Author Topic: what is 'survival food' / what to think of  (Read 9315 times)

Socrates

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what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« on: August 02, 2016, 02:00:54 AM »
I've been interested in healthy food just about all my life; started in my teens and i'm 51 now. All that time i've tried everything sensible i came across, i.e. my opinions are based on research and personal testing. My focus has, however, been that whatever 'solutions' i ran into should be easily duplicable, feasible and affordable.

I've learned a lot but one of the things i've never looked into has been CALORIES... until now.
I've avoided the whole calorie thing because of my research. You see, anyone who has really looked into diets knows that the mainstream hype concerning calories is bogus; it's just NOT about how many calories you eat. That is, IF you're about losing weight. However, when you're talking survival IT'S ALL ABOUT CALORIES.

In a survival situation you don't care where you're getting your energy from. All you know is that you need it (to survive). If that energy is environmentally unfriendly or even unhealthy, all of that becomes moot in survival situations.

I have learned that the best diet is one based on carbohydrates. HOWEVER, carbohydrates contain the LEAST amount of calories (i.e. talking about fats and proteins besides). Fats contain the most calories.

There is SOOO much to be said about diet but there's really only 1 thing to be said about survival food: CALORIES. The rest is just dressing on the cake.
Now, obviously, 'survival' can be about getting through a tough 72 hours, a tough 72 days or a tough 72 months...
I'm mostly talking about short-term challenges when i say it's really only about calories. One can get on to the myriad of other considerations after food sources and safety have been established and safe-guarded. But i myself have in the past mixed up my priorities and focused on healthy foods mainly. Unfortunately, the healthiest foods generally contain the least amount of calories. It has been a dilemma for me but the important thing is that you don't let it be a dilemma for yourself in a pinch. Then you just go for the fats.
(LOL; i was just watching Discovery Channel and they showed albatrosses feeding their young. Guess what they give them? They reurgitate an oil that has as many calories as diesel oil! That's what these chicks live off of.)
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Yowbarb

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2016, 06:25:25 PM »
Socrates, your post makes sense to me.
Everyone has their ideas, and valid ones about what is healthy, what they prefer. That said, in a truly survival situation it would be important to take stock of what one has and what one can get and calories and fat really would be very important. Especially if it is a cold environment.
Here is one (minor)  but  true example. My kids and I lived for a time, on our own land in the woods. It was a generally temperate climate but it was winter and unexpectedly cold and we did have some problems with heating  for a short while.
I went off pork (all mammalian meat) back in the 1960s, but in the 1980s, in that situation, with snow on the ground, and someone gave us a salted cooked ham, I let the kids eat all they wanted. We did stay warm enough and no one got sick...
I also got them some kielbasa sausage since it was easy to get at the local store (a mile and a half walk since my car had broken down.)
For decades before and decades since, I didn't eat or serve pork and only rarely meat, but in that time period, in that situation, pork was a very warming food. We were all on the slim side, no one got fat, and I was chopping wood and hauling water... walking to the market; didn't get fat.
My body does better in general with no meat, only a little yogurt, cheese.
But if I had hungry people to feed and all there was, was spam, rice etc. I would whip up a meal, making it as tasty as possible and I would not be making speeches about being a vegetarian, I would just fix it.
And if we had cocoa or chocolate I would be giving them that, too...
Your post reminded me of that. Survival is more important than any other considerations or opinions, although if someone did not choose to eat something for whatever reason, I would try to offer an alternative and I would not lecture them...
Share with us more ideas on survival foods, we do appreciate your posts.
All The Best,
Barb Townsend

Socrates

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2016, 11:39:58 PM »
Thanks for your kind words, Barb. Okay, so let's get to it then... 8)

Ironically [there's a lot of irony in diet theory], when people wish to lose weight, they should generally be focusing on what they can consume MORE of:
- more good salts
- more water
- more good fats
- more good carbs
- more minerally-rich foods [superfoods]

So, ironically, losing weight and survival actually align in this matter (with the possible exception of carbs). Salts, fats, hydration and mineral-rich food sources are not only essential to health and functioning well but also to the body's ability to take proper advantage of whatever sources are available.
Like, did you know that you require less water if your body is minerally full?

