From Storage to Stovetop: 16 Bean Soup Mix

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In today’s installment of From Storage to Stovetop we are going to show you a traditional 16 bean soup mix and give you a secret trick on how to make a simple soup without all of the hassle and wasted fuel to soak and cook all those legumes.

In the video below Julie shares her secret to making the best 16 bean soup. It doesn’t even need HAM in it to make it delicious, which is a big plus in her family. This is one of those ingredients that a lot of people have purchased for their food storage but very few people actually cook with on a regular basis.

Favorite Recipe for 16 (or 12) Bean Soup

2 cups of soaked beans (soaking optional)
5 cups of water
2 tsp of cumin
1/4 cup of dehydrated onions
1 tsp of garlic
1 tsp ground red pepper, or cayenne, or something spicy

Cook the beans in a pressure cooker, or in a crock pot. I use my electric pressure cooker and cook them on high pressure with natural release, for 45 minutes if I have soaked the beans for a number of hours. If I’m making a last minute meal and didn’t soak the beans, I cook them for 52 minutes. If you’re cooking the beans in a crock pot, cook on low for 6-10 hours. Do not add salt to uncooked beans – it will slow down the cooking process. Also the cooking time can vary based on how old your beans are.

When the beans are done add the following ingredients:

1 or 2 can of tomatoes blended (depends on how soupy you want it)
1 can of tomato paste, or some tomato powder to thicken it if you want it more chili substance
1 cup of salsa (I like Pace)
Salt to taste
Top with chips and cheese if you would like




The post From Storage to Stovetop: 16 Bean Soup Mix appeared first on Food Storage Made Easy.

Survival Gear Review: Benjamin Trail NP2 Air Rifle

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Best Survival Air Rifle

I peered through the ocular lens of the scope, reached up with my trigger hand, and cranked the Survivalmagnification dial up to 9x. I needed precision for this shot; my quarry wasn’t going to let me get a second chance if I missed. Fifty yards away, the beady-eyed, fanged animal peered back through the cross-hairs at me – almost as if it was daring me to try to end its until-then-peaceful meal, high up in the tree. I sneered, spat on the ground, and started my breath control and taking up the trigger slack as the duplex cross-hairs commenced their rhythmic dance around my opponent’s cranium.

By Drew, a contributing author of Survival Cache & SHTFBlog

I could clearly see the offal of the animal’s prey in its mouth, and falling on the ground around the tree, cascading down into a grim pile below. Time stood still as the perfect combination of heartbeats, breath, and trigger pressure coincided, and I clearly recall the magnificent beast, darkly silhouetted in the dappled light of the late afternoon sky. The fierce animal shifted on its perch, muscles tensed, ready to lunge at me, or effect its escape.  I squeezed the trigger. I felt it break cleanly beneath the pad of my finger. Perfect.

The calm afternoon couldn’t have been shattered less; the integrally-suppressed barrel of my rifle made a whispered “whap” noise as I sent the projectile hurtling through the crisp winter atmosphere, coursing towards my quarry’s cranium. The soft lead met skin-covered bone with an audible “whack!” and I saw my worthy challenger hunch up on the tree branch and freeze, as if pondering what course of action to pursue next. Gravity and high-velocity lead poisoning joined forces to hasten the animal’s decision-making, and the creature slowly toppled backwards and fell, fell, fell….meeting its ultimate demise upon sudden Earth-induced deceleration. A shower of quills, a final kick, the body relaxed, and it was over….I had prevailed. That was one porcupine that wasn’t going to eat my sugar maples anymore.

The Hunting that slew this particular Grendel’s Mother is a mighty tool indeed – but it’s not a firearm.

Air-Powered Ecstasy

Aside from the classic Red Ryder carbine action 200-shot range model air rifle with a compass in the SHTF Pellet Gunstock, and a summer’s worth of fun with an old Sheridan Blue Streak pump-up pellet rifle years ago, I had absolutely zero experience with air rifles. I’d been shooting .22 rifles since the heady age of 5, so there was never any need or want to explore the world of arms that used pressurized atmosphere to propel tiny lead pellets at high velocity. However, once Crosman sent me a Benjamin Trail NP2 to try, I quickly realized that I’d been missing out on a lot of fun and practicality without an air rifle in my arsenal.

The Benjamin Trail NP2 is a rifle-sized and -weighted pellet rifle that breaks open at the barrel to load its single shot. Offered in .177” caliber or .22” caliber, the rifle is powerful enough for serious small-game hunting, pest removal, or good old-fashioned plinking.

Also Read: Pellet Guns, Not Just For Kids Anymore

The proudly Made-in-America Trail NP2 utilizes the second generation of Nitro Piston technology epic banner 250x250 evolution of portable water filtration(hence the “NP2” moniker) to launch lead, as opposed to springs, CO2 cartridges, pneumatic pump-action, or pre-charged pneumatic (PCP) systems. The Nitro Piston system has a nitrogen-filled cylinder onboard; when the rifle is cocked via the break-open barrel, a piston compresses the nitrogen in the cylinder. Once the trigger is pulled, the compressed nitrogen drives the piston forward. This compresses the air in the chamber – and the pellet rockets out of the bore at a zippy clip, propelled by the blast of compressed air from behind. It’s a great system, and has several advantages over standard spring-powered pellet rifles.

A piston-driven air rifle can be left cocked and ready to go for a long time – days, weeks even – without any fear of a compressed spring losing its power or accuracy or messing with spring harmonics. There are no high-tension parts to wear out; however, it’s recommended you fire and work the piston system every couple months in order that the air rifle’s innards and seals don’t bond or compress semi-permanently. Temperature swings don’t fiddle with Nitro Piston air guns, either.

Related: Why Every Prepper Needs A Pellet Gun

A real benefit to the Nitro Piston system – and the Trail NP2 rifles in particular – is that they are VERY quiet. I’m told spring-powered air rifles can be quite noisy when the springs do their job, but the NP2 system’s nitrogen-powered piston is effortlessly noiseless – the only noise you hear from the rifle is a “whap!” sort of sound – about as loud as a handclap -that emanates from the barrel when the trigger is pulled. It helps that the barrel has an integral “suppressor” of sorts, with the last few inches of tube taken up by baffles that capture the noise of the compressed air being driven from the rifle. While unsuppressed air rifles certainly aren’t exactly like a .30-06 going off in your ear, the sound of compressed air rushing can be quite loud and distinctive-sounding; the baffles at the dangerous end of the Benjamin Trail NP2 do their intended job very effectively. I was able to do some target practice out the kitchen window this morning with my wife sleeping in the next room – she snoozed like a baby right through the whole process.

The Benjamin Trail NP2 does not have any fixed sights; rather, the rifle comes out of the box with a Picatinny rail mounted to the receiver. A set of inexpensive Weaver-style scope rings and a Centerpoint 3-9x scope make up the sighting package for the Trail NP2. The scope itself is not a high-priced item, especially to a guy who’s used to peering through Leupold and Burris scopes. But for the price point – and considering there is zero recoil for the scope to contend with – the Centerpoint does its job acceptably well. The crosshairs have stadia lines integrated into the reticle – why, I don’t know; you’re not going to be shooting at antelope in a 15mph crosswind 300 yards away with this rifle. But once the ocular-end focus is adjusted, the scope is decently clear and effective. It’s a solid starting point for optics on this rifle, and can be upgraded down the line simply by popping a new scope on the rings.

Rounding out the onboard accessories of the Benjamin Trail NP2 is a rear stock mounted QD sling swivel and a front sling loop for the included nylon padded logo sling. Offered in black synthetic or hardwood, the stock sports a thumbhole stock and a high comb for good cheek weld with optics use. A rubber non-slip recoil pad brings up the tail end of the Trail.

Breaking Bad – in a Good Way

The Benjamin Trail NP2 offers a newly designed “Clean Break Trigger” or CBT in the hopes of The Answer Water Bottle Filtration Solution 300x250maximizing the shooter’s accuracy experience. The CBT is a two-stage affair with a healthy amount of smooth, even take-up – probably a half inch of travel in total. After the initial take-up is pulled through, the rest of the trigger pull is decidedly short and relatively crisp, though with some definite creep. Considering that the Trail NP2 and scope is a $250 retail package, the trigger is quite good – certainly better than most AR-15s or even modern-production .22 rifles.

As a bonus, the trigger is adjustable – according to the instructions that come with the rifle, the trigger pull “second stage length” can be changed by accessing the adjustment screw that resides behind the trigger. Turning the screw clockwise shortens the length of the stage, counterclockwise increases. I fiddled with the settings a bit to make sure it worked, but then I returned the trigger to the factory setting; I was quite happy with it out of the box. Changing the “stage length” isn’t going to turn the trigger into a tuned match affair…but it does offer a bit of adjustability for those who like to tinker with their toys. It’s nice to see some effort by manufacturers put into providing a clean trigger on a rifle like this that’s capable of excellent accuracy.

Don’t Miss: 10 Best Survival Items

The safety is a positive affair, very similar to an M1 Garand. There is a tab inside the trigger guard that slides forward and back; with the tab in the forward position, the gun is ready to fire. In the rearmost position, the tab gets in the way of trigger access, and provides a tactile reminder that the safety is engaged. It works very well, gloves on or off.

Feeding the Beast

As stated, my particular Benjamin Trail NP2 is in .22 caliber – which I find preferable to the .177” for a Pellet Rifle Reviewforaging/hunting rifle due to its heavier punch, even though velocities are slower. The Trail NP2 is advertised as being capable of pushing alloy pellets to velocities approaching 1200 feet per second (fps) – which is 22 Long Rifle territory. However, the very low sectional density of aluminum alloy pellets means that the little pill will lose velocity very quickly, and penetrate miserably. Alloy pellets might work for dispatching sparrows, but for the survivalist’s consideration, they’re really only good for hyping up claims of velocity or target practice.

That brings us to lead pellets, which is where our looking for serious projectiles begins and ends. There are myriad designs for .22 pellets – domed, hollow point, flat-nosed wadcutter, conical, hybrid lead/polymer, match…the list goes on, and each has its specific usage. Domed, hollow point and conical pellets will penetrate targets more effectively and are best for hunting, while wadcutters are best for accuracy, generally speaking. But realistically, once we find a pellet design or two that works well in our air rifle, there’s no reason to stray. Lay in a healthy stockpile of your chosen pellet, and be happy. Pellets are cheap – The Crosman Ultra Magnum domed pellets my rifle likes are $8.99 for 500 projectiles. Some companies make pellet assortment packs to help you figure out the best projectile for your pellet rifle. Buy, try, then buy more of what your rifle likes best.

Realistic Performance, Not Advertised Performance

As I stated, the Benjamin Trail NP2 .22 air rifle is advertised to push a pellet around 1200 fps. While that may be true with an alloy pellet, I wanted to know what kind of velocities one could actually expect from this rifle utilizing actual useful ammunition. So I dug out my trusty chronograph, and set it up 10 feet from the muzzle when sighting at the bench. I shot ten rounds each of two different types of pellets to see what the performance really was, versus advertised.

The RWS Superpoint Extra Field 14.5 grain pellet showed a low velocity of 743 feet per second (fps), and a high velocity of 770 fps, giving up a spread of just 27 fps. Average was 762.76 fps, resulting in 19 foot-pounds of energy (fpe).

The Crosman Premier Ultra Magnum 14 grain Hunting Pellet uses that half-grain less weight to get a bit more velocity. Low chronographed velocity was 768 fps, with a high speed of 805 fps. This leaves us with a 37 fps deviation, and an average velocity of 768.17 fps for the ten shots fired. This average velocity offers – once again – 19 foot-pounds of energy.

Related: Project Squirrel Gun

In comparison, a .22 Short propels a 29-grain bullet at just over 1,000 fps for 70 foot-lbs of energy, and a .22 Long Rifle varies, but usually offers a bullet in the 40 grain range at about 1150 fps and 117 ft-lbs energy for standard velocity loads.

However, don’t “harumph” away that air rifle’s lower velocity and “only” 19 ft.lbs energy – this rifle is definitely powerful enough to harvest small game and varmints. I’ve sent countless numbers of chipmunks and nuisance red squirrels to the great stuffed cheek gathering grounds in the sky with this Trail NP2. I’ve shot three porcupines and a surprised woodchuck – all good clean kills – with the Trail NP2. A solid hit in the melon at close enough range should easily dispatch anything from small coyote sizes on down…and in a survival situation, I’d definitely see if I could head-shot a deer if the Trail NP2 was all I had to feed my family. I have no doubts that a hit in the head, especially the temple or other soft spot of the skull, could kill or incapacitate a human. This tool is not a toy, by any stretch of the imagination. As with any other firearm, all firearms safety rules definitely still apply to this rifle.

To satiate my own curiosity, I collected some scraps of lumber from my workshop and set them up outside, air rifle and some Crosman Premier Magnum domed pellets in tow. At a distance of five yards, the Benjamin Trail NP2 sent .22 caliber pellets sailing through ⅝” OSB board, and they completely penetrated every piece of ¾” wood I had – pine, maple, and red oak. 5/4 pine proved to be the rifle’s match, though, but just barely – the pellet stopped just short of breaking through. Friends, that’s pretty decent performance from a projectile that’s pushed by nothing but air.

Accuracy is quite good as well. Resting on my window sill, I can group five pellets into an inch cluster at 30 yards – the length of my backyard. I have found that maintenance plays a big part (whodathunk?), and when my accuracy starts going to pot, I run a .22 caliber bore brush through the rifle a few times and swab out the bore. Accuracy then returns again to normal.

