What I Eat In A Day

The short answer to “What do you eat?” is… “Mostly organic plants.”

Breakfast happens gradually. I have two cups of fresh ground organic coffee each morning at about 4 am. Good coffee is a delight. I drink mine black and strong while reading your comments and answering emails.

Coffee beans are among the most highly sprayed and chemically treated crops in the world. They are steeped in synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides. I buy only single-source certified organic beans at Fresh Market or my local Health Food store.

My next “course” is often red grapefruit in the winter months.

Citrus fruits have vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function correctly, including B vitamins, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and copper. Additionally, they are rich in plant compounds that have various health benefits, including anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects.

I try to drink between half an ounce to an ounce of water for each pound of my weight, every day. For example, if you weigh 140 pounds, that would be 70 to 140 ounces of water a day. I’ve used a Big Berkey® Water Filter with four filters for about three years. (This is not a sponsored post.)

A couple of hours after waking, I make oatmeal using almond milk and frozen blueberries. (Full disclosure: I borrowed the picture above from Pinterest. My oatmeal is often purple(ish) from the frozen berries and not so photogenic, but it is yummy.)

Low and slow is the best way to cook oatmeal (and soup too!). Bob’s Red Mill has always been my favorite.

I only use almond milk, and I always look for NON-GMO and organic.

Frozen berries and vegetables are the best options when cooking for one. It cuts down on waste and allows us to eat a much more healthy and varied array of foods.

Spices make my oatmeal taste delicious, and the nuts add texture. Those are raw walnuts, pecans, and fresh ground flax seeds, turmeric, curry, and sesame seeds below. I add the items above and a couple of chopped dates near the end of the cooking process.

I use a dedicated spice grinder and a separate coffee grinder. Never the twain shall meet.

Coconut macaroons (from Fresh Market’s bakery section) and dark chocolate are my guilty pleasures. I also enjoy Maté Factor, Organic Yerba Maté tea after breakfast.

I sometimes have a late morning snack of a crunchy organic apple.

An important note: My outstretched hand is always wider than the quantity of food I am about to consume. I am less active in the wintertime, so I eat fewer calories.

In winter, I often make a vegetable stew or hearty soup, including beans, various frozen vegetables, steamed cabbage, sliced fresh ripe avocado topped with herbed goat cheese, and good olive oil. You can add fresh sliced avocado to anything! Sweet Hungarian paprika, Himalayan sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper top the soup. It can be kept in the fridge for up to three days or frozen for later.

On most days, I consume my final meal before 3 pm. When I allow my digestive system to empty and rest, it results in more restful sleep and higher energy levels. Eating more food than I need always feels uncomfortable, and it causes unsettling dreams.

I never buy anything fat-free. My yogurt, butter, or cheese are the best quality, least processed items available. Your brain needs fats to function well since it holds about 25% of the body’s cholesterol.

A typical trip to the grocery may include vegetable or turkey stock, Eden Organic beans, full-fat Greek Yogurt, real butter, frozen wild-caught salmon, fresh root vegetables, and a variety of frozen or raw vegetables. I sometimes eat chicken, wild-caught fish, eggs, or seafood if I dine out on the weekend. During the week, I eat very close to the menu I showed you today.

Some may say it is too expensive to eat healthily, but I must tell you, before changing my food choices, my prescription medicines cost more than $500 per month. Frequent doctor’s office visits resulted in bills in the hundreds of dollars almost every month. In 2010 I was pre-diabetic, and my physician informed me that same year that I would need to start taking high cholesterol and high blood pressure pills for the rest of my life. I was seeing more than one specialist, and I couldn’t walk to the end of the block without fear of passing out.

My current grocery bills average less than $300 per month, even when I am extravagant.

After about six months of eating mostly plants, I lost more than forty-five pounds and kept it off. Ten years later, I don’t require any medications. I haven’t even had a cold over those years, and I now think nothing of hiking five miles.

Please check with your physician before making any significant changes to your diet or exercise routine. I share my journey, but my food choices may not be right for your body.

99 Comments
  1. Hi Susan
    New Years greetings from Ireland
    I was so pleased to see this post this morning I have been reading about plant based diets as I am feeling very bloated after all the Christmas overindulgence
    I thought that I would look to see if you had a post up and I was going to search your site for some plant based meals or send you an email to ask you to do something on healthy eating. Anyway there it was and I have read what you say carefully and made a shopping list!

