2 bags of Valley Food Storage Strawberry Cream of Wheat and a bowl of ready-to-eat strawberry cream of wheat

November Freeze-Dried Food Experiment – Prepper Report 3

In Sports & Outdoors by Consumer Files0 CommentsLast Updated: March 9th, 2019

Another month down!

Let me say right up front that this was a challenging month.  I consider it to be my trial by fire month, and hopefully, having survived it, the next several months (or at least a few of them) will be smoother sailing.  While last month saw a few “challenges,” this month took it to a whole new level, which complicated things a bit.

The isolation I mentioned in the last report, came to a head in November and blossomed into a full-blown depression.  In response, I had to make a couple of changes to the way I’m conducting the experiment

Some changes to the experiment

I’ve said before that initially, I envisioned keeping myself almost completely isolated and minimizing my contact with outsiders because that’s what I’d tend to do in an actual SHTF situation.  Turns out though, that even though I consider myself to be something of a hermit, that was too much isolation for me.

To help counter that, I decided to do two things.  

First, I am spending a bit more time talking to friends on the internet. Second, I am allowing myself a small number of “cheat days” if I start getting depressed, and so I can occasionally take my girlfriend out to dinner and such.  While I definitely want this experiment to be as authentic as possible, I also don’t want to lose my relationship over it, so I’m having to walk a bit of a fine line.

If and where I take a cheat day, I’ll add a day to the end of the experiment, rounding up make it a full week. So if I only took two cheat days during the whole experiment, that would add a week.  If I took five, that would still just add one week.  If I took eight, that would add two weeks, etc.

During the cheat days, I’m still obviously not allowed to go to the grocery store and buy food.  So, there’s that.  

Now, let’s jump into the guts of the month!

Daily Food Diary for November 2018

Thurs, 11.01.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

3 Fried Eggs (see notes!)

270

Lunch

Pancakes (see notes!)

580

Dinner

More Pancakes

580

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1580

On the last day of October, I scheduled a dental appointment, which made my whole mouth hurt and my face feel like it was going to slide off my skull. Needless to say, I wasn’t interested in eating anything crunchy today, so I got to thinking:

I can’t really cook, and I can’t fry an egg to save my life. On the other hand, I have a spiffy Quesadilla maker, and I figured that with some applied creativity I could use it to fry an egg, so…why not? I tried it, and believe it or not, it worked! I wound up with a trio of triangular shaped fried eggs. Piece of cake.

Building on that experiment, at lunch, I figured I’d try again with the pancake mix. After all, what are pancakes but slightly thicker, fluffier tortillas, right?

Turns out, that worked too! I have now found two new uses for my trusty Quesadilla maker. Whooohoo!

Granted, the lunch batch of pancakes were a bit subpar – as is often the case. Valley Food Storage recommends WAY too much water, so my first batch was less fluffy goodness and more like a pancake flavored oyster. I cut the water back for dinner, and they came out about right though, so I’m calling it a win! I see more pancakes in my future. They were delicious!

Fri, 11.02.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Cream of Evil

340

Lunch

2 servings of mango habanero chili with pork

1140

Dinner

2 servings of mango habanero chili with pork

1140

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

2770

LOVING the Mango Habanero Chili, but today’s batch burned my still tender mouth like fire. I don’t care – it’s too good to stop eating!

The pain though, combined with the isolation is making this experiment much harder than I had counted on. I’m really feeling its weight, and it’s messing with my writing productivity. Was hoping I’d have some awesome writing days, but so far…not so much.

I talk to Sharon on the phone regularly, but that’s a poor substitute for meeting face to face.

In other news, it’s been too cold for Patches to have much interest in venturing out for more sunset watching. So, we’ve been staying indoors, and I’ve been eating Advil like candy. Bleh.

Sat, 11.03.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

PB&J

230

Lunch

3 Servings of apple oatmeal (wanted to finish off the bag and ward off the cold!)

390

Dinner

Last of the mango habanero chili, plus a can of corn so I can pretend I ate a veggie

640

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1410

Forced myself to spend the whole day at the keyboard, and most of the night too. Hands were screaming by the end, and the depression seems to be deepening, but I’ve got no intention of calling a halt to the experiment.

I should say since I’m talking about mental health, that I am bi-polar with PTSD. No need to go into the particulars, just something to make a note of, as people without those conditions may find it easier to isolate themselves so completely. For me, given the above, it is proving to be a daunting challenge. Will have to keep a close watch on that, and if the depression gets much deeper, will need to try and head it off at the pass.

Sun, 11.04.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

2 servings of multi-grain cereal

360

Lunch

Made another bag of Irish pub soup and put two pork chops in it (2410 for the bag) – 1 serving for lunch

482

Dinner

2 servings of Irish pub soup for dinner

964

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1956

Bitterly, insanely cold this morning. I’ve had both heaters running full blast all day, and it’s just BARELY keeping the room tolerable. I’m right on the verge of teeth-chatteringly cold. Already got the “magic blankey” (the electric blanket) on the bed and turned on high for the cats, who are much wiser than I am, and already huddled together on it.

