57)

13. How much meat do you eat per day on average?

I eat anywhere from 2 to 3 pounds. My wife eats a pound or two, as do the boys.

14. Do you eat grass-fed/pasture-raised meat, or regular commercially produced meat?

Early on we ate grass-fed exclusively. We were pain-in-the-ass, religious zealots about it until we realized that we felt better (MUCH better) eating grass-raised, grain-finished good ol’ fashioned grocery store meat from our local Kroger or Winn-Dixie. Goodbye frozen bricks of way too lean beef, goodbye toe cramps and leg cramps in the middle of the night, goodbye restless nights, goodbye to our air of superiority as we attempted to savor the flavor of a cut of meat from an obviously undernourished animal. Grain is from a grass. When it is left to grow naturally, it goes to seed resembling a stalk of wheat. This seed head contains nutrition that “grass-fed” animals never see. Grass-fed farmers typically do not let their fields “go to seed”. A field of grass that is allowed to go to seed contains as many as 20 diferent species of grass and plant life, while a field prevented from going to seed will be lucky to have 10. It was a huge monkey off our back to stop eating grass-fed/pasture-raised/organic meat!

Here is a picture of What our steaks typically look like:

image
Untrimmed Bone-In Ribeye Steaks purchased from Winn-Dixie.

15. Do you drink any beverages besides water? (i.e. coffee, tea)

We just drink water.

16. Do you use salt?

We don’t salt our food. We all get puffy faced when we get into meat that has been salted or seasoned.

17. Do you use spices?

No, we don’t use any spices.

18. Do you take any supplements?

No, we don’t take any supplements.

image
George (age Cool and Charlie (age 10)

19. How much money do you spend on food each month?

We spend quite a bit! Unfortunately rib-eyes aren’t cheap. Depending on the price per pound, we spend anywhere from $1,000 to $1,750 a month.

20. Do you have any tips for making this diet more affordable?

There are other much less costly cuts of meat! We prefer rib-eyes so we are willing to cut our budget in other areas to make room for this high priced item. Talk to your butcher or meat department manager and tell them you’d like to buy in bulk. Rib-eye steaks go for $11.99 a pound but we frequently are able to buy them for $7 a pound or less by buying 40-60 pounds at a time uncut/untrimmed.

21. Do you exercise regularly? If so, how often and how vigorously?

My wife takes a 15 minute stroll daily. In no way should it be confused with “exercise”! She just likes to get out and get some sun, see the neighbors and generally be outdoors. I used to be an exercise fanatic but no longer! I feel much better the less I do. Presently I do about 5 to 10 minutes a week. When I’m at the park with the boys I’ll jump up and knock out a few sets of pull-ups. I’ll do this every other day. That’s it.

22. What benefits have you experienced since beginning a Zero Carb diet? (i.e. recovery from illness, overall health, body composition, exercise performance, hormonal, mental or psychological, etc.)

Neither my wife nor I had weight problems. But as I mentioned above, Charlene has come back from a serious illness. She was diagnosed with Lyme Disease early in 1998. Tests showing that she had it for a long time (this meant that the typical 2 week antibiotic protocol wouldn’t work). Armed with the highly saturated fat (saturated fat = very strong anti-bacterial agent) found in pemmican and beef steak, we made quick work of her supposedly incurable disease. Lyme can be wicked ugly. Charlene – at her worst – couldn’t be on her feet for more than a few minutes at a time, she was sensitive to just about every food known to man except for beef. Depressed, with her eye lashes and eye brows falling out, she was frequently unable to straighten her back/spine to sit up and eat. Sensitive to chemicals, deoderants, soaps, tap water, car exhaust, laundry soap, most trees, most of her clothing etc… etc… Today, she is a much happier, healthier person. I personally feel much more youthful and invigorated than before I started eating this way. My boys are very positive and happy, and they show a quick ability to learn and an overall enthusiasm for life.


Charlie (age 10), Charlene (age 42), and George (age8).

23. Have you conceived, given birth, or breastfed while on a Zero Carb diet? If so, what was your experience?

Charlene was zero-carb throughout both pregnancies. She was zero-carb during the breast feeding as well. No complications for either boys. We had them both at home. We used a mid-wife for our first child and then our second we had ourselves. I was all set to help Charlene deliver our second one when she told me her water had broke. By the time I made it over to the bathroom (a walk of about 20 feet) she had already given birth! Charlene says: “It was the strongest sense or urge I’ve ever experienced in my life! I pushed once and George’s head popped out – I felt the urge to push again and his little body popped out! We walked him over to our local Publix (Florida grocery store) to weigh him a couple hours later!”

24. Have you raised children on a Zero Carb diet? If so, what has been their experience? How difficult is it to keep carbs out of their diet in today’s world?

