6 Things You Will Need in an Emergency
Unfortunately, there are variety of disasters or that could strike at any moment. It is smart to be ready for an emergency by stocking a variety of important staples while prepping. Some of the most critical items are the most overlooked and taken for granted, so here are six essential things ready to go in case a major crisis happens.
Items for Cleaning and Sanitation
Staying clean and sanitary is something people often take for granted and forget when preparing for a disaster. It is entirely possible for plumbing to get destroyed during a disaster, so keeping cases of garbage bags for human waste is essential. Bleach and other cleaning supplies like brooms, mops and towels should be stocked up on too.
Items for Cold Weather
Extra bedding and enough clothes to layer up is crucial. These are another set of items beginning preppers tend to forget about. Dying of exposure is a reality in certain climates, and winter can be very unforgiving. The bedding will come in handy on a cold night, and layering clothing is a great way to combat the cold when moving around during the day.
As controversial as they may be, guns are something every prepper should have to defend what they worked so hard on building. A long range rifle can quickly turn into a necessary tool for hunting, and pistols can go a long way in deterring burglary and stopping harm in its tracks. Needing something for defense from looting and rampant crime is an unfortunate reality.
Access to an Abundant Water Supply
It is essential to have five years’ worth of drinking water available, and the best way to fortify property with enough water is to make sure it has access to an onsite well or cistern. The water industry has done a great job for the last 100 years. But the approaches that got us this far won’t properly serve us in the future. Because from now on, it gets worse – urbanization of the world shows no signs of letting up – from 34% of the world’s population in cities in 1960 to 54% in 2014. This means that water supply is colliding painfully with water demand in many parts of the world – both those without existing water infrastructure and those who have infrastructure that is not aging so gracefully. The World Resources Institute believes this situation may lead to not just environmental problems, but to social instability and political and military conflicts. Be sure to have plenty of purifying tablets and an emergency water filtration system as well.
Sources of Light
Electricity is a luxury. If the power goes out for any amount of time or reason, then alternative sources of light need to be available for use. Matches, lighter fluid, candles and batteries are the backbone for a good kit. Alternative energy tech has gotten more advanced too, so items like solar powered chargers can be added as well for common battery sizes.
These are just five of many key things to have available if disaster strikes. Focus on making sure there is a versatile set of supplies for survival. There are different types and degrees of devastation, and it is best to be ready for anything. Having enough of a variety could be what separates life and death following a terrible event.
Emergency Food and Storage Containers
Just as important to the process of having emergency food on hand is to have appropriate emergency storage containers for it. Thus, here are some things you should have.
#10 cans – Unless you’re in the habit of canning food for long term storage, you’ll use your own #10 cans to can your own food, following a widespread disaster, when the electricity is out for possibly several weeks (as in a severe ice storm that paralyzes a region), or several months or even years (should a much feared EMP or solar flare ever take place; refer to other articles on our site for instruction on these events). So keep a number of #10 cans on hand and hope that they never get used. (A #10 can is 5.3 times larger than a traditional can of soup, holding a total of about 109 ounces.)
Oxygen absorption packets – These are used to reduce moisture in food items, thus keeping the food viable for much longer (check the directions and utilize the experts when it comes to using these).
Foil pouches – These are made of multi layer laminated plastic and aluminum.
(Nowadays, oxygen absorption packets and foil pouches can be purchased together when ordering food storage supplies.) PETE bottles – These bottles, made of polyethylene terephthalate, are used for long term storage.
Clean, full size plastic garbage cans – These could be used for bathing or washing laundry.
5 Gallon Buckets – These could be used for washing dishes or for retrieving water from a local source.
Freezer – Okay, if the electricity goes out this won’t help. But if it doesn’t, a freezer and refrigerator in the area you plan on settling down is prudent (remember that if we’re talking about a fallout shelter of sorts, it will have to be in an accessible place).
Dried Food, Non-Perishable Food
Here’s the short answer: Have enough food and water on hand for at least a month which will involve stocking up on a number of food items. Particularly, you’ll want to look into dry foods because they last well. Dried beans, various types of rice, canned milk, and anything else you can find will be beneficial. The most important thing to consider is that if you’re going to survive off non-perishable food for a lengthy period of time that you get adequate nutrition.
Based on the items you’ve stocked up on, put together a daily diet plan that produces the vitamins and minerals you need in the appropriate amounts to stay healthy. Stocking up on quality multi-vitamins is a good idea also, as many canned foods or processed non-perishable foods may fall short of supplying sufficient nutritional needs. There are additional strategies you can use to choose the right foods for long term food storage such as a variety of easy to prepare meals or Meals Ready to Eat, (MRE) are the same meals that keep our troops running strong out in the field. Packed full of calories and nutrients, these meals are now available to the public.
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Don’t forget supplements! These can make a huge difference in your health, immune system, etc. Just remember that not all supplements are created equally, so get the most bang for your buck!
Supplements fall into four graded quality levels, and the highest quality of supplements are pharmaceutical grade. These are the quality level you should be looking for. They are pure and the actually contain the supplement listed on the bottle. Typically, these are sold through a pharmacy and require an RX. However, they are available through other resources. The second highest grade are medical grade, and you would usually get these from a medical professional. The third level is cosmetic grade and this is what you find in most grocery stores, big box stores, health food stores, GNCs, vitamin shops, etc. They have far less strenuous testing and quality controls. Often, they do not even contain the supplement they claim, and they contain unsavory fillers (like sawdust). This level of supplement is not often absorbed by your body. You are literally flushing the supplement, and your money down the toilet. The lowest grade of supplements are agricultural grade and they are not fit for human consumption.
Now that you know what quality of supplements you need, how do you determine which supplements you actually need? It can be a daunting task. If you smoke, or ever did smoke you should not take beta carotene. It increases your risk of cancer. If you have the MTHFR gene mutation, and an estimates 50% of people do, you can not take synthetic B vitamins. Some RX meds will interfere with supplements. Some will leech supplements from your body, or block their absorption. You must know what supplements you need for your body.
You simply cannot take an off the shelf one size fits none multivitamin. Customized vitamins are what you should be taking, and buying for survival purposes. The brand my family uses come printed with out names on them, and come in an easy open strip pack. No cumbersome bottles. A month supply will fit flat in a backpack and leave plenty of room for more items.