Top 10 emer­gency food sTuffs

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Pow­dered milk: No power, ice or fridge re­quired. Pow­dered milk is a source of vi­ta­mins and min­er­als such as mag­ne­sium, cal­cium, zinc, potas­sium and phos­pho­rous. Sim­ply add wa­ter or add the pow­der to a meal. Mix one mea­sure of pow­der with three mea­sures of wa­ter to make ‘milk’, or use it as a meal thick­ener and for flavour.

Flour: Re­dis­cover the Jamie Oliver in you and see what you can cre­ate with flour. Sim­ple stuff like scones, damper, dumplings and roti fill hun­gry bel­lies. With some ba­sic ad­di­tives, flour can form the cen­tre­piece of a real meal. After all, bread is a sta­ple food for many cul­tures.

Rice: Rice gives your body en­ergy in the form of car­bo­hy­drates. It also has vi­ta­min B and other min­er­als in it. It has lit­tle fat and is easy to digest. It’s no won­der half the world’s pop­u­la­tion sub­sists wholly or par­tially on rice. Grains usu­ally have a best-by date and not an ex­pi­ra­tion date, and can be stored for up to 30 years in the right con­di­tions.

Curry pow­der: Curry pow­der eases pain and in­flam­ma­tion, pro­tects the im­mune sys­tem from bac­te­rial in­fec­tions and in­creases the liver’s abil­ity to re­move tox­ins from the body. This is be­cause it’s high in nu­tri­ents, vi­ta­mins and min­er­als. That’s not sur­pris­ing given that curry pow­der typ­i­cally con­tains a range of spices in­clud­ing turmeric, co­rian­der, car­damom, cumin, sweet basil, red pep­per, fen­nel seeds, ginger, gar­lic, cin­na­mon, or mus­tard seeds, all of which have in­di­vid­ual health ben­e­fits.

De­hy­drated veg­eta­bles: Bring on the pow­dered spuds, de­hy­drated peas and don’t for­get the dried onion flakes and the dried herbs! After all, flavour makes a dif­fer­ence when your morale is down. Did you know that de­hy­drated food re­tains more of its nu­tri­ents than ei­ther frozen or canned foods?

Dried beans and legumes: You need a lot more time, wa­ter and a cook­ing source to take ad­van­tage of dried beans and legumes but they go a long, long way. If you have a hoard of hun­gry mouths to feed, they’re a good source of pro­tein and carbs.

Longlife meals: No one likes a bread and wa­ter diet. And not ev­ery­one is a bush tucker man able to pro­cure food from the land. So make things eas­ier on your­self. These are light­weight and good to go. Use them to bol­ster a meal, not as the only item on the menu. Avail­able in freeze-dried and ‘boil in a bag’ ver­sions.

Su­gar: Su­gar is blamed for many of the world’s health prob­lems. But, with­out it, your body would cease to func­tion prop­erly. And when the go­ing gets tough, mix a tea­spoon of su­gar with a 1/3 tea­spoon of salt to a litre of wa­ter for a ba­sic elec­trolyte drink.

Honey: Its acid­ity, lack of wa­ter and the pres­ence of hy­dro­gen per­ox­ide al­low this sticky treat to last for­ever if prop­erly stored. So it’s a great source of en­ergy and is also an ex­cel­lent bar­rier against in­fec­tion for wounds, burns or cuts.

Salt: Salt is es­sen­tial for life. With­out it, our bod­ies be­come chemically un­bal­anced, our mus­cles and ner­vous sys­tem cease to func­tion and even­tu­ally we die. It also makes food taste good.

Added ex­tra – vi­ta­min C tablets or kale pow­der: More ex­plor­ers and in­trepid trav­ellers have fallen ill with scurvy than many other fac­tors. Be­cause it is wa­ter sol­u­ble, it doesn’t store well and de­grades over time whilst cook­ing, freez­ing and de­hy­drat­ing de­grades it fur­ther. The best sources of Vi­ta­min C are fresh: rock­melon, cit­rus, kiwi fruit, mango, paw­paw, pineap­ple, and berries.

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