We have raised our boys on a zero-carb diet. They each breast fed until about age 2. We introduced meats a bit here and there mostly pemmican or raw salmon. It’s been fantastic to share this journey with them! At the time when they were both very young we were eating pemmican only (we spent several years on an all pemmican diet). My boys don’t attend a regular school. We enroll them in a variety of classes (depending on their interests) through many different outlets. They have taken history classes at the Museum, science classes at the Library, Ballet classes, Art classes, craft classes at the park and Gym classes at the College. They are involved in Baseball and Soccer leagues as well. I bring this up because these are boys who are around a very wide variety of children on a daily basis. Not once have either boy complained that someone has made fun of them or treated them badly because of their food choices. If they take any food with them to any of their camps or classes it’s pemmican (they enjoy the others kid’s curiosity!). Generally, when classes break for snacks or lunch they just do something else or hang out with their friends while they eat.

Around the age 4 both boys went through a phase where they became curious about other foods. I told them I would buy them anything they wanted – just let me know and we’ll see how you feel. They tried a few things here and there but with little interest. Occasionally they’ll have something now and then but they feel pretty lousy afterwards! It’s a built in deterrent! Try eating zero-carb for 4-5 years and then eat a piece of cake! Ha ha! I have NO trouble dissuading them from eating carbs. The last time they had any was at their buddies birthday party. His Mom had made this awesome Avengers cake. They couldn’t say no to this. They each had a few bites, didn’t finish and instead went outside to jump on the trampoline.

Of note: When they would try other foods I noticed that of all the things they tried the least destructive to their overall general happiness was chocolate candy bars (they had a Snickers bar a time or two). The worst food, and I mean agonizingly horrific temper tantrums and over-all belligerent behavior was fruit. Yes – fruit! Apples one time and raspberries another made them into crying, angry, little monsters. A complete turnabout from their general demeanor!

25. What do you enjoy most about eating a Zero Carb diet?

The food! Feeling good. Passing for being much younger than I am!

image
George (age Cool and Charlie (age 10)

26. Do you have any advice for someone who is just beginning a Zero Carb diet?

Give it a try! You don’t have to be sick or overweight to benefit from this way of eating. Also don’t complicate it! When you’re hungry eat meat, when your thirsty drink water.

27. Are your friends and family supportive of your Zero Carb lifestyle? If not, how do you handle this?

Our family and friends have been very supportive. Many of our friends and family remember how sick Charlene was. They know that the only thing that was done to create a more happy, healthy life for her was to change her diet. They can’t argue with the success! They see that our boys are in good spirits, happy and healthy as well. I’m sure our closest friends would tell you that they’ve never seen any of us, including the boys sick (we don’t get sick!). So on what grounds could anyone argue against our diet? We have incredible friends and family who know what we’re about and love us as we are.

28. Is there anything you would like share about this way of eating that I have not already asked you?

This way of eating is energy giving, clean and exciting. My body and mind are more active and responsive at age 56 than when I was in my 20’s.

In closing here are a few quotes from my wife and boys:

Charlene (age 42) “The simplicity. Less is more! I used to have to work my ass off to have a good body, now I literally don’t have to do anything (but eat steak) and I am lean and healthy!”

Charlie (age 10) “My favorite thing about eating this way is how good steak tastes!”

George (age Cool “It makes a good life.”

image
The Andersen Family when Charlie and George were younger.

Please visit my Interviews page to read the stories of other long time Zero Carb veterans.

If you are interested in meeting others who practice an All-Meat diet, please feel free to join us in the Facebook group Principia Carnivora for support.





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Army of One
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« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2015, 07:12:52 AM »

Both look fat for zero carb for so long
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El Diablo Blanco
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« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2015, 08:23:19 AM »

All that effort in their diets to look normal.  Why even bother?
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liberty
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« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2015, 08:34:38 AM »

You guys think the average american woman looks like her ?   Roll Eyes
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Irongrip400
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« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2015, 08:37:27 AM »

What does their blood look like, cholesterol wise?
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Yamcha
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« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2015, 08:39:37 AM »

You guys think the average american woman looks like her ?   Roll Eyes

Especially at 42
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a
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« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2015, 08:43:00 AM »

This can't be true.
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Straw Man
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« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2015, 09:07:07 AM »

If he is eating 2-3 lbs of meat a day then his body is likely making quite a bit of glucose from the excess protein so he's not on a zero carb diet.

I see no reason not to also eat some veggies, eggs, avocado, fatty fish, butter, olive oil etc.. and no need to eat so much protein

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BigRo
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« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2015, 09:14:41 AM »

making your children eat like this is child abuse.
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Irongrip400
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« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2015, 09:18:36 AM »

making your children eat like this is child abuse.

I would have to agree. I'm sure some social worker will be paying them a visit.
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« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2015, 09:41:50 AM »

If he is eating 2-3 lbs of meat a day then his body is likely making quite a bit of glucose from the excess protein so he's not on a zero carb diet.

I see no reason not to also eat some veggies, eggs, avocado, fatty fish, butter, olive oil etc.. and no need to eat so much protein



Can you recommend any books or articles about how protein turns to glucose?  I don't know anything about this subject, but I feel my brain works a lot better on carbs than protein.  Hence, I'm wondering if protein -> glucose requires some considerations.

By the way, they both look like shit.
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Straw Man
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« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2015, 10:53:00 AM »

Can you recommend any books or articles about how protein turns to glucose?  I don't know anything about this subject, but I feel my brain works a lot better on carbs than protein.  Hence, I'm wondering if protein -> glucose requires some considerations.

