Tag Archives: james talmage stevens
Greetings! My name is John Wesley Smith. Doctor Prepper was kind enough to ask me to guest post from time to time.
In case you’re curious, I have my own blog site on preparedness and survival at DestinySurvival.com.
It’s been a while since the last entry here, so we’ve got some catching up to do. A lot has been happening, and Doctor Prepper has been a busy guy. As he might put it, he’s been busier than a one-armed wallpaper hanger in a Corpus Christi hurricane!
Doctor Prepper’s best-selling book, Making the Best of Basics, is now in its 12th edition. And I’m excited to let you know it’s available in digital form as well as in print. Now you can view it on your computer. Plus, you get bonus material when you order the no-wait/no-freight electronic version.
There will be more to come on this soon, but for now, you can click here for the Family Preparedness Handbook.
Our Preparedness Radio Network on Blog Talk Radio has grown by leaps and bounds. We have a total of 25 show hosts, most of whom broadcast live weekly, discussing various aspects of a preparedness lifestyle. You can gain a wealth of great info to boost your prepping efforts by listening to these experts, authors, and practitioners of preparedness, survivalism, self-reliance, and urban and ex-urban homesteaders.
All Preparedness Radio Network shows are archived so you can download them and listen at your convenience––free of charge. You’re invited to go to DestinySurvival Radio on Thursday afternoons at 1:00 PM CST. I’ve interviewed guests about long-term food storage, earthquake preparedness, prepping for people with disabilities, and more. You can find out more here.
I look forward to sharing more with you about other shows and their hosts. I’ll also be telling you more about Making the Best of Basics. And maybe I’ll toss in a few other odds and ends about prepping, too.
As I like to tell my e-mail subscribers, “Have a great day, and keep prepping!”
Basics of Genetic Engineering
by James Talmage Stevens
Author of Making the Best of Basics: Family Preparedness Handbook (11th Edition)
and Dr. Richard E. Busch III
Author of Surgery not Included
The FDA has not evaluated all of these statements. This information is for educational purposes only. Always consult your own personal doctor or licensed professional for medical advice.
In the late 1980′s, a health epidemic struck the United States, killing more than 100 people, and ultimately affected another 5,000 to 10,000 people who became deathly ill,some of whom became disabled. It took more than 4 years to discover the cause of the epidemic. Finally, the source of the epidemic was identified as L-tryptophan, a sixty-year old,well-accepted form of food supplementation. It was determined a certain brand had genetically engineered a new form that resulted in the health catastrophe.
Genetic engineering of plants and animals is aggressively and distinctly becoming what could become the most massive challenge yet to human beings because the changes can be self-perpetuating, and any errors will be genetically passed on to the next generation.
The genetically-engineered plants that are the most common in the United States are corn, soy, canola, cottonseed oil, and wheat.
It is estimated that 40% of the corn supply and 80% of the soybean supply are genetically engineered. It is practically impossible in the marketplace today to escape genetically altered products––they have become ingredients in the dominant part of the products in our grocery stores––60% of food products in the typical grocery store have genetically modified content, and therefore are inevitably in our kitchens and pantries.
In May 2009, The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) released its position paper on Genetically Modified GMO) foods stating that:
GMO foods pose a serious health risk…
and calling for a moratorium on GMO foods. Citing several animal studies, the AAEM concludes:
…there is more than a casual association between GMO foods and adverse health effects” and that “…GMO foods pose a serious health risk in the areas of toxicology, allergy and immune function, reproductive health, and metabolic, physiologic, and genetic health.1
The AAEM called for the following actions to be taken:
- a moratorium on GMO food;
- implementation of immediate long term safety testing and labeling of GMO food;
- physicians to educate their patients, the medical community and the public to avoid GMO foods;
- physicians to consider the role of GMO foods in their patients’ disease processes; and
- more independent long-term scientific studies to begin gathering data to investigate the role of GMO foods on human health.