As soon as I finish writing in my journal today and one more short assignment, I’m going to go join them. Hopefully, we’ll be able to stay warm collectively. BRR!

Mon, 11.05.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Pop Tarts!

400

Lunch

2 finished off the Irish pub soup

432

Dinner

Made another batch of mango habanero chili (with pork) – 2 servings

864

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1846

Today was just a “going through the motions” day. I’m cold. I’m achy, and I’m barely making any progress on the writing. Can’t seem to get my hands thawed out enough to do more than pick at the day’s work. Going to bed early.

Tues, 11.06.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Last of the Pop Tarts.

340

Lunch

2 servings of mango habanero chili

864

Dinner

Mac and cheese and chops for dinner (2360 calories in the bag) – 2 servings for dinner

944

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

2298

Today was basically a carbon copy of yesterday, although it was maybe five degrees warmer. I’m sluggish as hell and really struggling. Bleh. Another day picking at the writing and an early bedtime. If the power goes out, I’m hosed. REALLY need to invest in a generator before next winter.

Wed, 11.07.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Tomato soup

225

Dinner

Tomato soup

225

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

600

Houston, we have a problem. When I rolled out of bed this morning, I felt something that scared the hell out of me. My feet were swollen. That’s exactly what happened in the days before I had my first heart attack, so I freaked out a bit.

Once I got moving around, I bundled up and headed straight to my doctor’s office. One of the perks of living in a small town is, there’s seldom a wait. And if you mention that you’ve got heart trouble, there’s even less of a wait. I got seen right away.

A full battery of tests (it had been a while since my regular doc has seen me, so she takes full advantage when she does). No test results till next week, but my BP was through the roof – almost into the “stroke zone.” The doc wanted to up my BP meds right away, but I’m pretty sure I know what’s causing it.

I said before we fiddled with the meds, I wanted to cut my consumption of freeze-dried entrees and see if I could get it back under control. Doc gave me until the tests came back to get it tamped down. If not, dose goes up on the BP meds. Fair enough.

So…there’s that. About a week and a half of eating almost exclusively from the freeze-dried entrée stock and I’m having BP trouble. Going to have to mix things up a bit. For the short term, I’ll lay off of them altogether, then mix them back in intermittently. We’ll see how it goes. No intention of stopping the experiment unless the doc orders it though.

Thurs, 11.08.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

2 servings of multi-grain cereal

360

Lunch

Thrive Life chicken salad

80

Dinner

PB&J

230

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

820

You know – I don’t even remember what I did today. I’m sure I worked on at least one writing assignment, but I couldn’t tell you about it if my life depended on it. I feel like sludge. I’m sure it’s a mix of the isolation, BP weirdness, and cold. No motivation at all.

I did make myself try that Thrive Life chicken salad for lunch – AMAZING and super easy to prepare. Very tasty. Definitely gonna order stuff from them when I rebuild my stock after the experiment.

Fri, 11.09.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Tomato soup

225

Dinner

2 servings of mac and cheese and chops

944

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1319

Today was probably the worst day yet where the depression was concerned. I even cranked up the beach music (being from Myrtle Beach, it’s kind of a thing) – but…even that wasn’t enough to lift my spirits. Might have managed to write 300 words all day. If something doesn’t change soon, this month is going to be a disaster.

Sat, 11.10.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Pancakes

580

Lunch

Last of the mac, cheese, and chops

472

Dinner

Mexican!

1100

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

2302

The cavalry came. Sharon drove up to see me and rescue me from myself. I took a “cheat day” and took her to dinner at our favorite little Mexican restaurant. Fun fact, Galax VA only has about 7000 people living in it, but they’ve got FOUR Mexican restaurants!

Felt strange to go to town, and stranger still to sit down at a restaurant and order food. That didn’t stop me, but it was jarring at first.

Pretty sure I’m going to have to scale back my ambitions for the month where my financial goals are concerned, but – not every month can be epic, so…yeah.

Anyway – Sharon’s visit really did lift my spirits. Finally got something approaching a good night’s sleep and it was great to have another human being to talk to.

Sun, 11.11.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

1 serving of multi-grain cereal

180

Lunch

Boxed dinner – Rigatoni

270

Dinner

Boxed dinner – Salisbury steak + can of corn

350

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

950

Still feeling somewhat buoyed by Sharon’s recent visit, so managed to have an almost productive day. It was warmer out, which also helped. If the trend continues, I think I got this. Cautiously optimistic.

Mon, 11.12.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Boxed dinner – Rigatoni

270

Dinner

Boxed dinner – meatloaf + mixed veggies

390

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

810

Nope. That was short-lived. The depression monster is back with a vengeance. Bleh. Forced myself to write, but yet another barely productive day. If I can’t figure out how to turn things around soon, I’m going to have a bad, bad month.

Tues, 11.13.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

1 serving of multi-grain cereal

180

Lunch

Boxed dinner – meatloaf

280

Dinner

Boxed dinner – Salisbury steak

280

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

890

Today, I tried a different approach. Slept in. Had some herbal tea. Listened to relaxing music.

