“Everyone knows someone who needs this information!” (TM)
It’s been a troubling fortnight, and I think much worse economic and political news is in the offing for the long-term; periodically, we’ll assess this global issue, but for now, rising food prices are especially troubling for diabetics, and I’ll share some ideas and resources for coping with this widening problem. All these extra societal and monetary stresses can effect your ability to maintain your biochemical equilibrium, as stress destroys well-being as well as peace of mind. So, first of all, stay as calm as you can and learn some stress-reduction techniques. Possibly monitor your blood sugar more often if your personal situation is dire. What’s next?
Secondly, in order for you to be sure to be able to have money for your meds, monitoring supplies, doctor visits etc. cut all your budget items to the bone, except food! Do it now, so you start having money to make choices for an emergency kit and pantry. The American government tried to pass legislation to criminalize food “hoarding”. So far, it has failed, but get your emergency stuff together as soon as possible, in case they try those shennanigans again.
As food prices are rising world-wide, there is more and more chance of food riots (they have happened in a few places already), and some sites on the web report that American police and military troops are being trained for this eventuality, too. Shocking.
And, a mainstream news report last week on the chasm between Los Alamos, New Mexico (America’s wealthiest city) (who knew?!) with it’s valley neighbor which is poverty-stricken, showed one adult was “on food-stamps that supplied only $27 for food”! I hope that was for one week; she didn’t say. But, that amount is tragic and her wizened, skinny, beaten frame told the story.
Well, while most of us are not in her unacceptably shortchanged-by-her-government position, which does not allow her to retain her Health and be able to be a willing, energetic, healthy worker, we ARE also sliding on a very slippery-slope toward the same, if we are not educated.
So, thirdly, learn about the best, healthiest foods; ways to cut extraneous items from your budgets; ways to find the healthiest foods and ways to cook them so they retain the most nutrition.
Additionally, we all need to have some strategies in place in case there is civil unrest.
As an over-60 Boomer generation adult, I’ve had plenty of experience, and with 2 parents who went through the Great Depression, frugal ways were in place even though we lived an upper middle class life. Even when my husband was making a six-figure income, we still retained many of these prudent financial food strategies because: they work; were responsible actions as stewards of the planet and because we understood our own life-progression would require it, (with us likely to live beyond our plan, as so many seniors have found financially, already).
I won’t re-iterate most of the steps, as I found a thought-inducing discussion at the New York Times today, with plenty of great grocery-shopping and food-process ideas. That thread will give you many more options than I can fit in here, so I’ll include that link in the Reference section below. I’ll just mention a few really salient strategies to act on, at THIS time in our problematic history, as the other comments at NYT will all be as if it will be business-as-usual, with no civil unrest or with no deepening Depression. Personally, I think both of these WILL happen, and so the Plan needs to refined.
These are ideas to help with civil unrest and deep financial Depression.
___ It’s too late for most of you who have land to start a complete garden in Northern climes, but if you can get seedlings for winter crops like cabbage etc. then do it! If you live further South, then plant everything you can.
___ If you have fruit trees, harvest them, and store the fruit in a cold place like your garage (apples) or inside (nuts) or for pears etc. make into sauces, juice, freeze etc. (read how to do this). If you have thick-skinned gourds like pumpkins, do the same; keep them in the unheated garage.
___ For people in urban areas, without land, or anyone who has harsh winters, still grow whatever you can indoors, in a sunny window. Learn about gardening under full-spectrum grow-lights.
___ If you have space enough in a corner of a room, consider indoor citrus growing. I met Walter Doty, founder of the Indoor Citrus Society, in the 1980s and was touched by his passion, and I am glad that his legacy lives on. Citrus is one of the best sources of Vitamin C, and will hold well on the tree.
___ Learn which foods are the most nutritious. We’ve worked on this here, but you need to speed-up your own learning. Maybe we won’t have the internet, after all China was able to stop access to it, just by turning off a switch somehow, and of course, many people will not be able to afford their present level of access. Libraries will hopefully continue to give access to all. Nutrition Data listed below is also a really helpful site.
One of the respondents on the NYT thread had done research on which vegetarian foods were complete proteins, even if just marginal sources. Here’s the list, as the likelihood of supplies of animal protein being available during civil strife is nearly nil. These vegetable foods are ranked with the best protein sources first. My notes are in [brackets].
Use forms which will last in your pantry, as electricity may not be available or could be erratic.
Pepitas (pumpkin and squash seeds) [Be sure to buy raw seeds only.]
Avocados [Won’t hold well, but get them as long as you can, as many as affordable.]
Lambsquarters (salad green) [Buy seeds.][Also, check out purslane.]
Fresh Soybeans [While you can use your freezer, get the shelled, frozen ones]
Pistachios [Do not use. These are always filled with microscopic molds.]
Potatoes [Only buy organic or grow your own in season. Others are sprayed with fungicide.]
Chestnuts [Short season, but they store well.]
Tofu [If you are a regular reader, you know I won’t use fractionalized foods.]
Chickpeas [Buy canned for civil-defense pantry + dry, in bulk, for regular cooking.]
Kiwis [In future, plant a male and female vine.] [For now, buy often. Great Vitamin C.]
Pink beans [Same as for garbanzos]
Small white beans [Same as other beans]
Refried beans [Check to make sure these are made with healthy vegetarian fats, or don’t use.]
Split peas [Buy as split-pea soup, and in organic, dry bulk.]
Great Northern beans [Same as other beans]
Cauliflower, raw [Buy fresh while you can, but not often if you have thyroid problems.]
