Podcast 233: Emergency Readiness Needs A Meal Plan

With heat waves hitting heavy, and hurricane season on the move, we’re thinking about disaster preparedness – again! In this episode, we’re covering an aspect of disaster preparedness we haven’t discussed on the pod before: food. Whether you’re putting together a bug-out bag, or building up a bug-in bag (or box, or cabinet, or whatever), you’ve got to have food.

What’ll matter in this context includes protein, fiber, calories, flavor, and – believe it or not – sugar. Since environments and emergencies differ, what you pack yourself might be a little different from what we do. We’ll give you some principles to start with and an example of our own preparations, and you can customize that to your own needs!

Here’s your “homework” – previous material from us on the topic of emergency readiness:

Emergent Responder

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Episode Transcript

Katja (00:00:00):
Hi, I’m Katja.

Ryn (00:00:15):
And I’m Ryn.

Katja (00:00:16):
And we’re here at Commonwealth Holistic Herbalism in Boston, Massachusetts.

Ryn (00:00:19):
And on the internet everywhere thanks to the power of the podcast. Yes, the podcast. It’s still powerful, even if it’s not on schedule.

Katja (00:00:28):
So, who needs schedules? What even is a schedule? What’s time?

Ryn (00:00:31):
It’s summertime. I mean, you know.

Katja (00:00:34):
You know, that would be a great excuse if the reason that the podcast hasn’t come out was because we were out kayaking or doing summer things. But we’ve actually been doing other things. We’ve been working on the Accessible Herbalism course. We were working on the Clinical Herbalism course… I mean the Clinical Herbalism program. We’ve been doing a lot of fun stuff.

Ryn (00:01:00):
Yeah. We’ve been busy. But today’s episode is called Emergency Readiness Needs a Meal Plan. Because with hurricane season kicking off – yay, I guess – we’re thinking about disaster preparedness again. If you’ve been a long-time listener, then you know that this is a topic we circle back to pretty regularly.

Katja (00:01:23):
It’s the responsible thing to do. Maybe you live in a place that doesn’t have hurricanes. Maybe you have wildfires or whatever. But these things have seasons and, you know, #adulting. It’s just one of those responsible grownup things to do. To just be like hey, do I have some stuff together just in case I had to shelter in place, or just in case I had to evacuate? Yeah.

Ryn (00:01:46):
Yeah. Just in case. So, that’s what we’re talking about this time once again. And in this episode as far as herbs go, and as far as first aid gear. Like what kind of bandages should you have, and all of that stuff goes. We’re giving you homework. So, those elements we’re not going to address in too much detail today. But there are some other episodes of our podcast that you’ve got to hear, because they do go into a lot more detail about that kind of stuff.

Katja (00:02:14):
So, those will be in the show notes for you. It links right to them. So, you can have a whole week or a whole however long whatever – You could binge it all in one day if you wanted to. – of all different ideas around just making sure that you’re ready just in case. Of course, we certainly will not manage to get through this whole podcast without mentioning any herbs. But in terms of which herbs go in your first aid kit. What should you put in your first aid kit? How all those kinds of things. There are tasks for you to do. And that should be fun, I hope. I hope that it feels like fun to just be like I’m ready just in case. And also, I tossed a little in extra just to take care of my neighbors or whatever.

Ryn (00:03:04):
Yeah. Exercise is to take it from a thought experiment to something that you’re getting your hands on and practicing in the real world. That’s how this stuff really works, . But today we’re including some thoughts on an element of disaster planning that we haven’t addressed on the pod previously. And that’s food.

Katja (00:03:22):
Yes. You’re going to need some because you’re going to get hungry.

Ryn (00:03:24):
It turns out you’re going to need some when things are troublesome. So, yeah, that’s our topic. And as a little mini advertisement here before we get rolling. I want to say if you’re already saying to yourself tell me everything you can about this as fast as possible. Then what you want is the Emergent Responder program. Aha, yes.

Katja (00:03:45):
The Emergent Responder program covers everything. And this is a really in-depth course or set of courses that helps you not just to like oh, a little bit of first aid. But really about sustaining your community, building the community support, building the community networks, building the community resources. So, that if there is a hurricane or a wildfire, some kind of bigger disaster, that you are ready with the tools in place, the skills in place that you need to make sure that you and your community not just survive the disaster but come out the other end hopefully a little bit better. And this also includes how to interact with government agencies. Now, in a lot of disaster situations they’re not going to get there very fast. Because if it’s just some local thing, okay, fine. But when it’s a hurricane, that’s a really broad area that’s affected. And the likelihood that they’re going to get right to you right away is small. So, you are going to need the skills to take care of yourself and your friends, your family, your community, maybe for days, maybe for weeks. And all of those skills are available for you in the Emergent Responder program.

Ryn (00:05:05):
That’s right, yeah. So, the link is in the show notes, and we’ll circle back to that at the end. All right. So, one last thing before we start, and that is the reclaimer, where we remind you that we are not doctors. We are herbalists and holistic health educators.

Katja (00:05:19):
The ideas discussed in this podcast do not constitute medical advice. No state or federal authority licenses herbalists in the United States. So, these discussions are for educational purposes only.

Ryn (00:05:30):
We want to remind you that good health doesn’t mean the same thing for everyone. Good health doesn’t exist as an objective standard. It’s influenced by your individual needs, your experiences, and your goals. So, please keep in mind that we’re not attempting to present a single dogmatic right way that you must adhere to.

Katja (00:05:49):
Everyone’s body is different. So, the things that we’re talking about may or may not apply directly to you. But we hope that they’ll give you some new information to think about and some ideas to research and experiment with further.

Your Emergency Bag & Modularity

Ryn (00:06:01):
Yeah. Finding your way to better health is both your right and your own personal responsibility. This doesn’t mean you’re alone on the journey. And it doesn’t mean that you’re to blame for your current state of health. But it does mean that the final decision when you’re considering any course of action, whether it was discussed on the internet or prescribed by a physician, that’s always your choice to make. Your choice, okay. Let’s make some more choices. Let’s choose some things to put into our emergency bag. Yeah. So, overall an emergency bag should be easy to carry. That’s pretty important.

Katja (00:06:35):
That’s key.

Ryn (00:06:36):
You should have carried it before the emergency occurs at least a few times, right? And you want to have in there some food, some gear, some first aid stuff, some medications if you have them in your life, and some herbs. And today we’re going to focus on food.

