Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What food to store and why part I

I've just had a nice week-end away and am ready to pass on some information. I will keep it simple because I know you have a lot of important things to do. Right now my husband is out of work. It has happened before and each time it is for different amounts of time. A wise thing for me to do is plan for this kind of emergency. You too should plan for an emergency. This is a little emergency at this time, but the winter of 2006 we were cut off from everything for 5 days to a week and that was a bigger issue. Wisely we should be able to take care of ourselves at these times. What do we need in order to take care of ourselves? Just to sustain life you need water, food, and sleep. Ask any new mom, showers are opt. Seriously your body is 50% to 70% water. So you need water to stay alive. You can only live a few days to a week without water. So put that as #1 on your list.
Food is our next issue. If you go without food your body will take care of its self. Yes it will do everything to last as long as it can. It begins by burning your fat stores. Good for round people like me, bad for skinny folks. Next when it runs out of fat to burn for energy it will burn protein, or muscle. This is not fun, it makes you tired and everything you do takes longer. I don't want to scare any of you. This is just information to help us see what we need to store, but next your smart body starts shutting down organs to save your brain and hope that help comes before it shuts down too much! What a smart system we have inside! Our goal would be to go into any emergency as healthy as possible. That gives us the best advantage.
Without food some people only can last 3 days or less however there are records of people lasting for months. It's all about your health to begin with, your state of mind (fear burns energy so fast!) will power to live, your body weight to begin with, how much hydration or water you get, and the climate you are in. It all makes sense. As a parent you will need to consider each family members issues in order to meet their needs. The youngest and oldest are always the biggest concern as are anyone who is ill.
With that out of the way lets consider what your body likes to live on most. Yes there are dozens of vitamins and minerals, proteins, carbs oh my the list makes your head spin and on most days we just want to find time to produce a meal everyone will eat! What you need to consider now is "This is an Emergency" what do I store for an emergency.
I'm so glad we went through that horrible storm that brought down miles of trees and froze our street so they were impassable. It taught me a lot of things I didn't consider in the past. First off we work hard when it's an emergency. That burns fats first and then proteins. OK so I have plenty of body fat, but I sure don't want to burn the muscle so I need to store proteins. That way I can refuel everyone who is under stress and working harder in new ways. When I say protein what do you think of? Animal products? Plant products? Be honest. Do you know where protein comes from? If not I can give you a lot of information to help you on this. In this blog note I'll just touch on basics to get you started. OK
In a basic form protein is only used in our body correctly if it is a complete protein. The body requires 22 amino acids in a specific pattern to make a human protein. All but 8 of these can be produced in the adult human body. Not all foods have the missing amino's. Most meats and whole dairy products are complete proteins. That's easy isn't it. BUT WAIT...these things spoil so easy. We will find them hard to store for long. If you go to the local GI Joe type stores you can buy M.R.E's or meals ready to eat. Made for the armies. There will be meats and dairy in these, but we don't really have a good way to store our own proteins if the power goes out. In my next "what to store" blog I'll cover what protein you can store in detail. For now lets consider these easy proteins. Can you fill up your freezers? Not with carbs but with some stored meats you can rotate into your eating and replace as you do? When an emergency comes about you can begin eating Fresh stuff first....
1. The veggie drawer of your fridge,
2. The fresh meats and milks
3. Cheese can be held with vinegar, on a towel, wrapped around it. Hold on to these and use in small amounts to make them last
4. Eggs
5. What else is fresh in your fridge? Go look?
Now when that is gone you can go to the freezer and begin there. You may not have a freezer I've never been without one. They sale really small ones and if you have a garage at all I'd sure want a little bit of frozen food.
After the fresh, and frozen stuff is eaten you will begin on your dry and canned storage. This you can store much longer than fresh and you won't have to rotate it nearly as often.
See that was easy. Look in each of these places, how much protein is in these places? What things do you question? Do ask me.
We are starting gently here. Remember water is first, then protein. I'll cover what you need next but start with this.
I promise we will cover everyday nutrition but right now I'm answering the storage question that was asked. The needs of our body on normal days of life will be somewhat different, but you will be gaining a lot of the basics right now as you plan for an emergency. Next I'll teach you about the easiest to store proteins......
Grammie person
P.S that beautiful glass bottle of water was passed out instead of the plastic kind at the cast party for the new Steven Spielberg movie 'Indiana Jones and the kingdom of the Crystal skull'
High class!
That cute little cactus is from My husbands family desert land in the South Mojave. Little cactus now lives with us in the Pacific northwest.

1 comment:

Fonnell said...

Some of you find this information unsettling. I only wish to prepare you and give you peace of mind. So I will continue to pass on part II but it is on food and I think even outside of preparedness it will be most helpful in meal planning. You be the judge. Don't read it is it isn't helpful. Really I just want to make your lives easier.