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Is 72 Hours of Emergency Food Really Enough?

Knowing how much and which foods to store in case of an emergency can be difficult especially if you have limited storage space. Then of course there is the issue of water which requires even more space. One of the first items in the planning process is deciding how many people you will need to feed, keeping in mind that you and/or your family may not be the only ones in your home when an emergency strikes.

Local governments and other disaster relief agencies do their best to get help where it is needed most but as we have seen and heard in so many news stories, aid can take days or weeks to arrive, particularly when conditions make it difficult to reach certain areas.  It’s also a good idea to have some extra supplies on hand in case you do have unexpected guests in your home or if you have to wait longer than you thought before help arrives. Planning now, when you are not going through the stress of wondering when help will arrive or how you will keep your family fed and safe is the smart way to prepare for any unexpected emergency.

Most government sites recommend having a 3 day supply of food and water for each person in your household. That is certainly a great place to start but a growing number of experts are telling us that several weeks or even 3 to 6 months of supplies is a more realistic plan. Storing cans and jars of food and enough water for drinking and cooking can take up more space in your home than you can spare. That’s where knowing what kinds of food to store is as important as how much to store. Healthy, prepackaged foods can double or even triple the amount of food you can store in even small spaces.

The types of foods you store are just as important as how much is stored. In times of emergency our bodies naturally experience high levels of stress and eating nothing but peanut butter, crackers and tuna for a week or more only adds to an already stressful situation. Variety, calories and adequate amounts of protein are essential in keeping you and your loved ones healthy and calm. These times, more than any other, are when people will crave comfort foods to help keep everyone’s spirits up.

Storing enough water and the right kinds of food may be worrisome if you don’t have the financial means to suddenly purchase 3 months of supplies at once. Beginning with a 72 hour supply is a great place to start and it won’t break your budget. Simply add a little more each month or so as your budget permits and soon you will be ready for any kind of emergency and can relax knowing that you and your loved ones will have all the food and water needed to stay healthy regardless of how long it takes for help to arrive.

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