Ingredients to Avoid While Building Your Food Stockpile

J5 Tactical Flashlight

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Our diet plays a vital role in our overall health and well-being, especially in a prolonged-survival situation.  This is why it’s so important to stock up and ingest foods that help rather than cause harm.  Let’s take a look at items that should be avoided at all costs in order to keep us fit, energetic and promote mental clarity and emotional health.

Juices

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Juices are a tempting option to store and have on hand.  Some products have a very long shelf life and are thought to provide us with a good source of vitamins and minerals.  This could not be further from the truth.  Most juices that are not fresh have been processed and have tons of added sugar or synthetic sweeteners or flavors.  The fruit is squeezed and filtered until all of the pulp is removed.  Then it is heated to a temperature that actually kills off most of the nutrients, in order to also kill bacteria.  Then vitamins are added as well as flavorings and sugars to make them sweet and tasty again.  The finished product not juice, but a synthetic variation.  Eat whole fruits or can them in pieces for consumption later in order to get the nutrition that you need.

Vegetable and Seed Oils

Vegetable and Seed oils are considered to be a healthier alternative to lard, margarine or animal fats.  However, they also trick the body into storing fat, and studies also show how it can mess with hormone regulation and metabolism.  Most vegetable oils have also been linked with diseases and cancer to one degree or another as well.  Canola oil is not a much better option as it has to be processed to the point where it is almost a synthetic product.  The best oil to have on hand by far is olive oil.  It is good for the body, low in bad fats and helps to raise good cholesterol.  It also has a long shelf life.

Artificial Sweeteners

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Avoid storing all kinds of artificial sweeteners at all costs.  None of them are good for the body, and it’s actually better to eat regular sugar instead in small amounts.  Aspartame, sucralose and saccharin are all linked to a wide range of diseases, including certain cancers.  They also interfere with digestive processes that can slow metabolism and place stress on the body.  Furthermore, there are links to mental health problems as well as bouts with emotional instability associated with the prolonged use of artificial sweeteners.  Honey, agave cactus syrup and stevia are all safer and completely natural sweeteners that also provide health benefits.  Stock up on these items and your body will thank you in the long run.

Sodium

We all need small amount of sodium in our diet to regulate hydration and promote important processes at the cellular level.  Consequently, you shouldn’t completely eliminate sodium from your diet.  However, it’s also important to be judicious in terms of how much salt you put in canning recipes.  Consider keeping salt out of the equation altogether.  Instead, keep a stockpile of salt in storage and add to foods when they are consumed.  You also want to limit salt intake from cured meats and don’t use them as staple foods.  If you eat seafood, remember that you are getting sodium and other minerals from the meat, and this can be enough to provide you with daily requirements without the need to add more. 

There is also a debate raging about the benefits and ill-effects of eating whole grains.  There are strong opinions on both sides of the coin, and this may be worth researching so you can draw your own conclusions.  One thing is for certain, you can get almost the same nutritional benefits as well as good carbohydrates from whole grain rice.   Rice metabolizes slowly, which means you eat less and don’t get hungry as often.  It also provides longer-lasting energy compared to grain products. 

Since we’re on the topic of carbohydrates, remember that 2/3 of our daily diet should consist of carbs.  There’s nothing wrong with grains, nuts, beans, seeds, rice and fruits, unless you have an allergy to some of these items. The trick is to create a balanced stockpile that will not make you dependent on one or two sources for energy.  Choosing to eat good, slow-burning carbohydrates will help you to stretch food supplies while also helping you to avoid the carb-crash and persistent hunger that sets in about an hour after eating.

Remember that survival food is there to keep you healthy while also keeping you fed.  However, it’s up to all of us to make good choices and stock up on items that will give us the most benefits with the fewest drawbacks.  Pay attention to what you are storing so you can be in the best possible position nutritionally if you are ever faced with a prolonged food shortage.