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Get Prepped Newsletter: August 26, 2011

Water is the most important preparedness item for your body’s survival. Having alternative treatment sources for potable water is a necessary preparedness items to have on hand.

MESSAGE FROM TESS

We are in week 18 of our 52-weeks to preparedness series. This week we will be discussing the importance of having alternative water treatment options. Water is the foundation of life, and as such, water preparedness is one of the most important aspects of being prepared.

Correct water treatment practices ensure safe drinking water for you as well as for those in your local area. Keep reading for more information on how your water treatment practices may affect others, or how their’s may affect you.

If you have missed any of our weekly preparedness newsletters, catch up! You an view previous newsletters to learn from, review or to share with others.

Ready Nutrition has been asked to do a radio interview with the Ready Store. The Skype interview is planned for September 2nd. I will be interviewed by Jeff, the founder of the Ready Store. I will share the interview link on Facebook and Twitter for those of you following me. I’d love to have you all tune in. 

I love all the comments and suggestions you have been leaving on our Facebook page. Thank you so much for making this preparedness community so inviting and helpful. Because you have all given me such a great gift of sharing your input, I will be periodically returning the favor and rewarding those contributors with random prizes and gift certificates. So, if you have something to share, don’t be shy! You just may get a prize for your thoughts.

If you haven’t already, follow us on Twitter or see what we are doing on Facebook. I love to interact with my readers, because, after all, we are all in this together! Don’t forget to share the prepared love and invite your friends and family to read Ready Nutrition and help build our community. 

 Regards,

Tess Pennington



PREP OF THE WEEK

Week 18 of 52: Water Preparedness

Disaster officials suggest the importance of having a 3-day water supply, equating to one gallon of water per person, per day. However, in the event of a natural emergency such as a hurricane or tornado, water can be interrupted for days or even weeks. Without water to drink, dehydration sets in, the body starts shutting down and then … well it isn’t good. Let’s just say that a human can die in 3 days without any water or if the water is not treated properly.

Water is essential to life, so why not be prepared. Keep some alternative water treatment sources on hand in case of a water shortage. If you want to learn about alternative water treatment options, scroll down to the “Preps to Buy” section of this newsletter.

Along with learning about various treatment options, store bottled drinking water for short-term emergencies, and consider having multiple alternatives on hand to treat water and to filter it if a short-term emergency is extended. Most preppers believe in the rule of 3, have three alternatives.  I recommend having three different types of water treatment options in case one breaks or is lost. Another way to do this would be having separate filtration systems for the home, for the 72-hour bag, and in emergency vehicle kits. In addition, keeping extra filtration parts on supply would be very proactive in the instance that a short-term emergency extends into a longer-term emergency.

Treating the water will eliminate any microorganisms and the possibility of contaminants in the water.  Microorganisms such as protozoan parasites, bacteria and viruses can make a person very ill.  Drinking contaminated water can even cause death in extreme cases. 

Once the water has been treated, ensure that all microorganisms are removed by boiling the water for 3-5 minutes. If someone suspects they have ingested contaminated drinking water, some of the symptoms include:

  • Severe gas
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Severe abdominal cramps
  • Headache
  • Weakness due to the above symptoms

In a disaster where water sources are compromised, people within a 50-mile radius could be adversely impacted by illness and disease if just one person incorrectly handles water or incorrectly disposes of waste. Learning how to handle and treat water before an emergency occurs will ensure that your family does not become ill from poor water conditions.

Water is only as safe as it’s source.  When their is any doubt about the quality of water you are drinking, treat it chemically, through distillation or through the boiling method. To learn how to treat water using these methods, click here.

 Follow these recommendations by the CDC for safely storing water:

  • Store emergency water in a cool, dark place in your home, each vehicle, and your workplace.
  • If  possible, store bottled water to ensure water is properly purified. Use water before the expiration or “use-by” date stamped on the container.
  • It’s possible to keep water in food-grade containers intended for water storage. Containers must be thoroughly washed, sanitized, and rinsed.  Only store clean, ready-to-drink water. Tap water will probably need to be purified. Ask public health authorities or your water provider whether tap water should be used and how to treat it. 
  • Plastic soft drink or food grade plastic containers can be used in a pinch. Ensure that the containers and cleaned and sanitized thoroughly before re-use.

