None of us know what tomorrow might bring. Today, we’re all living life as usual, but there’s no guarantee things will remain the same forever. In just a matter of moments, things could take an unexpected turn, leaving us forging ahead without the conveniences and luxuries we’ve all come to take for granted. Whether a natural disaster strikes or a manmade catastrophe takes shape, tomorrow could end up being a very different scenario than what we’re accustomed to.
No matter what type of unexpected development occurs, some of life’s simplest but most important amenities could quickly disappear. A readily available supply of electricity is one of them. Clean running water is another. Even being able to go to a nearby grocery store to restock our pantries may no longer be an option. As such, having a well-rounded Emergency Food Supply for your family is essential.
Building Your Food Stockpile for Emergencies
Dehydrated, freeze-dried, and other non-perishable foods are excellent options for emergency situations. They have long shelf lives, and they’re available in numerous varieties these days. That being said, building an emergency food stockpile requires thought and planning. Keep in mind that our bodies need certain nutrients to be able to thrive and function properly. Calories are important, but empty calories aren’t very helpful. Because of that, having a well-rounded selection of foods with an array of essential nutrients is the key to surviving an emergency.
Macronutrients are the components our bodies need in large amounts. They mainly come from the foods we eat, but they’re not available from all types of foods. Proteins, carbohydrates, and fats are among the most important macronutrients.
Proteins are among the most important macronutrients. They consist of amino acids that are the very building blocks of our muscles, organs, and other tissues. They also play significant roles in many bodily functions.
- Cell Structure and Functionality – Proteins are crucial for forming cells and maintaining their structure. They strengthen cell membranes and the organelles within them to ensure they work the way they’re supposed to. They also help with cellular repair.
- Muscle Development – Muscles also require protein for development, growth, and repair. During physical exertion, muscle fibers stretch and tear. Taking in ample amounts of protein gives them the building blocks they need to heal themselves and grow stronger.
- Immunity – Proteins are essential for immunity as well. They help the body produce antibodies that fight back against germs. In turn, they aid in warding off infections, viruses, and other illnesses that could otherwise prove deadly.
- Transporting Nutrients – Proteins likewise help to transport other nutrients we need to stay healthy. They aid in carrying oxygen, vitamins, and minerals to cells while also helping the body to get rid of toxins.
- Hemoglobin Production – Additionally, proteins help the body to produce hemoglobin. It’s essential for transporting oxygen in the blood, but it’s also important for other reasons. Without an adequate supply of protein for hemoglobin production, anemia could set in. That, in turn, could cause weakness, tiredness, and shortness of breath.
- Regulating Hormones – Proteins help to regulate hormone production, including insulin and human growth hormone. These compounds control metabolism, growth, and other critical functions.
- Enzymes – Enzymes help our bodies carry out chemical reactions. They’re important for digestion, metabolism, and energy production to name a few processes. reactions in the body, are composed of proteins. The body needs protein to produce enzymes.
- Balancing Fluids – Furthermore, proteins help maintain the body’s fluid balance. They ensure fluid moves properly between cell membranes and blood vessels. That fosters joint and kidney health among other aspects.
If the body is starving for proteins, you’ll be weak and tired. You’ll also be more susceptible to illnesses and injuries. In times of emergency, people tend to be more active than they normally would be. That, in turn, means they need extra protein to keep them going, fight off illnesses, and make sure their muscles can repair themselves. As such, adding high-protein emergency foods to your stockpile is crucial. Beans, nuts, seeds, and dehydrated meats are all high-protein foods, so they should certainly be part of your emergency supply.
Carbohydrates are also important. They’re the body’s main source of energy. Our bodies break them down into glucose that generates fuel for the brain and muscles. Whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes are all great sources of complex carbohydrates. They provide long-lasting energy for the body to work with. For an emergency food stockpile, dried beans, oats, dehydrated fruits and vegetables, and rice offer ample carbs. Of course, pasta is also a common source of energy.
Though proteins give us a certain amount of energy, carbohydrates work in tandem with them to keep us going for even longer. Without plenty of carbs to fall back on for energy, the body can, essentially, start feeding off of its own muscles. That could have dire consequences, such as dizziness, lethargy, anxiety, and shakiness. Since the brain requires a great deal of glucose that comes from carbohydrates, insufficient amounts of these macronutrients could also result in confusion, brain fog, and difficulty speaking along with other problems. You certainly don’t need those issues when you’re battling to survive an emergency situation.
Fats are also crucial. Though medical experts warn people to stay away from certain types of fats, others are essential. Our bodies need them for a variety of reasons. For one, they provide more energy per unit than both proteins and carbohydrates. As mentioned, energy is of the utmost importance in emergency situations whether you’re on the run from danger or simply having to work harder than usual to get through each day.
Beyond being great sources of energy, fats serve several roles in the human body. They help us absorb certain vitamins, like A, D, E, and K. The right types of fats contribute to heart health and help to maintain cellular structure. They also help the body to produce hormones, such as cortisol and adrenaline. Both of those hormones are part of the body’s stress response. Simply stated, they help you to move better and think more clearly, especially in situations where your survival may depend on those factors. Without essential fats, your brain function and memory would suffer.
At the same time, fats give foods flavor. Many people think this is a mere myth, but it’s actually a reality. Fats make foods taste better and seem more satisfying. They make us feel fuller when we eat as well. If certain foods didn’t contain fats, they’d be utterly unappealing and unsatisfying.
Micronutrients are essential for survival as well. Whereas we need large amounts of macronutrients, micronutrients are the compounds we need in smaller amounts. They help fill certain gaps where macronutrients fall short. Though we only need small amounts of them, they’re no less important.
Vitamins are among the micronutrients people need to survive. Vitamin A, for example, helps with immunity and vision. It also helps to keep the skin and mucous membranes healthy to ward off infections and illnesses. Vitamin C is well known for its immune support. It also helps keep cells, connective tissues, and blood vessels strong and healthy.
B-complex vitamins help the body to convert food to energy. They also promote healthy DNA production and keep the nervous system working properly. Those are only a few of the vitamins the human body needs each day. Be sure to choose foods for your emergency supply that provide them. With so many freeze-dried and dehydrated options available, that shouldn’t be overly difficult.
Minerals are equally important. Calcium is crucial for bone health. Iron, like protein, helps the body to produce hemoglobin and transport oxygen. Potassium helps the muscles and nerves to work properly while also helping to keep our electrolytes balanced. Zinc bolsters immunity and fosters metabolism. Several minerals are essential to the body; these are only a few of the most common ones. As is the case with other nutrients, we get these from the foods we eat.
Having a Supply of Nutritious Foods on Hand for Emergencies
Most of us take for granted that we’ll always have a steady supply of food to keep us going. In emergency situations, though, food may be harder to come by than you might think. At the same time, if there’s no electricity, keeping conventional meats, dairy products, and other perishable foods from spoiling won’t be easy. On top of that, without electricity, cooking those foods could undoubtedly be a challenge.
With all that in mind, it’s important to create an emergency supply of food that’s not only high in essential nutrients but also long-lasting and convenient. Freeze-dried and dehydrated emergency foods offer all those benefits. Their production processes preserve nutrients while also giving them a long shelf life. In fact, many of them can last for up to 25 years. That means you can stock up on them and count on them being safe to eat when you need them. All you need is a little hot water to reconstitute them and serve up all the nutrients your family needs to stay healthy.