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By Kellene Bishop

Dharma Food Supplies

Food Storage photo c/o westword.com

If you could only store four foods for you and your family, what would they be? Come on, take your best guess. The good news is you could indeed survive with some knowledge and creativity on just four foods for you and your family for an entire year, and you wouldn’t necessarily get bored either. The reason I share these four foods with you is in response to so many pleas to simplify food storage. Although I feel more strongly about storing what you eat and eating what you store using the “meal method”, some folks just simply won’t tackle their food storage needs unless it’s broken down to ultra simple. Well, here’s ultra simple, broken down to just four foods.

Allow me to share with you what I call “The Vital Four.” I don’t call them that to be cute or cunning. These four foods are not only ideal and relatively simple to use, they are also still relatively affordable.

Hard White Wheat photo c/o pgward.org

Hard White Wheat photo c/o pgward.org

So, what would The Vital Four be? In order of priority:

  • Wheat
  • Powdered Milk
  • Honey
  • Salt

Now, before you get crazy, these foods would NOT be appropriate if you currently aren’t eating wheat. Remember that due to the significant lack of fiber in our diet today, if you were to go on an all wheat diet, you would be dead within 30 days due to the shock to your digestive system. So don’t plan on using these foods “cold turkey”, folks. You’ve got to get your body used to this kind of fiber ahead of time if you intend to survive on it. With four of the most simple foods, could this list be any more “ultra simple?”

So why this particular order?

Vital Four #1: Wheat. Wheat is at the top of the list due to its enormous amount of protein, multiple uses, fats, amino acids, carbohydrates, antioxidants, minerals and vitamins—not to mention its longevity in your storage. An unbroken wheat kernel has the ability to retain its fat without going rancid. For those of you who don’t know, wheat was discovered in the Egyptian pyramids dating back to 2500 BC. The story is told that 36 of the kernels were planted and grew and thrived into 1,500 bushels of wheat over six years. Even those who are gluten intolerant can still use wheat by sprouting it. Once you sprout it, it’s no longer a gluten compound. It’s a vegetable—particularly high in vitamin C and B which is great for blood sugar regulation and energy. (1 ounce of sprouted wheat contains an entire day’s supply of vitamin C.) In other words, sprouted wheat can compensate for the absence of fruits and vegetables in a diet. As you’ve heard me say, sprouting is ultra simple.

Milk is Good for Bones. photo c/o franklinpierce.edu

Milk is Good for Bones. photo c/o franklinpierce.edu

Vital Four #2: Milk.  An important part of the “promised land” duo, milk has a great nutritional content–particularly protein and vitamin A and D, multiple convenient uses, and also stores very well–especially with today’s technological advances. Milk is a quality food which is found to be important for the proper function of the muscles and the bones, but even more so in times of stress. Very few foods can claim to assist the body in these two critical areas in one fail swoop, and none of the others I’ve found which do assist the body in this manner taste very good in baked goods, cheeses, and sauces like milk does. I mean really. Whoever heard of spinach cheese?  There’s nothing difficult about using milk. Measure it. Water it. Mix it. That’s it. Super simple!

Vital Four #3: Honey. Honey is the ONLY food which stores indefinitely (except maybe Twinkies. But it remains to be seen whether we can really call the Twinkie “food”). It was also found in the Egyptian pyramids, and serves as a necessary sweetener in everything which may call for sugar. As you may have read in a previous article, it also has amazing medicinal virtues. One aspect you may not have considered is that the sweetness of honey is so fulfilling, it’s not likely to be over indulged in. The last thing you need in an emergency is to be addicted to a particular food. Unlike so many other sweeteners out there, honey is NOT addictive. In fact several university studies have shown that withdrawing from sugar is just as challenging to most humans as withdrawing from heroine. Honey also has small amounts of protein, iron, and vitamin C. Hmmm… sweet, nutritious, and an indefinite shelf-life. Sounds like a food storage dream.  

Vital Four #4: Salt. Many folks are surprised to hear “salt” on my list of The Vital Four. Frankly, I’m surprised as well. I’m not one to “salt my foods. I rarely use it in my cooking, preferring other sources for a salty taste instead. In actuality, our bodies are just as reliant on salt as we are on water. In fact, it keeps our fluids in balance. It is necessary to all of the cellular processes in our body. ALL of them. It’s particularly necessary for muscle contractions, such as your heartbeat, nerve impulses, and the digestion of proteins. Our bodies do not produce salt. We deplete it through normal function. And we deplete a lot of salt when we’re involved in heavy labor or intense stress. Thus we must conscientiously feed it to our bodies. In addition to all of this, it’s also a great preservative for meats and vegetables without the need of any fancy equipment. Better yet, working salt into your diet doesn’t take any trickery.

If you want to still keep things ultra simple but add a few more “luxury items” to the list, I would recommend vegetable/olive oil, peanut butter, legumes, yeast, molasses, and dried fruits.

Passport to Survival photo c/o amazon.com

Passport to Survival photo c/o amazon.com

In summary, I find it interesting that The Vital Four are referred to in the Bible as foods of prominence: wheat—“the staff of life,” “land flowing with milk and honey” (mentioned 70 times in the Bible), and salt—“the salt of the earth” and “savor.” If you want a bundle of easy and creative recipes to use with your ultra simple food stores, I highly recommend Esther Dickey’s book, “Passport to Survival.” It was published in the late 60’s so you will most likely acquire a used copy on Amazon. But I find my copy to be just as useful—if not more so—today than perhaps it was intended to be several decades ago.

So I’ve made food storage as simple as is absolutely possible. Got any more excuses for delaying your food storage?  🙂

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

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This blog has moved. Please visit us at www.preparednesspro.com.