According to Dr. Amy Dean, PR chair and Board Member of AAEM:
Multiple animal studies have shown that GMO foods cause damage to various organ systems in the body. With this mounting evidence, it is imperative to have a moratorium on GMO foods for the safety of our patients’ and the public’s health.
One of the main reasons for the warnings about GMO foods is that as a result of the genetic modification, these crops produce new proteins that have never been present before which are, in effect, truly alien to the earth! As a result, our bodies are not capable of properly breaking them down, and the proteins produced and consumed cause the animal or human to have allergic reactions to the “alien” proteins. This reaction can cause inflammation within the body.
This inflammation in the system is the true problem because it has been shown that inflammation is the cause of many of the major health problems today. These include arthritis, heart disease, and even cancer.
The major problem with GMO foods is they are part of the content of virtually everything we eat! GMO foods started as experimental and it was assumed that they would never enter the food supply. However, that has all changed. Now, unless you are consuming a food that is certified as organic, chances are there is some substance in the product that is genetically modified.
Why Genetically Modified Seed?
GMO seeds were created to be resistant to pests and to herbicides. They are also purported to have better cold tolerance and disease resistance.
The plan was to increase yields and “feed the world.” At this point, it is highly questionable if this will be achieved––in fact it appears that the overall production may be diminishing.
In the past, farmers would harvest their crops, sell, and/or save the grain, holding back some grain for seeds for their next year’s crops. With the development of GMO’s, if the farmers buy and plant the GMO seeds it is illegal to hold grain back for seed because legally the seed is owned by companies such as Monsanto. The companies control the distribution and pricing of their patented seed products.
A number of studies over the past decade have revealed that genetically engineered foods can pose serious risks to humans, domesticated animals, wildlife, and the environment.
What Are Some Side Effects of Raising GMO Plants?
A reported side effect of raising GMO’s is the genetically modified plants are cross-pollinating with non-modified plants and causing a gene transfer in the otherwise normal plant. For example, the GMO plants that are developed to be pesticide-resistant will actually produce their own pesticides, and these genetic modifications may even cause the same types of production through cross-pollination in regular plants. Then it is entirely possible that this production––since it is may be in the form of a virus or bacteria that was introduced into the plant for resistance––could take place in our own intestinal system, which in turn could cause our own body to produce the pesticide or herbicide within the intestinal tract or other organ.
These problems may be some of the causes for the new mystery illnesses that are becoming more abundant, such as chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, and other health problems which include higher risks of toxicity, allergies, antibiotic resistance, immune-suppression, and cancer.
There are possible effects on the environment:
- biological pollution causing plants and animals to become extinct,
- creation of a strain of super weeds, and the
- possibility of unknown viruses.
Then, too, there is the high probability of contamination of non-altered as well as engineered plants and animals. The problem is that we just don’t know:
- Have we opened a Pandora’s Box with inherently dangerous alterations?
- Have we created new allergies?
GMO soybeans and corn each contain two new proteins with allergenic properties2, nutritional related problems, and diseases––and perhaps even poisons. Scientists are arguing for long-term testing.
According to Canadian geneticist David Suzuki, there isn’t any scientific evidence to show the GMO plants and food are safe, and he warns:
The experiments simply haven’t been done and we now have become the guinea pigs.
Anyone that says, ‘Oh, we know that this is perfectly safe’; I say is either unbelievably stupid or deliberately lying3.
To avoid genetically altered or engineered foods, plants and products, grow your own garden and preserve your own foods. Buy locally grown meats and fresh organic food. When you must buy processed foods, read the labels thoroughly!
For more information on GMO foods, their attributes and effects, go to:
Use your browser to find references about GMO and GMO foods on the Internet.
Learn to read product labels––however, reading labels is no guarantee you’ll get no GMO products, because the manufacturers are not required to list all ingredients used in their processes.
In conclusion: There is a long road to travel before these issues are resolved!
Inform yourself on these issues and determine whether you want to continue to support an industry-controlled harvest of genetically-modified foods and food products with your food dollars.