Note: Do not use milk or juice containers for storing water.  Even if you try to thoroughly clean these plastic containers, left over sugars and proteins provide perfect places for bacteria to grow.

Water is a finite resource, and in the case of emergency preparedness, it is one of the most important items to have stored. We use water for everything: hydrating our bodies, cleaning our bodies, brushing our teeth, for cooking, cleaning the dishes, and cleaning wounds. Ensure that you have enough for these purposes.

Preps To Buy:

  • 1-gallon of bottled water for each family member (i.e., 1-2 weeks worth)
  • Secondary water filtration system
  • Water purification tablets
  • Bleach (Bleach only stores for 12 months, so do not buy large quantities of this item unless you plan to use it for other reasons.)
  • Chlorine granules (available at most super stores or pool stores)
  • Iodine
  • Tarp or plastic sheeting (for solar stills)
  • Electrolyte or rehydration powders
  • Anti-diarrhea medicines
  • Vitamins (to help the body absorb needed nutrients after being ill from untreated water)

Action Items:

1. Research different types of water filtration systems to see which type is best suited for your family. Some great websites to begin searching is Berkey water filtration systems, Katadyn water filters, Micropur tablets and Steripen. These are all products that I have in my own preparedness supplies and use regularly.

3. Learn about natural ways to filter water. You Tube is an abundant source of information on how to filter water for survival situations. Devote some to learning methods such as: how to build a solar still, how to live on sea water, how to make your own water filter, making a sand filter and/or gravity filters.

3. Practice filtering and treating your water. This is a crucial skill to learn!


WHAT WE’RE UP TO

In Our Home:

I don’t know if any of you can relate to this, but this week I am reclaiming my home. Now that the kids are back in school, it’s time to re-organize and put up summer items for next year.

It seems like my 9, 6 and 5 year-old have grown up overnight. They all want to make their own lunches and snacks. My son wants to make his own breakfast in the mornings now and I have decided to let them do it (supervised of course). We all want our children to be self-reliant and it starts with simple jobs.  By having the freedom to do things themselves, they are learning about time management skills, preparedness, efficiency, how to make a balanced diet and most importantly, how to be independent. I am so proud of the who they are growing up to be.

Another way to teach self-reliance is to have children create personal preparedness kits to carry in their backpacks. If an emergency occurs at school, you will have the peace of mind knowing they have necessary items on hand to care for themselves until help arrives.

Family Preps:

This week, I have been sealing up some of the kitchen staples (sugar, flour, cornmeal) that I use regularly in smaller storage bags so that I can grab them when necessary. This cuts down on me getting into our long-term preparedness foods that are sealed in plastic containers. I also made some homemade bread and with the extra dough I had leftover, I made cinnamon rolls for the kid’s first day of school. They were delicious and I was praised for my efforts.


RECENT ARTICLES

The 5 P’s of Preparedness

Survival Preparedness for $100

Learning to Prepare the Hard Way


STATS AND FACTS

When water is unavailable, we must tap into other sources for emergency use. According to FEMA, there are sources in the home that you can access for emergency water. Click here to learn more about where these hidden sources are, how you can access them, and which sources to avoid.


LETTERS TO TESS

One of the perks of my job at Ready Nutrition is to address questions and/or concerns that you may have with your prepping endeavors. Feel free to ask anything that is on your mind because no question is too big or small. You can email questions to: getprepped@readynutrition.com

This week’s question addresses wheat:

Tess,

Just started putting some food away for the economic storm approaching. What are the advantages to getting bulk wheat versus getting bulk flour to store?

Thanks,

Bob

Answer:

Bob,

The main difference is the storage longevity and versatility. When wheat is grounded in to flour, it has a shelf life of 6 months to 2 years. Wheat berries, on the other hand, can be stored indefinitely. There versatility is also what makes them so appealing. Wheat berries can be used for bread baking,  sprouting, to make hot cereal, or steamed and dried to make into bulgur wheat, making alcohol, and of course can be planted for a wheat crop. Ensure that you properly store wheat berries to protect it from natural elements and insects. To learn about other emergency food items that last indefinitely, click here.

The only additional accessory you will need is a grain grinder to grind the wheat into flour. If you are preparing for long term emergencies, a grinder would be an important tool to have around.

I hope this helps.

Tess

This article was originally published at Ready Nutrition™ on August 26th, 2011

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