By Kellene Bishop

I’ve often had the question asked of me, “Why do we need spiritual preparedness for an emergency?”  I also frequently hear requests for a clarification of what I mean by “spiritual preparedness.”  Fortunately spiritual preparedness does not mean you need to have the Bible memorized, nor do you necessarily need to be able to interpret the Book of Revelations.  When I list the ten components of emergency preparedness, I assure you there is a deliberate reason why it’s at the very top of the list.  Bottom line, after all you can do, it may be your only source for survival.  Allow me to explain what I mean by that.

Stress, chaos, confusion - all byproducts of an emergency. Photo c/o stressrelatedillness.com

Stress, chaos, confusion - all byproducts of an emergency. Photo c/o stressrelatedillness.com

I anticipate that in virtually any emergency, chaos, confusion, upheaval, and stress will accompany the scenario.  You could have plenty of food, water, family, and physical comforts, but nothing will be able to take the place of what you have “stored up” spiritually.  If you’re not in the habit of reaching outside of yourself for comfort and peace, the likelihood of you being able to do so successfully in the midst of chaos is unrealistic, and yet I assure you that it will be just as vital as will your food and water.

Spiritual preparedness cannot be accumulated overnight.  It takes diligent and consistent effort.  Just like 1,000 sit ups in one sitting won’t prepare you physically, neither will a periodic drop to your knees in prayer.  In fact, chances are, if you’re not already in the habit of strengthening your spiritual standing, you won’t be likely to take any such efforts in the midst of a disaster.  To me that would make a person just as vulnerable during a disaster as a wounded deer out in the wild of Africa.

Think of it this way.  The children of Israel left the captivity of the Pharaoh with all of their provisions.  They took their clothing, their family, herds, water, seeds, agriculture and construction knowledge, and essentially everything they would need to survive a long trek.  But, when they came upon the edge of the Red Sea with Pharaoh’s armies close behind them, could any of these physical provisions save them?  No.  What did save them?  Spiritual preparedness on the part of Moses.  He wasn’t prone to panic and pacing.  Instead he relied on something outside of his own physical abilities.  

I know several individuals who dabble in building model airplanes, train sets, and boats.  I assure you that Noah’s building of the ark had nothing to do with a “little hobby of his.”  He was not a shipbuilder.  He was a spiritually prepared man.  I’m sure it was the result of his spiritual preparedness that he was able to break the news to his wife that her backyard was going to be consumed by a large vessel and hoards of animals, and not a recent “marriage class” he attended.

Five of Them Were Wise by Walter Rane

Five of Them Were Wise by Walter Rane

What made the difference between the 5 foolish virgins and the 5 wise virgins?  All 10 of them had vessels in which to hold oil.  All 10 of them fully expected to be granted access to the wedding.  And yet it was the spiritual preparedness that motivated the 5 wise virgins into action to actually fill their vessels with oil.  Didn’t even the 5 foolish virgins have every intention of filling their vessels with oil?  Surely you have the intention of filling your water jugs, your pantries, etc, right?  (What spiritual preparedness causes some to fill their pantry and their water jugs as opposed to others who just let them sit empty?)

In an emergency, situations will arise that we cannot possibly be prepared for otherwise.  Spiritual preparedness is often the only thing which can fill in the gaps of what we can and can’t do.  I find that it enhances my physical preparedness efforts as well, so long as I do all that I can.  Periodically I come up with ideas that I know I have never read in a book or heard of otherwise.  I’m certain that it’s as a result of my efforts to prepare spiritually for tough times ahead. 

spiritual-preparedness-911-from-the-groundI consider spiritual preparedness to be a key component to my “warning system.”  Some call this “women’s intuition”, or a “gut instinct.”  I hope you don’t mind my telling you that I usually refer to it as a “prompting of the Spirit.”  After 9/11 occurred, we heard stories of numerous people who avoided this disaster as a result of their spiritual preparedness coming in handy.  Some avoided getting on the plane.  Some avoided going in to work that day.  Many similar credible stories circulated before and after Hurricane Katrina.  For example, last week as I was heading out of town to teach some classes, I felt an unexplainable sense of angst.  I had no idea what it was attributed to.  Sure I get a bit nervous before teaching a class.  And sure it was a lot of work ahead of me.  But frankly I’m used to that.  As it turned out I felt the urge to ask a friend of mine if she’d like to join me on a road trip.  Surprisingly she did.  We ended up having TONS of people at the training events.  The effort and time that I had anticipated to be the necessary preparation work for the events ended up doubling!  I literally could not have done what I did without her.  (Thank you so much, Vicky!)  This is just a small example of what I mean by spiritual preparedness.  If I was more wrapped up in watching Oprah on TV, or staying busy 24/7 instead of taking time to listen to what’s really going on around me, I assure you I would have been in tears and a big emotional mess.  I’m sure such a state would have given me NO credibility as a “Preparedness Pro.”

Peace Amidst the Chaos in Iran, June 2009 photo c/o time.com

Peace Amidst the Chaos in Iran, June 2009 photo c/o time.com

Take time to pay attention to how you’re feeling.  Take time to be quiet so that you can listen to your instincts.  Take the time to instill habits which bring you a peace that may otherwise be foreign or in short supply in the midst of an emergency.  For those of you who believe in God, I assure you that He does not intend for those who are prepared to be panicked and helpless.  I figure that there’s a darn good reason why He urges us to be prepared.  Peace in the midst of chaos is what makes men great.   I’m certain that this is what He means when He tells us “if we are prepared, we shall not fear.”  Fear is debilitating and crippling.  I’m certain that if my spiritual preparedness is in short supply, I will be useless, and even a dangerous liability to those around me in the event of an emergency.  I am committed to being as much of an asset to my family and loved ones as possible.  How about you?

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.  All rights reserved.  You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

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