Recommended additional resource: The Non-GMO Shopping Guide.
2 See L Zolla, et al, “Proteomics as a complementary tool for identifying unintended side effects occurring in transgenic maize seedsas a result of genetic modifications,” J Proteome Res. 2008 May;7(5):1850-61; Hye-Yung Yum, Soo-Young Lee, Kyung-Eun Lee, Myung-Hyun Sohn, Kyu-Earn Kim, “Genetically Modified and Wild Soybeans: An immunologic comparison,” Allergy and Asthma Proceedings26, no. 3 (May–June 2005): 210-216(7); and Gendel, “The use of amino acid sequence alignments to assess potential allergenicity ofproteins used in genetically modified foods,” Advances in Food and Nutrition Research 42 (1998), 45–62.
3 “Suzuki warns against hastily accepting GMO’s”, The Leader-Post (Canada), 26 April 2005
This is the first of a series of Keep-It-Simple Shortcuts™ (K.I.S.S.).
I’ve tried to reduce the mass of information available in the world of conventional wisdom to that which is specifically effective and useful for those desiring to become prepared. These shortcuts are the results of more than 36 years of living in this mode, and previous to that, living in a family that practiced what is shared herein.
Wheat––the Basic Grain
Wheat is referred to as the staff of life because it is the most widely grown and consumed grain in the world. Wheat is utilized in many forms by different cultures, but the form of wheat most widely used is flour––whether for pastas, breads or other baked goods. Flours are available from the minimally processed whole-wheat flours, such as graham and bread flour to the highly-processed white flours, unbleached or bleached, such as bread, pastry, cake, all-purpose, self-rising, and semolina flour.
Perhaps less known are other types of wheat forms available for our use. Among them are the unprocessed forms of whole-grain wheat. These include whole or cracked kernels of the wheat berries. Slightly more processed forms include bulgur, couscous, wheat germ, wheat bran, rolled and flaked wheat (similar to oatmeal) and the wheat meals. The most recognized forms are the higher processed forms, such as farina, semolina, and white flour.
With such a wide range of uses, wheat is considered by many experts to be one of the most basic food storage items. It is certainly easy to store and has high value in the daily diet. Wheat can be prepared easily in an extremely wide variety of dishes––from breakfast cereals to breads to main dishes to desserts.
Wheat is also very nutritious, containing high amounts of protein, calcium, niacin, riboflavin, and thiamin. When sprouted, vitamins A and C are also present in increased amounts.
As interest in wheat storage and in-home storage and utilization has increased, equipment for in-home processing and food technology for its use and enjoyment have kept pace with the demand. Commercial resources for producing, milling, storing, grinding and preparing wheat have increased at ever-lower costs. Grinders, grinding mills, storage containers, widespread delivery systems, and availability are working for the wheat devotée.
This chapter contains many helpful ideas for storing and preserving whole-wheat grains. The following chapters have recipes for utilizing wheat from whole kernel to white flour. Virtually every form of preparing wheat in-home is covered.
By the way, here is an early warning message––don’t try to start a whole-wheat diet all at once! You would suffer digestive problems an antacid won’t resolve! The normal digestive system cannot adapt immediately to the extreme dietary change a diet of whole wheat would cause. Small children would probably have digestive and elimination problems when commencing a high-level wheat consumption diet.
A diet with a few ounces per day of processed flour products is a far cry from a diet of cracked whole-wheat cereal at breakfast, whole-wheat bread sandwiches for lunch, then a wheat sprout salad, a whole-wheat bulgur casserole, some more whole-wheat bread and a wheat-based dessert at dinner! Living on basic foods is a lifestyle unto itself.
Wheat causes allergic reactions in some people, and a whole-wheat diet will be very difficult for them. Many persons, who at lower levels of wheat intake may not be aware of their allergy to wheat, may discover their latent sensitivity when they ingest more wheat more often.
