5 Common Nutrient Deficiencies That Are Ruining Your Health

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I often find myself looking up the nutrient profiles of the foods I eat. I try to do it on a regular basis, just to see where my diet is lacking. What I usually discover, is that I’m deficient in one nutrient or another. You really need to eat a lot of really high quality foods to take in the vitamins and minerals that are recommended by the FDA. And even when you pull that off, it’s still isn’t necessarily enough. The daily recommended values that you see printed on the sides of most food packages, often reflect the minimum nutrients you need, rather than the most optimum nutrient intake.

And I know that I’m not alone. Despite the fact that people living in the United States have access to more food than anyone else in the world, or throughout human history for that matter, millions of Americans are still deficient in many different kinds of nutrients. The most common of which include:

Vitamin D

Studies have shown that vitamin D deficiencies are skyrocketing in the US. Because we receive most of our vitamin D from sun exposure, the most likely reasons for this trend include our sedentary lifestyles, and increasing sunscreen usage. Symptoms of a deficiency include fatigue, reduced mental faculties, and bone fractures. Though sea foods and dairy provide the most vitamin D in our diets, exposing your skin to the sun is the most efficient way to receive enough of this nutrient.


Because magnesium is present in every cell in your body, it would be impossible to list every symptom of a deficiency. Magnesium effects every bodily function, which makes it one of the most important nutrients. Though estimates vary between different studies, they all suggest that a majority of the population isn’t consuming enough magnesium. The best sources of magnesium include leafy greens, fish, beans, and nuts.


This is one of the most important nutrients for reducing inflammation, and when you don’t eat enough of it, you may suffer from severe cognitive decline, skin problems, and high blood pressure. Plus, the amount of omega-3 fatty acids that you consume needs to be in balance with the amount omega-6 in your diet, if you want to reap the benefits of this nutrient.

Though estimates vary, you should probably be consuming 1 mg of omega-3 for every 4 mg of omega-6. Unfortunately, for most people that ratio is closer to 1/12 or worse, due to the highly processed nature of our diets. So skip junk foods that are loaded with vegetable fats, and eat more fish products like salmon, sardines, and cod liver oil.


You wouldn’t think that this deficiency would be a problem in America when you consider how meat-rich our diets are. However, it’s fairly common among infants, children, and women who are pregnant or menstruating. The symptoms include fatigue, headaches, chest pains, pale skin, and shortness of breath. To receive enough iron in your diet, you need to eat plenty of meat (especially liver), seafood, seeds and nuts.


Potassium is a crucial nutrient for hydration, so when you don’t consume enough, it can cause a wide variety of problems including nausea, heart palpitations, delirium, cramps, and muscle weakness. Unfortunately, it’s fairly difficult to consume enough potassium every day. There isn’t just one food you can eat to alleviate a deficiency (contrary to popular opinion, bananas only have a moderate amount of potassium).

You need to incorporate a wide variety of plant foods into every meal to receive enough potassium. That can include beans, squash, potatoes, leafy greens, tomato sauce, and avocados.

Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.

Joshua’s website is Strange Danger

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Water from thin air

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Omar Yaghi in Berkeley, and his metal-organic models

Omar Yaghi and his metal-organic models

Scientists have created a device that can literally extract water from the air using solar power.  Solar Water could revolutionise off-grid living which currently requires a natural water source to be viable – even if its just  rain. This device could one day provide personalized water to those in areas affected by chronic drought.

Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of California Berkeley published their findings in the journal Science on Thursday.

The invention can harvest water from the atmosphere in conditions where relative humidity is as low as 20 percent, which makes it potentially usable in many of the planet`s driest regions.

This is a major breakthrough in the long-standing challenge of harvesting water from the air at low humidity,said Omar Yaghi from Berkeley, who along with colleague Evelyn Wang from MIT created the revolutionary tech.

In order to harvest water, the system uses a specially designed material, a metal organic framework (MOF) designed by Yaghi over 20 years ago. By combining metals like magnesium or aluminium with organic molecules the MOF creates rigid, porous structures ideal for storing liquids and gases.

Essentially the system absorbs and traps air in nanometer sized pores. When sunlight is added, water molecules inside the trapped air get released and condensed into drinkable H2O. Using just 2.2 pounds (997g) of MOF the device can harvest 2.8 litres of water over a 12 hour period.

One vision for the future is to have a solar water device at home running on ambient solar for delivering water that satisfies the needs of a household, Yaghi told Berkeley news.

The ingenious device is not yet ready for commercial production but the scientists have big plans for their technology.

There is a lot of potential for scaling up the amount of water that is being harvested. It is just a matter of further engineering now, expressed Yaghi.