Katja (00:06:52):
Yeah. You know, but you mentioned about bags. And it is worth just taking a little minute and thinking about the kinds of problems or disasters that could happen in your area, and what that would mean for you. So, are you in an area that is really prone to losing power for a week at a time? That doesn’t necessarily mean that you need a bag that is super comfortable so that you can hike with it. That may mean that you need a pantry shelf that is going to have supplies that would be manageable in a no-power kind of situation. So, you don’t necessarily need… Well, first off, you definitely don’t need some fancy backpacking bag that costs a million dollars. But might be fun to buy but costs a million dollars. You can thrift your emergency bags. You can not use a bag at all. You can use a crate.

Ryn (00:07:49):
You’re kind of talking about the difference between a bug out bag where you expect to have to carry it or at least bring it in your car with you somewhere. Or a bug in bag, which could, like you say, be a cabinet also.

Katja (00:08:01):
Right. If you know, for example, maybe you live in a hurricane prone area. And you know where your evacuation shelter is. You’ve been there before. You’re going to go there again. You know the whole drill. And you know you’re going to drive there because that’s how it always goes. And maybe you evacuate at the first call for evacuation. So, in that case, a milk crate in the back of your car is probably going to be very effective. Now, don’t leave all this stuff in your car. Leave it in your house where it’s not as hot as in your car. But have it in the crate so that it’s ready to go. All you have to do is just plunk it in your car, and then you can leave. So, okay. But so containment, that’s a thing to think about. And there’s no single right answer. The answer is the thing that’s going to work for the type of situation that you’re most likely to be in.

Ryn (00:08:55):
But there are some features that are going to be consistent regardless of what shape your containers actually look like. And that’s modularity, first and foremost. So, that means if I have a bag, it’s a bag full of bags full of good stuff, right?

Katja (00:09:09):

Ryn (00:09:10):
And if I have a box, it’s a box maybe full of bags or other small boxes that stack in nicely full of the good stuff.

Katja (00:09:16):
Yeah. If you just have one whole bag, and everything’s just crammed in there, that’s going to be harder to manage. So, one thing that we really love is they are made by Eagle Creek. And they’re actually the kind of bags that you use when you’re packing a suitcase, and you can fold your clothes in them to keep them really organized. But forget folding clothes. I never fold clothes. So, that’s not what these are for in our house. We use them for organizing the things in an emergency kit, and they come in colors. So, I have a white one and a green and blue and red. And that way the red one is always protein. And the blue one is always treats. And the green one is always vegetables. And the white one is always carbs. And then I have an orange one, and that’s fire supplies and different whatever. So, you don’t have to do it like that at all, but just a little bit of thought. And it could be Ziploc bags. It could be whatever. It doesn’t have to be these. But I got these on sale one time. And they are very durable, and they work, so that’s what we use.

Ryn (00:10:27):
Yeah. They’re, like you say, durable, easy to clean, just handy, you know? You can get different sizes, and some of them can nest in each other and so on. But yeah, you want to be thinking if I want to get to this thing quickly, easily, and be able to know that that’s what I’m grabbing. What are going to be some clues to me to help me do that? Color, texture, arrangement inside of the bag itself. Once you get familiar with it, now it’s like oh, I know exactly where the tin of sardines is. I know exactly where the spice packet is, whatever.

Katja (00:10:58):
Right. In our particular case, when we’re thinking about preparing for an emergency situation, it is a coin toss about whether that would mean shelter-in-place or evacuate. It isn’t really. I think maybe it’s a little heavier on the shelter-in-place side of things.

Ryn (00:11:17):
And there’s some that we don’t really count. Like for us, blizzards are just well, we’re going to stay home for a while. So, it doesn’t feel like a disaster situation.

Katja (00:11:23):
Yeah, that’s true.

Ryn (00:11:24):
Because it happens in the wintertime, and we’re just sort of used to it.

Staging Supplies & Pet Considerations

Katja (00:11:28):
Yeah. If it ever happens again, that would be great. But for us in Massachusetts, hurricanes are not as common – say as for somebody living in Florida or the Texas Gulf Coast – but still once a year for sure. And this year is expected to be a heavier hurricane season, so it’s more likely. And although our area is generally fairly lucky, there have been times that evacuations have been necessary. So, we know that that is one potential. On the flip side, when we had just moved into new home, we’d only been here a couple months, and there was this crazy ice storm. And there were trees down everywhere, and we couldn’t leave for days. Because there were so many trees down that every road was blocked. So, it wasn’t just our road that was blocked. But then once you could get off our road, then the roads after that were blocked, and the roads after that were blocked. So, in our case, we have both sets of situations. And so what we do is we have our bags that are ready, but they don’t stay packed all the time. And then all of our supplies are in very specific places that they always live in, close to where the bags are because the bags are on the backside of the kitchen. And this system actually works really well. And I think it would work well, even if you keep your bags packed all the time.

Katja (00:13:05):
One way or another the thing that I want to talk about real quick here is rotation. So, for us, the system of hmm, is it packed in the bag, or is it in the drawer? We keep it in the drawer. That way we’re able to constantly rotate it. And then inside each drawer, they’re all in bins. So, if we had to go, all you have to do is pick up the bin, dump it into the color coordinated bag. Okay. I’m a little over organized, but that’s fine. Dump it into the bag, shove all the bags in the big bag, and go. We could do that in 10 minutes, probably. But the key here is that that way we are constantly rotating for freshness. If you keep your bag packed all the time, there’s no problem with that. But keep in mind that things don’t last forever. So, only keep it packed for one hurricane season. And then make sure that at the end of the season you empty the bag and eat all that stuff, because it’s not going to last until the next season. And the next season you’ll bring in more stuff.

Ryn (00:14:10):
Right, yeah. As you’ll see in a minute, we are not stocking these bags with 10-year MREs.

Katja (00:14:14):

Ryn (00:14:16):
That’s not how we do it.

Katja (00:14:19):
Yeah. MREs are not delicious and really high in sodium. And they’re not really going to serve you to keep you healthy. They are calories. That’s good.

Ryn (00:14:30):
Valuable, yeah.

Katja (00:14:32):
But we want to hopefully be a little healthier in our choices. Just because if you are feeling disgusting, and you’re eating something that’s been vacuum-packed for five years. And now your guts are not very happy about it, and you’re in an emergency situation. And you’re maybe in a high school gym with a lot of other people and limited bathroom access. Not no access, but you’ve got to share it with everyone and whatever else. That doesn’t feel awesome. And so whenever I’m planning food in this kind of context, I’m always thinking like yes, okay. We need it to be portable. We need it to be lightweight. But we also need it to meet nutritional requirements. And we need it to not make bellies gurgly, not make a bunch of constipation or other unpleasant gut stuff going on. Because who needs to deal with that during an emergency? Nobody.

Ryn (00:15:26):
Yeah. One other aspect about the way that we think about this stuff is that we have these pets.

