Column: Healthy Hurricane Food Essentials

September 17, 2020 | 0 Comments

[Opinion column written by Agathe Holowatinc]

As we navigate the Atlantic hurricane season, we at FUELLED Bermuda urge you to take all necessary precautions to prepare your families and properties at this time.

During hurricane season, your emergency plan should include a list of items that you can keep stocked in your home. This hurricane preparedness grocery list should include a first aid kit, batteries, candles, lighters, water, certain non-perishable foods and other supplies that you may need.

Food-wise, if in the past you focused on stocking up on chips, chocolate bars, white bread, peanut butter, commercially produced cookies, soda pop, juices, wine, beer, rum and other snacks, today’s newsletter will help guide you towards a healthier approach to hurricane food preparedness.

That’s right, this your guide to healthy hurricane food essentials to keep on hand to ride out the storm.

1. Water

We need water to survive!

Water may not be drinkable during/after the storm and you may not have water pouring out of your faucets due to electrical outages.

You need: One gallon of drinking water per day per person plus more for any pets you have.

Stock up for at least three days. Fill up your water bottles now and buy bottled water.

2. Canned Vegetables

A great way to get more for your money, canned veggies still have the nutrients you need like potassium, iron, calcium, dietary fibre and even some plant protein. Some are even considered superfoods like probiotic-rich sauerkraut and kimchi [when made in brine and not vinegar].

Watch out for: Added sugar, salt, and oils. When these are added in, they make this a junk food – not what you’re going for. Rinse them off well or buy jars or cans without those added in.

Ex. Olives, sauerkraut, kimchi, beets, mixed veggies, asparagus, corn, green beans, peas [watch out for added sugar with peas]

Note: Canned fruit is okay too, like pineapple chunks, but ensure the fruit is in water, and not syrup or sugar.

3. Canned Tuna, Sardines, Anchovies, Clams, Oysters, Mackerel, Salmon

Great source of muscle-building protein, blood-building iron and other essential minerals, and some are loaded with healthy Omega 3 fats.

Watch out for: added oils, as often these are the cheaper inflammatory seed oils [safflower seed oil, soybean oil, etc]. Hard to avoid entirely so if you buy, say, canned oysters [something I love], rinse the oil off as much as you can.

4. Nuts & Seeds

A delicious and healthy snack loaded with powerful plant proteins, healthy omega 3 fats, fibre, essential vitamins and minerals and more!

Raw is healthiest but roasted is okay too. Be mindful of salt content, less is better.

Ex. Nuts: walnuts, almonds, macadamia nuts, pistachios, Brazil nuts, cashews. Avoid peanuts entirely.

Ex. Seeds: pumpkin seeds, hemp seeds, sunflower seeds, chia seeds.

5. Nut & Seed Butters

High in powerful plant proteins, minerals and healthy fats, these keep you full and satisfied and are a total win with me!

Nut and seed butters are shelf stable for a while in Bermuda, but if you’re able to keep them cool in the fridge, please do. The natural ones, i.e. no added preservatives or other chemicals, will have the fatty acids go rancid in our Bermuda heat after some time out of refrigeration.

Ex. Tahini, almond butter, cashew butter, sunflower seed butter. Avoid peanut butter entirely.

Watch out for: Added sugars, salt and oils. These are added in and they make this a junk food – not what you’re going for!! The ingredients list should read, for example, ‘almonds’ and that’s it. Nothing more. Maybe “roasted almonds’ but nothing else.

6. Fruit

These are water-rich and high in immune-boosting phytonutrients! Plus, they can be enjoyed raw and last a while outside of refrigeration.

Ex. Apples, bananas, pears, plums, citrus [grapefruit, oranges] will last a while on the shelf.

7. Hearty Veggies

Some veggies can be enjoyed raw and last longer outside the fridge than others and are a great source of energy, fibre and immune-boosting vitamins.

Ex. Carrots, celery, broccoli, tomatoes, mushrooms [can be eaten raw], zucchini, organic bell peppers, cucumbers.

8. Healthy Oils, Vinegar & Celtic Sea Salt Or Pink Himalayan Salt, Pepper

These will ensure you are getting those essential fatty acids in your diet while keeping you satiated, plus they’re the ideal way to dress up your veggies. Maybe even consider a healthy/clean ingredient taco seasoning mix here [to dress up beans or canned tuna, for instance].

Ex. Oils: Avocado oil, organic virgin coconut oil, olive oil [are the most shelf stable]. Flaxseed and hempseed oil and UDO’s oil should be refrigerated/kept cold.

Ex. Vinegar: Apple Cider Vinegar, balsamic vinegar, etc. Most vinegars are shelf stable.

9. Canned Beans

An incredible source of powerful plant protein, dietary fibre, iron and other minerals, canned beans are shelf stable, will fill you up, keep you full and can be dressed with your healthy oils, vinegar, salt and pepper.

Note: Drain & rinse well.

Ex. Cannellini Beans, Great Northern Beans, Fava Beans, Kidney Beans, Navy Beans, Pinto Beans, Black Beans, Chickpeas.

10. Bread & Crackers

Bread: A lot of commercially produced breads are really bad for you and so if you’re wondering to stock in this area, I would highly recommend buying the Ezekiel or Genesis frozen breads from your local grocery store [almost all Bermuda grocery stores carry these] as these are the best breads out there, nutritionally speaking.

Then defrost a few slices at a time as the hurricane hits, or if you have power still, then pop them in the toaster or on the frying pan [frozen] with a bit of coconut oil and you’re all set! I have found this bread to be shelf stable, unfrozen, for up to 5 days in Bermuda.

Crackers: For crackers, I have no recommendations for commercially produced ones, because of the inflammatory oils used to make them. Crackers are not stocked in my home. So, get clean rice cakes if you can find them, or, better yet, just toast up Ezekiel or Genesis bread on a frying pan with a bit of sea salt and coconut or avocado oil, cool them, and store them in a zip lock bag if you are concerned the power will go out [or fry them fresh if you have power]. They should give you that crispy, savoury texture and taste you are going for.

Bonus:

11. Healthy Sweets

Yes, I know, where is the fun, right?

To satisfy your sweet tooth, here are my top 5 shelf-stable suggestions to keep stocked for the storm.

Top 6 Healthy Hurricane Sweets:

Dark chocolate [70% or darker], apple sauce, dates, dried figs, raw honey to add to Tahini to make a healthy sweet spread, and my Canadian Maple & Sea Salt Roasted Walnuts [see recipe from last week].

Note: Be sure you have a can opener!

I hope this was helpful; stay safe!

We urge you to keep informed via the Bermuda Weather Service and the media, and to tune in to the Government Emergency Broadcast Station on FM100.1 MHz during a storm.

Spread the love: feel free to share this message with someone you care about. Print it off or save it in an email folder: keep this post and food list as a reference for later!

Much love, serenity and good health,

“Get FUELLED today for a healthier and happier tomorrow!”

PS – If you enjoyed this post and would like to receive this kind of information regularly, sign up for my weekly eNewsletter to get these updates delivered right to your inbox.

- Agathe Holowatinc is a Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, co-founder and director at FUELLED Bermuda Ltd., published author, health food private chef and health industry entrepreneur. She is a passionate advocate of real food, holistic approaches to health and communicating big ideas in a simple way. Visit fuelledlife.com or call or WhatsApp on 532-0426.

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