Also, the best place to store nutrients is... IN THE BODY. So if you're talking prepping and food stores, you should also be talking health right now.

Now, in modern culture we're constantly being told to CUT DOWN ON things like fats, salts and calories; so what gives?
We do need to cut down on...
- BAD fats
- BAD salt
- BAD calories [mainly bad fats but also too many proteins]
But saying you're going to cut down on fats PER SE is like saying you were a criminal but repented and now you won't accept 'drug money' anymore BUT YOU ALSO WON'T ACCEPT GOOD MONEY ANYMORE. And that would be insane; you NEED fats and salts. They are very important for you and if you have gone for years without an intake of them, you should probably be focusing on CATCHING UP and not only eating good fats and salts now but LOADS of them until you've given your body enough so it's caught up.

There is NO BENEFIT to eating LESS fat and salt!!!
Listen, i get that people like to make compromises and maybe say: Well, maybe i can have a little bit of good salt but too much is still bad for you....
NOOO! The salt-is-bad-for-you-bs was based on people consuming sodium chloride WHICH IS A POISON. So a lesson on salt...
When you evaporate seawater you get 3.5 grams of minerals per liter. 70% of that is sodium chloride and it crystalizes on top of the rest and can easily be scooped off. Presto: easy and cheap "salt". Now the rest of the minerals are called "bitters" because... they tend to taste bitter. That's why people came to leave them out. But seawater contains about 90 elements and they're all contained in the bitters. These include trace elements that are not only essential to health but also to the TENS OF THOUSANDS of species of micro organisms that populate your intestinal tract. And in case you didn't know, these outnumber the cells of your body 10 to 1 and THEY digest what you eat for you. If you didn't realize, then get this straight: YOUR BODY DIGESTS NOTHING; nothing. What your body does is PREdigest foods; then they go on to your intestines and the gut finishes the job, breaking down what you ate into smaller and smaller bits until it can be absorbed through the gut wall. All your body does is absorb what these micro organisms 'digested' for you.
So, and these symbiotic lifeforms need all kinds of minerals to function properly, just like you do. And where do you find just about ALL minerals in nature? Exactly: in seasalt.
So let me be perfectly clear and straightforward with you, since you have been misinformed and negatively conditioned by popular culture:
YOU CANNOT CONSUME TOO MUCH SEASALT
And you should probably be catching up on all of the salt you SHOULD have been consuming your whole life but weren't.

Phew. Long story. And here it all goes again in relation to FATS...
Well, that would be boring so let me just cut to the chase:
YOU ALSO CANNOT CONSUME TOO MUCH GOOD FAT
Really. Read up on the actual scientific literature and you'll find that high cholesterol levels are GOOD FOR YOU. Your body makes cholesterol, for Pete's sake.
The cholesterol bs works like this: if you were to analyse traffic accidents and there are always cops at the scene, do you decide cops ARE THE CAUSE of traffic accidents? No, because that would be crazy. Well, 'cause that's exactly what happened when researchers found cholesterol in places things went wrong in the body; they saw cholesterol was in problem areas and concluded THEY were the CAUSE of the problems. And then a TRILLION-$ industry was set up selling drugs to lower cholesterol levels and it became impossible to back away from this myth. But if you ever read newspapers you'll have read at some point that EVEN MAINSTREAM DIETICIANS acknowledge that it doesn't matter if you eat 1 or 50 eggs a day since your body will adjust how much cholesterol it makes based on what you consume. But even if it didn't, cholesterol does good work in the body and protects you from damage.

Anyway, good fats often don't even give you higher cholesterol levels (like olive oil, coconut oil, etc.), but the important thing is that you know that (good quality) butter is something you can (and likely should) eat in large amounts, especially if you've denied your body access to good fats in the past.
Bad fats offered bad building material your body needed to create cell membranes. And if you've been eating bad fats, now your body needs an ample supply of GOOD FATS to start replacing those poorly constructed cell membranes. And that will take quite a while, both for your body to replace all those cells and for your body to get rid of all of those bad fats that you consumed in the past.