Loves and Hates, Cheers and Jeers

I don’t have much to complain about with the Benjamin Trail NP2. My biggest beef is the lack of iron Benjamin-Trail-NP2-22-air-rifle-huntingsights and complete dependency on optics. While I understand this – the barrel is not fixed and putting a sight out on the end might not have 100% repeatable results – I still would like to have a set of iron sights for foul weather or in case the optic suffers damage.

My other complaint is pure snobbery with a touch of function – the scope. I do realize the rifle needs to be competitive price-wise so the choice of the Centerpoint scope is…tolerable…in that regard. However, I found that modest bumps or bangs will send the scope off zero – not something I find tolerable if my life depends on the rifle. I will be upgrading to Leupold rings and a 2x-7x Leupold Rimfire scope as money allows.

I do love the repeatable accuracy of this rifle (provided the scope isn’t nudged). Once I found a pellet design the rifle liked, the Trail NP2 was a shooting machine. I use the air rifle almost daily to cull nuisance critters from my garden and property, and its works terrifically well for this purpose.

The Nitro Piston design works slick as greased butter, and it’s not terribly difficult to operate. A bit of strength is required to cock the rifle, but a basic understanding of leverage principles and a little bit of practice will counteract that.

I’m also a fan of the included sling mounts. Hell, even a Ruger 10/22 Takedown doesn’t offer sling mounting locations right out of the box. This is a nice touch, and the provided Benjamin sling works well for its intended purpose. I might upgrade it down the road to a leather military sling, but that’s not a huge priority. Being able to carry your rifle slung while hunting or backpacking is a lovely option – especially for an air rifle that’s headed for the eight pound weight range.

The Clean Break Trigger is also a refreshing touch – this air rifle sports a trigger that is better than many stock modern .22 rifles. Thumbs up to Benjamin for providing a product with a decent trigger for those who appreciate the feature and will take advantage of it.

Wrapping It Up

The Benjamin Trail NP2 .22 caliber air rifle is a must-have tool. If you’re a prepper/survivalist, the Trail NP2 offers the ability to (relatively) quietly harvest small game and nuisance animals. Ammunition is very inexpensive, and its small size means you can have a huge quantity of projectiles stashed away without taking up much room.

For the everyday guy, the Benjamin Trail NP2 offers an inexpensive, ridiculously fun method of maintaining your shooting chops and providing pest control. Your neighbors won’t balk when the rifle goes off, you can order ammo off Amazon, and the Trail NP2 technically isn’t a firearm so many gun control laws simply aren’t applicable (depending on jurisdiction – research your laws!)

Overall, the Benjamin Trail NP2 is a dynamite addition to one’s arsenal – and I daresay it would be a fine choice more many who choose to have a one-gun collection. While I don’t think an air rifle could ever supplant a good .22 Long Rifle – especially when ranges are past 50 yards – I do know that I find myself reaching for the Trail NP2 more often than the Ruger 10/22 to complete shootin’ tasks around the homestead. It’s fun, lethal on small game, and supremely practical to own, even if you own a hundred firearms. I don’t want to say you’d be a fool not to have one, but, oh, what the hell – you’d be a fool not to have one.

Questions? Comments? Do you have an air rifle as part of your preps or daily use? Sound off in the comments below!

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Hidden Dangers Of Commercial Dental Care

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I do not like going to the dentist for a wide range of reasons—from bad experiences with hygienists to a slew of dental procedures that have cost tens of thousands of dollars. But there is something else, too. The dental materials and practices are creating toxic dental care.

How many people ENJOY going to the dentist?

Every time I go to the dentist, I’m waiting for the “other shoe to drop.”

Things to keep in mind

  • Dentists and hygienists look for what they are trained, so they see what they want to see.
  • The problems caused by toxic dental material may be masked by the symptoms, which mimic other medical conditions.

5 things you didn’t know about your dentist

  1. More than likely your dentist graduated years ago. Dentistry has changed so much in the last several years. Has your dentist continued his education?
  2. You dentist probably doesn’t have the latest technology. It would cost more than $2000 to update his or her equipment to provide the best possible care.
  3. The American Dental Association and the FDA do not have a problem with mercury fillings. Is your dentist still using these toxic time bombs?
  4. The lab your dentist uses is more important than you are. Make sure your dentist is not using an overseas lab or a cut-rate domestic lab who uses tin, aluminum, or even lead to cut costs.
  5. Dentists can receive a kickback for referring you to a specialist. For instance, you may be told you need a root canal or orthodontics. These specialists give your dentist a referral fee for every patient that gets treatment, even if you don’t need the treatment. Do you need a second opinion?

Remember, you always have the right of refusal or even delay while you get a second opinion.

Toxic Dental Care: What are they putting in your mouth?

X-rays

In 2013, research showed that repeated dental x-rays without a neck shield make you predisposed to thyroid cancer. (1)

Bacteria

In 2016, 30 children in California contracted a bacterial infection from a dentist’s office. The contaminated water could create long-term health problems for these children because the infection can often spread to the gum and jawbone.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), outbreaks at dentist’s offices are rare. However, they do admit that even though there are recommended guidelines to prevent bacterial infections, many dentists do not follow these guidelines and procedures. (2)

Sealants

Dental sealants are coatings of thin plastic applied to the teeth to prevent decay. The sealants prevent food particles and bacteria from getting into the grooves of the teeth where it is difficult to brush. Sealants last about five to ten years.

There is some concern that undetected decay can be sealed into teeth, which will continue to decay the tooth silently.

Also, there is the potential BPA (bisphenol A), a chemical used in plastics, which has been associated with health and developmental problems in humans and animals. It has been studied as a potential issue with dental sealants. The American Dental Association research shows that BPA only shows up in sealants as a trace amount. (3)

Fluoride (4)

There are many adverse effects of fluoride ingestion:

Brain.  Scientists have found dementia-like effects, as well as lower I.Q. levels.

Thyroid. Fluoride is an endocrine disrupter, which can lead to problems with judgment and intellect, depression, and weight gain.

Bones. Fracture risks may increase with fluoride ingestion. There is also a recent study by Harvard scientists that found a connection between fluoride and a serious form of bone cancer in males under 20 years of age.

Kidneys. People with kidney disease have a higher risk of fluoride toxicity.

Some things to keep in mind:

Children anti-cavity fluoride treatments were never found safe or effective by the Food and Drug Administration.

In 1951, the American Dental Association said, “there is no proof that commercial preparations … containing fluorides are effective in preventing dental decay.”

The bottom line—fluoride won’t keep your teeth healthy and could pose a serious health risk.

 

toxic-dental-care

Toxic Dental Materials

There are so many dental materials created. It would be impossible for any one person to stay up-to-date with every single material used in dentistry. Here are a few that stand out.

Fillings

Fillings can be made out of plastic, resins, and amalgam (metal).

Amalgam fillings have been scientifically proven to be detrimental to human health since 1927.

For almost 200 years, mercury amalgam has been the most commonly used dental filling material. Amalgam is a mixture of 50 percent mercury and the other 50 percent tin, silver, and copper.

The mercury content in the filling is not stable and leaks 24 hours a day, especially after eating, drinking hot drinks, and brushing your teeth.

Mercury is one of the most toxic metals on the planet and is a known neurotoxin. It damages nerve and brain tissues. Of course, plastics and resins are not much better.

Crowns & Bridges

Crowns and bridges are mostly made out of metal. If you ask your dentist for a porcelain crown, he or she may have a porcelain piece made that’s baked onto the metal. These metals act as a substructure for strength, but they also contain nickel.

Nickel is cancer-causing. It’s a neurological toxin. Crowns and bridges can also contain palladium, cobalt, cadmium, and barium. This dental work can be a big toxic mixture.

Dentures

A lot of dentures are made out of materials that contain cadmium. Cadmium is a neurotoxin. The teeth and wires that they use can have stainless steel or nickel chromium, which are also bad for you.

Polymethyl methacrylate is a material used in bike parts. It is also the pink part of partials and dentures. If your dentist is using that material and you have redness on your gums, you could be allergic to it.

Add to that that dentures are constantly giving off fumes, and you have a recipe for sickness and disease.

Implants

Titanium was used in implants. This metal has been known to cause headaches, migraines, and immunity issues. Today ceramic and zirconium are used in place of titanium.

Toothpastes

Not only is the commercial toothpaste that you use toxic, but the polishers that hygienists use also have fluoride, sugars, and pumice.

Research has shown that polishing can remove tooth enamel. The American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) said in their paper: (4)

  • Polishing is a cosmetic procedure with little therapeutic value.
  • Thorough brushing and flossing produce the same effect as polishing.
  • Continuous polishing can, over time, cause morphological changes by abrading tooth structure.
  • The outer layers of enamel are removed through polishing.

Their conclusion was that polishing should only be performed as needed and not be considered a routine procedure.

Deep-cleaning or Scaling

If you haven’t had the pleasure of experiencing this deep-cleaning method, it is a high-pressure water pearl salt that is shot between your teeth and gums to remove tartar and plaque.

Experts say it won’t harm your teeth or gums, and helps prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease.

However, there are some hazards of which you need to be aware:

  • Improper teeth scaling can loosen teeth. If this happens, there is a chance you could lose several teeth.
  • There are concerns for people who have diabetes or heart conditions.
  • Inappropriate teeth scaling can cause gum or periodontal disease. Bacteria and food debris accumulate in the pockets left by the scaling procedure.
  • If your teeth are already sensitive, teeth scaling can increase your sensitivity to hot or cold food.

While risks might be minimal and the rewards great, it is still best to be informed. You are your own best health advocate, and that goes for your teeth and gums, too!

In the pocket

Dentists are increasingly in the pockets of big corporations, pharmaceutical companies, and specialists. It is to their benefit to sell you … well, just about anything from fluoride to teeth straightening devices.

It is becoming a larger concern that your dental health decisions are at the mercy of dental insurance companies and corporate managers, and not necessarily what is best for you.

Allies of corporate dentistry offer high-dollar contracts that prey on new dentists trying to pay off student loans.

Out of YOUR pocket

The cost of going to the dentist is going up significantly. The average American will spend approximately $9,000+ out-of-pocket on dental procedures in one year.(5)

Dental insurance costs an average of $360 per year, which may only cover a portion of the actual cost of a procedure. If you don’t have dental insurance, a cleaning will cost about $150 each visit. If you have a cavity, you’ll pay between $90 and $250 for EACH filling. The cost of bridges, x-rays, crowns, extractions, etc. goes up from there.

Did you see this article:  How Much Will You Spend At The Dentist?

George Carlin said something similar … Somewhere in the United States is the worst dentist. And what’s terrifying is that someone has an appointment with him or her tomorrow morning.

Hopefully, dentists will begin to stop this downward spiral into toxic dental care. Perhaps as patients begin to see the dangers of this type of dental practice, it will persuade the establishment to take a closer look at their materials and procedures.

Maybe it will be a time when people’s health is put before the ol’ mighty dollar.

What are your thoughts on the dental care system? Tell us your stories in the comments below.

 

Resources:

1 Repeated Dental X-rays Without Neck Shielding Predispose to Thyroid Cancer. American Thyroid Association. [https://www.thyroid.org/professionals/ata-publications/clinical-thyroidology/september-2013-volume-25-issue-9/clin-thyroidol-201325201-202/]

2 Bacteria in dentist’s water send 30 kids to hospital. CNN. [http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/11/health/california-dental-water-bacteria/index.html]

3 Are Dental Sealants Safe? Dr. Weil. [https://www.drweil.com/health-wellness/body-mind-spirit/dental-oral-health/are-dental-sealants-safe/]

4 American Dental Hygienists’ Association Position on Polishing Procedures, 2001 [www.adha.org]

5 Dental Facts & Statistics. [https://www.dentalplans.com/press-room/dentalfactsfigures]

 

Discover how to care for your teeth…

  • Dental hygiene without brushes, paste, or floss
  • Healing cavities with herbs
  • Treating abscesses with herbs and poultices
  • Treating cracked and chipped teeth

The post Hidden Dangers Of Commercial Dental Care appeared first on The Grow Network.

Hidden Dangers Of Commercial Dental Care

I do not like going to the dentist for a wide range of reasons—from bad experiences with hygienists to a slew of dental procedures that have cost tens of thousands of dollars. But there is something else, too. The dental materials and practices are creating toxic dental care.

How many people ENJOY going to the dentist?

Every time I go to the dentist, I’m waiting for the “other shoe to drop.”

Things to keep in mind

  • Dentists and hygienists look for what they are trained, so they see what they want to see.
  • The problems caused by toxic dental material may be masked by the symptoms, which mimic other medical conditions.

5 things you didn’t know about your dentist

  1. More than likely your dentist graduated years ago. Dentistry has changed so much in the last several years. Has your dentist continued his education?
  2. You dentist probably doesn’t have the latest technology. It would cost more than $2000 to update his or her equipment to provide the best possible care.
  3. The American Dental Association and the FDA do not have a problem with mercury fillings. Is your dentist still using these toxic time bombs?
  4. The lab your dentist uses is more important than you are. Make sure your dentist is not using an overseas lab or a cut-rate domestic lab who uses tin, aluminum, or even lead to cut costs.
  5. Dentists can receive a kickback for referring you to a specialist. For instance, you may be told you need a root canal or orthodontics. These specialists give your dentist a referral fee for every patient that gets treatment, even if you don’t need the treatment. Do you need a second opinion?