    I am off now to the store with one of your scarves on to get started

    As we all say your posts are invaluable and I wish you all the best of health and good fortune for the coming year

    Warmest best wishes. Margo

  2. I like the taste of curry very much, and it is useful for reducing inflammation. Frozen vegetables are healthy because they are frozen at their peak. Fresh fruits and vegetables are often transported for days before they arrive in your local market. The time I take to prepare my meals is a wise investment in my health and a ritual I enjoy.

  3. You are so right about whole plant foods, Susan. When my doctor told me I had 3 months to get my cholesterol down or it was statin time, I was amazed at what WFPB eating does for your body. Definitely a life changer.

    Thank you for sharing your experiences with us.

    PS: I know you have a little desert when you and Mr. Micky dine out. But do you have a daily nibble as pictured during the week?

    1. Yes. I enjoy a small piece of dark chocolate (about the size of two fingers) each morning. Sometimes I have a couple of those little macarons too. They are about the size of a quarter.

  4. Thank you, Susan, for this explanation of your eating habits. I think this is very doable for me. Now I have to make adjustments for my husband, as I know he wouldn’t eat this alone. The pictures are a great help!

  5. This is very similar to the way I eat, except I keep my eating “window” between 12:35 (my assigned lunch at school is 12:35-1) and 4:30. I rise between 4:30 and 5 and enjoy black coffee before heading to school at 6:30. I usually try to get a few chores done before the work day begins. I do drink filtered water and lots of organic green tea – recently I’ve switched to Pique Tea. Sunday I eat 3 small meals (pretty much whatever I want) and stop by 6. I fast for 24 hours and eat a small meal at 6 on Monday. I’ve been doing this since school started in the fall, and it’s really helped me maintain my weight. Five years ago, I gave up sugar and all grains and lost 58 pounds. It stayed off pretty well but started creeping up this last summer – in spite of how careful I was. I just needed to switch things up. It’s helped immensely! I haven’t been sick in 5 years (even though as an elementary music teacher I see nearly 300 children aged Kindergarten through 5th grade every day and work a second job on Sundays). I don’t need any meds, either. Like you, I was close to needing bp meds and was pre-diabetic. I’m 63 and have more energy than I did in my 40s!

  6. I love your website. Which Computer Operating System are you using? I tried loading Windows 10, but it was so slow, lost the sound, etc so I took it off. Now I cannot see what you have written. I can see it on the Apple computer. Have you changed anything or is the fault with my laptop?
    Happy New Year!
    Regards,

  7. Please share the soup recipe as you usually make it. I know that you may not use a recipe, but if you could estimate amounts it would be helpful.

    1. Saute onions, potatoes, carrots, celery on low in butter and olive oil for about twenty minutes until tender. Add the frozen vegetables and enough broth or stock to cover. I use about 1/2 cup of each. Season to taste, cover, and let the soup rest for about ten minutes more. It ruins the meal when you burn your mouth on hot soup!

  8. Great post. As an empty nester, I have found that I am able to eat healthier. I too have been able to shed pounds. Before my son left for college, he got me to into lifting weights and I took to it like a fish to water. I was 47 then. Now at nearly 53, I feel healthier and fitter than ever before, even though I have always worked out.
    Thanks for the inspiration. Keep it coming….

  9. I believe we pay now in choosing healthy foods and supplements or we pay later in ill health, doctor’s bills and prescription meds. Food IS medicine!

  10. You are wonderful. I kinda eat healthy or at least I try. No where near what you eat. I really enjoy reading your blog. You are my daily inspiration. Helen

  11. New me in 2020 is my life change goal. After coming back from a 16 day cruise, I realized I must change my food choices. It can be done and you’re my inspiration. Thank you for these posts.

  12. Thank you for such a great post!
    I’m 58 and need to loose 35 pounds (to start) I do try to eat organic and healthy but I struggle with the exercise part.

    Do you replace the water in your Big Berkey everyday or just fill it with the exact amount you drink in a day?
    By the way, you have beautiful skin .