Red kidney beans [I do not recommend any kidney beans. Wrong food for most blood types.]
Black beans [Same for other beans]
Cowpeas [Same for beans]
Yardlong beans [These only come fresh in season. Buy in Oriental Markets.]
Cashews [This nut is not for every blood type*]
* I think raw, organic almonds are best, but they are almost impossible to buy now that California is insisting on irradiating its almonds (and still labeling them “raw”). California produces most of the world’s crop, but organic, non-irradiated nuts have been available at a few online sites.
___ Each of the photos above represent a stage in your thinking.
1. Store whole grains and have a manual, not electric grinder, if needed for flour. Otherwise cook the whole grains. Keep them away from moisture, otherwise they will mold. Check survival sites for the best container options. Include a balanced glycemic, wrapped, portable granola bar stash; I use Balance Bars. www.balance.com
2. Eat the most nutritious fresh foods, in season, while you can. Learn to can and dehydrate properly and save for the equipment.
3. Have sproutable seeds on hand and the simple equipment you need to sprout them, along with a reference for time and technique. Sprouts are some of the most nutritious foods on the planet. Pay attention to the broccoli sprouts and micro-greens options, especially. Learn a lot at: http://www.living-foods.com/articles/sprouting.html You MUST use seeds set aside for sprouting purposes only!!! Other seeds to be planted in the ground have fungicides sprayed on them, big-time!!! http://www.cityfarmer.org/sprout86.html has great information about this and lots more; it’s a good site. I DO NOT RECOMMEND that you grow wheatgrass. There are real issues how to prevent mold. Choose other sprouts.
4. Store some foods without the need for refrigeration. Learn more in books about storing foods in a root cellar (even if you do not have one); for some foods, a cold, unheated garage may do, if you store the foods in the proper way, with good air circulation, too. Plan your garden next time to include these “keepers”; this year, buy more while they are in the market!
5. Do get some long shelf-life, vacuum-packed foods from Mountain House directly, or at good camping stores like www.rei.com . I am not going to mention other brands, as this is the one I buy, and I saw a report of a family which has invested in thousands of dollars worth of this brand’s food, and found when they opened a pouch of blueberries, 10 years apart, they tasted just the same. http://www.mountainhouse.com/ Remember to include any of the whole Celtic Sea Salts (not other salts). Try to choose as many alkalizing foods as possible.
___ There are many Mormon sites on the internet which can teach you about what they try to store for emergencies, but in the past, I have been concerned that much of this is too oriented to flour and dry milk. The processing of dry milk is problematical. It is most usually processed at much too high temperatures — or for too long a time — for it to be quality protein any more (the same is true of any “ultra-pasteurized” fresh dairy). Dried eggs may have some of the same issues, but I haven’t read about that specifically, as I have done about milk processing. In the past, good health food stores have had options for lower-temperature dried milk (it should be labeled as such) or go online.
These Mormon / survival sites will also give you an idea of amounts per person. Use www.thefoodguys.com/foodcalc.html
___ And, remember to store fresh water! Learn at fema.gov about how to do that. Most of our city water supplies require electricity to pump our water to us. No electricity, no water. Go to an excellent camping store and get supplies to purify water — anything from tablets to filtering systems. I suggest REI.com www.rei.com
___ Talk to your doctor about using an over-the-counter diabetes formula in case you cannot get your meds. This option may or may not apply to you. If you control your diabetes with mostly diet, you may be able to use something like 21st Century’s Diabetic Formula which is a multivitamin and diabetic assuaging herbs. The preparation is shelf-stable and has a decent shelf-life (around 2 years, if fresh when you purchase it). Under normal circumstances, a month’s supply costs about $7. Go to their site, print out the information and take it to your doctor to discuss. If you are on insulin, ask LOTS more questions about what to do in long-term emergency civil strife!
Make sure your children and grandchildren will have proper options at their schools, too, regardless of whether the child is diabetic or not. Schools are lagging here!
And, be sure to plan for babies — even if there are none in your family at the moment, in any protracted time-line, babies have a habit of “showing up”!
I will probably add to this later, and will do more in coming weeks, if my own circumstances permit. I’m off to do lots more on this for my own family, as much as we can, anyway.
I think it is important for Americans to keep a real, present, constant assessment going on the financial and societal state of affairs. I hope we have an orderly transition of government after the election, but I see too many signs, from the present government’s planning, that this will not happen. They have not systematically removed the Bill of Rights and many other Liberties for nothing.
Learn more at:
very important ! www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/apr/24/usa.comment
very important: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_XgkeTanCGI
Please read and watch the above sites. Inform yourself. Nothing could be more important at the moment.
Best to all — Em
Be sure to check the Title Archive on the upper Navigation Bar. There are 3 pages listed there. Enjoy!
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/19/nyregion/connecticut/19Rparent.html this is not the strategy I suggest, but it gives an overview of one person’s choices to help her family of 5 in a regular world.
This is the thread where you will get LOTS of ideas. You will have to assess how pertinent they are to your situation, financially, and again, no-one here is thinking about civil-strife.
California Rare Fruit Growers – inheritors of wisdom from the Indoor Citrus Society:
REI – for the best camping supplies www.rei.com
To assess foods for their nutrition: http://www.nutritiondata.com
Diabetes Formula www.21stcenturyvitamins.com
Sprouts: longest time expert I know of = http://www.sproutman.com/ I’ve read Steve since the 70s.
(c)2008 Em https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.com
My work is copyrighted. Please respect that. If you want to quote from or use my article, please name me as author of the article and place my name and website’s address in a footnote or in your reference section of your article. Thanks!