Remember, you always have the right of refusal or even delay while you get a second opinion.

Toxic Dental Care: What are they putting in your mouth?

X-rays

In 2013, research showed that repeated dental x-rays without a neck shield make you predisposed to thyroid cancer. (1)

Bacteria

In 2016, 30 children in California contracted a bacterial infection from a dentist’s office. The contaminated water could create long-term health problems for these children because the infection can often spread to the gum and jawbone.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), outbreaks at dentist’s offices are rare. However, they do admit that even though there are recommended guidelines to prevent bacterial infections, many dentists do not follow these guidelines and procedures. (2)

Sealants

Dental sealants are coatings of thin plastic applied to the teeth to prevent decay. The sealants prevent food particles and bacteria from getting into the grooves of the teeth where it is difficult to brush. Sealants last about five to ten years.

There is some concern that undetected decay can be sealed into teeth, which will continue to decay the tooth silently.

Also, there is the potential BPA (bisphenol A), a chemical used in plastics, which has been associated with health and developmental problems in humans and animals. It has been studied as a potential issue with dental sealants. The American Dental Association research shows that BPA only shows up in sealants as a trace amount. (3)

Fluoride (4)

There are many adverse effects of fluoride ingestion:

Brain.  Scientists have found dementia-like effects, as well as lower I.Q. levels.

Thyroid. Fluoride is an endocrine disrupter, which can lead to problems with judgment and intellect, depression, and weight gain.

Bones. Fracture risks may increase with fluoride ingestion. There is also a recent study by Harvard scientists that found a connection between fluoride and a serious form of bone cancer in males under 20 years of age.

Kidneys. People with kidney disease have a higher risk of fluoride toxicity.

Some things to keep in mind:

Children anti-cavity fluoride treatments were never found safe or effective by the Food and Drug Administration.

In 1951, the American Dental Association said, “there is no proof that commercial preparations … containing fluorides are effective in preventing dental decay.”

The bottom line—fluoride won’t keep your teeth healthy and could pose a serious health risk.

 

toxic-dental-care

Toxic Dental Materials

There are so many dental materials created. It would be impossible for any one person to stay up-to-date with every single material used in dentistry. Here are a few that stand out.

Fillings

Fillings can be made out of plastic, resins, and amalgam (metal).

Amalgam fillings have been scientifically proven to be detrimental to human health since 1927.

For almost 200 years, mercury amalgam has been the most commonly used dental filling material. Amalgam is a mixture of 50 percent mercury and the other 50 percent tin, silver, and copper.

The mercury content in the filling is not stable and leaks 24 hours a day, especially after eating, drinking hot drinks, and brushing your teeth.

Mercury is one of the most toxic metals on the planet and is a known neurotoxin. It damages nerve and brain tissues. Of course, plastics and resins are not much better.

Crowns & Bridges

Crowns and bridges are mostly made out of metal. If you ask your dentist for a porcelain crown, he or she may have a porcelain piece made that’s baked onto the metal. These metals act as a substructure for strength, but they also contain nickel.

Nickel is cancer-causing. It’s a neurological toxin. Crowns and bridges can also contain palladium, cobalt, cadmium, and barium. This dental work can be a big toxic mixture.

Dentures

A lot of dentures are made out of materials that contain cadmium. Cadmium is a neurotoxin. The teeth and wires that they use can have stainless steel or nickel chromium, which are also bad for you.

Polymethyl methacrylate is a material used in bike parts. It is also the pink part of partials and dentures. If your dentist is using that material and you have redness on your gums, you could be allergic to it.

Add to that that dentures are constantly giving off fumes, and you have a recipe for sickness and disease.

Implants

Titanium was used in implants. This metal has been known to cause headaches, migraines, and immunity issues. Today ceramic and zirconium are used in place of titanium.

Toothpastes

Not only is the commercial toothpaste that you use toxic, but the polishers that hygienists use also have fluoride, sugars, and pumice.

Research has shown that polishing can remove tooth enamel. The American Dental Hygienists’ Association (ADHA) said in their paper: (4)

  • Polishing is a cosmetic procedure with little therapeutic value.
  • Thorough brushing and flossing produce the same effect as polishing.
  • Continuous polishing can, over time, cause morphological changes by abrading tooth structure.
  • The outer layers of enamel are removed through polishing.

Their conclusion was that polishing should only be performed as needed and not be considered a routine procedure.

Deep-cleaning or Scaling

If you haven’t had the pleasure of experiencing this deep-cleaning method, it is a high-pressure water pearl salt that is shot between your teeth and gums to remove tartar and plaque.

Experts say it won’t harm your teeth or gums, and helps prevent gingivitis and periodontal disease.

However, there are some hazards of which you need to be aware:

  • Improper teeth scaling can loosen teeth. If this happens, there is a chance you could lose several teeth.
  • There are concerns for people who have diabetes or heart conditions.
  • Inappropriate teeth scaling can cause gum or periodontal disease. Bacteria and food debris accumulate in the pockets left by the scaling procedure.
  • If your teeth are already sensitive, teeth scaling can increase your sensitivity to hot or cold food.

While risks might be minimal and the rewards great, it is still best to be informed. You are your own best health advocate, and that goes for your teeth and gums, too!

In the pocket

Dentists are increasingly in the pockets of big corporations, pharmaceutical companies, and specialists. It is to their benefit to sell you … well, just about anything from fluoride to teeth straightening devices.

It is becoming a larger concern that your dental health decisions are at the mercy of dental insurance companies and corporate managers, and not necessarily what is best for you.

Allies of corporate dentistry offer high-dollar contracts that prey on new dentists trying to pay off student loans.

Out of YOUR pocket

The cost of going to the dentist is going up significantly. The average American will spend approximately $9,000+ out-of-pocket on dental procedures in one year.(5)

Dental insurance costs an average of $360 per year, which may only cover a portion of the actual cost of a procedure. If you don’t have dental insurance, a cleaning will cost about $150 each visit. If you have a cavity, you’ll pay between $90 and $250 for EACH filling. The cost of bridges, x-rays, crowns, extractions, etc. goes up from there.

Did you see this article:  How Much Will You Spend At The Dentist?

George Carlin said something similar … Somewhere in the United States is the worst dentist. And what’s terrifying is that someone has an appointment with him or her tomorrow morning.

Hopefully, dentists will begin to stop this downward spiral into toxic dental care. Perhaps as patients begin to see the dangers of this type of dental practice, it will persuade the establishment to take a closer look at their materials and procedures.

Maybe it will be a time when people’s health is put before the ol’ mighty dollar.

What are your thoughts on the dental care system? Tell us your stories in the comments below.

 

Resources:

1 Repeated Dental X-rays Without Neck Shielding Predispose to Thyroid Cancer. American Thyroid Association. [https://www.thyroid.org/professionals/ata-publications/clinical-thyroidology/september-2013-volume-25-issue-9/clin-thyroidol-201325201-202/]

2 Bacteria in dentist’s water send 30 kids to hospital. CNN. [http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/11/health/california-dental-water-bacteria/index.html]

3 Are Dental Sealants Safe? Dr. Weil. [https://www.drweil.com/health-wellness/body-mind-spirit/dental-oral-health/are-dental-sealants-safe/]

4 American Dental Hygienists’ Association Position on Polishing Procedures, 2001 [www.adha.org]

5 Dental Facts & Statistics. [https://www.dentalplans.com/press-room/dentalfactsfigures]

 

Discover how to care for your teeth…

  • Dental hygiene without brushes, paste, or floss
  • Healing cavities with herbs
  • Treating abscesses with herbs and poultices
  • Treating cracked and chipped teeth

The post Hidden Dangers Of Commercial Dental Care appeared first on The Grow Network.

Tensions Mount As Trump Warns North Korea: Military ‘Locked And Loaded’

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Tensions Mount As Trump Warns North Korea: Military ‘Locked And Loaded’

Image source: Flickr / Gage Skidmore / Creative Commons

President Trump’s latest Tweet might be a sign of an imminent military conflict with North Korea.

“Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely,” Trump tweeted on Friday morning. “Hopefully Kim Jong Un will find another path!”

Trump did not detail the military solutions, but later re-tweeted pictures of U.S. bombers based on the Pacific island of Guam. Guam is a U.S. territory that North Korea has been threatening to attack.

Are Your Prepared For A Downed Grid? Get Backup Electricity Today!

The images Tweeted included pictures of U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer bombers. The B-1B is capable of carrying the largest payload of guided and unguided weapons of any American bomber, according to the Air Force website.

A wild card is China, which is sending mixed signals about its military intentions.

“China should … make clear that if North Korea launches missiles that threaten U.S. soil first and the U.S. retaliates, China will stay neutral,” an editorial in the Chinese Global Times newspaper stated. “If the U.S. and South Korea carry out strikes and try to overthrow the North Korean regime and change the political pattern of the Korean Peninsula, China will prevent them from doing so.”

What do you think the Trump administration should do? Share your thoughts in the section below:

Only you can prevent forest

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It’s forest fire season here in Montana. At the moment the air quality index is reading “Extra Chunky Style”. Remember when you were a kid and you were toasting marshmallows around the fire? The smoke would eventually settle on you as a target and basically follow you around the campfire? Yeah, it’s like that.

Not much you can do about it, it’s just part and parcel of living in Free(er) America.

I’ve been busy with ‘real world’ stuff lately so posting has been thin, but fear not…there’s plenty of brain droppings a-brewing.

And, as several people pointed out to me, speaking of elevators……

Elderly Denver man died in elevator after twice pushing emergency button

I’ve some interesting links people have emailed me about elevators and how to escape them…I’ll be putting them all up in a post later.

iOSAT ™ Tablets For Your Nuclear Survival Kit

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Radioactive iodine (primarily I-131) is a waste product of nuclear fission produced in nuclear reactors and nuclear bombs. In the event of such a nuclear catastrophe, and what makes I-131 so dangerous, is that the body cannot distinguish I-131 from ordinary iodine. As a result, if it’s inhaled or swallowed following a nuclear ‘event’, it will be absorbed into the thyroid gland and will poison its victim. Depending on the absorption, the effects can lead to thyroid damage, cancer, growth and birth defects, or even death. The good news is that there’s an easy way to block it, and something

The post iOSAT ™ Tablets For Your Nuclear Survival Kit appeared first on Modern Survival Blog.

Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum

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The post Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum is by
Lorin Nielsen and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Crotons offer a splash of color to any environment. With thick, leathery leaves that have a shiny surface and that grow in a wide variety of colors, they’re admired as an ornamental. They even flower, with both male and female flowers on a given plant — but their inflorescence pales in comparison to the red, … Read more

The post Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum is by
Lorin Nielsen and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum

The post Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum is by
Lorin Nielsen and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Crotons offer a splash of color to any environment. With thick, leathery leaves that have a shiny surface and that grow in a wide variety of colors, they’re admired as an ornamental. They even flower, with both male and female flowers on a given plant — but their inflorescence pales in comparison to the red, … Read more

The post Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum is by
Lorin Nielsen and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum

The post Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum is by
Lorin Nielsen and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Crotons offer a splash of color to any environment. With thick, leathery leaves that have a shiny surface and that grow in a wide variety of colors, they’re admired as an ornamental. They even flower, with both male and female flowers on a given plant — but their inflorescence pales in comparison to the red, … Read more

The post Crotons: How To Grow And Care For Codiaeum Variegatum is by
Lorin Nielsen and appeared first on Epic Gardening, the best urban gardening, hydroponic gardening, and aquaponic gardening blog.

Best Essential Oils for Sleep

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Are you finding a good night’s sleep more and more elusive? Many factors in our lives can cause us to struggle drifting off into restful slumber. Maybe the stress of the day makes it difficult to turn your brain off at night. Maybe a stuffed up nose or joint pain wakes you up throughout the. . . Read More

The post Best Essential Oils for Sleep first appeared on Backdoor Survival.

goTenna Mesh Off-Grid Communication Device Review

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goTenna Mesh Off-Grid Communication Device Review

In late 2015, I reviewed the original goTenna. It’s fair to say that, right off the bat, I was pretty smitten with the concept of this tech, but back then, I felt the goTenna was too far ahead of its time due to the inherent range issues. Communication platforms only work on a mass scale […]

This is just the start of the post goTenna Mesh Off-Grid Communication Device Review. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!


goTenna Mesh Off-Grid Communication Device Review, written by Thomas Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.

No, Preppers are Not Weird

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No, Preppers are Not Weird Let me take a wild guess: at some point you read or heard about the prepping movement, saw some ridiculous opinions of it, came to the conclusion that preppers are weird… and left it at that; you didn’t bother to dig further. After all, who wants to be part of … Continue reading No, Preppers are Not Weird

The post No, Preppers are Not Weird appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Stockpiling Firewood On The Cheap

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Stockpiling Firewood On The Cheap

Image source: Pixabay.com

Most of us are planning on heating and cooking with wood when the power goes out or the grid goes down. But to make it through winter requires somewhere between four and six chords of firewood. At today’s prices, that’s a hefty investment. But I don’t have a single dollar invested in my stockpile of firewood, other than for gasoline.

Yet there are a number of strategies you can use for building your firewood stockpile that won’t cost you any more than they’ve cost me:

Clearing the Streets After a Storm

It’s not uncommon for severe storms to cause tree branches to come crashing down. While trees are resilient, there is a limit, especially with old trees or trees that have branches with a large horizontal reach. A severe storm can leave people’s front yards and even the streets littered with dead branches.

