Pre-COVID 19, most of us had never heard of or practiced the concept of stockpiling in a pandemic. Public educators have been trying to preach the gospel of building yourself a store of food that can be consumed and take one and their loved ones through a long emergency survival situation. Most of us don't know how to do this however.
While it might be tempting to simply purchase tons of canned soup and pasta, that won’t provide the nutrition you need to create healthy meals during a long-term food shortage. The average moderately active woman needs 2,000 calories per day to maintain her weight, while the average moderately active man needs about 2,700 calories. An inactive person requires about 200 calories less than that, while an extremely active person requires about 400 calories more than that.
You will therefore need a variety of food with different nutrientional value. Those need to consist of healthy calories and that means protein. Your healthy eating plan should contain a ratio of fats/carbs/protein that prioritizes protein. Only about 15 percent of your diet should consist of fats and 35 percent carbs, so that leaves 50 percent protein. Protein can be plant-based too. Nuts also contain high protein, as do fish, nut butter, beans, quinoa, barley, broccoli, lentils, and sprouts.
You could stockpile enough food to live off of for one year by purchasing in bits as opposed to bulk. Below are suggestions on the best foods to stockpile, taking your nutrition in consideration.
Best Foods to Stockpile
You would grow rather bored eating just rice for one year, so each month, you vary your purchase. You also purchase two items per month for a total expense of about $40 per month. Here’s what to purchase to own the essentials:
Buy three months worth of white rice and three months of wheat. You would then own the ideal starter stockpile. Those rations would feed one person their basic calories for one year.
In addition to these supplies, you could also stockpile canned versions of your favorite vegetables. Corn and tomatoes make ideal choices. Soybeans, garbanzo beans, and powdered milk make ideal choices.
You also need to store water. The human body requires one gallon of water per day. You cannot survive without eight eight-ounce glasses of water per day. Buying 365-gallon jugs of water will take up significant space and isn’t realistic, so you need to consider your options. You may not have access to tap water, or your running water might become tainted, such as occurred in Flint, Michigan.
You could purchase a few gallon jugs of water for inside your home, in your bomb shelter, or emergency shelter, then install a water storage tank outside. This essentially borrows from the practice used by nearly every US city of having a water tower. You fill the tank with water and drop in an additive that helps the water keep well.
You could also install a rainwater capture system. Many residents of Australia use rainwater capture on an ongoing basis to provide them with drinking and bathing water. You also need water for hygiene purposes. You cannot go for a full year without bathing or brushing your teeth.
Adding to Your Menu Selections
Think about two overarching items in your menu planning. What can you purchase canned? Can you eat it without cooking it or by simply heating it on a burner?
The latter might seem like an odd thought to some, but if you are cut off from other humans for one year, you probably won’t have regular electric or gas service. You need to consider how you will prepare the food.
Now, think about what meats you enjoy that you can purchase dried or canned. Tuna, salmon, and chicken probably top the list. You can also find canned ground beef. Potted meat costs little and you can dress it up easily with spices and powdered cheese, such as Parmesan, to make a delicious dip. You can add a few bags or cans of potato chips, so you have some fun snacks, too.
While most people think of beef jerky when they consider jerky at all, you can find nearly every meat as a jerky. That includes beef, chicken, turkey, venison. You can find fish jerky although it won’t be packaged as you probably think of jerky.
The most likely option will be ahi tuna jerky, but snap up whale meat jerky if you can find this product of Japan and Alaska. It is a product of Alaska from Native American tribes that still fish for subsidence and industry. Since the whaling season is super short, they dry the meat, so it keeps year-round. Whale meat jerky rehydrated makes terrific sushi meat.
You might use a solar cooker. This assumes you can safely go outdoors. You can use a camp stove. These use small canisters of propane or butane as fuel to heat a burner for cooking and reheating foods. Since you are planning for an essential apocalypse, purchase both.
Planning for Disastrous Times
We aren’t always ready for the worst, but we can be. Always make sure that first and foremost, you have enough food and water- stockpile that first. Make sure that you have food options that can be eaten straight from the can, because while prepping for an unknown SHTF situation, you must assume the possible scenario and prep for it. You could end up with no fire to cook your food.