  13. For most of this past December I ate a small breakfast, skipped lunch, and then had a light supper no later than 6. I used all the principles of healthy eating that I have learned over the years (different in some respects from yours, Susan). My weight fell somewhat, and I felt fine, not hungry and not deprived. I think I will revive this practice again and see how it works. It strikes me that “3 square meals a day” may be more of a cultural custom than a biological necessity.

  14. HI Susan – great post. And of course, as my ex-Navy husband would have said, you drink your coffee stron and black. You were in the Navy!! I, too, drink my coffee strong and black – but was not in the Navy 🙂

  15. Almond milk is so easy to make. I used to make almond butter first, but read about a hack that makes it even simpler.

    3 handfuls of roasted almonds (I roast my own)
    4 c. of water
    1 t. vanilla
    3 medjool dates (pits out)
    blend until frothy using a Vitamix or other strong blender
    It is delicious and free of unnecessary ingredients.

  16. Dear Susan, what a wonderful post, and i know it’s not new “news” to your regular subscribers, but it’s always good to re-focus. I try to eat organic when it’s available. I do eat meats and poultry and fish, after joining Weight Watchers 8 years ago i found I needed more protein in my diet to stay full, and less carbs. Everyone has to find their right balance in life. Regarding your oatmeal, do you ever prepare a whole batch and then re-heat it throughout the week, or do you start fresh every morning? Thank you for your wonderful blog! Amy

  17. Susan,
    Your explanation on the foods you eat and why you started this kind of menu was so informative. I am pre-diabetic myself and using high blood pressure and cholesterol medication. I started a Keto diet a few days ago as my cousin recommended as she lost 35 pounds and is feeling so much better and off most meds. Thank you for sharing your journey as others just might benefit from your advice. Now I won’t worry about you being anorexic…….
    Take care and thank you for taking the time and sharing some personal things from your life. I think God is using you to reach out and help others in more ways than just fashion!
    Sincerely,
    Clara Bulens from Iowa

  18. Susan,
    I always appreciate your posts about healthy eating and living. We have used a Big Berky for years – such an easy way to have clean water. I also reviewed your posts and video about French Kande jewelry before making a December purchase. So informative!
    Enjoy all of your posts – thanks so much and Happy New Year.
    Karen

  19. Thank you Susan for this most informative and helpful post. I have been waiting for such information for some time. I have saved this and will refer to it throughout my next grocery trip.

  20. Have you discovered Thanksgiving Coffee Co ? All organic, fair trade and have received many awards. I found their coffee to be the best and I drink a lot of coffee.
    Also Kerrygold grass fed butter is delicious and good for you.
    You have been so sweet to share your food choices so I thought I could share mine too. Have a great day!

    1. No, I have a built-in microwave, but I never use it. I use a saucepan on the stove. I add about one cup of almond milk and a half cup of oats and cook on medium until the oats are soft.

  21. This type of post is among my favorites. Everyone’s metabolism is different and other gals may get different results than you, but your eating tips are very sound. We have backyard chickens, so we know how the chooks are raised and what they are fed. For breakfast, I alternate oatmeal, low carb smoothies (almond milk only) or a scrambled egg bowl with veg. When we go to the store and see what people unload from their carts, it is astounding. We have Fresh Thyme Farmer’s Market, which is similar to Sprouts and other smaller organic markets. Our local Earth Fare stores are in the process of closing.

  22. Happy New Year, Susan!!
    Your blog continues to delight me even though you have lost your clothing lines.

    Today’s blog answers lots of questions that I’m sure most of us have wondered as to how you keep your beautiful figure and skin.

    Could you please tell us daily about how many miles you walk or/and your exercise regime?

    Please continue sharing your lifestyle… As most of us admire you so, for enduring former Learning experiences that have led you to such successes today!

    May this new year truly give you 2020 vision for how GOD continues gifting you to gift us!

  23. Could you share what types of foods you were eating before you lost the 40 lbs.? Perhaps a lot of us would benefit to avoid what was unhealthy for you. Thank you.

    1. I was eating processed foods that were quick and convenient. Mr. Mickey wanted to take me out to dinner often, and I was going out to a social function almost every night. Food surrounded me, and social eating was something I did without thinking about health. I ate when and what those around me ate. When I learned to pay attention to my body, I realized I don’t need so much food, and I wasn’t eating anything nutritious. When the sugar and carbs burn off in an hour, we reach for more food because our body is still in need of nutrients.