Cleaning up that mess can take days and cost the city a small fortune. So why not do a little community service work? Go out about the neighborhood, cutting up those trees and hauling them off. Nobody needs to know that you’re hauling them to your own backyard, where you’re turning them into firewood. Besides, I doubt if anyone would care.

You can actually do this with almost no waste, if you plan it out right. The larger branches can be fuel, smaller ones can be turned into kindling and the leaves and twigs can either go into your composting operation or can be mixed with chopped-up newspapers and molded to turn them into fuel, as well.

“The Big Book Of Off The Grid Secrets” — Everyone Survivalist Needs One!

Just check with your city maintenance department before you do this. You’re much less likely to run into trouble with the city if you let them know what you’re doing, before you start. Some union members may complain about you, so having management aware that you’re a civic-minded citizen can help them defend you.

Trimming Your Trees

Speaking of tree branches falling, I’m sure you’ve had that happen in your own yard. I’ve got at least one chord of wood in my pile that has come from my own trees. One died and I had to cut it down, another is old and has had some branches break off in storms, and the old oak had some dead branches that had to be removed.

Stockpiling Firewood On The Cheap

Image source: Pixabay.com

Of course, if you prune your trees, you’re going to be removing some branches, too. Just because you feel that your trees don’t need those branches, doesn’t mean that they’re a waste. Good wood is good wood, no matter where it comes from.

Trimming Other Peoples’ Trees

Since you’ve already equipped yourself to cut down and cut up your own tree branches, why not extend your reach to others? Keep your eyes open for people who have dead trees or trees that are breaking due to age and weight. Offer to cut those dead limbs off or remove the tree. That will greatly expand your wood pile and only cost you a Saturday afternoon here and there.

I personally draw the line here on not pruning peoples’ trees for them. While I’m willing to offer a free service that helps me, too, I’m not really into being taken advantage of. Besides, I really don’t feel that I’m knowledgeable enough about pruning that I can do it correctly. I really don’t want to be liable for any mistakes I make.

If you’re not finding enough dead trees and tree limbs to cut down, put up a notice on your local grocery store’s bulletin board. Lots of people do that for all kinds of services, so it wouldn’t seem unusual. Just be specific on your flyer of what it is that you are offering.

Taking this idea to the extreme, find a builder who is starting a new housing development and needs to clear land. They generally have to pay someone to do that. Get your buddies together and offer to clear the trees for free some weekend, stocking yourself and your survival group up with firewood all at the same time.

Watching for Woodpiles Awaiting the Trash Man

There are actually a couple of ways of doing the same thing, without as much work. That is to look for trees that someone else has cut down and are awaiting removal by the city’s truck. A lot of towns have regular pickup of leaves and tree branches, with people leaving them on the curb for pickup. All you need to do is drive by with your truck or trailer and grab the branches that you want. Just ask the people first so they don’t think you’re a thief.

You even can work out a similar sort of deal with someone who has a tree trimming or pruning business. They usually have to take the limbs they cut to the dump or to a municipal mulching center. You can actually save them some cost by asking them to dump off branches in your driveway, especially the larger ones.

Collecting Pallets

Pallet wood is excellent firewood because it is often oak — a good, slow-burning hardwood. The trick is finding the pallets. Most companies sell their used pallets to businesses that specialize in recycling pallets. That makes it hard to get pallets from larger companies. But you can get them from smaller companies that don’t have an agreement with a pallet recycler.

Another possibility is to go to the pallet recyclers themselves. They want the good pallets because they can sell those to companies that need them. But in order to get the good ones, they have to be willing to pick up the bad ones, too. So, they usually have a huge pile of broken-up pallets that they are stuck with. Check with them; they’ll often let you take whatever you want from that pile for free. It saves them from having to deal with them.

What ideas would you add on getting free firewood? Share your tips in the section below:

Gardening In Late Summer and Fall

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Depending on where you live, the idea of planting anything new in July or August is unheard of, a waste of materials and resources. Some may even call it a taboo! There are various reasons given but when you really think about it and ask yourself, “Why not?” you may realize that not many people have a very good reason.

Sure, in some climates late summer is so hot that sprouts would just wither and die off but you can overcome that in the same way you protected those little sprouts from the cold: start them inside!

 

There are plenty of tasty veggies that actually prefer cool (even cold) temperatures and tend to thrive the cooler it gets.

Living in Southeast Alaska, we rarely get above 80 degrees, and 90 degrees is some record breaking temps. You could say that I grow in cooler temperatures all summer long and have learned what really likes those nice, cool nights. Listed below are some of my favorites.

Gardening in Late Summer

Greens

Various types of lettuce, mustard greens, and kale grow very well in cooler temperatures and tend to prefer it. They may need to be started inside first so they can harden up and be less susceptible to burning up in the hot sun. Once true leaves are evident, you should be able to transplant them without issue.

Kale is an extremely hardy plant that can tolerate temperatures down to around 30 degrees F and it is actually preferred to harvest kale after it has been touched by frost. Reports say that kale harvested in hot temperatures is very bitter.

Lettuce in general cannot handle even a light frost but the upside is that it grows very fast and thrives in temperatures between 40-60 degrees.

Onions

Since time is a factor, I recommend growing some green onions whether that is specifically green bunching onions, or simply planting some sets out and harvesting early. Onions are extremely hardy and can handle light freezes, especially if you put a little blanket of mulch over the top. If you happen to end up with too many onions, they are very easy to dehydrate.

Carrots

Depending how late in the season you plant them, carrots offer two different benefits: more greens and baby carrots. Carrots can be left in the ground and harvested later in fall so long as there isn’t a ‘hard freeze’ of about 25 degrees F or lower. At that point, anything left over can be mulched and left to grow the following year which will produce seeds for you!

Beets

Beets are cold loving plants. They can handle more than a light frost but don’t do well if temperatures exceed 75 degrees. This year I actually lost my beet sprouts twice because they got too hot in the cold frame and died off. I started some in a more shaded area and hope they will do better. The upside is that they grow pretty fast once they get going! During the winter, then, I have a nice harvest of beets that I can pickle. Pickling is easy and this kit, in particular, is a good one for both pickling beets and making various vermented recipes with them.

Peas

Last year I tried to squeeze out as much harvest as I possibly could and ended up planting peas pretty darn late. I decided since I had already planted, I would just see how things went. I was shocked that they survived some light frosts and even one  ‘harder’ frost. While they weren’t growing as fast as when it was warmer, they still produced and we enjoyed fresh peas off the vine in the middle of October — and this is in Alaska! If I can grow peas into the fall, so can you!

Herbs and Spices

I was rather surprised how many herbs and spices can actually handle some colder temperatures! Dill, parsley, and chives are just a few that do well in cooler temperatures and still thrive. Cilantro and sage are even more hardy than the others mentioned and serve well for short season growers. All herbs are incredibly easy to dehydrate, so you save money on purchasing dried herbs and have the more intense flavors of home-grown herbs all year long. This set of culinary and medicinal herbs are GMO free and heirloom varieties, which is exactly what you want, especially if you are thinking of savings seeds, as explained in this article.

For my personal set up, we have 3 cold frames (raised beds that are covered) and an enclosed greenhouse also with raised beds. This allows us to extend our gardening season by about 2-4 weeks on either side of the traditional growing season. Because they are all raised beds, the soil temperature tends to stay warmer, longer. The plastic sheeting over the tops allow heat to be trapped inside and help keep the frosts at bay a little longer.

TIP: Many different types of cold  frames and covers are on the market for late gardeners. Some are up to 3 meters long, while others are good for smaller gardens.

There are actually many ‘cold crops’ that prefer spring and fall temperatures. A little research may surprise you and help you see that you can do so much more with your garden than you ever thought, even when it’s chilly outside!

TIP:  There are a variety of fall and winter seeds available to plant. Check out this great variety of vegetables!

 

Save

What We DON’T See in Peoples Range and Bug-Out Bags!

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Written by Wild Bill on The Prepper Journal.

 

I climb upon my soap box” and scream “ENOUGH!” We don’t see enough, but can we have “enough?”

What we do not see in Range Bags: tools, the right tools for the weapons and mechanical items contained therein (site adjustment tool, break-down kits, D.O.P.E Cards – Not that kind of Dope, Data On Personal Equipment cards!). All these tools and a cleaning kit . Planning on what people are going to the range for other than pushing rounds down range (which is fine if that is all they are planning). I see people trying to sight in weapons with no dope sheets or without the instruction on the sight; people running different grain rounds within a magazine, or even different grains in different magazines when they are scoping in a weapon. No First aid kit. My last three trips to the range and I saw no one with a first aid kit, with 50 shooting positions occupied (Saturday mornings).

   

I see this because I abhor inefficiency, so like the person who is annoyed by a barking dog because they are not a dog person, I am annoyed by inefficiency. Don’t get me wrong, I love pushing things down range just because, once the sights and all else are working. And I love dogs, not so much cats as they are natures definition of inefficiency, but that is an opinion based on my personal preferences 😉 BTW, the “just because” has a purpose because practice makes better (only in the movies does it make perfect.) Bottom line, goals are important and planning is always rewarded.

  

When do most injuries occur because of a natural disaster like a hurricane or earthquake? The first 24 hours after the storm. Why? Because we prepare for “the storm” more than “the aftermath” which is always longer and has many more components to it. Looters, downed power lines, animals, ruptured utility systems, broken infrastructure, uncontrolled fires, contaminated supplies, panic, no information, no situation awareness. In earthquake California, we build houses on mountainsides held up with stilts, you know, the ones you see on the news sliding down a hill side in a rain storm that would be considered “high humidity” in most other parts of the country. In New Orleans, we build houses across from dikes almost 30 feet high, making the homes 30 feet below sea level, in a hurricane zone, in what was once a swamp. Yes, I understand all the economic and political considerations compounded by population density, and on and on, but still.

Bug-Out Bags: Enough, we never see “enough” bug out gear – enough water, MEDICAL supplies, food and clothes and ammo. Since you don’t know the duration of the emergency only common sense and personal experience of your needs can be applied to solve this, your SWAG (Scientific Wild-Assed Guess.) Tools to support what you did bring; tools to help you live for the x days if the rule of law fades or disappears. PLANS, a purpose, a destination, an alternate and a way back. A portable Ham Radio, rechargeable batteries and rechargers and a solar way to recharge them, flashlights, more than one knife, a saw, a shovel, paracord, alternative shelter, foul-weather gear, water purification, a second good medical kit . I know, it is starting to sound like a fully stocked motor home may be too small to carry everything. Reality is that may be true, so we plan, project and hope.

You know mobile phones are only “cellular” to the nearest cell tower, right? While some of these may use microwave to further transmit the signal, it is good for one or two hops before the call is routed through existing land-lines. Not knowing things such as this may kill you, end your plans or just push you further down the food chain, none of which is a plus.

There are articles ad nauseum as to how many millions of rounds of ammo you MUST have, how many millions of gallons of potable water, and just about everything else. I do not dispute any of them but propose that having a staged plan helps us all with these. For a range and bug-out bag (these should be a matched-set and never far apart, like you and your dog when you are cooking in the kitchen.) I carry 3-days’ worth of supplies. I also have my 3-days “past due” plan – where I go on day three and what I stockpiled there. If I am home and home is safe still, fine. But everyone should have an alternative location planned, restock their matched-luggage set and be ready to move out again if required.

As I put the final edits on this post sabers are rattling around the world, some very big ones, so keep those bags close as the view from the soap box can be scary at times. Climbing down now.

 

The post What We DON’T See in Peoples Range and Bug-Out Bags! appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

EDC Kit: Back To Basics (Guest Post)

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When becoming involved in survival and prepping, there are many different ways to get started. For instance, some people start by learning about specific survival skills, while others start by buying supplies. Some people buy a few survival tools and learn how to use them, while others just spend time becoming more self-sufficient. There is no … Continue reading “EDC Kit: Back To Basics (Guest Post)”

Prepping Between Reality And Paranoia

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We often let our imagination run wild and we put ourselves in all sorts of hypothetical scenarios. As preppers, a little skepticism may help us push forward with our prepping plans and keep us alive if SHTF. However, an excess of imagination can do more harm than good. Here is how we can keep a … Read more…

The post Prepping Between Reality And Paranoia was written by Bob Rodgers and appeared first on Prepper’s Will.

Into the Wild: 4 Useful Skills You Should Have for Camping Trips

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Globalization has created a new breed of eclectic traveler. The Popular website Airbnb reports that trips to Havana Cuba have increased by 940% since 2016. A recent article on the Fox News Travel site shows that the number of Americans who go camping is also on an uptick. Those with experience trekking through national parks and forests of the great U.S. wilderness, know the art of pitching tents and boating wild rivers without skipping a beat. Those interested in joining in on what appears to be a rising national trend, however, should probably first get the hang of the following skills.

Cooking

A camp side dinner’s the perfect way to culminate a day of touring the great outdoors with your entourage of fellow adventurers. While there’s all kinds of high-tech cooking equipment you can consider using, nothing beats pan searing fresh trout in a cast iron skillet over a bonfire of dazzling flames. Pick a clearing where there aren’t dangling branches or surrounding brush that’s combustible. Gather stones and arrange them in a u-shaped pattern with a large rock at the center. Try to replicate a hearth. Pile it with layers of kindling on which you’ll cook. There’s an art to it that’s less about obsessing over the latest electric induction stove, and more about living off the fat of the land.