Katja (00:15:34):
We do have a lot of pets.

Ryn (00:15:35):
We love these pets, and we’re not going to abandon them in a circumstance like that. So, that has other consequences we’re not going to get into today. Like there are some shelters that we wouldn’t be able to go and stay at. Or other elements of the escape drive that we have to plan and think about in terms of how we’re going to get everybody there and get them all relatively comfortable and settled for this sort of sort of living situation for however long that lasts. But it does mean that we’re going to include some pet food in our bags. And yeah, that makes them heavier. But again, we’re mainly thinking we’re in place. Okay, it’s fine. It’s here. Or we’re driving away somewhere, not literally marching outside.

Katja (00:16:16):
Yeah. If we were marching outside, we probably wouldn’t be able to also carry five cat carriers. We would need a different sort of set up for the pet situation.

Ryn (00:16:25):
Yeah. It would be a rough spot.

Katja (00:16:27):
Yeah. That would be not so awesome.

Ryn (00:16:29):
Right, okay. Fortunately, that doesn’t tend to be the way these things play out.

Katja (00:16:34):
Right, right, right. So, if you have pets, then find out now where the shelter in your area is for hurricanes, for wildfires, for whatever it is in your area. And find out if they take pets and what the rules about pets are. Some of them accept pets, some of them don’t. Some of them, the ones that do probably they’re going to be required to be crated the whole time, or on a leash, or different things. So, find that stuff out now. And if your area doesn’t have shelters that accept pets, then make a plan now for your pets so that you know what their care plan would be in an emergency situation.

Protein & Fat

Ryn (00:17:12):
Yeah. All right. So, some food. Some food in food bags.

Katja (00:17:15):
Human food. Yep.

Ryn (00:17:17):
Human food, yeah. I mean, some of this is pet food too really, but… So, as always when we think about a problem like this, we want to start at a higher level than this is a good object, or this is a good individual specific item. Rather than saying, this is a job for calendula, we want to start and say oh, this is a job for lymphatic herbs. Same basic idea here.

Katja (00:17:38):
In other words, we’re looking at the macros.

Ryn (00:17:40):
Yeah. So, we’re thinking about making sure we get protein. And we’re going to have an extra emphasis on protein. Especially because in a lot of these circumstances, you may find yourself somewhere where there’s some food available. And maybe there’s a giant vat of rice that’s cooked over some Bunsen burners for everybody to have some from. Okay, cool. But there are some things that wouldn’t be available. And especially if you have food intolerances or restricted diet in any way, that’s where you’re going to run into the bigger problems. So, thinking about sources of protein, of fiber, of calories kind of more generally, and also sources of flavor is a really good way to start when you’re thinking about what’s going to be most important to carry with you.

Katja (00:18:25):
There’s going to be a surprise here. And the surprise is going to be sugar. Because that is going to be actually very important in your emergency bags. And you might be like wait, sugar is really important in my bag? Because of course, normally we’re like let’s try and avoid sugar as much as possible. In an emergency situation sugar is important. It can give you snap energy. It can cheer you up. It can be used to cheer other people up, especially children who are very upset. Maybe a little piece of candy can be comforting. Actually, this is the right time for a little bit of candy.

Ryn (00:19:10):
Time for sugar, yeah.

Katja (00:19:11):
It’s the right time for sugar. So, we’re going to include that in our list as well.

Ryn (00:19:17):
All right. So, any kind of bag we’ve got, we’re going to have some protein in there, right? And we can talk about a short-term situation bag, and then a long-term one, and talk about ways those would be slightly different from each other. But let’s just get started and say we need some protein, right? So, we really love these little fish meat pouches. This one is fish meat. This one is cow meat. But little pouches like that, it’s basically equivalent to a can of tuna or a tin of…

Katja (00:19:45):
Yeah, a little bit less than a can but yeah.

Ryn (00:19:47):
Yeah. Size-wise, right? But in terms of storage ability, these things are pretty awesome.

Katja (00:19:53):
They’re much lighter weight. And they are lots of brands of these. They’re like foil pouches if you’re only listening with your ears. They’re these foil pouches. These are by wild planet. But any grocery store in the tuna section has these pouches of tuna and salmon. Usually you can also find chicken and beef. They’re becoming very, very popular. And the thing is that they are super versatile. You can also just take them to work and make a tuna sandwich. So, it’s not like it’s weird survival food. It’s regular tuna. It’s just there isn’t the heavy can associated with the tuna, or the beef, or chicken, or whatever.

Ryn (00:20:39):
This is a super quick, I just had an intense workout. Or I was in the yard pulling weeds for three hours. Now I want to have a bunch of protein as fast as possible.

Katja (00:20:48):
As fast as possible. Yeah, exactly.

Ryn (00:20:49):
You can tear it open and get a fork in there. You’re good to go.

Katja (00:20:51):
Yeah. And especially with the tuna ones, and probably also salmon ones as well, one benefit here is that you have protein, but you also have fat. And that is something you need to plan for. You need to plan for fat to make sure that you’re going to have enough of it. And again, if you are eating Red Cross food or something like evacuation center food, it’s probably just going to be carbs. So, having one pouch that holds protein and fat is really, really valuable. So, that’s great.

Ryn (00:21:30):
Yeah. Super handy, these things. Cool.

Katja (00:21:33):
There are a couple other options that we have here. There are these pemmican bars. There are a couple different varieties of those. This one has meat and spinach in it, so it gets you a little bit of fiber. Not very much but a little. And then we really love harðfiskur. It’s Icelandic fish jerky.

Ryn (00:21:56):
Don’t give up on it just from those words if you’re like no, I don’t think so. Because I was definitely not sure about this idea the first time we encountered harðfiskur. But it turns out it’s awesome.

Katja (00:22:06):
It’s awesome.

Ryn (00:22:07):
It’s really, really good. It’s very dry. It’s flaky. It’s not oily or oozy or whatever.

Katja (00:22:13):
Yeah. So, if you’re not really a fish person, I mean, okay. It does have fish flavor. But it’s cod, so it’s pretty mild fish flavor.

Ryn (00:22:21):
It is mild, yeah.

Katja (00:22:22):
But it’s not oily or any of that stuff. It’s completely dried. So, that could be more pleasing if you’re not a tuna pouch kind of person.

Ryn (00:22:33):
So, you know, these are all just varieties of portable and mostly preserved meat kind of situation. The jerky, the harðfiskur, the little… You said pemmican, right? So, meat and berries kind of all smashed together in a way that it’s going to pretty much preserve itself for a decent stretch. These things are super handy. The pemmican, they can often include, you know, they’ve got some cranberry in there. There’s always at least a bit of fat in that form of jerky. It’s not as dry as when you think of beef jerky, or when you think of the fish jerky or whatever. You think of it as a very dry thing. But pemmican bars are softer, easier to chew maybe if people have loose teeth or something going on.