If you aren’t using whole-wheat food daily, start utilizing it at some meal soon. Get accustomed to whole-wheat foods by using some whole-wheat flour in white flour recipes the family already likes. Once you’ve cleared that hurdle, start on the next one. Eventually you’ll be able to utilize whole-wheat flour exclusively, when flour is required in a recipe. Then, and only then, are you ready to use only your own wheat flour produced in-home, including all those delightful whole-wheat casseroles you’ll create!
Let reason prevail––start now in your goal of utilizing wheat in every form. Break into the whole-wheat lifestyle with a gentle, guiding effort. Don’t wait for a cataclysm––you’ll have more than one serious problem with which to deal!
Basic Storage Guidelines
Listed below are his suggested criteria for purchasing, treating, and preserving bulk whole wheat:
- Protein content
- Moisture content
- Storage techniques
Purchasing Whole Wheat
varieties to buy include Dark Hard Winter, Spring Wheat, Dark Turkey Red, and Montana White Wheat because they store best. Grain should be cleaned for human consumption and free from all foreign matter possible. Buy Grade #1 for food storage. Always buy the best grade(s) available––the quality of your results in cooking, baking and realizing the full health benefits whole wheat offers depends on your choice of grain!
Protein content should be 13% or higher. There are wheat varieties available to the consumer with as much as 18% protein.
Moisture content should not exceed 10% in the grain. This will inhibit microbial infiltration and insect infestation.
Quantity to buy varies according to age, weight, size, sex and appetite of each person.
When buying whole-wheat flour from the store, buy it only if it has been refrigerated. Be sure to keep it refrigerated until utilized. Even these precautions will not prevent loss of the essential vitamins and minerals.
Containers for Storing Whole Wheat
Use crush-proof, waterproof, and moisture-proof containers. All food storage products must be protected to prevent infiltration, infestation, and contamination. The better the container fulfills these requirements, the better condition your stored wheat will be when needed.
Store wheat in round cans. When storing wheat in square cans, allow several inches open space on all sides of the cans to allow air to circulate more freely.
A round, 5-gallon metal bucket, enamel-coated interior, with an airtight lid and waterproof seal is the best option for storing bulk whole wheat. They are generally available from restaurant suppliers, barrel, container, or used-container dealers. This type container will hold approximately 35 pounds of wheat, and is convenient for both transporting and long-term storage purposes. These containers will stack safely, allow better ventilation, protect the contents, and utilize less storage space.
A 5-gallon polyethylene bucket with tight-fitting lid and waterproof seal is a good alternative to the metal can––these are normally available at the same businesses as metal cans. Same caution as to container’s previous contents applies.
Attention to previous contents of any used container is important. Make sure no chemicals, odorous food, or non-food products were stored in food containers.
Always use a heavy-duty, food-grade, sealable, plastic liner in any container for bulk wheat. With any container, a food-grade plastic liner is necessary to prevent infiltration of contaminants, infestation, and moisture.
Properly processed, treated, pre-packed, and factory-sealed wheat can be purchased from reputable mills and food storage dealers. Commercially sealed wheat usually requires neither turning nor aerating when properly stored.
Basic Storage Techniques
There are a few critical things about bulk wheat storage we bring to your awareness. Properly stored wheat will store indefinitely. Improperly stored wheat will neither store for very long, due to spoilage nor have any food value left when used, even if it doesn’t spoil.
Temperature range for storing bulk wheat is 45°–65°F. Edible and sproutable wheat was discovered in the pyramids after centuries of storage. Wheat will keep indefinitely when properly stored. However, since ideal storage conditions are difficult to maintain, always rotate stored wheat. Use older wheat first and replace it annually with new wheat at harvest times, when prices are generally lower.
Always store wheat in a dry environment. Bulk wheat must be kept dry to prevent infestation and contamination. Moisture provides a growth environment for molds, bacteria, and a multitude of bugs.
Wheat in containers draws moisture, so take precautions to protect stored wheat from exposure to high humidity and high temperatures. Use boards or wooden platforms under metal cans to prevent bottoms of cans from touching or being in direct contact with concrete, earth, or any moisture-conducting surface. The bulk wheat draws moisture, so must be isolated by the wood and air buffer to prevent spoiling.