Fishing

Of course, you’ll have energy bars and bags of granola. You won’t forget to bring cans of your favorite beer, but camping’s not camping without going fishing. How lucky you get will have to do with where you cast your hook as much as your technique. There’s a way to finesse and direct a rod once you put bait on it. Reeling your catch out of the water calls for the right timing. You’ll also need to bone up on the best bait to bring. It won’t hurt to arrive with trustworthy fishing equipment and gear such as portable refrigeration to store your catch in.

Handling a Firearm

Bears populate the forests of Alaska, Montana, Ohio, and Wyoming. They’re in Upper Michigan and the woods of New York. Recent statistics have shown that their populations are surging due to wildlife laws that protect them, which is a good thing. Many believe it’s also good to carry a loaded firearm in bear country, however. While most avoid people, some can be aggressive and threatening. Knowing how to accurately load and aim a firearm with a MadKC bolt head will give you the confidence that you’re ready for the worst. Mastering trigger squeeze and aim doesn’t come easy, but there’s nowhere better to hone these skills than out in the outdoors.

Purifying Water

The assumption is that you’ll bring everything you need and won’t run out of basic staples. Still, surprises abound out in nature. Humans can live without eating for a number of days. Having water on hand is always essential. Boil snow or stream water to sterilize it. Add iodine or chlorine in measured amounts. Lakes and ponds are known to contain lots of bacteria. Learn how to select the safest water sources.

Spending recreational time in the great outdoors has been a part of American culture since the 1800’s. It wouldn’t be such an historically popular family pastime if fatal animal attacks or other catastrophes were a regular occurrence. Planning for the unexpected before you begin your trip into the wilderness doesn’t mean you’re embarking on something risky. Your time spent outdoors is more likely to be a rare chance for you and your loved ones to marvel at beautiful sunsets, rare bird calls and go skinny dipping.

About the Author: Lizzie Weakley is a freelance writer from Columbus, Ohio. She went to college at The Ohio State University where she studied communications. In her free time, she enjoys the outdoors and long walks in the park with her 3-year-old husky Snowball. Twitter: @LizzieWeakley Facebook: facebook.com/lizzie.weakley

Radiation Sickness

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RADIATION SICKNESS

Radiation sickness

Many consider a nuclear attack an outlandish scenario to which only conspiracy theorists subscribe. Unfortunately, the threat of a nuclear incident, accidental or purposeful, exists, perhaps more than in recent years, due to recent developments in the Korean peninsula.

Atomic weapons can decimate a population from thermal blasts, but it also causes illness and death due to exposure from radiation. Although populated areas have experienced detonations only twice, (Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945), nuclear reactor meltdowns and other events have occurred from time to time since then, such as in Fukushima in 2011 and Chernobyl in 1986.

In an atomic explosion, radiation is just one of the possible causes of casualties; heat effects and kinetic energy damage near the blast will cause many deaths and injuries. Radiation released into the atmosphere, however, can have devastating effects far from “ground zero”.

A nuclear event produces “fallout”.  Fallout is the particulate matter that is thrown into the air by the explosion. It can travel hundreds (if not thousands) of miles on the prevailing winds, coating fields, livestock, and people with radioactive material.

The higher the fallout goes into the atmosphere, the farther it will travel downwind.  This material contains elements that are hazardous if inhaled or ingested, like Radioiodine, Cesium, and Strontium. Even worse, fallout is absorbed by the animals and plants that make up our food supply. In large enough amounts, it can rapidly become life-threatening. Even in small amounts, it is hazardous to your long-term health.

A nuclear power plant meltdown is usually less damaging than a nuclear blast, as the radioactive material doesn’t make it as high up in the sky as the mushroom cloud from an atomic bomb. The worst effects will be felt by those near the reactors. Lighter particles, like radioactive iodine, will travel the farthest, and are the main concern for those far from the actual explosion or meltdown. The level of exposure will depend on the distance the radioactive particles travel from the meltdown and how long it took to arrive.

RADIATION SICKNESS

The medical effects of exposure are collectively known as “radiation sickness” or “Acute Radiation Syndrome”. A certain amount of radiation exposure is tolerable over time, but your goal should be to shelter your group as much as possible.

To accomplish this goal, we should first clarify what the different terms for measuring the quantities of radiation mean.  Scientists use terms such as RADS, REMS, SIEVERTS, BECQUERELS or CURIES to describe radiation amounts. Different terms are used when describing the amount of radiation being given off by a source, the total amount of radiation that is actually absorbed by a human or animal, or the chance that a living thing will suffer health damage from exposure:

Marie and Pierre Curie

BECQUERELS/CURIES – these terms describe the amount of radiation that, say, a hunk of uranium gives off into the environment. Named after scientists who were the first to work with (and die from) radioactivity.

RADS – the amount of the radiation in the environment that is actually absorbed by a living thing.

REMS/SIEVERTS – the measurement of the risks of health damage from the radiation absorbed.

This is somewhat confusing, so, for our purposes, let’s use RADS.  A RAD (Radiation Absorbed Dose) measures the amount of radiation energy transferred to some mass of material, typically humans.

Some effects of radiation exposure (wiki commons)

An acute radiation dose (one received over a short period of time) is the most likely to cause damage.  Below is a list of the effects on humans corresponding to the amount of radiation absorbed. For comparison, assume that you absorb about 0.6 RADs per year from natural or household sources.  These are the effects of different degrees of acute radiation exposure on humans:

  • 30-70 RADS: Mild headache or nausea within several hours of exposure.  Full recovery is expected.
  • 70-150 RADS: Mild nausea and vomiting in a third of patients.  Decreased wound healing and increased susceptibility to infection. Full recovery is expected.
  • 150-300 RADS: Moderate nausea and vomiting in a majority of patients.  Fatigue and weakness in half of victims.  Infection and/or spontaneous bleeding may occur due to a weakened immune system. Medical care will be required for many, especially those with burns or wounds.  Occasional deaths at 300 RADS exposure may occur.
  • 300-500 RADS: Moderate nausea and vomiting, fatigue, and weakness in most patients.  Diarrheal stools, dehydration, loss of appetite, skin breakdown, and infection will be common.  Hair loss is visible in most over time.  At the high end of exposure, expect a 50% death rate.
  • Over 500 RADS: Spontaneous bleeding, fever, stomach and intestinal ulcers, bloody diarrhea, dehydration, low blood pressure, infections, and hair loss is anticipated  in almost all patients.  Death rates approach 100%.

The effects related to exposure may occur over time, and symptoms are often not immediate. Hair loss, for example, will become apparent at 10-14 days.  Deaths may occur weeks after the exposure.

PROTECTION AGAINST EXPOSURE TO RADIATION

radiation dosimeter

In the early going, your goal is to prevent exposures of over 100 RADS. A radiation dosimeter will be useful to gauge radiation levels and is widely available for purchase.  This item will give you an idea of your likelihood of developing radiation sickness.

There are three basic ways of decreasing the total dose of radiation:

1) Limit the time unprotected. Radiation absorbed is dependent on the length of exposure. Leave areas where high levels are detected and you are without adequate shelter.  The activity of radioactive particles decreases over time.  After 24 hours, levels usually drop to 1/10 of their previous value or less.

2) Increase the distance from the radiation. Radiation disperses over distance and effects decrease the farther away you are.

3) Provide a barrier. A shelter will decrease the level of exposure, so it is important to know how to construct one that will serve as a shield between your people and the radiation source. A dense material will give better protection that a light material.

DIFFERENT MATERIALS AS BARRIERS

Radiation burns post-Hiroshima bombing

The more material that you can use to separate yourself from fallout, the more likely you won’t suffer ill effects. Barrier effectiveness is measured as “halving thickness”. This is the thickness of a particular shield material that will reduce gamma radiation (the most dangerous kind) by one half.  When you multiply the halving thickness, you multiply your protection.

For example, the halving thickness of concrete is 2.4 inches or 6 centimeters.  A barrier of 2.4 inches of concrete will drop radiation exposure by one half.  Doubling the thickness of the barrier again (4.8 inches of concrete) drops it to one fourth (1/2 x 1/2) and tripling it (7.2 inches) will drop it to one eighth (1/2 x 1/2 x 1/2), etc.  Ten halving thicknesses (24 inches of concrete) will drop the total radiation exposure to 1/1024th that of being out in the open.

Here are the halving thicknesses of some common materials:

  • Lead:   4 inches or 1 centimeter
  • Steel: 1 inch or 2.5 centimeters
  • Concrete: 4 inches or 6 centimeters
  • Soil (packed): 6 inches or 9 centimeters
  • Water:  2 inches or 18 centimeters
  • Wood:  11 inches or 30 centimeters

 

By looking at the list above, you can see that the same protection is given with 1/6 the thickness of lead plating as that of concrete.

TREATING RADIATION SICKNESS

Eliminating external contamination with fallout “dust” is important before absorption occurs. This can be accomplished d with simple soap and water. Scrub the area gently with a clean wet sponge. Safely dispose of the sponge and dry the area thoroughly.

Internal contamination is a more difficult issue. Emergency treatment involves dealing with the symptoms.  Once the diagnosis is made, methods that may help include antibiotics to treat infections, fluids for dehydration, diuretics to flush out contaminants, and drugs to treat nausea.  In severely ill patients, stem cell transplants and multiple transfusions are indicated but will not be options in an austere setting.  This hard reality underscores the importance of having an adequate shelter to prevent excessive exposure.

Protection is available against some of the long term effects of radiation. Potassium Iodide (known by the chemical symbol KI), taken orally, can prevent radioactive Iodine from damaging the specific organ that it targets, the thyroid gland. The usual adult dose is 130 mg daily for 7-10 days or for as long as exposure is significant. For children, the dosage is 65 mg daily. KI is available in a FDA-approved commercial product called Thyrosafe.

Thyrosafe (Potassium Iodide)

Taking KI 30 minutes to 24 hours prior to a radiation exposure will prevent the eventual epidemic of thyroid cancer that will result if no treatment is given. Radiation from the 1986 Chernobyl disaster has accounted for more than 4,000 cases of thyroid cancer so far, mostly in children and adolescents. Therefore, if you only have a limited quantity of KI, treat the youngsters first.

Although there is a small amount of KI in ordinary iodized salt, not enough is present to confer any protection by ingesting it.  It would take 250 teaspoons of household iodized salt to equal one Potassium Iodide tablet.

Pets may also be at risk for long-term effects from radioactive iodine. It is recommended to consider 1/2 tablet daily for large dogs, and 1/4 tablet for small dogs and cats.

ALTERNATIVE REMEDY FOR RADIATION EXPOSURE

Don’t depend on supplies of the drug to be available after a nuclear event. Even the federal government will have little KI in reserve to give to the general population. In recent power plant meltdowns, there was little or no Potassium Iodide to be found anywhere for purchase

Betadine Solution

If you find yourself without any KI, consider this alternative:  Povidone-Iodine solution (brand name Betadine). “Paint” 8 ml of Betadine on the abdomen or forearm 2-12 hours prior to exposure and re-apply daily. Enough should be absorbed through the skin to give protection against radioactive Iodine in fallout.

Betadine as an alternative for KI

For children 3 years old or older (but under 150 lbs or 70 kg), apply 4 ml. Use 2 ml for toddlers and 1 ml for infants. This strategy should also work on animals. If you don’t have a way to measure, remember that a standard teaspoon is about 5 milliliters. Discontinue the daily treatment after 3-7 days or when Radioiodine levels have fallen to safer levels.

Be aware that those who are allergic to seafood will probably be allergic to anything containing iodine. Adverse reactions may also occur if you take medications such as diuretics and Lithium. It is also important to note that you cannot drink tincture of iodine or Betadine; it is poisonous if ingested.

Although many don’t view a nuclear event as a likely disaster scenario, it’s important to learn about all the possible issues that may impact your family in uncertain times.

Joe Alton MD

Dr. Alton

Find out more about survival medicine with the 700 page Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way. And don’t forget to fill those holes in your medical supplies by checking out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at store.doomandbloom.net.

Medical Kits by Doom and Bloom

Planting Apple Trees – 3 Great Backyard Varieties To Plant This Fall!

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Fall is the perfect time for planting, especially when it comes to planting apple trees! Apple trees really are the ultimate tree for the backyard. Not only do they look beautiful and provide shade, they can also provide 25 years

The post Planting Apple Trees – 3 Great Backyard Varieties To Plant This Fall! appeared first on Old World Garden Farms.

Podcast #156: How Self Esteem Can Hold You Back

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August 11th, 2017: In today’s show I talk with you about how our Self Esteem can really hold us back in life.  I share some amazing resources to help you improve your Self Esteem and be empowered. Book Resources Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, And Lonely Courage Under Siege: Adversity To […]

The post Podcast #156: How Self Esteem Can Hold You Back appeared first on Trayer Wilderness.

Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight

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A tactical flashlight should be an essential part of your everyday carry kit because–unlike a normal flashlight, which is primarily for illumination–a tactical flashlight has multiple uses that could be vital to your survival. This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Tactical Flashlight

The differences between a regular flashlight and a tactical flashlight.

Regular flashlights provide illumination, which is helpful when you are in a dark place without sufficient lighting. But tactical flashlights offer more. They have a stronger light intensity, and a lightweight but more solid construction. Most are made of non-corrosive, waterproof, shockproof material to extend durability and life span. And they often have serrated or toothed bezels which help you counterattack any threats.