Katja (00:23:17):
Yeah. Or just soreness in the teeth or whatever. So, the other key with all these things is that this is stuff that we will eat anyway. And that part is really important. When you are stocking your emergency kit, if you spend a ton of money on food that you wouldn’t normally eat, but that is maybe portable in an emergency. Well, then that food is going to go bad if you don’t have an emergency. And then that’s just money that you’ve wasted. So, if you can find portable versions of things that you already like. I love tuna salad. And so, okay, this is great. It’s more portable than a can, and I will eat it anyway. So, whatever it is that you like for protein, what you’re looking for is the most portable version of that that ideally doesn’t need to be cooked. It would be nice if it’s warmed up maybe or maybe not. It just sort of depends. Maybe it needs a little condiment or something. But that it’s portable. That it’s preserved. And that you actually like it and will eat it so that it isn’t just going bad in a bag somewhere.

Ryn (00:24:32):
Yeah. Yeah. Try out different things sometimes. Like this one with the lamb and the spinach and stuff in here, we tried these just this week, you know? To be like let’s see what that’s like. Is that good? Do we want to get it some more? But it’s good to just try stuff out like that until you find at least a handful that you’re like all right, these are good. I could rotate through them. I would feel pretty happy. Yeah. That’s the goal. All right.

Fiber & Sugar

Katja (00:24:56):
Well okay, we got protein, but the other thing that’s going to be really key here is fiber. Because fiber is just so critical to every function in your body, but especially the elimination functions. Again, if you are constipated in an emergency, or worse if you have diarrhea in an emergency, either side of that is bad. And fiber really helps with those things.

Ryn (00:25:24):
Helps to prevent either.

Katja (00:25:26):
Yeah, exactly. And then the flip side of that is that fiber is not necessarily easy to get into your diet. You might think oh, I’ll just take some whole wheat crackers or something. Well, first off, that might work for you. But it wouldn’t work for me because I’m allergic to whole wheat crackers. So, I’m needing to look for fiber sources that fit my food restrictions, my food intolerances and allergies. But also, I’m looking for the highest sources of fiber that I can get. Because again, we don’t want to carry tons and tons of stuff. So, almonds fit the bill. They have 11 grams of fiber per cup. Okay, a cup of almonds is kind of a lot of almonds.

Ryn (00:26:13):
But it’ll also fill your belly.

Katja (00:26:15):
It will fill your belly. And it has protein. And it has a lot of other things going on. Some fat in there too. So, you know, actually we were just filming some material for the Accessible Herbalism course. And we were talking about polycrest herbs and working with herbs more affordably by choosing herbs that have many functions. And so that’s polycrest, one thing that can do many things. And almonds are like that. They’re a polycrest food because they’ve got your fiber. You got some protein. You got some fat. Oh, it tastes good too.

Ryn (00:26:52):
A little sweetness. Yeah.

Katja (00:26:53):
Yeah, exactly. And it doesn’t just have to be almonds plain. You can have almonds with dried apples. The equivalent of one apple that is dried is four grams of fiber. You could have prunes in there. A serving of prunes is three grams of fiber. You could have raisins in there. Not a lot of fiber in raisins, but lots of potassium actually.

Ryn (00:27:20):
And good sweetness.

Katja (00:27:21):
Yeah. And hey, there’s nothing wrong with some chocolate chips in there. Like I said, in an emergency situation, sugar actually can be helpful. Not so much sugar that you’re jittery, but a little bit can actually be helpful. And then if you’re just sort of at a loss of like I really don’t know what else I could put in here. Then a bag of chia seeds is not very heavy. And you could just put them in some water. Not super delicious, but you would get the fiber from it, and also, it’s filling. And those have 10 grams of fiber for a fairly small serving.

Ryn (00:28:00):
Yeah. That’s pretty compact, really.

Katja (00:28:02):
Yeah. Thinking about I keep listing the number of grams. On a regular day a regular human really needs at least 30 grams of fiber. So, if we’re thinking about okay, well where am I going to get 30 grams of fiber in a day in an emergency situation? All right, well, trail mix that has almonds, and dried apples, and prunes, and whatever plus some chia seeds. It’s not like you’re going to eat a salad in an emergency situation, but we’re going to get a fair amount of fiber this way.

Ryn (00:28:35):
Yeah. Okay. And also, you should be taking all of this as inspiration for further delving into what are some high-fiber foods that I like, and that I actually enjoy, and that I would actually eat that are portable, that are going to last, all those qualities. You’re establishing parameters, and now you can fit in the individual items that are going to fit for you. Yeah. All right. We’ve kind of mentioned fat a little bit. But let’s just say again, those fish pouches – or if it’s pantry tins or cans, that’s fine – but that’s a fantastic source of good quality fats. So, that’s a real superstar, right? And then you get some fats from your nuts. And that includes nut butters, by the way, which may be easier to eat, or just more compact to carry, or whatever than a bag full of whole almonds.

Katja (00:29:28):
Yeah. You won’t get as much fiber from the nut butter, just because you don’t eat as much when it’s nut butter. But the fat is in there, and that’s really good. Yeah. Also you can get those in those little foil pouches as well, so that you don’t have to carry a big jar of it. You can just have the little pouches.

Ryn (00:29:51):
Yeah, handy. Okay. And yeah, sugar, right? So, so why? Well, when your body is stressed out, then it does kind of want to run on sugar. It’s a little easier to do. And in a lot of cases we need to try to resist that temptation to have the easy thing for the body, right? Because if we do that too often, then we damage our metabolism, and we run into a lot of health problems. But like you said before, in the midst of an emergency, that’s a good time for sweetness. That’s a good time for some sugar sources. And so that can be chocolate, that can be sweet treats. That can be whatever tastes good to you and again, is small, and portable, and so on. Not everybody likes chocolate, by the way, it turns out. So, just include that in your planning.

Katja (00:30:42):
Yeah. But it also doesn’t have to be outright candy. There are these date cacao energy chunk things that you love.

Ryn (00:30:54):
I love them.

Katja (00:30:55):
And I like them okay. But in an emergency situation, I would like them a lot more. But they have sunflower seeds, and goji berries, and whatever all kind of mixed up with date paste.

Ryn (00:31:06):
Yeah. You can make them with all kinds of different things, but often times a little bit of cacao gets into there. The date gives it tons of sweetness. And yeah, you can put in seeds. You can put in other dried fruit. You can put in spices if you want if you make your own. It’s not super hard, but those things are really great. They’re compact, energy dense. They taste good and handy enough.