Leave air space around stored wheat containers. Ventilation is necessary because the ambient air provides a buffer zone for the stored wheat as it gains and loses heat.
When storing wheat in square cans, allow several inches open space on all sides of the cans to allow adequate ventilation. Wheat stored in square cans and stacked too closely together does not allow the heat generated to escape. The increased temperatures cause sweating inside the containers.
Use boards or wooden platforms under all storage containers, especially metal cans, to prevent bottoms from rusting.
Avoid storing wheat in bright light or sunlight. Some light will discourage molds from growing in small containers.
Treating Wheat for Controlling Pests
There are a number of methods to treat wheat intended for long-term storage. The following are the best methods overall I’ve found over the past 36 years. However, you choose the method best suited for your specific situation. Each method has advantages and disadvantages.
The following methods seem to be the best overall in controlling pests. Generally, grains are very durable and safe for storage if kept in a cool, dark, and dry place.
Heating Treatment Method
The heating method has the advantage of killing all forms of animal life in stored wheat. The disadvantage is that it will also kill the wheat when overheated or left in the oven too long! Ordinarily, most grain is storable upon purchase––it requires a combination of appropriate temperature, moisture, and light for the bugs to activate.
Basic heating method: pour infested wheat in shallow baking pan to depth of 1/2“. Place in preheated 150°F oven for only 15–20 min. Wheat will scorch if it gets too hot for too long. Oven door may be left open to allow moisture and heat to escape.
Organic Treatment Method
Diatomaceous earth (DE) is an organic method to eliminate the hungry little critters feeding freely on your storage supply. It will rid the container of all living bug and critter life. This organic treatment is not harmful to man or animals. It’s also very cheap and simple to use. Use only DE that is food grade––usually available at natural and whole food grocery stores, health food stores, and nurseries. Do not use the DE for swimming pools and spas! Never!
Basic organic method: for each 5 gal. container, put in 11/4 C. diatomaceous earth (DE), shake vigorously or roll container until all the wheat grains are dusted with powder. To use wheat after treatment, rinse grain before using, then blot the grain dry with a towel, utilizing a massaging action to wipe off powder.
Assure that the grain is completely dry before grinding! Or use it with the dust on it––it’s an organic compound.
Local Area Guidance
Local County Extension Service agents will have additional information on the best storage techniques and details for your geographical area.
What Not to Do with Storage Wheat
Here’s a short list of things to avoid when storing bulk wheat––or when storing any food products:
- Do not pack wheat tightly into any storage space that is not optimal for storage.
- Do not store wheat directly on dirt or cement floors, as wheat draws moisture from these surfaces.
- Do not store wheat in a container which holds more than 2 bushels or 100 lb. Large containers are difficult to move and any infiltration, infestation, spoilage, or exposure would contaminate the entire contents.
- Do not store wheat near:
– hot or cold water pipes, heating ducts, or steam pipes
– washing machine or clothes dryer (vented or not)
– where laundry is hung to dry
- Do not store wheat in any of these locations:
– an unheated garage or non-insulated space
– a basement or underground space not completely dry
– any uninhabitable space (The unbreakable rule: Food is life––store it where you live!)
- Do not put chemicals, salt, spearmint chewing gum, or herbs (such as bay leaf, laurel leaf, rose petals, or other home remedies) in wheat when storing it.
- Do not use aluminum garbage cans for wheat storage––an airtight seal is generally impossible to achieve.
- Always use food-grade plastic liners––garbage bags are not designed for storing edible food. Do not use garbage bags for foods––they contain pesticides not intended for human consumption.
If you store wheat in bulk, you certainly must have access to a wheat grinder. There are many models on the market, both hand-operated and electric models. The electric models are great for quick results, but quite expensive, fairly noisy, and often create a lot of flour dust in the kitchen. It makes good sense to have a hand-operated, foot- or bicycle-powered model available for use before purchasing an expensive electric model. The more a wheat grinder is utilized, the better it grinds the wheat into flour––the grinding surfaces literally grind themselves to a perfect fit.