To say that your normal city life doesn’t need a tactical flashlight is wrong. No one knows what future holds. Blackouts, brownouts, dimly lit streets. You don’t have to be a hunter, or a policeman, or a soldier to benefit from the use of a tactical flashlight. A tactical flashlight will come in handy to anyone in the world.

3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight.

A tactical flashlight is versatile and useful in many scenarios. Use your tactical flashlight to:

1. Confuse the attacker

Blind him with the super-bright light. This will disorient him, leaving you time to hide, run, or draw your weapon. Even some wild animals will withdraw with such a shock. Be careful when applying this tactic. Only use it against people who are a real threat and approaching with anger, or serious aggression. You don’t want to blind an innocent person–like a child or your neighbor–in a terrible misunderstanding.

2. Become an extra light support for shooting in the dark

Tactical Flashlight at NightYour gun is a powerful self-defense tool. But if you can’t see your target, then your gun is useless. Scope manufacturers create night-vision scopes and weapon-mounted lights. However, both of those accessories have disadvantages. Night vision scopes don’t help when the surroundings are too dark. And the weapon-mounted light causes users to point the gun at the target with chances of unintentional firing.

This is why many people love using a police flashlight as an extra source of light for shooting in low-light conditions. It provides more light so that you will have a quicker target acquisition. And it’s clearer and sharper, resulting in more accurate shots. Night vision scopes, if aided by an extra flashlight, will be more precise and effective.

You can hold your gun in one hand, and the light on the other hand. This approach allows you to adjust your vision without pointing the muzzle at the target. This prevents you from unintentional shooting or causing harm to other people. When you need to hold the rifle with both hands, you can turn it into a weapon-mounted light. Many police flashlight models have an attachable part to be easily attached to the barrel of the gun. The attach/detach process is quick and easy.

If you are shooting with a semi-automatic rifle such as AR-15 or AK-47, a police flashlight can be more useful. Those guns are made for close combat, so people often don’t mount a powerful night vision scope on it. These sights are too heavy and bulky. Instead, a red dot sight is more effective for an AR-15. But with red dot sights, your vision in the dark is very limited. Thus, attaching a flashlight onto the rifle is an optimal idea. Extra light, extra vision and the same convenience, those are wonderful features for an AR-15. If combining with a good AR-15 bipod, your shooting will be more accurate and consistent even in a dark forest.

3. Start a fire

This is not its primary purpose but you can make a fire with a tactical flashlight. There is more than one way to do this.

  • Method 1: this method is the most guaranteed way to start a fire with a flashlight. Firstly, you need to remove the head and the protecting glass. Then, break the bulb. Be careful in this step because you don’t want to break the whole bulb. You want to break the outer glass but leave the filament untouched. Next, put tinder (lint, paper, or hair) in and switch the light on. After some seconds, you will have a tactical firing match to start a bigger fire.
  • Method 2: this method is only available during daytime, especially when there is blazing sunshine. Take out the protecting glass on top of the flashlight. Hold it in the air between the sun and the tinder. Then, wait for a couple of minutes for the sunshine is converged and burn the tinder.
  • Method 3: this solution is only available with some specific tactical flashlight. Some models are designed to emit an intensive light that is able to burn flammable materials nearby. Just turn that mode on and shove your light near the tinder.

Bonus: the right way to hold a flashlight alongside your gun

As I said, a tactical flashlight is a good alternative to weapon-mounted light. But how to hold it to secure accurate shots and safety? My answer: the right way to hold a flashlight and a gun are the eye index technique.

There are many ways to do that and you will see them often in the movies. But the most effective one is rarely seen in cinematic scenes. First, hold the flashlight with your non-dominant hand. Then, put it beside your head, at the same level with your eyes. Second, hold the pistol in your dominant hand and stretch it out. This technique allows you to see both the target and your gun’s sight. It also more secure because you don’t point the gun at the target.

If you have owned one, take a look at our quality picks for good police flashlight. 3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight above have proven its importance. It isn’t an item in your everyday carry kit. It can be your life savior when chances come. So, check for the flashlight every time you go out. Also remember to recharge it at home, creating a habit of this will ensure your safety and convenience.

This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Shooting Mystery

If you found this article helpful/interesting, please Share it by clicking on the social media links. Thank you for helping us grow!

The post Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight appeared first on Surviving Prepper.

Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight

A tactical flashlight should be an essential part of your everyday carry kit because–unlike a normal flashlight, which is primarily for illumination–a tactical flashlight has multiple uses that could be vital to your survival. This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Tactical Flashlight

The differences between a regular flashlight and a tactical flashlight.

Regular flashlights provide illumination, which is helpful when you are in a dark place without sufficient lighting. But tactical flashlights offer more. They have a stronger light intensity, and a lightweight but more solid construction. Most are made of non-corrosive, waterproof, shockproof material to extend durability and life span. And they often have serrated or toothed bezels which help you counterattack any threats.

To say that your normal city life doesn’t need a tactical flashlight is wrong. No one knows what future holds. Blackouts, brownouts, dimly lit streets. You don’t have to be a hunter, or a policeman, or a soldier to benefit from the use of a tactical flashlight. A tactical flashlight will come in handy to anyone in the world.

3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight.

A tactical flashlight is versatile and useful in many scenarios. Use your tactical flashlight to:

1. Confuse the attacker

Blind him with the super-bright light. This will disorient him, leaving you time to hide, run, or draw your weapon. Even some wild animals will withdraw with such a shock. Be careful when applying this tactic. Only use it against people who are a real threat and approaching with anger, or serious aggression. You don’t want to blind an innocent person–like a child or your neighbor–in a terrible misunderstanding.

2. Become an extra light support for shooting in the dark

Tactical Flashlight at NightYour gun is a powerful self-defense tool. But if you can’t see your target, then your gun is useless. Scope manufacturers create night-vision scopes and weapon-mounted lights. However, both of those accessories have disadvantages. Night vision scopes don’t help when the surroundings are too dark. And the weapon-mounted light causes users to point the gun at the target with chances of unintentional firing.

This is why many people love using a police flashlight as an extra source of light for shooting in low-light conditions. It provides more light so that you will have a quicker target acquisition. And it’s clearer and sharper, resulting in more accurate shots. Night vision scopes, if aided by an extra flashlight, will be more precise and effective.

You can hold your gun in one hand, and the light on the other hand. This approach allows you to adjust your vision without pointing the muzzle at the target. This prevents you from unintentional shooting or causing harm to other people. When you need to hold the rifle with both hands, you can turn it into a weapon-mounted light. Many police flashlight models have an attachable part to be easily attached to the barrel of the gun. The attach/detach process is quick and easy.

If you are shooting with a semi-automatic rifle such as AR-15 or AK-47, a police flashlight can be more useful. Those guns are made for close combat, so people often don’t mount a powerful night vision scope on it. These sights are too heavy and bulky. Instead, a red dot sight is more effective for an AR-15. But with red dot sights, your vision in the dark is very limited. Thus, attaching a flashlight onto the rifle is an optimal idea. Extra light, extra vision and the same convenience, those are wonderful features for an AR-15. If combining with a good AR-15 bipod, your shooting will be more accurate and consistent even in a dark forest.

3. Start a fire

This is not its primary purpose but you can make a fire with a tactical flashlight. There is more than one way to do this.

  • Method 1: this method is the most guaranteed way to start a fire with a flashlight. Firstly, you need to remove the head and the protecting glass. Then, break the bulb. Be careful in this step because you don’t want to break the whole bulb. You want to break the outer glass but leave the filament untouched. Next, put tinder (lint, paper, or hair) in and switch the light on. After some seconds, you will have a tactical firing match to start a bigger fire.
  • Method 2: this method is only available during daytime, especially when there is blazing sunshine. Take out the protecting glass on top of the flashlight. Hold it in the air between the sun and the tinder. Then, wait for a couple of minutes for the sunshine is converged and burn the tinder.
  • Method 3: this solution is only available with some specific tactical flashlight. Some models are designed to emit an intensive light that is able to burn flammable materials nearby. Just turn that mode on and shove your light near the tinder.

Bonus: the right way to hold a flashlight alongside your gun

As I said, a tactical flashlight is a good alternative to weapon-mounted light. But how to hold it to secure accurate shots and safety? My answer: the right way to hold a flashlight and a gun are the eye index technique.

There are many ways to do that and you will see them often in the movies. But the most effective one is rarely seen in cinematic scenes. First, hold the flashlight with your non-dominant hand. Then, put it beside your head, at the same level with your eyes. Second, hold the pistol in your dominant hand and stretch it out. This technique allows you to see both the target and your gun’s sight. It also more secure because you don’t point the gun at the target.

If you have owned one, take a look at our quality picks for good police flashlight. 3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight above have proven its importance. It isn’t an item in your everyday carry kit. It can be your life savior when chances come. So, check for the flashlight every time you go out. Also remember to recharge it at home, creating a habit of this will ensure your safety and convenience.

This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Shooting Mystery

If you found this article helpful/interesting, please Share it by clicking on the social media links. Thank you for helping us grow!

The post Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight appeared first on Surviving Prepper.

Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight

A tactical flashlight should be an essential part of your everyday carry kit because–unlike a normal flashlight, which is primarily for illumination–a tactical flashlight has multiple uses that could be vital to your survival. This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Tactical Flashlight

The differences between a regular flashlight and a tactical flashlight.

Regular flashlights provide illumination, which is helpful when you are in a dark place without sufficient lighting. But tactical flashlights offer more. They have a stronger light intensity, and a lightweight but more solid construction. Most are made of non-corrosive, waterproof, shockproof material to extend durability and life span. And they often have serrated or toothed bezels which help you counterattack any threats.

To say that your normal city life doesn’t need a tactical flashlight is wrong. No one knows what future holds. Blackouts, brownouts, dimly lit streets. You don’t have to be a hunter, or a policeman, or a soldier to benefit from the use of a tactical flashlight. A tactical flashlight will come in handy to anyone in the world.

3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight.

A tactical flashlight is versatile and useful in many scenarios. Use your tactical flashlight to:

1. Confuse the attacker

Blind him with the super-bright light. This will disorient him, leaving you time to hide, run, or draw your weapon. Even some wild animals will withdraw with such a shock. Be careful when applying this tactic. Only use it against people who are a real threat and approaching with anger, or serious aggression. You don’t want to blind an innocent person–like a child or your neighbor–in a terrible misunderstanding.

2. Become an extra light support for shooting in the dark

Tactical Flashlight at NightYour gun is a powerful self-defense tool. But if you can’t see your target, then your gun is useless. Scope manufacturers create night-vision scopes and weapon-mounted lights. However, both of those accessories have disadvantages. Night vision scopes don’t help when the surroundings are too dark. And the weapon-mounted light causes users to point the gun at the target with chances of unintentional firing.

This is why many people love using a police flashlight as an extra source of light for shooting in low-light conditions. It provides more light so that you will have a quicker target acquisition. And it’s clearer and sharper, resulting in more accurate shots. Night vision scopes, if aided by an extra flashlight, will be more precise and effective.

You can hold your gun in one hand, and the light on the other hand. This approach allows you to adjust your vision without pointing the muzzle at the target. This prevents you from unintentional shooting or causing harm to other people. When you need to hold the rifle with both hands, you can turn it into a weapon-mounted light. Many police flashlight models have an attachable part to be easily attached to the barrel of the gun. The attach/detach process is quick and easy.

If you are shooting with a semi-automatic rifle such as AR-15 or AK-47, a police flashlight can be more useful. Those guns are made for close combat, so people often don’t mount a powerful night vision scope on it. These sights are too heavy and bulky. Instead, a red dot sight is more effective for an AR-15. But with red dot sights, your vision in the dark is very limited. Thus, attaching a flashlight onto the rifle is an optimal idea. Extra light, extra vision and the same convenience, those are wonderful features for an AR-15. If combining with a good AR-15 bipod, your shooting will be more accurate and consistent even in a dark forest.

3. Start a fire

This is not its primary purpose but you can make a fire with a tactical flashlight. There is more than one way to do this.

  • Method 1: this method is the most guaranteed way to start a fire with a flashlight. Firstly, you need to remove the head and the protecting glass. Then, break the bulb. Be careful in this step because you don’t want to break the whole bulb. You want to break the outer glass but leave the filament untouched. Next, put tinder (lint, paper, or hair) in and switch the light on. After some seconds, you will have a tactical firing match to start a bigger fire.
  • Method 2: this method is only available during daytime, especially when there is blazing sunshine. Take out the protecting glass on top of the flashlight. Hold it in the air between the sun and the tinder. Then, wait for a couple of minutes for the sunshine is converged and burn the tinder.
  • Method 3: this solution is only available with some specific tactical flashlight. Some models are designed to emit an intensive light that is able to burn flammable materials nearby. Just turn that mode on and shove your light near the tinder.

Bonus: the right way to hold a flashlight alongside your gun

As I said, a tactical flashlight is a good alternative to weapon-mounted light. But how to hold it to secure accurate shots and safety? My answer: the right way to hold a flashlight and a gun are the eye index technique.

There are many ways to do that and you will see them often in the movies. But the most effective one is rarely seen in cinematic scenes. First, hold the flashlight with your non-dominant hand. Then, put it beside your head, at the same level with your eyes. Second, hold the pistol in your dominant hand and stretch it out. This technique allows you to see both the target and your gun’s sight. It also more secure because you don’t point the gun at the target.