Katja (00:31:30):
Yeah. And especially if you are in a situation where it’s an emergency situation, and also you are volunteering. You are not just sheltering, but you are helping. You are providing first aid. You’re providing emotional support. You’re providing whatever kind of care. Then sometimes you need to just grab something that is energy dense very, very quickly and get back to whatever you’re volunteering to do. And so these little energy squares, there’s all kinds of recipes for them on the internet, but you can also buy them already made in pouches. Nativas, I think, is the brand that makes the ones that you like.

Ryn (00:32:12):
They’re good. They’re good. They’re all a little bit expensive when you buy them. So, you’re not going to be like I’m going to stock 10 gallons worth of these things. And really with any of the sweetness, with the chocolate or this or that, we’re not saying you need a massive store of it, you know? It’s just enough for what your expected amount of time is before things get back to normal when you think about the way these disasters are going to impact your community.

Katja (00:32:37):
Right. And the sort of benefit of the store-bought ones, even though they’re more expensive, is that they also tend to last a little longer. If you make them regularly, well then that’s no problem. Because if you’re just in the habit of making them, then you can think to yourself well, I pretty much always have them. I can just toss them in the bag. So, that’s totally fine. But if you make them, then experiment with freshness. And experiment with how long they last before you just Ziploc a bag and toss it in your emergency kit. And then when there’s actually an emergency, there might be mold. So, do a little testing in your kitchen first to make sure that you know how long they’ll last.

Electrolytes, Caffeine, & Condiments

Ryn (00:33:22):
Absolutely. Yeah. All right. Now, there’s a few other things that we want to bring in as well. Little packets of magic salt are pretty good to have. And I mean, I think they’re technically called electrolytes. But they’re magic salts, you know?

Katja (00:33:36):
Yeah. They are magic salts. A lot of those electrolyte packets… There are a million different brands. But one thing to keep in mind is that a lot of them have vitamin C and tend to have something around a thousand milligrams of vitamin C. That’s not bad. And in an emergency situation where maybe you’re not getting a lot of fruit and vegetables, that may actually be great. But it is important to recognize that if you just have them because you like the flavor of them. Or you have them, and you’re like well, every time I drink water, I’m going to put these in or something like that. You can very quickly get to a super high dose of vitamin C that can be uncomfortable in your body. So, when we think about these electrolyte packs, they’re important to bring because it might be the kind of situation where you’re sweating a lot. Your emergency might be happening in the summer, and it might be very hot. There might not be climate-controlled areas. And so the more you sweat, the more you need electrolytes. But also, you need minerals every day. So, it’s important to have some every day. But just also to remember oh, I shouldn’t have them all day every day. Just one packet is probably enough every day. Which is great because that means you only need to carry as many as you need to carry. You don’t need to carry a cajillion of them.

Ryn (00:35:05):
Yeah. Some of them are formulated a little differently from each other depending on the brand, and the product, and whatever. Some of them are very much like we expect you to have been sweating for two hours, and then take this to replenish. You know, something like that. So, again, try a few different ones, see how they taste, see what’s in them.

Katja (00:35:24):
Keep in mind also that they’re not all gluten-free.

Ryn (00:35:26):
Yeah, that’s true.

Katja (00:35:27):
The Emergen-C brand, that brand, some are gluten-free, and some are not gluten-free. I don’t know why we need gluten in a packet of salt, like mineral salts, but they have it in there.

Ryn (00:35:42):
It is kind of baffling, honestly.

Katja (00:35:43):
Yeah. So, just make sure that you check the label if you have food allergies.

Ryn (00:35:48):
All right. Something else in the other category is some caffeine. I don’t think you should actually just get powdered white caffeine and start messing around with that. Not a great idea. You probably don’t have a hundredth of a gram sensitive scale with you in your emergency kit. But tea is really handy for this. Yerba mate is fantastic. Yaupon, whatever, your favorite caffeinated plant.

Katja (00:36:13):
Regular English breakfast tea or Earl Gray tea or whatever. They’re lightweight. They’re easy to carry. They have many uses. It’s not just the caffeine, but also if you need an astringent. If there was poison ivy. If there was whatever. Okay, well that tea bag becomes medicine then at that point too. Yeah. Black tea is the way to go. And again, sure. Normally on your average Tuesday, we would be telling people hey, let’s back off the caffeine as much as possible. But in an emergency situation, that’s when the caffeine is really… That’s what it’s there for. And you may need it, especially if you’re volunteering. Again, you’re not just sheltering. You’re providing support. You may not get to sleep. You may have to go 24 hours straight. You may only get a few hours of sleep for several days in a row. And yeah, that’s when caffeine is appropriate. We don’t want to do that every single day just because of work, and hobbies, and whatever.

Ryn (00:37:17):
And the exhaustion, yeah.

Katja (00:37:18):
Yeah. But in an emergency situation, that’s really when the caffeine is there for you.

Ryn (00:37:25):
You may want to consider if there is going to be hot water available. And think okay, if I have some kola nut powder, I can just nibble a little bit of that. And that’ll give me my caffeine boost. I may not be as enthusiastic about tearing open a tea bag and just chewing it down. Eh.

Katja (00:37:44):
Yeah, that doesn’t sound awesome. In a lot of situations, and certainly if you are sheltering at the high school gym or at whatever, then the likelihood is that there will be hot water. But you never know.

Ryn (00:37:57):
If you were camping out somewhere, it could be a little harder to come by.

Katja (00:38:01):
Yeah, but like matcha powder.

Ryn (00:38:02):
There we go.

Katja (00:38:03):
That would work because it’s not maybe the awesomest, but you can whisk it into cold water too. Yeah.

Ryn (00:38:10):
Super easy.

Katja (00:38:12):
Okay. And then also in our other category are some condiments. Because after a while just eating pouches of plain whatever gets kind of boring. So, those little mustard or mayonnaise packets, or ketchup packets, or whatever. Again, they don’t last forever. You have to turn them over. But if you have a few of those, it just makes it a little bit nicer. Try to get the better ones. Sir Kensington’s makes a mayonnaise packet that is sunflower seed oil. Which is not as awesome as avocado or something, but still better than canola or soybean oil. And so you could get some of those. You can get some little mustard packets. It’s amazing when you’re in emergency situation, and you’re not in your places of comfort and whatever else. It’s amazing how comforting a little bit of mustard can be. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it really is true. Or ketchup or whatever the thing is that you like best. And then here also is seasoning packets. Okay, that’s herbs. But here I’m thinking about them specifically as flavors that you enjoy. And in this moment, I’m thinking about them less in their medicinal application and more in their hey, if you have to eat tuna out of a packet for four days, you might like that better if you had a little turmeric or a little whatever you like on your tuna.