To have solar water running all the time, you could design a system that absorbs the humidity during the night and evolves it during the day, he said. Or design the solar collector to allow for this at a much faster rate, where more air is pushed in. We wanted to demonstrate that if you are cut off somewhere in the desert, you could survive because of this device. A person needs about a Coke can of water per day. That is something one could collect in less than an hour with this system.

There is no other way to do that right now, except by using extra energy. Your electric dehumidifier at home produces very expensive water, he added.

Wang echoed these statements; This solar water device offers a new way to harvest water from air that does not require high relative humidity conditions and is much more energy efficient than other existing technologies, the mechanical engineer said.

With an estimated 1 in 10 people lacking access to clean drinking water and 4 billion people worldwide facing severe water shortages the potential for this technology is huge.

The post Water from thin air appeared first on Living Off the Grid: Free Yourself.

The Natural Blood Pressure ‘Medicine’ Your Doctor Hasn’t Told You About

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The Natural Blood Pressure ‘Medicine’ Your Doctor Hasn't Told You About

Image source: Pixabay.com

If you’ve been told that you have “high blood pressure,” aka, “hypertension,” you’re not alone. The CDC says that more than 75 million people in the U.S. alone have it. There are many reasons why you may have it, and most allopathic doctors will automatically write a prescription to lower your blood pressure. But do you really want a prescription, with side effects? Or worse, another one?

Blood pressure is the force exerted on the blood vessels when the heart pumps blood throughout your system. Pressure goes up and down all day, depending on your activity. But when it stays up, it’s “high.” The CDC considers pressure that’s 120/80 to be “pre-hypertension.” The first number, “systolic,” is over 120 bpm, and the second number, or “diastolic,” is over 80 bpm.

Hypertension has no obvious symptoms, so monitoring blood pressure is important. It’s called the “silent killer,” because there is no warning. Hypertension can cause chest pain and decrease blood flow to the heart, causing heart attacks and heart failure. Strokes and chronic kidney disease are also a risk. You may not know about it until it’s too late.

So, What Can You Do?

Lifestyle changes, like quitting smoking, reducing caffeine intake, eating better and exercising are a good start, but might not be enough. In that scenario, you’ll likely be told that a prescription is your only solution.

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Patients spend an average of $733 yearly on blood pressure medications to lower blood pressure, totaling over $42 billion. Magnesium, a mineral, is readily available at drug stores, health food stores and even some big box stores (Walmart, Target.) Magnesium is also in nuts, seeds, greens and whole grains. If you don’t eat enough of these foods, supplementation is easy.

Why Magnesium?

Heart attack patients receive a high dose of magnesium in the ER, because the heart can’t function well without it. Hypertension is one of many symptoms of magnesium deficiency, along with cardiac arrhythmia, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and sudden cardiac death. Proper levels of magnesium relax the smooth muscle tissue in your blood vessels, allowing freer blood flow and keeping your blood pressure normal.

Stress, bad diets and other factors can burn up your magnesium levels faster than normal. If your magnesium level is depleted and you’re not supplementing, hypertension may be your first indicator that you’re deficient. Other symptoms will follow.

Low magnesium is critical in the elderly. If you’re a woman taking calcium without magnesium, calcium can build up in the heart, brain and other places, causing blockages. Magnesium metabolizes calcium. If you’re under an unusual amount of stress, you’re burning up your magnesium reserves even faster.

Magnesium is relatively inexpensive and is available in organic form. At Vitacost.com, a 240-count bottle of 400 mg tablets costs about $14. A liquid version called ReMag is more expensive, but doesn’t have the laxative effect that pills might. You can also soak in it — get some “Epsom salts.” A foot bath or tub soak with Epsom salts is an easy way to increase magnesium.

Sound expensive? Think of it this way: how much would blood pressure meds cost, even with your co-pay? How much would a heart attack or stroke cost, if you survive it?

Avoid taking all of your magnesium at one time, such as first thing in the morning, since it can cause diarrhea. Split-dosing your magnesium into morning and evening doses is safer to avoid the potential laxative effect.

If you’re looking for a better way to control your blood pressure, consider magnesium. It’s is an underrated mineral, but it’s also one of the most important to improve and keep your overall health. For high blood pressure patients, it can mean the difference between surviving a heart attack and not even having one.

*This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or cure any particular health condition. Please consult with a qualified health professional first about this method.

Have you ever taken magnesium for blood pressure? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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Magnesium, Arrythmias & Hypertension, CarolynDean.com, April 11, 2013

Magnesium for Broken Heart Syndrome, CarolynDean.com, January 8, 2016

The Magnesium Miracle, CarolynDean.com, undated

Magnesium—An Essential Mineral for Heart Health, Mercola.com, July 25, 2016

Magnesium Benefits Your Blood Pressure, Mercola.com, June 11, 2009

Treatment and Drugs for High Blood Pressure, Mayo Clinic website (undated)

The Cost of High Blood Pressure, The Piper Report, May 13, 2013

The Right Way To Start A Fire When It’s Wet Outside

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The Right Way To Start A Survival Fire When It's Wet

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Fire has long been considered one of man’s best friends. It provides both light and warmth, it enables us to cook our foods, and it aids us in the production of primitive weapons.