If you have owned one, take a look at our quality picks for good police flashlight. 3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight above have proven its importance. It isn’t an item in your everyday carry kit. It can be your life savior when chances come. So, check for the flashlight every time you go out. Also remember to recharge it at home, creating a habit of this will ensure your safety and convenience.

This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Shooting Mystery

If you found this article helpful/interesting, please Share it by clicking on the social media links. Thank you for helping us grow!

The post Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight appeared first on Surviving Prepper.

Survival Uses of a Tactical Flashlight

A tactical flashlight should be an essential part of your everyday carry kit because–unlike a normal flashlight, which is primarily for illumination–a tactical flashlight has multiple uses that could be vital to your survival. This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Tactical Flashlight

The differences between a regular flashlight and a tactical flashlight.

Regular flashlights provide illumination, which is helpful when you are in a dark place without sufficient lighting. But tactical flashlights offer more. They have a stronger light intensity, and a lightweight but more solid construction. Most are made of non-corrosive, waterproof, shockproof material to extend durability and life span. And they often have serrated or toothed bezels which help you counterattack any threats.

To say that your normal city life doesn’t need a tactical flashlight is wrong. No one knows what future holds. Blackouts, brownouts, dimly lit streets. You don’t have to be a hunter, or a policeman, or a soldier to benefit from the use of a tactical flashlight. A tactical flashlight will come in handy to anyone in the world.

3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight.

A tactical flashlight is versatile and useful in many scenarios. Use your tactical flashlight to:

1. Confuse the attacker

Blind him with the super-bright light. This will disorient him, leaving you time to hide, run, or draw your weapon. Even some wild animals will withdraw with such a shock. Be careful when applying this tactic. Only use it against people who are a real threat and approaching with anger, or serious aggression. You don’t want to blind an innocent person–like a child or your neighbor–in a terrible misunderstanding.

2. Become an extra light support for shooting in the dark

Tactical Flashlight at NightYour gun is a powerful self-defense tool. But if you can’t see your target, then your gun is useless. Scope manufacturers create night-vision scopes and weapon-mounted lights. However, both of those accessories have disadvantages. Night vision scopes don’t help when the surroundings are too dark. And the weapon-mounted light causes users to point the gun at the target with chances of unintentional firing.

This is why many people love using a police flashlight as an extra source of light for shooting in low-light conditions. It provides more light so that you will have a quicker target acquisition. And it’s clearer and sharper, resulting in more accurate shots. Night vision scopes, if aided by an extra flashlight, will be more precise and effective.

You can hold your gun in one hand, and the light on the other hand. This approach allows you to adjust your vision without pointing the muzzle at the target. This prevents you from unintentional shooting or causing harm to other people. When you need to hold the rifle with both hands, you can turn it into a weapon-mounted light. Many police flashlight models have an attachable part to be easily attached to the barrel of the gun. The attach/detach process is quick and easy.

If you are shooting with a semi-automatic rifle such as AR-15 or AK-47, a police flashlight can be more useful. Those guns are made for close combat, so people often don’t mount a powerful night vision scope on it. These sights are too heavy and bulky. Instead, a red dot sight is more effective for an AR-15. But with red dot sights, your vision in the dark is very limited. Thus, attaching a flashlight onto the rifle is an optimal idea. Extra light, extra vision and the same convenience, those are wonderful features for an AR-15. If combining with a good AR-15 bipod, your shooting will be more accurate and consistent even in a dark forest.

3. Start a fire

This is not its primary purpose but you can make a fire with a tactical flashlight. There is more than one way to do this.

  • Method 1: this method is the most guaranteed way to start a fire with a flashlight. Firstly, you need to remove the head and the protecting glass. Then, break the bulb. Be careful in this step because you don’t want to break the whole bulb. You want to break the outer glass but leave the filament untouched. Next, put tinder (lint, paper, or hair) in and switch the light on. After some seconds, you will have a tactical firing match to start a bigger fire.
  • Method 2: this method is only available during daytime, especially when there is blazing sunshine. Take out the protecting glass on top of the flashlight. Hold it in the air between the sun and the tinder. Then, wait for a couple of minutes for the sunshine is converged and burn the tinder.
  • Method 3: this solution is only available with some specific tactical flashlight. Some models are designed to emit an intensive light that is able to burn flammable materials nearby. Just turn that mode on and shove your light near the tinder.

Bonus: the right way to hold a flashlight alongside your gun

As I said, a tactical flashlight is a good alternative to weapon-mounted light. But how to hold it to secure accurate shots and safety? My answer: the right way to hold a flashlight and a gun are the eye index technique.

There are many ways to do that and you will see them often in the movies. But the most effective one is rarely seen in cinematic scenes. First, hold the flashlight with your non-dominant hand. Then, put it beside your head, at the same level with your eyes. Second, hold the pistol in your dominant hand and stretch it out. This technique allows you to see both the target and your gun’s sight. It also more secure because you don’t point the gun at the target.

If you have owned one, take a look at our quality picks for good police flashlight. 3 survival uses of a tactical flashlight above have proven its importance. It isn’t an item in your everyday carry kit. It can be your life savior when chances come. So, check for the flashlight every time you go out. Also remember to recharge it at home, creating a habit of this will ensure your safety and convenience.

This is a guest post from Shooting Mystery.
Shooting Mystery

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Top 10 Easiest Vegetables For New Gardeners

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We’ve talked at length about the most nutritious vegetables to grow, and about how to choose seeds and save them for the next year.

We’ve also talked about how to build a compost pile, and do container gardening, and just about every other gardening topic that you can think of, but what about what’s just plain easy?

Now you need a list of the easiest vegetables to grow, so this is for anybody trying to make a successful first attempt at gardening.

Potatoes

Potatoes are probably the easiest vegetable … err … tuber to grow because you basically plant them and forget them. I actually learned how to plant them in a 5-gallon bucket and haven’t looked back because it’s so easy.

Before we do that, though, let’s talk about the traditional way. Just let your potato grow eyes, then cut them off so that each section has an eye or two – that really is all that you need. Bury each start a foot or so apart and bury under about three inches of soil.

Once the plants reach a foot or so tall, pull dirt in from between the rows to make a mound around each plant. After that, just keep an eye out that they stay planted because they may work their way to the top of the soil.

To grow them in a bucket, just let the potato grow eyes, and plant the whole thing six inches or so down in the center of the bucket. You can cut it into eyes if you want, but you don’t have to.

In both circumstances, the potatoes are ready when the plant dies off.

Discover the golden days’ practice for getting all you can eat food without buying from the supermarket!

Herbs

Just about any herb is a piece of cake to grow. You simply plant the seeds a half-inch or so deep (I like to use the small seedling trays then separate them out into 6-inch pots when they get their second set of true leaves.  As long as you keep the soil damp but not wet, they’ll grow marvelously.

Peppers

Peppers are super easy to grow, too. They’re another where you just plant the seeds a half-inch deep, water them a couple of times a week, and watch them grow. They do like a sandier soil, and it needs to be loose enough for the roots to grow, but packed enough to hold the roots in.

As far as water, they like the soil damp but not soaked, so again, the sandier soil helps with the drainage. Still, peppers are super low maintenance.

Cool trick – pepper seeds love warm soil – 75 degrees or better. When I start mine, it still gets cool at night, so I water them in the mornings with warm (not hot!) water to hurry germination along.

Melons

Some people are intimidated by melons, but I don’t really know why. They’re great for a traditional garden, or you can raise them in raised beds of even containers. Just make a mound of dirt, plant three or four seeds an inch or so deep in the center of the mound, and watch them grow.

Cucumbers

Cucumbers are another easy crop. They don’t mind sun and they’re happy with just a moderate amount of water. You don’t have to do any pruning or much babysitting at all. Grow them the same way that we just discussed growing melons, and they’ll be fine. The good thing about cucumbers is that you really can’t pick them too early. As soon as they look like cucumbers, whether they’re three inches long, or ten inches, (depending on variety because they don’t all get that big), they’re ready to eat.

My only suggestion with cukes is to keep an eye on them because they have a tendency to grow in the shady spots under the leaves and you’ll miss them if you don’t pay attention.

Lettuce

You seriously can’t get any easier than lettuce. It’s also an instant-gratification plant because you’ll see growth in just two or three days. Scatter your seeds over your soil (I use plastic Chinese takeout containers), rub your hands over them to sort of cover them in soil, give them some water, and you’ll have lettuce in no time. I like to mix my leaf lettuces, but that’s just me.

Carrots

Carrots are also easy to grow; in fact, you can grow them in window boxes, and they come in a whole variety of cool colors that offer visual distinction and a variety of nutrients. Carrot seeds are tiny like lettuce seeds are and you plant them in much the same way, except you want to spread the seeds out so that you’re only planting four seeds every inch or so.

Water the soil well before you plant, then cover them with a quarter-inch of soil and lightly pack it down. Pat it may be a more accurate term. Carrot tip – if you want pretty, elongated carrots instead of stubby deformed ones, make sure your soil is a little sandy and loose-packed because if it’s too packed, you’re carrots will look weird.

Green Beans

Beans are easy to grow, too. Bush beans may be the easiest to grow because they don’t need stakes, but I kind of like the runners because they’re tied up and ready to pick. If you’re going for something easy, especially if you’re growing in a container, then go for the bush beans.

If you’re planting traditionally, plant the seeds one inch deep and two inches apart, then thin bush bean seedlings to four inches apart, and pole bean seedlings to six inches apart.

Onions

Onions are another easy-peasy veggie to grow. I like to grow green onions – the ones similar to scallions – for eating raw with a sandwich or in a salad, but I prefer Vidalias or red onions for everything else. I’m not a big fan of that strong, oniony flavor, but onions are an absolute necessity in almost all of my savory recipes in one way or another.

If you’re planting green onions, plant them exactly as you planted your carrots. To plant big onions from seeds, plant the seeds about an inch down and about six inches apart. If you’re growing in containers, they can be a little closer together than that, but picture the full-sized onion under the soil to get a good visual idea of how much space to leave.

They like a looser soil, too.

Pumpkins

I used to love growing pumpkins just to see my son’s face when he was little. He used to love picking them for Halloween. Now just to be clear, there are many different kinds of pumpkins, so check that out before you plant. If you’re going to cook them into pies, for example, you don’t want to use jack-o-lantern-type pumpkins because they’re too stringy. That being said, any pumpkin can be a jack-o-lantern if you want it to be!

Still, the basic premise of growing pumpkins is pretty much identical to growing melons and cucumbers, so make last Halloween the final one where you had to buy a pumpkin.

I want you to succeed. I want you to enjoy growing your own food as much as I do, and I’ve tried to include a variety of different foods to help get you started. In that same vein, I’ve written a book called the Forgotten Lessons of Yesterday, which is a compilation of skills that were passed down to me.

It details everything from canning your own foods to making cheese, wine, and beer, to butchering meat, and I wrote it because I think that everybody should have the skills within it. We’re giving away some pretty cool bonuses with it too, so check it out!

Now, as usual, if you have anything that you’d like to add to this article – tips for beginners, questions, or just other veggies or fruits that are easy to grow – share them with us in the comments section below!

This article has been written by Theresa Crouse for Survivopedia. 

The Ultimate Survival Tree That Grows on Almost Every Street in America

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This tree is so common in the U.S. that you can see it planted on the streets, in parks, and in residential areas (due to its use as a specimen

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Prepper Protein: Supplement Your Pantry With the Essentials

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ReadyNutrition Guys and Gals, you already know what a PT (physical training) nut I am, and how I’m in a long-term “love affair” with my weights.  I follow a simple rule that is all-encompassing for my existence: if you’re not in good shape, you better get in good shape; if you are in good shape, you better stay that way.  That mentioned, we need supplements to make up for the lack of nutrients in our diets and also to “boost” our intake of needed materials.  Protein powders do this.  Let’s go into it, shall we?

Please refer back to my previous articles on amino acids and protein for further reference in-depth.  As mentioned, we have 8 essential amino acids, just to review.  These are critical for our upkeep, and they must be obtained from our food.  A protein powder may or may not (or may partially) provide these amino acids.  Of particular importance are BCAA’s (Branched-Chain Amino Acids), such as L-Isoleucine, L-Leucine, and L-Valine.  These guys are very important for tissue repair.

I have found that there are many types of protein powder that are not specifically designed to replace the amino acids you need.  EAS manufactures a protein powder that is nonspecific such as this: you’re getting protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.  There are four that I think are really good to use: Market Pantry (Target’s generic brand) of protein/whey powder, Muscle Milk, Pure Protein (carried by Wal-Mart), and Raw Protein GreenThe last one listed will be of interest to those who want raw organic vegetable proteins.  It’s expensive: about $30.00 per canister.

The powder provides all of the amino acids, but it’s a little “light” in some areas.  Still, Mrs. JJ likes it, and it is very good for those who don’t have a strong stomach/intestinal tract that have trouble taking in these large quantities of nutrients.  The overall “best” has to go to Muscle Milk, the Pro Series 50 in chocolate (Knockout Chocolate, to be exact) flavor.  Designed for pre and post workouts, you’ll get about 23 servings out of it with 25 grams (g) of protein per serving.

