Salt has a long history of value. In ancient times it was killed for, traded, and valued as highly as gold. But why, as a prepper, is it important to understand the uses of salt?
Long-term salt storage is vital. Salt is an essential part of any diet, as it balances electrolytes, regulates heart rate, ensures proper cell functions, and treats ailments. It is recommended that you store 10lbs of iodized salt for each person in your household in preparation of a SHTF situation. Salt is important for the following medical reasons:
Electrolyte Balance. Salt is essential in your body in terms of water retention and electrolyte balance. Electrolytes are in your blood, urine, and body fluids and they help regulate muscle contractions (including those in heart!) When you sweat, your body loses these electrolytes, so it is important to replace them through salt intake.
Medicinal Uses. Salt is also an antibacterial agent. Diluted in water, salt acts as a mild antiseptic. Mixing salt in purified water to soak cuts or wounds will help stop bleeding and cause them to heal faster.
Iodine. Iodine is a trace element necessary for our bodies to carry out proper functioning. It is responsible for regulating thyroid activity, which controls the breakdown of fat, regulation of body temperature, growth, reproduction, muscle, and nerve functioning, and heart rate. Without iodine, you will feel tired, lazy, and will be unable to warm your body. Adding iodized salts to your foods when SHTF will allow your body to continue to function properly. Foods that naturally contain iodine include fish, dairy, grains, eggs, and beans.
Salt also has non-medicinal uses that can helpful in a disaster situation. A few of the most useful tips and tricks using salt include:
Food Preservation. Salt is one of the most effective food preservatives. It prevents food from spoiling by inhibiting the growth of germs. Salt can be used to cure meats and can foods (canning and pickling should only be done with specific “pickling salt” because it is free of any additives).
Cleaning. When mixed with baking soda, salt forms a paste that can be used to clean and disinfect cooking pans and utensils. As these are both safe products to ingest, this paste is the safest way to sanitize kitchen utensils when soap is no longer available.
Testing Foods. A fun trick that salt can do is to tell you whether eggs are safe to eat. If you have access to egg-laying chickens, this is a good trick to know. Mix two cups of water with four teaspoons of salt until the salt dissolves, then place the egg in the solution. If the egg sinks, then it is fresh enough to eat. If it floats, DO NOT eat it.
Attracting Wild Game. Salt licks can sometimes attract wild game, as all animals require salt to survive. If you are bugging-in, consider putting salt licks near your property to attract deer and other game for easy hunting. You will have to periodically move them to various locations, as the animals will learn where you typically hunt.
The importance of salt cannot be overlooked when prepping for SHTF. Without processed foods, you will not be getting a sufficient amount of salt or iodine in your diet. Therefore, it is vital to add iodized salts to your foods. Not only will this make your food taste better, but it will help your body continue to function properly. Salt can also be used to disinfect wounds, clean cooking utensils, and even attract wild game, making it one of the most versatile products to store for a survival situation.
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