If you have eaten minerally-deficient foods in the past it will also take a while until your body is minerally dense. So best to start today...

Obviously you should also be consuming appropriate amounts of GOOD WATER... Best thing for now [i.e. not talking about survival situations] is to distill water, then also run it through a reverse-osmosis filter and then restructure it [which can be as simple as throwing in some seasalt].
BUT... Drinking 2 liters of water a day is mainstream bs; it depends on your diet. If you're eating loads of fruit in the morning (as you should), you won't be drinking much water, if at all. On the other hand, the consumption of both proteins and grains requires a lot of water to digest and then you'll be getting thirsty. So have enough to drink, specifically IN THE MORNING which is when your body does it's cleansing.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2016, 11:50:22 PM by Socrates »
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Yowbarb

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2016, 09:38:15 AM »
RE Fats, interesting suggestions, Socrates. I read a good fat book back in the 1990s, a real eye opener. I had read about good fats also back in the Adelle Davis days, 50s, 60s. Ghee, sesame oil, avocados etc. been a part of my diet for awhile. If I do (not) keep up these good fats I notice a decline in health, fast. I personally do a lot better when I have those fats listed above, regularly...

I agree on the water, AM is good, too. My Michael and I used to have warm purified water first thing in AM... took a little walk, then slices of green apples, or fujis, then about 20 min later fresh juices including carrots with a dab of garlic or ginger, lettuce  cabbage etc.

The we had home cooked five grains and aduki beans cooked with a bit of garlic or ginger and plenty of sea salt. We hauled the water jugs around with us wherever we went...

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2016, 10:00:03 AM »
Both Adelle Davis (1950s) and Hulda Regehr Clark (1980s) said butter is good for people. They said to put it liberally on the cooked vegetables to encourage people to eat the vegetables, along with salt.
I think it was Clark who said the butter provides some protection to the intestines from parasites.
I feel better if I use butter in moderation, and ghee.

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Alcohol
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2016, 12:43:39 PM »
(Ghee is a good one since it'll keep for a long time if stored properly.
I'd also like to add that i agree with the 80-10-10 folks in that fats should ideally make up 10% of one's caloric intake; and since fats are so calorically dense, that suggests tiny amounts. But that of course is assuming you're good on good fats in the body.)

Having shattered the fats and salt glass houses, now let's say you're dealing with the '72-month' part of survival; you've made it through the first (harrowing) 3 days and then through the first bad months. But then you'll have to get some organisation and sophistication going or you'll go bat sh!t crazy before the first 72 months have passed...
Let's talk about... alcohol
You're gonna say: Alcohol as survival item?! C'mon! Get outta here! But with alcohol, too, there is more than what meets the mainstream eye... A few things:
1.: Alcohol does not kill brain cells
2.: It may effect men and women quite differently
3.: All long-lived cultures have produced it
4.: One does well to differentiate between fermented and distilled alcohol
5.: 'Naturally fermented' alcohol may actually benefit both health and liver
6.: "Beer" is a very oestrogenic beverage that undermines hormonal balance

You can tell, i could go on and on concerning this matter. The fact is that my life has not been an easy one and PROPERLY BREWED ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES have served me well. That means that i brew my own MEAD with herbal teas and all kinds of other beneficial additives. It has helped me overcome my adrenal fatigue/burnout. Hey, do you think anyone will be suffering from burnout after TSHTF...?
Modern culture has stopped short of making the consumption of alcohol illegal [oh, wait, the Prohibition years...] but otherwise it's frowned on and generally deemed inferior. Be that as it may, popular and political themes are just that; they are neither here nor there.

The simple truth is that an alcoholic buzz gives relief. It relieves stress. Sounds good? 'Cause it is.
If you wanna get through hard times, some relief and R&R could be more than welcome; they could save you from going crazy. Do you think your 'character' or willpower should be what gets you through your worst nightmares? Well, mankind has commonly sought refuge in alcoholic bliss and for good reason.