  24. Hello Susan greetings from New Zealand.Love your site and your elegant style of dressing.I am 78 have reasonable health for my age,walk every morning and eat sensibly.However I would caution you about having coffee so early in the morning on an empty tummy.Could undo all the good you are doing.I dont have any hot drinks till after morning tea ,only water cold or warm depending on the weather with a squizze of lemon.No coffee after lunch.I do enjoy my cups of tea.Also if I wake up during the night I have a glass of water.I try to keep a positive out look and thank God every morning for another day which is a bonus at my age.I am involved in my community and church.People tell me I look ten years younger than what I am.Mr Mickey looks like a lovely caring man so look after him and enjoy his company.Blessings Katrina Moore

  25. Thank you for sharing this, Susan! It is so inspiring to see what your typical food day looks like. I especially like the outstretched hand tip for gauging your portions. I’m in the process of losing weight — have lost 30 lbs and have 15 left to go. When I get to my goal weight, I want to revamp my entire wardrobe as a reward. In the meantime, I’m learning as much as I can about fashion from your blog posts. And since I still have a ways to go, I’m treating myself by selecting new accessories — jewelry, handbags, scarves — based on items I see in your blog. I can’t tell you enough how much I look forward to reading your blog posts!

  26. Hi Susan,
    Thank you for sharing your eating plan with us.
    I have been on many different plans and weight comes
    off but very slowly .Your diet sounds very nutritious .
    M

  27. Susan, you are inspiring and helpful with your food and fashion ideas. I need motivation to stick to a food choice plan and you are a part of that “you can do it” plan.
    Thanks for all you share.

  28. I really found this to be very interesting. I am nearly 85 years and do not take any medications. I used to do yoga, but this year plan to walk at least a mile a day! I want to eat a healthy diet just as you are inspiring me to do. Thank you for all your excellent posts!!!

    Carole

  29. I love eating healthy! I have taken your advice about not eating after 5pm. It makes me feel better. I have lost over 50 pounds since January of 2019! Thanks for your tips!

  30. Very inspiring. Like you, I love oatmeal with blueberries and cinnamon for breakfast. I add a teaspoon of raw honey. And good coffee is a must!!

  31. Thank you so much for your wonderful post! My husband and I eat clean but I must confess I do not drink organic coffee. After reading why you drink organic coffee I’m definitely going to switch. I feel silly because my kitchen is organic but I overlooked the coffee

  32. Happy new year, Susan-
    I learn something from each of your posts, and I particularly love this one. I enjoy food preparation and knowing that I am using ingredients that I want in my body. Making soup is one of my pleasures. I make big batches and give away a great deal of it.
    I have been making my own broth for several years. After we eat a whole chicken off of the rotisserie, I bone it and put it in the slow cooker with some vegetables and seasonings. A slow simmer for 24 hours makes a fantastic broth. Since I also include the skin for flavor, I then jar it so that the fat comes to the top and can be removed before I use it. It is so much better tasting than some of the salt laden soup bases.
    Looking forward to your posts in 2020.

  33. Great post Susan. I have the same health issues you mentioned. Your food plans look like they are right up my alley and look achievable.
    I will be shopping and incorporating your ideas. Thank you! I’ll let you know how I make out.

  34. Hi Susan,
    Interesting to read your typical day regarding food intake. I personally eat very similar to what you have noted, and have been for years, although my last meal (dinner) is generally consumed around 5:30 pm. Fortunately I have never had a weight problem (5 ft 4 in & 107 lbs). I am curious to know what time you go to bed at night given it is a 4:00 am wake up. How many hours of sleep?
    I really enjoy your blog. Thank you.
    Elizabeth

  35. Hi Susan,
    I really appreciate your comments here. Do you not eat any carbohydrate in the form of bread , rice, pasta, meusi base etc?
    thanks, Jenny Gloucester, UK.

