One of the most challenging things to prepare for is a type 1 (insulin dependent) member of your network. However, contrary to what some believe it is possible to do and being a diabetic prepper does not have to be an oxymoron. Type 1 diabetics don’t have to count themselves dead when the SHTF if they follow a few prepping tips.
- Stock up on as much insulin as possible! This cannot be overstated because type 1 diabetics must have insulin to survive. However, if they follow the steps below, they will not need nearly as much as they do under every-day
- circumstances. Stocking up on insulin takes time, so start today. The easiest way is to get your prescription filled as often as possible (based on doctors orders and what insurance will pay for), whether or not you need a refill or not. Stock up those vials and build a buffer using the first in-first out (FIFO) rule so you are NEVER USING EXPIRED INSULIN. In a year or so, you will have a decent supply of insulin. WARNING: Using expired insulin, especially vials not refrigerated, can cause death because insulin can form crystals over time that can kill you when injected.
- Stock up on test strips, an extra tester or two (put on in an galvanized garbage can for EMP protection), and syringes. Although syringes can be used twice, three times, or even more…they are inexpensive and you should have a supply. Testing capabilities will be invaluable and a key to success in making the steps that follow work.
- The key to diabetic survival in a SHTF situation in a low carbohydrate diet. The human body requires insulin to break down carbohydrates into usable energy. A high carbohydrate diet requires a lot of insulin to maintain blood sugar levels; conversely, a low carb diet requires less insulin to maintain blood sugar levels. This means staying away from breads, pastas, root vegetables, wheat, oatmeal, etc. The following are good low-carb foods to stock up on or plan to grow:
- Egg Plant
- Spaghetti Squash
- Used stocked testing supplies to closely monitor blood sugar levels and use as little insulin as possible given your extremely low carb diet. Most diabetics will use far less insulin than normal on an extremely low carb diet, but without close monitoring, there will be no way to determine what that new level is.
- Unfortunately, diabetic survival is not as easy as a low carbohydrate diet that doesn’t require much insulin. Without the sugars from carbs processed by insulin, the body will begin to make energy from fatty acids. This process releases ketone bodies that turn the blood acidic. There are ketone urine test strips available over the counter. However, any diabetic in survival mode, trying to use as little insulin as possible, will likely be generating ketones, so the best method is to try and treat their affects on the body. This can be done as follows:
- Drink significant amounts of water to help avoid dehydration as the renal system and respiratory system attempt to alkalize the blood.
- Drink a solution of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to help alkalize the body.
- Drink a solution of oral rehydration salts to maintain levels of potassium and sodium that can be quickly depleted as the renal system flushes the body.
- Take magnesium and calcium supplements as these too can be quickly flushed from the body.
- Know the symptoms of severe ketone body acidosis and use stocked insulin more liberally together with an increase in carbs and the previously mentioned treatments if they occur as death can result from ketone body acidosis. These symptoms include: nausea and vomiting, pronounced thirst, excessive urination, and abdominal pain.
Ultimately, there is no way for type 1 diabetics to survive indefinitely without insulin. However, a low carbohydrate diet, close monitoring of blood sugar levels to promote absolute minimum insulin usage, and the management of ketone body acidosis will make stocked insulin supplies last much longer.
Other useful resources:
Blackout USA (EMP survival and preparedness guide)
Backyard Innovator (All Year Round Source Of Fresh Meat,Vegetables And Clean Drinking Water)
Conquering the coming collapse (Financial advice and preparedness )
Liberty Generator (Easy DIY to build your own off-grid free energy device)
Backyard Liberty (Easy and cheap DIY Aquaponic system to grow your organic and living food bank)
Bullet Proof Home (A Prepper’s Guide in Safeguarding a Home )
Family Self Defense (Best Self Defense Strategies For You And Your Family)
Sold Out After Crisis (Best 37 Items To Hoard For A Long Term Crisis)
One Reply to “Diabetic Survival in a SHTF Scenario”
And now the 2017 update for long term insulin storage. It has now been found that injectable solutions of insulin can be frozen under certain conditions and maintained in the frozen state for prolonged periods of storage without deterioration, thawed for injection without alteration of physical, chemical or pharmaceutical properties, with maintenance of the efficacy of the time at which it was first frozen. The thawed solution can be injected at once, or can be kept for the period it would have been considered good at the time it was first frozen, i.e., the normal expiration period resumes at the point at which it was suspended. the drug insulin can be stored for an indefinite period of time without any loss of its physical, chemical or pharmaceutical characteristics. The drug solution is instantly frozen as, for example, in liquid nitrogen,
Current practice and regulation prohibits freezing insulin because of physical and chemical deterioration, and the consequent loss of physiological activity, which occur during the freezing process. Such prohibitions have heretofore been wise and necessary and remain so if proper freezing technique is not employed since deteriorated insulin will not effectively arrest the diabetic condition, resulting in a coma or death. It has been found, however, that if the freezing process is sufficiently rapid, the deterioration which occurs under normal freezing processes does not occur, and the insulin retains its full potency and efficacy. In order to attain sufficient rapidity, the insulin, preferably in injectable form, i.e., a conventional injectable solution, and preferably packaged for sale, is subjected to extreme low temperatures until frozen. A convenient and relatively inexpensive technique is to immerse the solution in appropriate containers into a bath of liquid nitrogen, at a maximum temperature of about -320.4 F., until frozen, i.e., for at least about 3 to 3.5 seconds per cc. While a liquid nitrogen bath is a convenient and relatively inexpensive manner of attaining sufficient rapidity in the freezing process, any other mode of operation which will result in a comparably rapid freeze can be utilized.
In essence, if you have a way to keep something frozen, insulin can be flash frozen via liquid nitrogen and stored indefinitely until needed. This does NOT include sticking it in your freezer to freeze it, it HAS to be flash frozen. The method has been tested and flash freezing methods have been given a patent as well.