If you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything. Thus, in the event of a local or national disaster, you need to be prepared not just for a short-term food supply solution, but have a long-term plan that allows you to meet the nutritional needs of each individual family member.
If a disaster’s effects last longer than three days, the reality is that most people are not prepared to provide healthy meals beyond that period. Trying to rely on outside assistance may not be the best approach, so you should be prepared to subsidize your nutritional needs even in the event that outside help is available, and make sure you rotate your emergency supply so it’s always current within a three-month window. Keep the following nutritional needs in mind as you create your disaster plan.
A person can only survive three to five days without water. The first priority in any disaster is, therefore, a clean water supply. The average person needs to drink approximately 2 to 3 quarts of water each day. If you live in a warm climate, are nursing a child, or are ill, that amount can easily double.
Water is also necessary for some food preparation and certain hygiene needs. When you add that together, you should store at least 1 gallon per person, per day. Set aside a 20-day supply of water for each member of your family. It’s also recommended to break up this storage supply over multiple areas: garage and basement, with some supply in your vehicle. There are large storage containers from 55-gallon drums to large 150-gallon Poly-Mart containers that are useful for storing your water supply. Be sure these are secured and maintained.
Meals Ready to Eat (MREs) are usually in most family disaster supply kits. They are easy to store and purchase, and simple to prepare. Keep in mind that these rations usually have a five-year shelf life and must be maintained to ensure that you keep them fresh in the event of a disaster.
Protein powders and meal supplement bars are also great ways to meet your nutritional needs in a disaster situation. You should plan how much you need to set aside based on how many people you’ll be feeding and what their caloric requirement will be each day. Multiply these needs by at least 20 days.
During a food crisis, MREs and other supplements are helpful, but the need for fresh fruits and vegetables is critical in long-term situations to keep your body healthy. A home garden is a great source for disaster nutrition.
Not only will you always have food on hand, but much of your garden food can be stored for later use. Freeze-drying, canning or dehydrating food will keep a lot on your shelf and in your food rotation to ensure that you have a fresh supply on hand. A garden can be created in just about any living environment.
You can simply start with a few small containers or build some planters from lumber if your yard isn’t ideal for gardening, and create your survival garden until you’re harvesting enough of your own food to satisfy the whole family.
The Forgotten Reservoir How To Get Water From Your Water Heater Tank
In an emergency when you’re without running water, remember that you have one water source in your house—your hot water heater tank. Follow these steps to access it:
- Verify that any flooding does not submerge plumbing fixtures and the water heater.
- Turn off the gas or electricity, and close the water intake valve.
- Begin the water flow by opening the drain at the bottom of the tank and turning on a hot-water faucet.
- Do not turn on the gas or electricity when the tank is empty.
Ride out the storm
No one wants to experience a disaster, but anything can happen at any time, which is exactly why you need to be prepared.