  36. Susan I so enjoyed reading this. This article really resonates with me, I follow a similar eating pattern, I avoid sugar, easy when you don’t have a sweet tooth, my weakness is bread but only occasionally. When I get up I have red bush tea or lemon with hot water then, 4 mornings, before showering or straightening the bed I do 15 minutes Pilates/stretching the other 3 mornings I take a Pilates class and twice a week I swim.
    My friends say “you have a fabulous figure” I don’t really that’s there perception of someone who’s well groomed, puts an outfit together and has the energy and flexibility of someone half their age and I put that down to a healthy diet with treats!

    Thank you so much, I do so enjoy your articles, I read them, with great enjoyed and enthusiasm, with my 11 a.m coffee.

  37. Good morning, Susan! I hope you are enjoying your coffee. Is it 4 am, and if so, what is your regular bedtime? I am in the midst of a dark and murky English winter here. I agree about the veg warding off cold and flu. My husband and I eat large quantities of different veg and I’m sure that keeps us free of cold whilst others are coughing and sputtering all around us! Sugar, too, I believe, is not good for the immune system. I am loving your blogs.

    1. There is no actual recipe. Like everything else in my life, I look at what I have on hand and make the most of it. I start with butter or coconut oil, add chopped sweet onion and gently sautee until they begin to lose their shape. Add chopped potatoes and carrots with enough broth/stock to cover them. Let that simmer until the vegetables are soft enough to pierce with a knife. Turn down the heat and add the frozen vegetables. Cover and let everything rest on low heat until it is warmed through (stir occasionally). Add spices, fresh or dried herbs, crumble cheese and drizzle olive oil. Enjoy!

  38. Thanks so much for sharing. I think it’s important to always share healthy examples of meals and their ingredients. For some, these things are so foreign, so the more they are shared, the more familiar and “comfortable” they become.

    You are a wonderful inspiration to me!

  39. I make the traditional Scottish porridge for winter breakfasts with blueberries and a tab of honey. After reading one of your older recipe posts a few years ago, I began substituting almond milk for water, and it tastes even better.
    Here’s to a healthy lifestyle in 2020!

  40. Thank you for sharing your daily menu. I am trying to change my eating plan. I, too find that giving my body a time to go into a fasting rest is helping me feel much better.

  41. Hi Susan! Thank you so much for everything you shared in this post!! It is invaluable for many people including me! I am in the process of making many changes in my eating. Need to lose a good bit of weight and get off some medicine and feel better! You are such an inspiration to me! Please continue sharing about food..
    May God bless you!
    Barbi

  42. Fabulous article and well said. More people need to get with the program. Quality over quantity. Less is definitely more. Thank you for sharing. ❤️

  43. Thank you so much for the wonderful informational email. I especially you showing us which products you prefer and actually eat. I’m wondering if there are any food / recipe websites or blogs you refer to for ideas. I so look forward to your emails. Keep up the wonderful work.

  44. You’re eating your long term care insurance premiums – the best and most functional way to go while in good health!

  45. Very helpful, especially the vegetable soup. I will give it a try. I try to eat early but my husband likes me to eat with him.

  46. Thank you for letting us in on your application of the principles of eating mostly plant based on a daily basis. It is good for me to see examples of how to personalize food choices as well as clothing choices to feel my best from the inside out.

  47. Thank you for sharing your food journey! With my diagnosis of severe osteoporosis at age 60, I have changed to a plant based diet and have found that I have more energy and stamina. I am only 6 months into my dietary changes and so am still hopeful to see significant health changes in the near future.
    I have recently begun following your style blog and appreciate your approach which I interpret as having fewer, quality, well fitting pieces. I have cleared out my closet so that I am only looking at winter clothes that fit well and that I really like to wear. It’s so much easier to get dressed in the morning!
    I would love to hear how you make “athleisure” work. I go to the gym or yoga most days and find myself in yoga pants and tennis shoes stopping at the store. How do I/you make this kind of outfit look stylish and purposeful? Thank you for your blog!

  48. This has been great information. Thanks for sharing!
    I always enjoy learning things that other people find successful.
    I hope you’ll continue with all the wonderful helpful suggestions/hints that work for you.
    I am so glad I found your site. Such fun!

  49. Susan ~ Thank you for publishing ‘what you eat in a day!’ I am most interested in pursuing diet options including information regarding your’s! I always enjoy your photos that include Tri-Cities sites, too!

