Being prepared is not just for boy scouts. Every household should be aware of what it takes to survive in an emergency situation. The timing of when or how a crisis sneaks its way into your life is not something you can actually plan for. However, by being prepared, you can plan on how you’ll survive during the aftermath of a crisis situation.
Here’s a fun fact: Mother Nature is an unpredictable beast, especially when it comes to natural disasters. However, she also has her steady and true qualities. For example, every year winter will show its icy cold face. Yet somehow, there are still people who are shocked when they wake up to find that they’re being held a prisoner in their own home by a relentless storm, which has covered their city in a thick blanket of snow. This scenario often causes the unprepared masses to panic. They rush to their local grocery store with high hopes of shelves stocked with enough food for their survival.
An average grocery store typically has about 3 days worth of supplies on hand, but when deliveries stop, supplies can quickly dwindle to nothing. Moral of this fun fact: do not count on local stores to have enough food and water to get you safely through an emergency situation.
Don’t wait until you are in the midst of an emergency situation, start preparing today. Not sure where to start? Here are 10 important survival foods that you should have in your home at all times. Let’s get started:
1- Peanut Butter, Trail Mix, and Nuts
Not only is peanut butter scrumptious in every way, but it contains high amounts of healthy fats and proteins needed to fuel the body with strength and energy. Because it does not require refrigeration, it is ideal for shelf storage.
As for other nutty treats, individually sealed packages of nuts, whether part of a trail mix or simply on their own, are convenient and a great source of energy.
You never know how long you may be without power or access to fresh food, so it is important to include multivitamins in your emergency kit. A vitamin packed supplement can help replace nutrients that may not be available to you during an emergency.
3- Dried Fruit
Dried fruits have a much higher shelf life than fresh fruit and they are just as delicious. Raisins, strawberries, pineapple, apricots, and coconut are just a few of the available freeze-dried fruits on the market. These fruity morsels have been enjoyed by campers and backpackers for years due to the high amount of nutrients they provide.
4- Canned Fruits, Vegetables, Chili and Soup
Canned goods are beneficial in an emergency kit for many reasons, such as they can be eaten straight out of the can, do not require refrigeration, last for a long time, and provide essential nutrients the body requires on a daily basis.
5- Whole Grain Crackers & Cereals
Crackers can be a great substitution for bread. They have a higher shelf life (especially when vacuum sealed) and contain carbohydrates and fiber, which the body requires to function properly. Whole-wheat and whole-grain crackers are the way to go.
Just like crackers, whole grain cereals contain enough fiber to be filling and are also a fast and easy snack food. Try to find a cereal that has individually-packaged servings, that way it will stay fresh for much longer.
6- Pasteurized/Powdered Milk
Milk is a great source of calcium and vitamin D, but when fresh milk is inaccessible, non-perishable pasteurized milk and powdered milk can be a great alternative. They do not require refrigeration, so they are a great addition to a food survival kit.
7- Baby Food & Formula
Infants require a whole slew of nutrients in order to grow up healthy and strong. So if you have an infant, baby food and formula will be an essential part of your food storage.
No little ones in the house? Adults can also benefit from the nutrients that baby foods provide. An average jar of baby food has around 50-100 calories, so this can be a handy option to “tie you over” until your next full meal.
8- Energy Bars & Sports Drinks
If they are good enough for professional athletes, they are good enough for your emergency kit, right?
Granola bars are a great source of energy. They work quickly and efficiently because they are packed with carbohydrates and protein. They are also kid friendly, so they are great for the whole family.
Sports drinks are not only hydrating, they provide the body with electrolytes and carbohydrates, which makes them a great source of energy.
9- Canned and Freeze Dried Protein
We’ve all had canned tuna fish, sardines, or salmon, but freeze-dried meats are giving canned proteins a run for their money. Within the past few years, the process to freeze dry proteins has come a very long way. Protein is required for maximum energy levels and strength, so canned proteins are a great addition to any emergency kit. Although, they really can be enjoyed at any time, emergency or not, try spicing up your weekday dinner with some protein-packed freeze-dried chicken or beef.
Last, but not least, water. It won’t matter if your storage is full of all the food items on this list, without water you simply will not survive. Make sure you have a supply of fresh water as a part of your emergency kit. Keep in mind, that supply may run out, so you should also have a backup plan for your water source. Boiling water will make it safe for consumption and use, so besides having a stockpile of water, you should have items that will allow you boil a second source. Pots, matches, candles, and burnable oils are essential components of any emergency kit.
Keep in mind that all of these things must be stored correctly. Your emergency storage should be somewhere cool and dry, such as the basement. Check your food for unusual odors, colors, and textures periodically and discard any food that may have been contaminated. Having these survival foods as part of your emergency arsenal will greatly increase your survival rate the next time Mother Natures gets a bee in her bonnet. Don’t wait until it’s too late, start to gather your goods today.