Properly brewed beverages also give probiotic support. The Tarahumara who can run a marathon daily on a cup of chicha/tesguino [corn brew] and nixtamal [properly prepared corn] can do so because the combination of corn and probiotics that help digest it together offer their guts the opportunity to extract so much. It is similar to how ruminants can extract so much from grass; their digestion is also obviously all about how their gut flora make do with what might otherwise seem slim pickings [i.e. talking about grass]. Now if the Tarahumara would only eat corn, i.e. without also consuming tesguino/chicha, their bodies would not enjoy everything corn has to offer.
So as long as you're talking raw fermented beverages, you're talking probiotic support. This obviously doesn't apply to distilled alcohol and all kinds of unhealthy brews coming out of factories.

I'm going to cut this short; the topic is just too culturally loaded to try to convert any naysayers to believers. But believe you me, when you're down and out and weary of the next dreary day of waking up in your cave, you can bet you will welcome a few hours of alcoholic relief. Hey, maybe it will even stop you from knifing your spouse...
« Last Edit: August 04, 2016, 10:01:39 PM by Socrates »
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MadMax

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2016, 05:50:31 PM »
We personally make monthly purchase of food (freeze dried) from:

http://www.nitro-pak.com/

Good prices and great customer service..

Max.
"Ignorance is Bliss" - (Agent Smith the first Matrix Movie)

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Fermented foods and how to make them
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2016, 10:17:15 PM »
We enjoy foods from all over the world now but people commonly don't realize that every single kind of cheese, for instance, once came from one single region where the micro organisms responsible for making that cheese had been cultivated. So we go to a supermarket or cheese shop; it's one single stop for us; but for mankind it has been centuries in the making. Cheeses don't grow on trees and if there's no one making your particular kind of cheese, you will have to do without it, just like people all over the world usually enjoyed one single kind of fermented food in whatever region they lived.

All long-lived cultures fermented food and drink. I've already covered alcoholic beverages but the importance of fermented foods is just as great. Japanese who survived Hiroshima did so thanks to the fermented foods in their diet, especially miso [which deals with radiation]. What is life without cheese, yogurt, bread, sourkraut, etc.? They are much more than quaint tastes. Fermented foods offer probiotic support. Many people today would do much better by consuming them in greater quantities, especially the raw kinds.

[One man who used to win dog shows with his dogs and who says his dogs commonly lived to be 24 years old [3 times longer than is common for the breed he had] says the key thing to keeping his dogs healthy was a diet containing raw meat, raw fermented foods and seaweed.]

You may have stocked up on seeds, water and tons of rice but do you have any cultures of bacteria you can use to make miso, kefir and 50 different kinds of cheese with...?

Also, you might wanna look into charcuterie [the craft of salting, smoking & curing]. Meats are 50% fat and a great food to stock up on after they've been properly prepared.
Michael Ruhlman & Brian Polcyn wrote a good book on this. It's part of my basic library, as is Sandor Katz' book Wild Fermentation.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2016, 11:45:59 PM by Socrates »
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From a Sarajevo war survivor
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2016, 11:28:19 PM »
From a Sarajevo war survivor

Experiencing horrible things that can happen in a war – death of parents and friends, hunger and malnutrition, endless freezing cold, fear, sniper attacks…

Stockpiling helps, but you never no how long trouble will last, so locate near renewable food sources.
Living near a well with a manual pump is like being in Eden.
After awhile, even gold can lose its luster. But there is no luxury in war quite like toilet paper. Its surplus value is greater than gold’s.
If you had to go without one utility, lose electricity – it’s the easiest to do without (most when you’re in a very nice climate with no need for heat.)
Canned foods are awesome, especially if their contents are tasty without heating.
Bring some books – escapist ones like romance or mysteries become more valuable as the war continues. Sure, it’s great to have a lot of survival guides, but you’ll figure most of that out on your own anyway –trust me, you will have a lot of time on your hands.
The feeling that you’re human can fade pretty fast. I can’t tell you how many people I knew who would have traded a much needed meal for just a little bit of toothpaste, rouge, soap or cologne. Not much point in fighting if you have to lose your humanity. These things are morale –builders like nothing else.
Slow burning candles and matches, matches, matches.
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ilinda

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #9 on: August 08, 2016, 07:01:28 PM »


So let me be perfectly clear and straightforward with you, since you have been misinformed and negatively conditioned by popular culture:
YOU CANNOT CONSUME TOO MUCH SEASALT
And you should probably be catching up on all of the salt you SHOULD have been consuming your whole life but weren't.