    ~ Anne

  50. I am so very happy that I found your blog!! I can’t say enough good things about you and the positive impact your blog has had on me. I eagerly look forward to all your postings about food, skin care, general self care and, of course, your wonderful clothing ideas. You have a fan for life. Thank you for all the time you put into your blog. You are an inspiration to so many of us. love

  51. Mmm,I’m impressed Susan by your discipline ,and a lot of the commentators are disciplined too. I’m afraid I’ve a long way to go.I don’t drink coffee.I do like a nice cup of Earl Grey tea,but only one. The rest of the day I drink water. I don’t eat red meat but I do eat bread,whole meal,so I’m trying and of course butter,Kerrygold actually.I don’t think my diets horrendous,but I could work on my portion sizes.. If I thought I could look like you,I would be on your diet tomorrow but At eighty that ships passed.However I’m inspired to try a few of the things you suggest,so nothing ventured,nothing gained so they say.Thank you Susan for your very interesting blogs.

  52. Susan, that much water?! Any advice on how to get into that habit? Water isn’t my favorite thing, but I will drink it. After one glass, though, I spend the rest of the day seeking the ladies room. Two glasses, and my bladder tells me I may as well just stay in there all day,

  53. Thanks for sharing. I always say you can pay to be healthy or pay to be sick. I’m still working on healthy here so I loved reading this.

  54. Dear Susan,
    At 70, I’m finding I need to eat far less than when younger, and am finding that the government sanctioned recommended amts are way way off. I maintain my weight in much the same way you do and find many parallels to what you eat with one major exception — I’m extremely sensitive to gluten so it’s just easier to avoid all grains and packaged foods. My morning ‘cereal’ has been replaced with a blueberry, kale and protein smoothie, with a splash of avocado oil. I love the almond milk with cashews so I use that one also! And alternate with the coconut almond variety. I made a sausage pumpkin soup last night, so this morning pumpkin went in my smoothie instead of blueberries. It was a hideous color – but tasty. Orange and green don’t work in clothing choices or in a smoothie! I’m on board with organic single bean coffee as well. This saves money because I’ll never drink coffee away from home. I totally agree that these food choices save money. At age 70 with a spouse who is 71, we take no prescription drugs. And it is not because we shun them, but because we have no underlying diseases that require them. One way we are different is we eat red meat but only grass fed and finished.

    Thanks for sharing. Your post reminds me that oatmeal is wonderful, but it’s not for me.

    — Paleo Girl in California

  55. Hi Susan,
    Where do you purchase the wild frozen individual pieces of salmon. That seems ideal for a quick meal for one or two.
    How do you prepare your salmon?
    I am getting ready to make your soup.

  56. I found your beautiful website on Pinterest. You are an inspiration to women showing us we can age gracefully and beautifully thank you.

  57. Thanks so much for your wonderful post. I’m very interested in the organic coffee and which brand you like best. Do you have any thoughts on decaffeinated organic coffee? Thank you!

  58. Susan, your diet obviously works well for you, as you look fabulous! Do you get enough sleep waking up at 3 or 4 in the morning? Sleep is just as important as diet in maintaining our health. I generally sleep from 10:30 to 6:30 and feel it mentally & physically if I don’t get 7.5 to 8 hrs sleep per night. I do notice I don’t sleep as well if I don’t exercise that day.
    Thank you for all your beautiful posts.

  59. I was watching your two videos about how you eat. In the second one, you had eliminated beans and grains and you indicated it had been the source of a skin rash. Have you reintroduced beans and grains back into your diet at all? Were they the problem ? Just curious. (I love sprouted grain bread!)

    1. I have not reintroduced grains. I rarely eat any bread and occasionally have rosemary flatbread crackers. I can eat Eden Organic beans because they are pressure cooked.

  60. Hi,
    I Love your Blog,
    You’re an inspiration to women over 60, That’s refreshing!
    I have wanted to give up animal protein for a long time. I’m an O blood type & was told by my nutritionist that O’s need meat. She told me that I wouldn’t be healthy if I did. Do you have a vegetarian blood type?
    There is a book called, “Eat Right for your Blood Type” that I had followed for quite awhile.

    Warmly<
    Dianne

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I blogged for five years as Fifty, not Frumpy. Now that I am in my sixties, I am sharing ideas and inspiration for using and loving what you already have.

Thank you!
Susan

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