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These are the Building Blocks of Survival

amino-acid [1]ReadyNutrition Readers, we are going to cover a few tips and pointers you can use in your preparedness stance.  I word it in that manner because you are never truly done with preparedness.  Even if you had every supply known to man, you still must work on yourself, on other perishable skills (shooting, first-aid, etc.), and on your procedures (SOP’s if you will).  As a survivalist and preparedness adherent, you must always keep this in mind: you’re a work in progress, and neither the work nor the progress ever stops.

We’re going to mention protein [2] and amino acids because they are both so important for you.  When I had surgery about 6 years ago, my recovery time was cut in half from the doctor’s original prognostication because of my intake of protein supplements and amino acids.  When you have traumatic injury, surgery, exercise, or conditions of physical and emotional stress and trauma, the supplements will aid your recovery and ability to weather the storm.

I’m not going to delve into categories of vegan discipline, gluten free diets, or non-GMO foods.  Such is not within the basic scope of this article and would require attentions that would detract from the main message: how to obtain and use protein and supplements effectively.  You will face (in a SHTF scenario) a great deal of difficulty in obtaining protein that you have not already stocked up beforehand.

Proteins themselves are essential in the formation of cellular tissue and virtually every hormonal and endocrine function in the human body.  Proteins degrade, and this means that they wear out, or fall apart over a certain period of time, dependent upon the particular tissue in the body.  Protein turnover is how they break down and then are recycled to form new protein structures.  The average protein lifespan in our cells is 1-2 days; the protein is constantly being broken down and then replenished.

In order to maintain itself, the body must also take in protein, and amino acids are the basic structures that are needed to manufacture proteins.  There are nine amino acids that are considered essential.  By this term essential, these amino acids cannot be synthesized (or manufactured) within the human body, but must be taken in through food/diet.  These nine are histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine.

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The highest sources of amino acids in food include watercress and spirulina [4] (which even exceed meat), pumpkin, leafy greens, hemp seeds [5], chia seeds, soybeans, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds [6] and sunflower butter, almonds, avocados, figs, raisins, quinoa, and wheat.

In addition to these nine are six conditional amino acids: arginine, cysteine, glutamine, glycine, proline, and tyrosine.  This means their synthesis (production by the human body) is limited by physical condition and/or environmental condition (to include diet and trauma).

Then there are BCAA’s (branched-chain amino acids) and these are, in particular, the proteinogenic BCAA’s…and there are three of them: isoleucine, leucine, and valine.

These three are very important, because as you may have noted, they are also three of the nine essential amino acids that cannot be synthesized by the body as mentioned earlier.

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When it comes to weight training and bodybuilding, these BCAA’s are essential to help with tissue repair and (eventually) muscle growth.  Many doctors discount them as not having the effects that weightlifters claim.  I can personally shoot that down, as I bench press 4 sets of 6 with 350 lbs. and max over 400 lbs.  I’m doing seated behind-the-neck military presses 4 sets of 6 with 225 lbs.  If the learned doctor prefers to “teach” me how the BCAA’s are not of use, let’s see if his physical training regimen stacks up to mine.

All of the theories in the world are worthless unless they can be placed into practice.

Protein works, both for your physical training intake and for tissue repair following a workout scenario, or a traumatic event/series of events.  I am recommending what I use.  I supplement my meals with 2-3 “shakes” of milk and protein powder.  I prefer Target’s brands of Market Pantry whey powder with 25 grams of protein per serving.  These have all of the amino acids I need.  I also use Rapid Drive Amino Series BCAA 5000, the 12.32 oz. size with 50 servings, running about $30 a can.  This gives the three BCAA’s that are also essential; I mix it with water and drink it post-workout and one before bed on days I lift.

The protein requirements are different for men and women and differ also by physical condition and needs.  Average daily requirements can be looked up in with differing numbers in just about every text.  I have found that as a man weighing about 200 lbs., I need between 200-300 grams of protein per day.  Not all of this is meat, and as I said, I supplement with the shakes which give me about 40 grams per shake when I add milk and peanut butter.  The time to store up your supplements is now, along with high-protein foods: canned meats and fish, peanut butter, canned chicken.  Believe me, under adverse conditions of physical and emotional stress, your needs per day shoot up akin to a rocket.

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You will need to work up an exercise and dietary regimen in order to prepare yourself for situations in the days to come.  Consult with your doctor on any exercise program or fitness regimen, as they have the legal authority to advise on health treatment in our Soviet-style society.  Keep in mind that these guys do have investments in companies whose business it is to make sure you’re “well,” such as drug companies and other “prescribed” remedial treatments.

I’m here to tell you, it’s important to keep in shape, have supplies of proteins and supplements, and plan a fitness and exercise program that will properly sustain and maintain your body’s physical needs.  Keep up the good fight and don’t stop the training!  JJ out!