Phew. Long story. And here it all goes again in relation to FATS...
Well, that would be boring so let me just cut to the chase:
YOU ALSO CANNOT CONSUME TOO MUCH GOOD FAT
Really. Read up on the actual scientific literature and you'll find that high cholesterol levels are GOOD FOR YOU. Your body makes cholesterol, for Pete's sake.

 EVEN MAINSTREAM DIETICIANS acknowledge that it doesn't matter if you eat 1 or 50 eggs a day since your body will adjust how much cholesterol it makes based on what you consume. But even if it didn't, cholesterol does good work in the body and protects you from damage.

Anyway, good fats often don't even give you higher cholesterol levels (like olive oil, coconut oil, etc.), but the important thing is that you know that (good quality) butter is something you can (and likely should) eat in large amounts, especially if you've denied your body access to good fats in the past.
Bad fats offered bad building material your body needed to create cell membranes. And if you've been eating bad fats, now your body needs an ample supply of GOOD FATS to start replacing those poorly constructed cell membranes. And that will take quite a while, both for your body to replace all those cells and for your body to get rid of all of those bad fats that you consumed in the past.
res a lot of water to digest and then you'll be getting thirsty. So have enough to drink, specifically IN THE MORNING which is when your body does it's cleansing.
Thanks for posting the reminders we need to hear regularly, that is, that good fats are truly good for us, and in greater amounts than mainstream recommends.

Likewise regarding cholesterol.  I mean, this cholesterol hysteria is being whipped up by Big Pharma to scare people half to death and into hooking more and more innocent victims into taking statins for the rest of their lives.  I have a nephew, barely 40, who has been on a statin for several years already, and there is no family history of hypercholesterolemia.   Why didn't his doc tell him about lifestyle changes? 

And, interestingly, Big Pharma tries to confuse the issue by pretending that serum cholesterol and dietary cholesterol are intimately related, which they are not.

Yes, wake up people!

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2016, 06:06:05 PM »
According to Carol Deppe in her book, The Resiliant Gardener, on page 57:
"Potatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates, protein, and vitamin C. 

In pre-potato-famine Ireland, many peasants ate pretty close to an all-potato diet for the major parts of the year.  The average Irishman ate 13 pounds (5.9 kg) per day of potatoes, during fall and early winter."

This is making me want to grow more potatoes.    Today I dried potatoes for the first time ever and was pleasantly surprised at how easily and quickly they dried.  The thing is when you have potatoes early in the year while it's still HOT, they should be kept cool, even cold, and if that isn't possible, they will deteriorate rather quickly, so what to do?  Dry them.

According to one site, the Incas had a method of freeze-drying their potatoes so that they had a shelf life of ten years or more.  So much to learn.

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Re: potatoes
« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2016, 10:44:18 PM »
It would make this thread too long to go into all the good foods separately but talking about things like potatoes and corn are essential. We're all used to running to the supermarket for our carb and calorie sources but when/if such things ever shouid fall away, having reliable supplies and knowing how to grow them will be more important than things like schools or weapons or even relationships...
So forgive me if i elaborate on potatoes.

One source i truly respect, Robert Von, says potatoes are so good at sucking away toxins and eliminating them from the bowels that it's even pointless to eat greens with them; it seems potatoes will suck their goodness away, too.
Now, according to solar nutrition (which i've been practicing since 2009 or so) potatoes should be eaten in the evening and your greens should generally be eaten in the afternoon, so i don't see a problem with it.
Robert Von also says to eat corn with your potatoes.

Drying potatoes is news to me and great news at that. So, thanks!, Illinda. I'd like to learn more about freeze-drying them, too.