Therefore, understanding how to build a fire is an essential skill for any outdoorsman, and the ability to build a fire in wet conditions is especially useful. Thus, the first thing you need to understand about building a fire is that it is all about the production of BTUs! While that may sound like an oxymoron, the fact is that heat production is the single most important key concept to building and managing a fire, regardless of whether it’s a campfire or the fire in your wood stove. It is essential to understand how heat and air react, with both wood and moisture, in order to gain a proper understanding of how to build a fire in wet conditions. Obviously, a heat source is required to light a fire and both oxygen and fuel are needed to maintain it.

The second concept that you need to be aware of is that the less dense and/or the smaller the diameter of the fuel is, the faster it burns; the denser and/or the larger diameter the fuel is, the slower it burns. Further, it is important that you have enough fuel at hand before you start the fire to get it going so that you don’t have to scramble to find appropriate fuel while you are trying to build your fire.

First Steps

To start a fire in wet conditions, you will first need some lightweight, small diameter fuel known as “tinder.” Next, you will need to build a small platform on which to start your fire; when you build a fire on the ground, some of the heat it produces is absorbed by the ground beneath the fire and when that ground is wet, building a fire on top of it will cause it to produce steam, which will dampen your fire.

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It also should be noted that any small tree branches lying on the ground during a soaking rain also will absorb a significant amount of moisture; when gathering tender in wet conditions, it is best to look above ground. For instance, the upper sections of tall stands of dead grass are often dry enough to burn after a rain, and pine trees often have a plethora of small, dead branches on their lower extremities that can be easily collected.

The Right Way To Start A Survival Fire When It's Wet

Image source: Pixabay.com

Once you have sufficient tinder and fuel to start and maintain your fire, the next step that you need to take is to clear the ground of any debris or leaf litter until you reach bare ground. Then, place several short sections of small diameter dead limbs side by side to create a platform on which to start your fire.

Starting the Fire

Next, place your tender in a pile on the platform that you built and apply heat. While a magnifying glass, a match or a butane lighter will serve the purpose in many cases, sometimes your tinder and fuel are simply too sodden to ignite easily; in those situations, you need a more intense source of heat. Consequently, it is wise to carry a Magnesium fire-starter block with you, in addition to waterproof matches and a butane lighter. With this device, you simply use a knife to remove some shavings from the edge of the block and then, you either use the imbedded flint striker or a match to light the magnesium, which will burn so intensely that it will light anything that is placed on top of it.

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Once your tinder is going, you simply add small bits of slightly larger fuel to the pyre until you have built the fire up to the size that you want. But when doing so, you need to plan ahead, because when placing larger pieces of damp fuel on the fire, those pieces will first need to absorb enough heat to convert the moisture they contain to steam so that it can evaporate and then, they will need to heat further to reach the flash point before they will burn. Thus, it is imperative that your fire be really hot before you start adding larger pieces of wet fuel, and that it has enough heat to dry the fuel that you do add.

If You Can’t Find Dry Wood

The last concept that you need to be familiar with is that split wood burns better than round wood. If are having trouble finding sufficient quantities of small, dead limbs to build your fire, then you can use your survival knife and a baton to split larger pieces of damp wood to expose the dry interiors in order to produce burnable fuel for your fire.

The key concepts to remember when building a fire in wet conditions are that fire is all about the production of heat and thus, you need heat to light and maintain a fire.

Fortunately, all of this is not as difficult as it might sound, since there is really very little difference in building a fire in dry conditions and in wet conditions, other than being aware of the key concepts mentioned above, and planning ahead so that your wood is dry by the time that you need it.

What advice would you add on starting a fire in wet conditions? Share your tips in the section below:

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USA Made Fire Steel: Have You Tried it?

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Recently I went to a preparedness convention in Georgia and had a great time. I was very impressed with a lot of the booths that were set up, but I have to tell you about one of my favorites, the Fire Steel Booth with Georgia Pyro.

I have seen a LOT of fire starters in my day and have tried many different kinds. This one takes the cake. What drew me to his booth was the amount of sparks I saw flying from one strike, but also the size of the sparks. They were HUGE!

So I started asking questions about their product and found out some very interesting things. For starters, they are USA hand made right here in Georgia, but also that their fire starters produce an amazing amount of 3000 degree sparks and their magnesium burns at 5000 degrees. WET or DRY and their larger rods give over 20,000 strikes!

