Things you’ll need for Sanitation when SHTF!

In most disaster scenarios or any kind of end of the world as we know it type event, sanitation is going to be a major problem. After an earthquake, flood, hurricane, tornado, in a war zone, or during a pandemic, your surroundings as well as your immediate area can and will be contaminated with germs, viruses and disease. That means any common or public area is going to be extremely dangerous.

Sewers and septic tanks are going to leak / overflow into the surrounding areas, they can potentially contaminate groundwater, lakes, and water pipelines. Without garbage trucks, dead animals and trash will quickly pile up and create breeding grounds for germs and bacteria. Most people will not dispose of their waste properly, and it will more than likely seep into waterways. Petroleum byproducts, oil, gasoline and the like from damaged or submerged vehicles is likely to spread into the earth. To make matters even worse, the increased stress of the situation will lead to a weakening of your immune system. So what can you do?

Ideally, you’ll want to stay inside as long as possible. But if the crisis lasts for long, you’re going to have to go outside eventually. Here are some supplies you should start stocking up on now (in alphabetical order):

1. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes – Great for cleaning any surface areas that are touched often.

2. Drinking Water – You’ll need at least a gallon per person per day. Two gallons would be even better because you’ll also need clean water to bathe yourself with. If you run out of clean water, you’ll have to boil whatever water you can find. A roiling boil for 1 minute should do it. (Rain water must be boiled, too.) If you don’t have room to store a lot of drinking water or don’t have enough fuel to boil water everyday, I recommend buying a Katadyn Pocket Water Microfilter. This will clean up to 13000 gallons of water before the filter needs to be replaced.

3. Feminine Hygiene Products – Self explanatory.

4. Hydrogen peroxide – For treatment of minor cuts, scrapes and burns. Can also be used as a gargle or mouth rinse.

5. Nitrile Gloves – Wear these while cleaning and dealing with waste.

6. Pampers Baby Fresh Wipes – These are great for cleaning yourself if you don’t have enough clean water for bathing.

7. Paper Towels – For drying off after washing yourself. Don’t just use the same cloth towels over and over.

8. Portable Toilet – You may need this if the water tap stops flowing. Don’t forget to buy some small trash bags to use as liners, or consider installing the tried and true ‘Outhouse’ on your property if you are able.

9. Instant Hand Sanitizer – Use it when you get up, after you go to the bathroom, before cooking, before you eat, basically all the time!

10. Regular Unscented Bleach – This kind of bleach has a longer shelf life, and it can also be used to purify water.

11. Toilet Paper – There’s an old survivalist joke that when TSHTF, toilet paper will be worth its weight in gold. I wouldn’t be surprised if this actually happened.

12. Toothbrushes and Toothpaste – Remember, the mouth is the dirtiest part of the body.

13. Trash Bags – You’ll need somewhere to put all those dirty baby wipes. You can never have too many trash bags, they can also be used to place any deceased animals found in/around your shelter into.

14. Rubber Gloves – You’ll need these for when you have to interact with potentially contaminated materials.

15. Learn to make your own soaps using wood ash as the base, this will help if it’s not a disaster situation, but a end of the world as we know it type event.

Remember, the best way to prevent disease is to avoid getting one in the first place. Wash your hands!

Homestead Seasonal Cleaning Tips, Tricks, and more!

How clean is your home? Let’s answer this question straight away: It’s not as clean as you THINK it is. After the shelves have been dusted, the windows washed, and the floors have been swept, scrubbed, and mopped, there are still overlooked spots where grime is hiding. Do you know where they are? Don’t worry! We’ve prepared our best solutions for helping you get to every corner.
Continue reading

Goat Milk vs. Cow Milk

Dairy farmers had quite a marketing plan back in the 1980’s that made them more than 13 billion dollars in recent years. With commercials touting milk mustaches and encouraging little kids to drink their milk (even if it’s chocolate, and full of refined sugar), should we question if cow’s milk is really that ‘good’ for the body? Many people don’t believe in drinking milk at all, but much of the world drinks more goat’s milk than cow’s milk, so what’s up with the American addiction to the cow? In this match of goat milk vs. cow milk, which will come out on top?
We begin life relying on our mother’s milk, and breast feeding research makes it clear that feeding babies with breast milk far exceeds anything made by any corporation. So perhaps our obsession with cow’s milk comes from this strange correlation. Maybe not. The bottom line, though, is that the rest of the world drinks goat’s milk because it is simply better for the human body.

