This article is part of a complete guide to preparedness - Getting Prepared, An Untrained Housewife's Guide. Everything you need to have a simple survival plan for you and your family!
Recently, I read a novel titled “Alas, Babylon,” by Pat Frank. This book was written in 1959 and is about the long-feared nuclear war anticipated during the ’60s. The experiences of the survivors brought new ideas to my own emergency preparation plans. One item that became critical in large quantities was salt.
I have always known the need of the human body for salt, and have always kept the required amounts for one year: 5 pounds per person. It is very important for our health to use iodized salt. But there are many valuable uses for uniodized salt – so many that it would be prudent to store uniodized salt in large, bulk amounts.
If you take into consideration the need to preserve meat without electricity, you will need much more than 5 pounds of uniodized salt per person per year. Meat can be boiled in salt water and dried. Meat can also be covered with salt, eliminating the boiling step. Plan to store enough salt to preserve meat and fish, just in case!
Uniodized salt in large quantities is used to tan hides. If you need to kill an animal for food, why not use the pelt, too? Even if you are not in a survival situation, you can use, give as a gift, or sell a tanned hide. It will take about 5 pounds to tan one deer hide.
Making Saline Solutions
Most sites warn not to use rock salt to make saline solution. Un-iodized table salt or laboratory grade sodium chloride is recommended. Also, it is not advisable to use homemade saline solution wounds. So in an ideal situation, go with the best, including sterile distilled water. Here is the recipe on Buzzle.com:
Next, take the other saucepan, pour the distilled water into it. Then you have to add salt or sodium chloride to it. Normally, the concentration of sodium chloride in a sterile solution should be 0.9 %. So, in one liter of water, you need 9 grams of salt. One teaspoon of salt weighs 5 grams approximately. So, you can add one heaped teaspoonful of salt into the water. Boil this saline solution for 15 minutes. Let it cool down. Pick up the sterilized jar and the lid with the help of the tongs and pour the freshly prepared sterile saline solution into the jar and store it in refrigerator.
If you had plenty, and I means LOTS, of salt stocked up, you could use it to make saline solutions for many things. That less-than-perfect saline solution could be used in an emergency for irrigating nasal passages, massaging a sore throat, and yes, even wash out a wound. Most sites also warn not to use home-made saline solution on contact lenses. Since contact lenses are consumable these days, and if the emergency lasts for months, you are going to run out of them anyway. This is why I purchased a very ugly, very sturdy, very serviceable pair of regular glasses. Without them, I would be legally blind, so they are a necessity in my prepper closet!
The moral of this story? Stock up on salt- much more than simply what is recommended per person for dietary needs. Go. Get. Salt!