Ryn (00:39:53):
Yeah. And then when we get into where it’s like all right, we’ve got our critical absolute must bag over here. And then we’ve got our like secondary but nice to have stuff bag over here. And then there’s some other things that we would also want to add in. And that would include a few little canisters of spices. We can make room for a few little, I don’t know, four ounce or whatever canisters of spices to have with us. Because that’ll last you for a while. And that will really up your survival cooking game.

Katja (00:40:22):
Yeah. I have these little pouches of garlic that are vacuum sealed. They come from Thrive Market. But you could also get from Mountain Rose a small four-ounce bag of garlic granules or whatever. And again, if all you had was garlic and a little bit of salt, that’s not very much if you’re thinking about cooking a whole meal. But in an emergency situation where you could just have a little bit of a nice flavor that you appreciate, it is pretty helpful. And it doesn’t weigh very much.

When You Have Room to Spare

Ryn (00:40:59):
When we have more capacity, we’d also be thinking about basically more of everything that we’ve mentioned so far: your proteins, your fibers, your fat sources, all that good stuff. A little more chocolate, yeah. And then we’re also thinking about okay, let’s have some of our own carb sources. Let’s have rice. Let’s have lentils or split peas.

Katja (00:41:19):
Yeah. I chose lentils and split peas because they have the highest fiber and the lowest lectin content. So, they don’t require super long cooking to be more friendly to your digestive tract. So, that would be the ideal situation there.

Ryn (00:41:40):
Yeah. Really nice, really handy. And then some seaweed is super great here. That’s filling in a lot of mineral gaps. That’s adding some extra benefits to the food you can prepare in terms of the demulcent aspect and some of those cool, glycosaminoglycan-like proteins that help with smoothing and soothing any kind of irritations internally. Helping your body with water retention and movement really. I mean, not just like gross retention with seaweed. You get some nuance with it.

Katja (00:42:11):
Keeping in mind too that in stressful situations, your body burns minerals faster. So, being able to put seaweed in anything that you might be cooking. And again, if it’s a longer-term situation, maybe you’re thinking about a hurricane situation and sheltering in place. Or you’re thinking about providing community food, maybe. Seaweed, especially when you boil it into rice with lentils or something, and it’s chopped up small, you don’t notice it that much as a flavor that people won’t like. If you say seaweed, a lot of people are like ew, that’s gross. But when it’s just chopped up in rice and lentils, and maybe there’s a little meat in there, maybe not. It’s just sort of like oh, a little bit of savory green stuff.

Ryn (00:43:03):
We have added oceanic vegetable for umami.

Katja (00:43:05):
Yeah, exactly. And it really is filling in for for vegetables here.

Ryn (00:43:13):
It bumps up the fiber content, seaweed.

Katja (00:43:14):
Yeah. You can also dehydrate vegetables to take with you. And then all they need to do is just be in some hot water, and they kind of like plump back up again. But if you are pressed for time or pressed for space, seaweed covers a lot of bases and can also be turned to medicinally, that dehydrated carrots are not necessarily going to get for you.

Ryn (00:43:42):
And this is also a place where tea blends can get stashed. Mm-Hmm. .

Katja (00:43:45):
Right. Also filling a vegetable gap, right? Because all of the vitamins, and the phytochemicals, and just the green in your tea is going to still be making sure that you’re getting all of those plant properties. Maybe not as much as you would normally get on a regular day, but it’s still filling that gap.

Ryn (00:44:06):
Yeah. This could be a time for you to say all right, I’m going to make my most nutritive possible tea blend. I’m going to have nettle, and rose hips, and a bit of horsetail in there. And probably a few others are coming to mind, right? But I’m going to make a blend that is designed to be a supplement for the food that we’re able to prepare at this time.

Katja (00:44:30):
In an emergency situation, my opinion is that it is a very good idea to have something moistening in the tea blend because the likelihood is towards dehydration. And even if you are a person who doesn’t run dry in an emergency situation, still the likelihood is towards dehydration. So, having some kind of at least marshmallow leaf, if not marshmallow root. Or if you can get a bunch of linden and put it in there, well, even better. Having that in the tea blend is going to help fight against dehydration. And also, you know, there’s a lot of other good benefits to all of those moistening polysaccharides. But, just thinking in terms of like even if you never think about dehydration for yourself on a normal day. In an emergency situation it is much more likely just because there may not be as much liquid to drink as you’re normally used to. Or maybe there is, but you don’t have time because you are part of the support staff, whatever.

A Go Bag for Going

Ryn (00:45:40):
Right. Okay. Now, if you are actually building a go bag for going, then there are some other considerations you’re going to need to have for what fits into that, including gear.

Katja (00:45:52):
Oh wait, did we say salt and spices in there?

Ryn (00:45:57):
Just that when we had more space, we would bring more of them?

Katja (00:46:00):
Yes, okay. But salt and spices both can be medicinal, not just flavorful. But honestly, when things are grim, flavor is not a luxury. It is comforting. It is calming. So, you’re not froofy, or weak, or – I don’t know – any kind of derogatory term. If you’re like I’m going to bring nice flavors with me. No, that is comfort. That is support. And both salt and spices are also a medicine. So, make space in your bag for salt and spices. Okay. I just wanted to make sure that we definitely, definitely said that, and I couldn’t remember. Okay. But you were talking about gear.

Ryn (00:46:39):
Yeah. Some gear. So, again, this is not going to be an extensive list where we detail all of the details about every item on the list. And which is the best flashlight that you should be having. And which is the best backup battery for the kind of phone you’ve got and all of that kind of thing, right?

Katja (00:46:54):
Yeah. Check the Emergent Responder program for the nitty gritty, super nitty gritty details.

Ryn (00:47:00):
But again, think about what could you actually need in a given moment. It might be handy to have some paper maps, because what if your phone does run out of battery? And now suddenly you can’t instantly know where you are from the satellites.

Katja (00:47:12):
Right. Or maybe your phone still has battery, but all the cell towers got hit by the hurricane, or the tornado, or the whatever, right? So, yeah. Yeah. Having paper maps is important. Okay. But we do live in a technological society. And having a battery backup for your phone is important because your phone – assuming the cell tower still work – enables you to tell your extended family that you’re still okay. And do a little research about where is the nearest drugstore that didn’t get flooded by the hurricane because that person over there needs their insulin or something. And so now you’re planning a trip of how can we get out of this zone to go and get some insulin for that person who needs it, whatever. Phones really are… It’s great to be like I can be totally off grid. I’m totally independent, whatever. But they are a tool, and use them, and plan to use them. So, having a battery backup doesn’t weigh very much and can be a very good resource. It’s not fruity. It’s okay.