Here’s why:

You don’t have to homogenize goat’s milk; it is naturally homogenized. Homogenization is a process done to cow’s milk to equally distribute the fat molecules so that when you purchase a jug from your grocery store it doesn’t have milk curd (milk cream) floating on the top of your milk. If you put two glasses of fresh goat’s and cow’s milk in the refrigerator overnight, the cow’s milk separates, and the goat’s milk does not. Homogenization of milk also causes fat cells to break, releasing a free radical called Xanthine Oxidase. As we know, free radicals aren’t good for you; they cause DNA mutations, among other things.
Cow’s milk sold in stores and not purchased fresh from a dairy farm is also pasteurized in order to kill any pathogenic bacteria, but this also kills all the good bacteria that contribute to healthy gut flora and proper digestion – of everything you eat, but also the cow’s milk you drink. Enzymes and vitamins A, D, and C are also eradicated in the process of pasteurization, and this is why Vitamin D is often added back into cow’s milk. Pasteurization kills the life out of the milk.
Goat’s milk is about 85% less allergenic than Cow’s milk, so people suffer intolerance less often. In children under three in the United States, milk is one of the most allergic foods
Goat’s milk is easier to digest for the majority of people than cow’s milk and most closely matches the milk produced by human body. The simplicity of digesting goat’s milk has to do with how fat is digested in the body. Basically, the fat molecules in goat’s milk are smaller, and therefore easier to stomach. Goat’s milk also contains less lactose, so there is less likelihood of developing an intolerance.
Goat Milk Advantages
The most significant difference between goat milk and cow milk is that fresh, unpasteurized cow milk forms a distinct cream-line at the top and goat milk does not.   The reason is that goat milk is naturally homogenized which means the fat molecules are smaller than in cow milk and so remain evenly dispersed throughout the milk.   The smaller size of the fat globules seems to make goat milk more digestible for some people but not all.   I personally find no difference in digestibility between the two.
While the protein structure of cow and goat milk is fairly similar, goat milk is missing an alpha casein present in cow’s milk.  In addition, when you drink a glass of goat milk and it reacts with the acid in your stomach, the protein curds that precipitate are smaller in size and a bit softer than the ones that form with cow’s milk.  This is another reason some folks find goat milk to be more easily digested than cow milk.
Cow Milk Advantages
Cow milk is higher is vitamin B12 which so many people are severely deficient in.  Goat milk also lacks folic acid making cow milk more suitable for homemade infant formula in the event the mother cannot breastfeed.
Cow milk is also higher in B6 making it a better choice for pregnant mothers who have morning sickness. My ex-wife suffered from B6 deficiency and morning sickness and found sipping fresh cows milk during the first trimester to bring almost immediate relief. Incidentally, B6 is destroyed by pasteurization so any sort of heat treated or pasteurized milk will not help in this regard.  The milk must be farm fresh and preferably grass-fed.
Cow milk is usually more readily available than goat milk and is typically a lower cost per gallon making it more suitable for tighter budgets.

And The Winner Is?
So in the fight of goat milk vs. cow milk, goat milk does indeed come out victorious. If you’re a milk-drinker, go goat.
Goat’s milk is just better for you, overall. It has a greater concentration of essential fatty acids such as linoleic and arachidonic acid than cow’s milk along with higher amounts of vitamin B-6, vitamin A, and niacin. The milk also has higher levels of bioavailable iron, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium which results in the restoration of altered haematological parameters and better levels of parathyroid hormone (PTH).

Sources:
http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/homogenization_T3.html
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/07/070730100229.htm

Hardtack: Survival Food for Survival Situations!

Hardtack (or hard tack) is a simple type of cracker or biscuit, made from flour, water, and sometimes salt. Inexpensive and long-lasting, it was and is used for sustenance in the absence of perishable foods, commonly during long sea voyages and military campaigns. The name derives from the British sailor slang for food, “tack.” It is known by other names such as pilot bread, ship’s biscuit, shipbiscuit, sea biscuit, cabin bread, sea bread (as rations for sailors), brewis (possibly a cognate with “brose”), or pejoratively “dog biscuits”, “tooth dullers”, “sheet iron”, “worm castles”, or “molar breakers”.

Continue reading

Ways to store Meat without Refrigeration

Living on a homestead, or in any rural area, or preparing for a potential natural disaster. Being 40 miles from the nearest grocery store tends to prompt one to learn good food storage.  Some homesteaders have our own cattle, and tend to large freezer filled with beef, or are hunters and have that same freezer filled with venison.  Freezing has become the perfect modern way to preserve our precious supply of good ole’ meat.

Continue reading

The Lost art of proper Food Storage

A generation or two ago, families had the good sense to always maintain a good food storage program because they understood that bad things can happen, not just in life, but also to your food supplies. After the great depression, families who survived learned the lesson of being prepared for just about anything. Since the late 80’s early 90’s when food, and other household products became more and more readily available (think Walmart beings pushing mom and pop shops out of town), America became complacent and assumed that there would never be a time when we couldn’t get in the car, drive to the grocery store or restaurant, and find exactly what we wanted in bountiful quantities at cheap prices.

Continue reading