Their scrapers are 1/4″ square high speed steel tool Bits. They are very sharp and very easy to strike. So much so that you can actually use it to scrape wood shavings to use as tinder. David Bailey demonstrates in the videos below.

Look at all those sparks!

Starting a Fire with Cotton

Scraping Off Tinder

If you want to see for yourself, he has a list of shows he will be at on his website. There are nothing but outstanding reviews there as well. We purchased the fire block at the show but will be getting the Tiger Maple one soon to add to my husbands bag. I can not stress enough that you will not be disappointed in this product. You guys know me, if it is USA made I’m all about it. Especially if it is done by an individual verses a corporation. I personally prefer supporting the little guys. 🙂

Check David Baily out at GeorgiaFireSteel.com and let us know what you think!!

The post USA Made Fire Steel: Have You Tried it? appeared first on American Preppers Network.

Bug Out Fire Starters (Video & Transcript)

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Video By Lonewolf Wilderness Survival
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Transcription provided by American Preppers Network 

Number of speakers: 1 (Shane)
Duration: 5 min 00 sec  

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Bug Out Bag Fire Starters

Shane: “Hey welcome back You Tube, it’s Shane here with another episode of Lone Wolf Survival and we’re here to talk a little bit about fire making and some of the commercial and non-commercial applications that are out there. Now later on we’re going to talk about some of the more primitive skills stuff but I’m gonna more or less key in on what you’re going to carry in your Bug Out bag or your camping gear. Something more portable than fire bow systems like that.”

“So what I’m gonna start with is one I always start with any time we’re out there and people want to know what their building their fires with. A .89 cent Bic disposable. It’s what I use okay? Fire in my pocket okay. I carry several of these. Some people won’t do it. This very rarely lets me down. It takes very little effort. Its compact, throw it in my bug out bag, throw it in my survival bag. I can put it in my day bag or in my pocket. So that’s one.”

“Number two is plain ole water proof stick matches. Coleman has a water proof stick match you can strike anywhere. I can throw em in a zip lock bag or bug out bag. Good for that.”

“Then you start looking at some of the strikers. Here is one made by UST. Pretty good little system. Compact. Ten, twelve, fourteen dollars is what you’ll spend on systems like this. Make sure on these you get the coating off of them or you’re gonna stand there for a good period of time. Good little striker, compact, inexpensive.”

“Then we go back to my favorite which is always my Smith Multi tool that I have. It has a sharpener, a compass and it has a fire striker located in the handle. Like I said make sure you get the coating off it. This is a good little system as well. Inexpensive and light weight.”

“Then we go to a product that Coleman puts out. This is a magnesium block. The neat thing about this is it has what appears to be part of a hack saw blade. That’s what it looks like, a hacksaw blade. I’m gonna call it what it is. I’ll always shoot ya straight when we are looking at products. A magnesium block is a metal that burns very hot and very high temperature, very fast. So I take the blade part and I scrape some of the magnesium off into my tinder bundle. Then I turn around and hit my striker. These are about 12 bucks. Neat little product.”

“Then we move down to a 9 Volt battery and steel wool. We’ve used this many times before. Am I gonna carry this in my pocket instead of a light? No I won’t, but it’s a neat little system, the good thing about this is I can wrap my tinder bundle around the steel wool and with the steel wool you want to open it up. Almost bird nesting to get plenty of oxygen in here and take your 9 volt battery and drag it across and if I’ve got this in a tinder bundle then I can start nurturing my tinder bundle. I can get some oxygen to it, blowing on it and I can use this to start my fire. So that is a really neat application if you’re in a wet environment. It always works.”

“Then some of the commercial stuff. Coleman has a strike fire starter and we’ve used these before. This takes the place of the tinder bundle. Now they’ve put a match head on it. I mean, what will Coleman come up with next. Strike pads on the back, drag this thing across. Boom! There ya go! So it’s a match on a tinder bundle. How great is that? Another great product put out by Coleman.”

“So these are just some of the stuff that we use out in the field. There is a lot of stuff out there and the reason we do this is to give you an idea of what’s on the market and some of the stuff we use and try that you can go ahead and start shopping for to put in your bag now. Later on in some other episodes we’ll start doing some of the primitive stuff. How to use a bow drill, a cauldron, a ladle and stuff like that. Make sure you shop around. Try to have at least two systems. Don’t limit yourself to just one.”

“As always, thanks for watching and make sure to subscribe to our channel. Thank you.”


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Start A Fire 7 With Unusual Items

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Prepping 101 – What’s the ONE most important skill for a prepper? Knowing how to start a fire (and keep it going) is the most important preparedness skill you can have. It covers so many of the greatest, most urgent threats to your life when SHTF. Here are 7 ways to start a fire with unusual, often […]

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