JJ’s Protein Power Shake:

Now for JJ’s trick for you: put in 1 cup of milk (whole, reduced, skim) for about 9 g of protein, and 2 Tbsp. peanut butter (on average, about 8 g protein).  Mix these in a jar.  I use a kind of skinny vertical jar that used to hold salsa.  Add water to the edge of the jar-threads.  Shake it up vigorously about 300 times to blend it all in.  Voila!  You just took that shake and went from 25 g to 42 g of protein in the blink of an eye!  Yes, it matters on the overall tally.  Remember: you’re not replacing meals; rather, you’re supplementing them.

JJ’s Protein Powder Reviews:

This Muscle Milk tastes good (the chocolate does), and the “additives” make it taste better.  One in the morning post-workout (within 20-30 minutes), and then one in the evening before bed at a minimum.

Market Pantry (Target’s Brand) and the Pure Protein (Wal-Mart) weigh in slightly less amino acid than the Muscle Milk.  Pricewise, though, you pay $18.47 for the former and $17.98 for the latter, as opposed to $30.00 for the Muscle Milk.  The numbers are so close that it’s worth it to buy the other two for the price.  Get the chocolate: the vanilla doesn’t taste very good, even when you “doctor” it with my additives.  The protein content per serving is about the same: 25 g.  They also have sodium and potassium, critical electrolytes that you need with your physical training.

You can take one of these jars to mix it up within a cooler with a cup of milk in it, and a serving of powder in a plastic/Ziploc bag.  I have these small servings of peanut butter that I just squeeze in, but you can measure this out in a Ziploc bag (2 Tbsp.) and cut a hole in one corner.  Then just roll the whole thing up until it’s closed and rubber-band it until you need it.  This is a lot better for you than some “crapulous” snack with no nutritional value and empty calories that you can blend in with other snacks, such as raw vegetables and fruit.

Bottom line: depending on how much protein you estimate you’ll need, the powder is the way to make up the difference: quick, easy, and affordable.  Just as what you put into your training time is what you take out?  What you put into your body matters.  The powder is the way to go, along with a good diet and exercise plan.  Fight that good fight!  JJ out!

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

15 Bug Out Bag Essentials You Must Have

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by Bethany

Bug out bags are essential items for any survivalist. Deciding what to put in your bag can be difficult. Each person has different needs and requirements. You may have a large family, or you could be a single person, prepping for the future. A bug out bag is meant to carry items to allow you to survive for 72 to 96 hours when you evacuate due to emergencies.

There is no right or wrong answer to the items you include! Some people have multiple bug out bags for different scenarios. You may have one particular scenario in your head, or you may want to be prepared for anything you encounter. No matter the purpose of the bag, there are some items I consider essential and have in all of my bags.

CRUCIAL TIP: Your bug out bag must be made according to YOUR climate and region. If you live in a region that has frequent snowfalls, you must take that into consideration. I live in Ohio, so my list may be vastly different compared to someone living in the South! Other considerations are your age, the number of people in your group and any medical conditions. All of those factors will determine the items you pack in your bug out bag.

#1. Tent/tarp/poncho

The elements can kill quickly if you are left in them. You don’t need a fancy tent in your BOB. In fact, a huge tent will take up too much space in your bag. The shelter can be anything from a one-person tent to a poncho that can keep the rain off your body. Some people include tarps if they have space in their bags.

All too often, preppers include things like food and fire starting devices, but they forget how quickly the elements will kill you, so be sure to put it at the top of your list!

#2. Things to keep you warm

Blankets or a sleeping bag go right along with the idea of shelter. Blankets keep you warm to help reduce hypothermia. Depending on the bag you pick, you might be able to tie a sleeping bag on the exterior of the bag. Some bags include straps for this scenario. Wool is another choice because it retains heat. However, wool blankets are heavy, so many survivalists opt not to include them.

Something we keep in our bug out bags are hand warmers, also known as Hot Hands. They can add extra warmth to your blanket if the temperature rapidly drops. Plus, Hot Hands are rather small and compact, perfect for a BOB!

mylar blanket

Emergency Mylar blankets come in small baggies and are the perfect choice if you are running out of space in your bag. They can hold in the heat during an emergency, and the package is very small. You can keep multiple Mylar blankets everywhere, including your car!

#3. Ways to start a fire

In your BOB, you want to keep multiple sources of fire. Here is what I have in mine:

  • Box of matches – waterproof ones are the best!
  • a couple of lighters
  • Flint and steel

fire

Starting a fire is tricky at times, such as after a hard rain or during windy conditions. Some people like to include extra things that get fires started like candles and cotton balls.

#4. Water Filtration System

Water sources might surround you, but that doesn’t mean you can safely drink from those sources. Learning how to filter water is an essential skill. In your BOB, you have to include ways to safely filter water for each person in your group, whether you are alone or with your family.

There are a few choices to consider. I keep a personal straw filter for each person in my family. The LifeStraw Personal Water Filter is our favorite; each member of our family has one. They are an investment, but you can find them on sale if you are on a budget. Sawyer Mini Water Filtration System allows you to drink from a bottle of water, filtering it as you drink. Plus, it is rated up to 100,000 gallons of water, which is impressive.

Another choice is a bottle that filters water when you add in the water. Find one that clips right onto your BOB! The LifeStraw Go Water Bottle filters 1,000 liters of water.

The other choice would be to purchase bottles of water purification tablets. These tablets are cheap, allowing you to purchase dozens of bottles for little cost. When using tablets, you have to wait 30 minutes, on average, before drinking.

gerber suspension multitool

#5. Everyday Multi-Tools and Knives

Everyone needs to have a multi-tool in their bag. While you also might want to carry a separate knife, multi-tools have everything you might need in one place. They allow you to keep everything in one place. The only thing I do suggest is that you invest in a nice multi-tool, such as the Gerber Suspension, which has 11 tools.

Most survivalists opt to carry a knife with them. A larger knife can accomplish dozens of tasks like cutting weeds and kindling for the fire. A knife is also an essential tool for skinning and butchering animals if you hunt. The Gerber Bear Grylls is made with carbon featuring a serrated edge. It is a highly-rated choice.

You can do like our family and opt to carry a bit of everything. We have knives and multi-tools. However, if I had to pick just one, I would always pick a larger knife!

#6. A Form of ID

Identification won’t help you prevent a disaster, but they may be a lifesaver. Someone might find you and, in order to give you first aid, they could use whatever personal info they could find about you (blood type, allergies etc). Or, you need an ID to get into your bank account and access any of your assets. Luckily, identification doesn’t take up much room in your bag.

Forms of identification and other personal information include:

  • Driver’s license or state-issued ID
  • Birth certificate
  • Passport
  • Social security card
  • Military ID
  • Blood type
  • Allergies
  • Phone numbers of your loved ones
  • …and so on

#7. Food

Ideally, you will have 72 to 96 hours of food stored in your BOB. To keep your bag itself light, you don’t want to pack any mason jars. However, you can put a few small canned goods from the store. Think of your calorie count and blood sugar, which may drop after long periods of walking. Food like chocolate and dried fruit has high calorie and lots of sugar, perfect if you start feeling a bit lightheaded while walking. Both of those foods can increase your blood sugar, and chocolate contains caffeine which can give you a boost in energy.

You also want ready to eat meals or things you can cook over a fire. Dehydrated meat, like jerky, helps with the protein needs. If your bag can handle it, considered a few cans of meat like shredded chicken or beef. If you dehydrate your food, you can make dehydrated vegetable soup that just needs water and heat to reconstitute. Other great options include trail mixes and granola bars. Trail mixes e2552de

When considering the food you are packing, think about the calorie intake. Chances are you will be on the move a lot, burning 4,000 calories or more depending on the temperature. Each person needs at least 2,000 calories per day in their bag. If you have a nursing mother in your group, add 500 calories extra to her bag! I often have a nursling, so I must remember to pack extra calories for myself.

first aid kit

#8. First Aid Kit

Including a first aid kit in your BOB is a clear must-have item. You never know what you will encounter. Unfortunately, you have to be selective about what you include, unlike your medical kit at home which can be extensive. What do I include in my BOB medical kit? Here are my top picks!

  • Painkillers such as Tylenol and sprays
  • Bandages
  • Gauze and tape
  • Butterfly closures
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Benadryl (pill and cream for bug bites)
  • Sting relief for bees and wasps
  • Scissors
  • Medications required on a regular basis
  • Burn ointment or cream
  • Stitches kit
  • Penicillin or some antibiotic
  • Anti-diarrhea medication
  • Sunblock, because you don’t want a sunburn at this time!

The list of things you could include in your BOB first aid kit is endless, but you have to keep amount down to reduce the weight. It can be hard to decide because you always think “what if I need that.” Pick the items you think you will need the most and stash a larger first aid kit at your bug out location (if you have one).

#9. Extra Clothes

Unless you have small children with you, don’t pack too many clothes for you. They will weigh down the bags. I always keep a lightweight jacket with me (unless it is winter time), but you can tie that around your waist or bag itself.

You should also include a simple change of clothing, such as clean underwear, shorts or pants, and a shirt. I also keep additional socks in my bag in case my feet get wet.

Careful: wet feet can lead to hypothermia in cold regions. If possible, bring along an extra pair of shoes and thick socks, such as wool, that wick away moisture while keeping your feet toasty warm.

#10. Sanitation Supplies

Germs travel quickly during a crisis. You protect yourself and your family, sanitation should be of utmost importance to reduce infections. A roll of toilet paper is easy to include in the bag. Hand sanitizer is a must for every person in the group. Soap and mouthwash for each person help to reduce the spread of germs. For dental care, you should include floss, a toothbrush and toothpaste.

Females and babies have other considerations as well. Females must have sanitary napkins and tampons stashed in their bag. Bacteria can spread quickly. Tampons without applicators are smaller, but you must use hand sanitizers BEFORE and AFTER use.

Sanitary napkins can also be used in a first aid scenario as a dressing.

If you have a baby in the group, you know that diapers are a must. Depending on your plan, there are a few things you can do.

Pack as many disposable diapers and wipes as you can fit. Don’t forget diaper rash cream which is beneficial for everyone in the group!

Use cloth diapers. With cloth diapers, you will need to find a stream to wash them out in often and leave to dry. We use cloth diapers in our regular life, disposable diapers for the BOB and cloth diapers stashed in our final location plan.

paracord bracelet

#11. Paracord

Survivalists love paracord. You can find lanyards, bracelets and keychains made from paracord, making it easy to keep on your body at all times. Here are a few ways you can use paracord.

  • Tying a shelter together.
  • Make a sling for a broken arm.
  • String a clothesline.
  • Hang tools from your belt.
  • Use inner threads as fishing lives.
  • Make a hammock.

The possibilities are endless. You want paracord 550, meaning it can hold up to 550 pounds.

#12. Communication

If the grid goes down, cellular devices will not work. How are you supposed to know what is happening? The best thing you can take with you is a portable radio with short wave receiving capabilities. You can use this to listen to advisories or the news to let you know what is happening.

Another great addition to your bag is a pair of walkie-talkies. If you are in a group and need to split up, walkie talkies allow you to stay in contact and let each other know if you need any help.

flashlights

#13. Flashlights

Having a light source available is a great thing for a BOB. While a lantern is nice, they take up too much room in a bag. The flashlight you pick should be durable; aluminum is an ideal material. Brightness is a factor. LED lights, even if they are small, light up an entire campsite, making them a great choice.

Remember to pack extra batteries for your flashlight. AA batteries are the easiest to find and cheap. It is a good idea to try to line up your items to all take the same batteries. You don’t want to carry several varieties with you.

Hank crank is a definite plus, because you won’t rely on batteries anymore.

handgun

#14. Firearm

You already need a knife, so why do you need a firearm? There are two reasons you want a firearm with you in your BOB. First, it provides protection. In the event of a global emergency, people will be in a panic. People will attack each other if they feel it will benefit them. You don’t want to be the person they take down.

Second, firearms are beneficial for hunting. If you go through the 96 hours of food and still have yet to find a location to stay, a firearm allows you to hunt for your food. Depending on your region, you do want to make sure you are using the correct caliber to take down the game in your area.

Firearms should only be with those who are trained to use them. In the wrong hands, firearms are a threat to a group. Ensure only trained individuals and adults have access to the firearms.

#15. Duct Tape

Duct Tape can fix nearly anything, which is why you want it in your BOB. If you need to fix a tarp, duct tape is the answer. If your boat has a hole, you can patch it with duct tape. For its size and weight, duct tape is a must have item. The possibilities are endless. Some people do prefer Gorilla Tape, claiming that it is stronger.

This list is far from exhaustive. If you have extra room in your bag, you can include things like fishing line and lures, a deck of cards (for boredom), a sewing kit, and a camp ax. The list of possibilities is endless.

Remember, bugging out should be the LAST resort. You want to try to bug in for as long as possible. Pack your BOB according to what you need in your region and your family.

What items do you consider essential for your bug out bags? Let us know in the comments below.

2017 Suburban Steader Update – Week 32

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Wow – it’s been six weeks since I posted a weekly update here.  There’s been a lot going on here including some weekend trips, considerable garden growth, an improvement in my fitness and a possible new business venture. Let’s jump in and see what’s been going on here at the Suburban Steader Homestead! This Week’s

2017 Suburban Steader Update – Week 32

Wow – it’s been six weeks since I posted a weekly update here.  There’s been a lot going on here including some weekend trips, considerable garden growth, an improvement in my fitness and a possible new business venture. Let’s jump in and see what’s been going on here at the Suburban Steader Homestead! This Week’s