In today’s society, being prepared for the worst is no longer a sign of paranoia, terror, obsession, and superstition. As natural disasters, terrible storms, wars, riots, uprisings, and economic crises become more and more frequent, having a backup emergency plan just in case is the smart, not psychotic, thing to do. Emergency clothing, shelter, and most importantly, food and water, is an essential for every household as the world we live in becomes more and more unstable. During most emergencies, households can typically expect to be without refrigeration, electricity, and gas for at least a short period of time. Most government and federal aid takes at least three days to make an appearance when emergencies strike, so it is not in the best interest to rely on outside sources for help with food and shelter. This being said, a three day supply of food and water at the minimum should be found in every household. However, the larger the reserve, the better; having several weeks of food on hand only guarantees longer survival times if the disaster is catastrophic.
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During emergencies, citizens turn to looting, raiding, stealing, and even violence just to make resources available. With an emergency food source, you will not be forced to be exposed to the dangers of the streets. However, it is also a good idea to refrain from advertising your emergency supplies. If people know that you are housing food and water, your house may be the first stop for many people who do not have the needed resources on hand. Be smart when building up an emergency fund.
So what kinds of foods should e compiled into an emergency food stash? After a disaster or emergency, you can fully expect to be mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausted as stress levels run high and lack of sleep begin to catch up with your body. With so much energy being depleted, it is essential that the majority of the emergency food in storage is high-energy, non-perishable, and at least somewhat nutritious. What kinds of foods fall into these categories? Believe it or not, there is a pretty expansive variety of foods that are suggested to have on hand in case of emergency.
In terms of foods with high caloric values, minimal preparation, and long shelf life, food bars are one of the best routes to take when gathering an emergency food supply. They taste great and will keep you sustained for a fairly long period of time. Another great food source, somewhat similar to the food bar but requiring a little more preparation would be in the form of a Meal Ready to Eat, or simply, MRE. MREs provide a full, pre-cooked meal that provides the body with a wide array of vitamins and nutrient, and most importantly, energy. MREs are definitely a nice change of pace when stuck with food bars or other meal replacements. They are also affordable; a three day supply will keep a family of four fully sustained for about $150. These are some of the more effective foods in terms of staying energized and safe to eat; however, it may a good idea to stock up some traditional comfort foods, just to take the mind off of the situation at hand. Hot chocolate, instant puddings, fruit and granola bars, and candy will not only provide energy, but can bring the family closer together. A simply cup of hot chocolate with the family can go a long way when dealing with the stresses of an emergency.
Lastly, none of this food will matter much if you do not have a fair supply of water on hand. Water is absolutely essential, and, if you are gradually collecting items for an emergency stash, water should be the absolute first thing on the list. Your body can survive weeks, maybe even a month or two, without food. However, you will not make it longer than a week without a clean, fresh water supply. Stock up on gallons on sealed drinking water or individually packaged water bottles. Gatorade or other sports drinks are great too, as they provide the body with electrolytes and other nutrients. Avoid sugary drinks and sodas that provide little sustenance.
Stacy Gianakura is an avid blogger and writes for News Updates Weekly.