OUTLINE

1. REQUIREMENTS TO MAINTAIN HEALTH. Maintenance of health is the first step in preventing injuries. The three requirements are: (WSVX.02.15a)

A. WATER

(1) A person can not survive without water for more than a few days. Your body loses water through normal body processes (sweating, urinating, and breathing). During normal activity the kidneys excrete 1 to 2 quarts of water per day and a person evaporates . 5 to quart per day. Other factors, such as heat exposure, cold exposure, intense activity, high altitude, burns, or illness, can cause your body to lose more water. Water intake is critical in preventing illness.

B. FOOD

(1) The body can live several weeks without food. However, without an adequate supply to stay healthy your mental and physical capabilities will deteriorate rapidly. Food supplies the body with the necessary nutrients and energy to survive.

(2) Food sources are plants, animals, and fish.

(a) Fiber. Fiber prevents irritable bowel syndrome. In the Falklands campaign the British had a major constipation and diarrhea problem. This was largely caused by dehydration and a low fiber diet. Grasses and pine needles are a good source of dietary fiber.

(b) Vitamins. Vitamins are essential to metabolic functioning of the body and cold weather compounds this function. Our bodies cannot make vitamins so we must provide them in our diet. Most edible plant life contains many different vitamins. Associated illnesses from long term deficiency are Scurvy (vitamin C) a physical disease and Beriberi (vitamin B1) a mental disease. Vitamins can be found in the cambium layer of trees, pine needles, and stinging nettle.

(c) Minerals. The mineral that we are primarily concerned with is Iron. Iron deficiency causes a 9% decrease in heat energy production. Iron acts as a thermo regulator. Consuming only 1/3 RDA of iron results in a 29% greater heat loss during cold exposure. Animal blood, dandelions, stinging nettle, and marrow provide the major source of iron. Ensure these foods are properly prepared.

(d) Calories. To produce energy, the body uses calories. Proteins, fats, or carbohydrates produce calories. Of these three, certain ones produce better energy than others do. Animal meat is an excellent source for caloric intake, although nuts from pinecones can supplement it.

1. Protein. Proteins are a reparative food of complicated molecules composed of chains of amino acids. There are numerous kinds of amino acids which cannot be synthesized by the body and thus must be consumed in the diet. A pure protein diet can cause fatalities in 3-8 weeks from Rabbit Starvation, a term used for living on a relatively fat free rabbit diet. Protein can be found in dandelions, nuts, and meats.

2. Fat. Fats serve as the main storage form of energy. Fats produce energy and heat. Fats are best obtained from bone marrow, liver, or the stomach portion of fish

3. Carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are known as the quick energy food. They produce lots of heat. They are stored in the liver and muscles. These organs are not large and can be markedly depleted by fasting for as short as 24 hours. Cattails, nuts are a source for carbohydrates.

C. PERSONAL HYGIENE

(1) Cleanliness is an important factor in preventing infection and disease. It becomes even more important in a survival situation.

(2) The areas to pay special attention to are the feet, hands, armpits, crotch, and hair. Visual and physical inspections should be conducted daily. Hand and finger nails should be kept as clean as possible to prevent infection of mucous membrane.

(a) Soap (lye) can be made from animal fat and ashes.

(3) Teeth are another important area to keep clean. Brush your teeth each day either with a toothbrush, or if you don't have one, make a chewing stick.

(a) A chewing stick is made out of a twig about 6 to 8 inches long. Chew one end of the stick to separate the fibers. Now you can brush your teeth.

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