Since potatoes are a source of carbs and carbs don't contain too many calories (compared to protein or fats), if one had little to no proteins or fats to go with one's potatoes, one would probably be eating loads and loads of them.
As i am low on funds at the moment, i'm eating sweet potatoes every time i cook. Now, along with string beans and tomatoes, i know that sweet potatoes are a superfood when grown in good soil.
I cook them as Robert Von teaches:
- throw in (already) boiling water
- keep fire high so the water keeps as hot as possible
- boil from 10 to 15 minutes max
- take from pot and rinse with cold water
This way your food is cooked to make it easier to digest but by keeping the time it's heated to a minimum [i.e. only 10 to 15 min.], you leave many enzymes in tact that support the digestion of said food. Of course the way most people cook their food, they throw it in cold water which then slowly comes to a boil and then after boiling the food is allowed to cool slowly; in this way your food is actually subject to maybe half an hour of heat above 118 degrees, i.e. the temperature high enough to destroy enzymes.

Atom Bergstrom suggests dextronizing potatoes by heating them in an oven at 400+ degrees for many hours. Now, again, most people wrap them in foil, thereby causing the potato in the oven to be COOKED, not dextronized. Anyway, it's supposed to help make the carbs much better digestible.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2016, 10:58:50 PM by Socrates »
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Yowbarb

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2016, 01:29:57 AM »
According to Carol Deppe in her book, The Resiliant Gardener, on page 57:
"Potatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates, protein, and vitamin C. 

In pre-potato-famine Ireland, many peasants ate pretty close to an all-potato diet for the major parts of the year.  The average Irishman ate 13 pounds (5.9 kg) per day of potatoes, during fall and early winter."

This is making me want to grow more potatoes.    Today I dried potatoes for the first time ever and was pleasantly surprised at how easily and quickly they dried.  The thing is when you have potatoes early in the year while it's still HOT, they should be kept cool, even cold, and if that isn't possible, they will deteriorate rather quickly, so what to do?  Dry them.

According to one site, the Incas had a method of freeze-drying their potatoes so that they had a shelf life of ten years or more.  So much to learn.
I wonder if this is the site? This page has an article mentioning the Incas freeze-drying potatoes...

http://www.calnative.com/stories/n_incapotato.htm

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Re: potatoes
« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2016, 01:10:03 PM »
Great article, YowBarb! And very funny  :D
So when you're stuck on a mountain in the cold of winter... You can freeze-dry your potatoes. That is, if you were smart enough to head for a mountain where the Sun shines; anyway, if they keep for 10 years, you can build up a supply today for an eventual hard couple of years ahead.

Potatoes.... Who knew?  ;)
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ilinda

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Re: what is 'survival food' / what to think of
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2016, 05:59:46 PM »
According to Carol Deppe in her book, The Resiliant Gardener, on page 57:
"Potatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates, protein, and vitamin C. 

In pre-potato-famine Ireland, many peasants ate pretty close to an all-potato diet for the major parts of the year.  The average Irishman ate 13 pounds (5.9 kg) per day of potatoes, during fall and early winter."

This is making me want to grow more potatoes.    Today I dried potatoes for the first time ever and was pleasantly surprised at how easily and quickly they dried.  The thing is when you have potatoes early in the year while it's still HOT, they should be kept cool, even cold, and if that isn't possible, they will deteriorate rather quickly, so what to do?  Dry them.

According to one site, the Incas had a method of freeze-drying their potatoes so that they had a shelf life of ten years or more.  So much to learn.
I wonder if this is the site? This page has an article mentioning the Incas freeze-drying potatoes...

http://www.calnative.com/stories/n_incapotato.htm

Interesting site, and thanks for finding it, but that wasn't the one.  What I read was actually in the "comments" section after an article.

In the comments, they talked about how the Incans would spread out their potatoes and stomp all over them to break them into smaller bits and pieces, then keep them spread out, so that at night it would freeze.  Then the next day the sun would dry them a bit more, then that night freeze again, and they apparently knew when the process had gone on for long enough to have well dried/freeze-dried potatoes with that 10 or more year shelf life.

They had several varieties:  a black one and a white one, and presumably others when one thinks of the hundreds of varieties of potatoes that originated in South America.  I think the name was coon~ya (tilda is over the "n") or Choon~a.