By the way, they both look like shit.

just google "gluconeogenesis"

all the keto diets (low carb, high fat, moderate protein) talk about limiting protein to avoid gluconeogenesis

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visualizeperfection
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« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2015, 11:06:33 AM »

Haha.


I had different cuts of meat so my toes and legs cramped.


I wonder if they have experimented with baking lawn clippings, very falconesque logic indeed.
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cephissus
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« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2015, 11:34:29 AM »

just google "gluconeogenesis"

all the keto diets (low carb, high fat, moderate protein) talk about limiting protein to avoid gluconeogenesis



Thanks!
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Tapeworm
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« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2015, 12:02:37 PM »

A fool and his expensive turds are eventually parted.
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Rudee
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« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2015, 06:25:41 PM »

Eating nothing but rib-eye steak.  That would get awfully boring, awfully fast.
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« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2015, 06:36:31 PM »

mami looks soft for a lifetime of zero carbs
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el numero uno
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« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2015, 06:38:50 PM »

Bull$hit

I tried a low carb - zero carb diet for only 2 months and I almost dissapeared. You can't eat like that forever.

Remember Galeniko use to diet year round but with hugeeee cheat meal consisting of ice cream and chocolate.

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« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2015, 07:22:05 PM »

making your children eat like this is child abuse.

yep. much like feeding cats abd dogs vegan food is animal abuse.
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Never1AShow
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« Reply #19 on: June 12, 2015, 07:51:24 PM »

Both look fat for zero carb for so long

This is a pack of lies.  Probably they are selling something.  I don't know I only skimmed it enough to see the lie where he says how much meat he and his wife eat.  He says he eats 2-3 pounds a day and his wife eats "probably a pound or two."

There is a huge difference between eating one versus two pounds of meat.  Anyone who uses such loose language isn't interested in the truth.  This is like being asked "how many kids do you have?" And answering "one or two".   

Simply lies.
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SF1900
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« Reply #20 on: June 12, 2015, 08:22:14 PM »

Whatever happened to eating a BALANCED diet like a NORMAL human being? Shit, why all these crazy diets and fads? Does it make people feel important?  Undecided Undecided
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« Reply #21 on: June 12, 2015, 09:32:05 PM »

Lots of people with food addictions seem to go to these extremes.

On the other hand there are people who just don't desire to eat anything but meat and fat.

Interesting stories here:

http://zerocarbzen.com/2015/05/31/healing-brain-cancer-with-a-zero-carb-ketogenic-diet-by-andrew-scarborough/

http://zerocarbzen.com/the-bear/

http://www.diagnosisdiet.com/all-meat-diets/
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« Reply #22 on: June 12, 2015, 11:11:42 PM »

These lies and the math does not add up:

rib-eyes aren’t cheap. Depending on the price per pound, we spend anywhere from $1,000 to $1,750 a month.

20. Do you have any tips for making this diet more affordable?

There are other much less costly cuts of meat! We prefer rib-eyes so we are willing to cut our budget in other areas to make room for this high priced item. Talk to your butcher or meat department manager and tell them you’d like to buy in bulk. Rib-eye steaks go for $11.99 a pound but we frequently are able to buy them for $7 a pound or less by buying 40-60 pounds at a time uncut/untrimmed.

Assuming 5-10 lbs a meat a day based on his figures. That is 5x7x30=$1050 a month at the lowest end or 10X12x30=$3600 at the high end.  In the middle is 7.5 lbs x $9.50 x 30 = about $2140.

This is all made up.  Also one meal a day of 2-3 lbs of meat?  For kids?  Horseshit.
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« Reply #23 on: June 12, 2015, 11:17:55 PM »

Two con men just selling their bullshit story. Nincompoops. 
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a
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« Reply #24 on: June 13, 2015, 09:08:53 AM »

These lies and the math does not add up:

rib-eyes aren’t cheap. Depending on the price per pound, we spend anywhere from $1,000 to $1,750 a month.

20. Do you have any tips for making this diet more affordable?

There are other much less costly cuts of meat! We prefer rib-eyes so we are willing to cut our budget in other areas to make room for this high priced item. Talk to your butcher or meat department manager and tell them you’d like to buy in bulk. Rib-eye steaks go for $11.99 a pound but we frequently are able to buy them for $7 a pound or less by buying 40-60 pounds at a time uncut/untrimmed.

Assuming 5-10 lbs a meat a day based on his figures. That is 5x7x30=$1050 a month at the lowest end or 10X12x30=$3600 at the high end.  In the middle is 7.5 lbs x $9.50 x 30 = about $2140.

This is all made up.  Also one meal a day of 2-3 lbs of meat?  For kids?  Horseshit.

He eats 2-3 pounds per day. Bulk at $7 per pound is between $14 to $21 daily

She and her kids eat 1 to 2 pounds daily. That's 3 to 6 pounds daily or $21 to $42 daily

Low end is $35 daily to $63 high end daily.

$35 x 30 is $1050 min and 63 x 30 is  $1890 max.

His numbers are pretty much spot on.
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