Ryn (00:48:16):
It’s good to have. It’s good to have. Just like having some things that you can start a fire with is good to have. Having a set of some camp dishes. Having some cord, some paracord, parachute cord, right, it’s critical. If you don’t know already, you’re going to find out.

Katja (00:48:34):
Yeah. No, string is so important. Let’s even just say like the most basic kind. It’s not like you’re going to climb a mountain with the string, although maybe you will. But okay, you’re in the high school gym. You’re evacuated. You’re whatever. You’re thinking is there any possible way I can get some privacy? And you’re like oh, we’ve all got a little paracord with us. And we could just hang a little privacy space and toss some blankets over it. Or even those foil, fake blankets. It would still be enough to make a little bit of privacy. And even if everybody didn’t have their own space, it would just be a place where people could go to change or have a minute of decompression or whatever. Again, these things, when we’re in emergency situations, and we’re planning for them, we tend to think that we’re going to be super tough. That we’re going to be like I don’t need much, whatever. But the reality is you don’t actually know how long you’ll be stuck in that high school gym or wherever. And it gets to you. And if you can provide a little bit of comfort for your community by creating a little space of privacy in the corner of the gym, that’s a huge deal. That could be the difference between somebody breaking down and having a full-on panic attack and whatever else. And somebody being able to stay stable and even be able to contribute to help in the situation, because they had a few minutes to themselves to just escape from everyone being able to see them all the time. So, string. It’s important. Hefty string.

Ryn (00:50:16):
Get some paracord. Get a knife to cut it with. Get familiar with your knife. Don’t let your knife only live in your emergency bag, and you never, ever handle it or touch it until you’re already in the middle of a panic mode. That’s not a great way for knife safety.

Katja (00:50:30):
Hey, that’s true for fire stuff too. Make sure that you get it out. And I really like mag sticks. And Light My Fire is the brand that I like best, but there’s a billion of them. But you strike them with a piece of metal, and they throw sparks. And they’re extremely reliable, way more reliable than matches, but they take a little bit of practice.

Ryn (00:50:55):
You’ve got to get used to it. Yeah.

Katja (00:50:56):
And the first time you try it, you might think I’m never going to get this. But I swear if you just tell yourself I’m going to do it a hundred times in a row. Somewhere around time 57, you’ll be like oh, I got it. Because there’s just a little angle that you kind of have to just find where that is. And once you find it, you get it every time. So, okay. It takes a little bit of practice. But they are extremely durable. They last a really long time, and they work even if they’re wet. So, it’s worth it. And the same with your camp dishes. Listen, everyone in your party – your family, your friend group, your whatever – not everybody needs their own set of camp dishes. You can share. But have them and get a little familiar with them. And make sure you know if they extend, or collapse, or all those different things. They make all different kinds. Just make sure that you feel comfortable with that. And that you have enough but not too much so that everybody can share, and you don’t have to carry a lot of weight. Yeah. But anyway, yeah. Practice. Practice with your stuff.

Ryn (00:51:58):
Practice with your stuff. Practice with your stuff. Absolutely, yeah. Bring a change of clothes, at least some underwear, some socks. You are going to really appreciate having that at some point along the time.

Katja (00:52:08):
Even if you can’t carry a whole change of clothes, underwear, and socks makes a huge difference.

Ryn (00:52:15):
In the sense of little things that make a big difference, some playing cards. A little game that you can carry for yourself, for kids, whatever. Again, it’s just nice to have. And then just practically speaking, you may want to have some emergency contact info on a piece of paper, maybe laminated or in some other protective case. Just so that’s always there with you again, if the power’s out, if you don’t have your devices, all that kind of thing. And an emergency blanket like the foil ones, the things that you put around the marathoners, those are really handy. They’re very compact when they’re folded up. Very good for keeping you warm. A nicer blanket is nicer. absolutely.

Katja (00:52:57):
Or a sleeping bag is fantastic, but that’s not always an option. So, as long as you have some kind of emergency blanket. And they make ones that are a little bit more durable, that don’t tear very easily. They’re still the foil-y kind of thing, but they’re a little bit tougher. And the thing is that it first off, they do really work to hold the heat in. But secondly, they have a million other uses like a privacy panel, like whatever.

Homework & Where to Find More Information

Ryn (00:53:28):
Yeah. So, we could spend, obviously, a lot more time talking about any of those things or what else to include on your like ideal world list of all the stuff we could possibly have in there. And that’s a good thought exercise to go through. That’s part of your homework is to think through, and be like what kind of gear do I actually need? What of that gear am I already familiar with? Not just do I already have but am familiar with, know how to work with well, efficiently. That’s part of the homework process, right? And then here comes the rest of it. So, mentioned that the first aid stuff, the herbs, this is going to be for you to dig in a little bit further today. And so there are some links in the show notes for this episode. The first one you’ll see is a blog post called First Aid Kits for Everyone. And there we talk about – well, you wrote about – what should you carry? How are you going to carry it around? You stressed the importance of actually working out of your kit. That should be the first thing you go to when you cut yourself in the kitchen, or when you sprain your ankle in the yard, or whatever.

Katja (00:54:32):
Just so that you’re really comfortable with it.

Ryn (00:54:34):
Do you know where everything is? Do you know how to get to it? It’s mentally mapped, right?

Katja (00:54:39):
There are three different kits in that series because you don’t always need to have a giant, huge backpack first aid kit. Sometimes you need one that’s super tiny that fits in your pocket. And so there is a tiny kit. And there’s kind of a daily kit. And then there is a big kit for okay, you’re going to take care of your friends, your family, your community group, whatever. And each one has a detailed list of exactly what’s in it, and how many, and why, and the herbs that I include in each one as well.

Ryn (00:55:15):
Yeah. So, that’ll introduce you to some herbal thoughts. And then to get further into there, your task is to think in terms of actions, right? Like in my first aid kit for disaster situations, I want some antimicrobials. I want some astringents. I want some digestive aids, including some nausea stuff, some stuff for diarrhea, some laxatives for constipation, right? I want to have some nutritive herbs. I want to have some nervine herbs. I want to have some exhilarant herbs to lift our moods when everything’s terrible. I want to have some stimulants to keep us going when we’re really starting to slow down. So, you think in terms of actions that you’re going to require in these moments. And then you apply those in terms of the herbs and the formulas that you’re going to actually construct and then pack in. And you’re always looking for areas where they overlap, right? If you can have those polycrest herbs you mentioned earlier. This plant does a dozen different things. All of them are likely to happen in this situation. That’s your best friend, right? You’re always looking for that.

