This article from The Provident Prepper talks about calories and nutrition in your long term form storage and what sort of effects deprivation can cause. Long Term Food Storage: Creative Solutions to Build a Critical Asset
Long term food storage is a vital tool to help you conquer challenges that come your way in everyday life, as well as for emergency preparedness. This stockpile of life-sustaining long term storage foods should be built once you have a 3 month supply of foods that you eat everyday stashed in your pantry.
How do I build the perfect long term food storage plan for my family?
- Develop a plan that includes the number of people, unique dietary preferences, and takes into consideration minimum caloric needs.
- Prepare a cool, dry location to store your food supply.
- Search for reputable suppliers where you can purchase foods specifically packaged for long term storage at reasonable prices.
- Begin to implement your plan and consistently stock up on long term food supplies until you reach your goal.
We are going to begin by investigating important basic principles, looking at what the experts are recommending, and then taking a peek at how real people are using a bit of creativity to develop a long term food storage program that works for them.
Basic Caloric Requirements
USDA average caloric recommendations are 2000-2500 calories per day which is between 15-26 servings of food each day. We have been programmed to think that calories are bad. Calories are critical for energy and to maintain health. Let’s use the example of a 150 pound man. We have calculated to include physical activity and dietary thermogenesis. Generally the caloric requirements for a man to maintain a 150 pound weight is:
- Inactive Male Adult – 2,360 calories
- Average Male Adult – 2,722 calories
- Active Male Adult – 3,176 calories
Depending on the scenario, a disaster may result in a normally inactive man having to significantly increase activity level resulting in a higher caloric requirement. When planning your basic longer term food storage, be sure to include enough supplies to meet the caloric requirements of each member of your family.
Minnesota Semi-Starvation Experiment
During World War II thousands of people died daily of starvation. The University of Minnesota conducted a clinical study to determine the physiological and psychological effects of severe and prolonged dietary restriction. They wanted to simulate a severe famine in a controlled laboratory environment and be able to assist famine victims.
36 Civilian Public Service male volunteers were selected to enable a detailed study of the physical and psychological effects of prolonged, famine-like semi-starvation on healthy men and their ability to recover from the experience. During the 24 week semi-starvation period, the caloric intake was cut to 1,560 calories a day consisting of a diet including; potatoes, rutabagas, turnips, bread and macaroni. The diet was rich in carbohydrates and poor in proteins. Subjects were required to walk 22 miles per week.
The results of the study clearly demonstrate that a male adult that consumes only 1,560 calories a day will have significant physical and psychological difficulties. They consistently found the following symptoms in test subjects;
- Increased depression, hysteria and hypochondriasis
- Severe emotional distress
- Preoccupation with food
- Social withdrawal
- Decline in concentration, comprehension and judgement capabilities
- Reduction in body temperature, respiration and heart rate
- Edema in extremities
- No energy
- Always cold
One interesting thing noted is that all food was reported to be delicious with no evidence of diet fatigue. Many of the subjects would add water to the food to make it more like a soup to help make them feel full.
One of the take home messages from this study is to make sure you factor basic caloric requirements into your basic food storage plan. Not all grains are equal when it comes to calculating calories. Wheat at 1520 calories per pound has less calories than white rice at 1650 calories per pound. It doesn’t look like a big deal until you multiply it out and see the difference
- 300 lbs wheat = 456,000 calories = 1,249 calories a day for 1 year
- 300 lbs white rice = 495,000 calories = 2,007 calories a day for 1 year
- 300 lbs black beans = 461,400 calories = 1,264 calories a day for 1 year
Continue reading “The Provident Prepper: Long Term Food Storage”
Boxes of #10 cans can easily fit under a twin bed. We have found that 12 cases of 6 cans will fit nicely. That 72 cans of dry goods will come close but will probably not have quite enough calories to feed one person for an entire year without supplementation. However, if it is used to supplement a 3 month supply of everyday foods stored in a pantry, or garden fresh fruits and vegetables, it would be perfect and bring the total caloric intake in line with basic requirements.