Storing ground wheat: keep ground whole wheat and all types of fresh-ground or commercially-ground (store-bought) flours in the refrigerator or in an equally cool, dry lace. Refrigeration at 0°F will extend shelf life of ground wheat by approximately 6 months.
Grind only enough wheat for use within 1 week. Natural whole-wheat flour has practically no food value when left at room temperature for a few days.
Next: Special Aspects of Wheat Storage––making your own wheat sugar, how to make yeast-to-sourdough recipe conversions, and how to make gluten (wheatmeat) in your own kitchen.
Got a question, a really hard question, about preparedness?
We're pleased to announce that the Doctor is IN -- and
ready to take all comers. No insurance necessary!
Today's question comes from a lady who wonders why Doctor Prepper said, "When asked where someone should send a check to support clean drinking water or any charitable purpose, I’m never sure where to send them."
Hi Mr. Stevens,
Just re-subscribed. Thank you for your thoughts and for working to get other families to prepare. I am aware that on your website you say, "no doom, no gloom, no politics, no religion, no bull". And as I read through your email and heard you wonder where to donate money, I couldn't help but want to mention the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. No religion! I know, I know, but the LDS church does not have ANY paid clergy or workers. Ever. All work done and any humanitarian efforts are supplied by volunteers. Always! So, if you donate $50.00 to the Humanitarian Fund, all $50.00 goes to Humanitarian Aid. You can even specify how you would like it spent...such as for clean drinking water or a specific country or disaster.
I'm not sure you'd be willing to voice support for this organization, being as how it's a church. I know that makes it touchy, but if you are HONESTLY looking for a properly run organization, I ask you to at least give them an investigation...
Doctor Prepper responds:
Thanks for your note.
Religion is always a touchy issue--I don't want my show to be about religion, politics, gloom or doom, or my issues.
I am well aware of LDS doctrine and practices. I have no issue with any of them--the general public does, so I take that card out of the game! I also take guns and revolt out of the discussions...
I am the #1 all-time best-selling author on preparedness because I avoid the religious issues, and base my teaching on the universal need to live the preparedness lifestyle--which is what the LDS Church teaches on its web page to which you referred me. There the emphasis is on self-reliance, which is iterated clearly in my latest edition. That, by the way, is a clear departure from the previous emphasis on food storage--thank heaven for that.
I hope you're not totally offended for the way I've chosen to do things...You have your commitments, and I have mine--I'm executing them as I have been inspired and directed to get the message out to the most people who will listen. I'm a teacher a la Stephen Covey--teach correct principles without flogging with the religious cat-o'-nine-tails! Remember the statement about teaching correct principles and people will follow them...
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For: James Talmage Stevens, a.k.a. "Doctor Prepper" Author of: Making the Best of Basics–Family Preparedness Handbook
Award-winning radio talk show host:
Quoting from today’s Survival Dispatch:
Today’s the day I [John Wesley Smith] will be a guest on James Talmage Stevens’ Blog Talk Radio program. It’s this afternoon, March 13th at 1:00 Central Time. You’re invited to listen in.
The link for Mr. Stevens’ Blog Talk Radio page is http://www.blogtalkradio.com/doctorprepper
Besides talking about DestinySurvival, you’ll hear a surprising secret or two about yours truly.
Plus, I’ll be announcing a special offer for those who don’t yet receive the “DestinySurvival Dispatch.” So if you have friends you’d like to invite to listen in, be sure to let them know. You’re more than welcome to forward this announcement to them.
My thanks in advance to James Talmage Stevens for the opportunity to be a guest on his Blog Talk Radio program today.
Mark it on your “to do” list. The program is this afternoon at 1:00 Central Time. Again, the page is at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/doctorprepper. If you miss it, you can replay it later.
Thanks for your support.