Katja (00:56:14):
A super simple example there could be sage. Sage is antimicrobial. Sage is a digestive stimulant. Sage is also a digestive bitter. It’s warming and a bitter. Sage is going to help if there’s any kind of mouth problems because you can’t brush your teeth. Because oops, you forgot to put a toothbrush in your first aid kit or in your emergency bag. But oh, okay, I’ve got sage. I can swish with that for a while, and that’s going to maybe help keep my mouth from being a disaster. And other things probably too.

Ryn (00:56:50):
You can do steams with it.

Katja (00:56:51):
Yeah, exactly. So, if you kind of think about each kind of herb, and say well, how many actions can I get out of each individual herb? And then choose the ones that have the most application. Then you don’t need to carry as much because each herb is doing more work.

Ryn (00:57:11):
Yeah. And we can help you with this process. So, referring back to some prior episodes, we had one called Herbs for First Aid and Disaster Response. And that’s one possible set of herbs to meet the needs of that whole list of actions that we’re trying to cover. It is New England centric. You know, if you’re in the desert southwest, there’s going to be other plants that you have better access to that fill in the jobs. But it should get you thinking, get you in that right direction. One area that’s critically important to consider but easy to forget when you’re thinking about first aid – when you’re thinking about blood and guts, including like upset guts, right – is psychological first aid. And so we had a podcast episode about that. It’s a very important topic around here. And that pod will really get you started in terms of thinking about nervines in terms of acute needs and how to think about which ones are going to be most relevant and most helpful in those moments.

Katja (00:58:12):
So, we’ll have them in the show notes too, but that was episode 64: Herbs for First Aid and Disaster Response. Episode 66: Herbs for Psychological First Aid.

Ryn (00:58:24):
And then we had a series, so 166, 7, and 8 were Herbalism and Climate Change. And there was an episode on heat waves, and then flooding, and then fires, right, 166, 7, and 8. And those are really good to look through for those specific risks, right? You’re like hey, I live in New England, and we’re getting a heat wave this week. And it’s going to be 99 degrees on Thursday. So, I better listen to that and learn about sour herbs, and hibiscus, and lemonade, and all that kind of fun stuff. Or if you know that there’s potential for flooding in your area or for fires. So, you can apply the actions from there that are most relevant to your area’s risks. Yeah. and then finally, episode 187, Herbalism in a Time of Collapse. And that one was at the same time taking kind of a broad view of what are the needs in a time of collapse, and how does that manifest for people moment to moment. And then also on a very practical level, where do you start? You start by getting to know your local herbs that are antiseptic, that are nutritive, that support emotional health, digestion, and breathing. And if that sounds like a lot, don’t worry. You can do them one at a time. You can focus on one category each week. You’ll be there in a couple of months. You’ll be ready to go.

Katja (00:59:45):
Yeah. Okay. Well if that sounds like a lot, we have more.

Ryn (00:59:54):
There’s a lot to talk about.

Katja (00:59:56):
There’s a lot there. But listen to those podcasts. Check the blog post about the first aid kits. And if you’re like this is giving me confidence. This is feeling really good. This is information that I need. Then check out the Emergent Responder program. There are so many people who either have written to say I took this just in time. And then there was a wildfire, then there was a hurricane, then whatever, and I knew what to do. And then there were other folks who wrote, and they were like I took this course because I lived through the dollar fire, or the camp fire, or the whatever.

Ryn (01:00:29):
Or Harvey or whatever it was.

Katja (01:00:31):
Yeah. And if only I had known these things before. But now I know them, and they’re still helpful actually. So, definitely check this course. It’s two courses bundled together. One course is kind of on the organizational and management side of things. How to find resources. How to organize people. How to put together a first aid tent and a long-term first aid tent. How are you thinking about getting clean water and shelter and security? And all those things are in the management side of things. Wow do you deal with lost people? What do you do with bodies if you have to manage that? Just all that kind of stuff. How do you interact with FEMA if that’s an option, or the Red Cross, or whoever. And then the second part is around first aid and long-term first aid, so second aid or whatever.

Ryn (01:01:29):
Second through 10th.

Katja (01:01:31):
Yeah. So, this is everything from how do we nourish a community so that we are less susceptible to disease and infection. To how do we deal with common disease and infection in a post-disaster situation. How do we support babies, and pregnant people, and elders, and people with special needs in a long-term disaster? How do we support people who have chronic illness or serious illness in a long-term disaster?

Ryn (01:02:01):
Who may not be able to access their medications as much as they would like to. Yeah, right.

Katja (01:02:05):
Exactly. And of course also broken bones and stuff, all the usual kind of stuff too. But that longer-term community thinking is also in there.

Ryn (01:02:17):
Yeah. So, it’s very structured. It takes you through it a piece at a time. And there are big picture things to think about. There are big, complicated elements to weave together there. But Katja did an amazing job in bringing all of that to you. And of course, like all of our other courses, your access isn’t going to go away. You have access to us in Q&A sessions and through discussion threads that are built right into the course platform itself. So, that if you need help applying these lessons to your particular life in your community, then we’ve got you. We can do it.

Katja (01:02:54):
Yes. We answer questions every day. And twice a week there’s live Q&A. So, you’re not just out there all by yourself trying to be prepared for who knows what’s coming. No. We’re all in this together. And if you’re like I don’t actually know how to find that resource in my community. Then say so, and we will find it together so that you do know. Yeah, we really want you to be prepared for whatever is the thing in your area. If it’s hurricanes, if it’s fires, if it’s flooding, if it’s heat, if it’s whatever. Let’s all get prepared together. The more of us who are prepared to help, the more people we can help. And the reality is that our first responders are maxed out. They are always working as hard as they can, not getting enough sleep, not having enough resources, especially in these kinds of situations. And if we can turn ourselves into people who can respond to many things, then it’s less burden on them, less work on them, and more people who get helped overall.

Ryn (01:04:01):
Hey, that sounds pretty good.

Katja (01:04:03):
So, check out the Emergent Responder Program at online.commonwealthherbs.com, or just grab the link right in the show notes.

Ryn (01:04:13):
There you go. All right, everybody. That’s it for this episode. We’ll come back eventually with some more Holistic Herbalism podcasts for you. Until then, take care of yourselves. Take care of each other. Drink some tea.

Katja (01:04:27):
Drink some tea.

Ryn (01:04:28):
Or maybe some lemonade. And be prepared. Bye

Katja (01:04:34):


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