It was a bit warmer out, and the light filtering through the window had a magical, golden quality to it. Patches promptly hopped up on the little folding chair by the bookshelves and enjoyed some sunrays. I grabbed my camera and took a few pictures.

Bella Bug got jealous and tried to upstage the Crown Princess of the Kingdom by showing off her hunting prowess and bringing me a dead mouse. I accepted her gift, although she wasn’t happy when I took it from her and proceeded to give me some visual insubordination.

I got a picture of that too, complete with the Mighty Huntress licking her chops. Her fur is filled with static electricity which is why it looks a bit disheveled, but I think the photos came out well.

An Image of Bella Bug 2C Mighty Huntress
An Image of Bella Bug 2C Mighty Huntress 2
An Image of Bella Bug 2C Mighty Huntress 3

Definitely not saying that the change in approach was a magic bullet, but it did help some, and I managed to get a bit of work done after the “photo shoot,” so some progress. I’ll take it and call it a win.

Wed, 11.14.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Tomato soup

225

Lunch

Can of chili

580

Dinner

Can of beef stew

660

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1615

Got a call from my landlady today, warning me that a winter storm was approaching. She wanted to make sure I was prepared. She doesn’t know about my preps, but I assured her that I was as ready as I could get and battened down the hatches.

More progress on the writing front today. Still a hard slog, but I’m managing to move the ball forward again. Onward!

Thurs, 11.15.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

2 servings of multi-grain cereal

360

Lunch

2 boxed rigatoni dinners

540

Dinner

PB&J

230

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1280

Power went out late in the evening, not long after I finished my lovely PB&J dinner. It’s cold but not as cold as it has been and the heaters didn’t do a bad job of keeping the place warm. Their effects will linger a while yet, and I’ve got plenty of blankets. Was making good writing progress right up until the power died.

Going to bed early. It’s DARK up here tonight. I mean – spooky dark. Can’t see your hand right in front of your face dark. I kinda love it.

Fri, 11.16.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Bag of Mixed Nuts

675

Lunch

Bag of Mixed Nuts

675

Dinner

Huge steak with a side of spaghetti squash

2100

Others

NO COFFEE!!

0

Total Calories

3450

Some of my friends from Myrtle Beach have been asking me to come see them. It’s been almost four years since I moved away. Today seems like a good day for that. Power’s still out, so it’s not like I can get anything done here.

I made a giant blanket nest for the kits, made sure they had plenty of food and water, packed a bag, tossed my laptop in the car and started to drive. Made Myrtle Beach by 2:30 and enjoyed the warm weather, sunshine and the company of old friends. A much-needed break that didn’t banish the depression, but was certainly another step in the right direction.

Sat, 11.17.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Chicken Cheese Steak

1200

Dinner

Bag of Mixed Nuts

675

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

2025

Just a quick visit, so headed back to the mountain today. Woke up early, did some writing, had lunch, got an email from the power company that said the power was back on. Realized that I had forgotten to turn one of the two heaters off when the power died and had a momentary vision of a burned down house and crispy cats. I hurried home.

Everything was fine and the heat being on helped warm the place up, so it wasn’t an icebox when I walked through the front door. Everything worked out. Whew.

Did a bit more work when I hit the door, despite being tired, and then face-planted.

Sun, 11.18.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

1 serving of multi-grain cereal

180

Lunch

Can of ravioli

440

Dinner

Can of beefaroni

420

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1190

Today was bland and uninspiring, especially on the heels of a fun mini-vacation. On a whim, I tried some of the ravioli I’m trading to Mike’s kids – bleh. I can’t believe I used to like that stuff as a kid. I’m definitely going to continue trading it.

I noticed that I had a few cans of Beefaroni mixed in with the Ravioli, so tried some of that for dinner. It’s marginally better. Will probably keep the few cans I’ve got left and trade the rest. Will add a bit more variation into the menu. Mediocre writing day.

Mon, 11.19.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

1 serving of chili

540

Lunch

2 servings of chili

1080

Dinner

2 servings of chili

1080

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

2850

A chilly day today, but not brutally cold. Took some time away from the writing to place my big Amazon Christmas order, which included buying Sharon an LG Thinq 7 phone (along with a book she’s been wanting and a badass walking stick). Will add her to my Google Fi plan when the phone arrives.

Speaking of – I experimented with my new Pixel 3 today, getting it set up on Google Fi. Wasn’t sure if I could send texts or get calls up here in the boonies, but sure enough, it worked just fine. Better than the service I’ve currently got. Will be switching! Making some more white bean and lime chili with pork.

Tues, 11.20.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

2 boxed dinners (Rigatoni)

540

Dinner

Salad with chicken on top

1150

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1840

Spent most of the day writing, and Sharon came up for another visit, arriving late in the evening. She wanted to do some shopping, so we went to Wal-Mart and got a small, artificial tree and a variety of cat toys to use as decorations for the tree.

Greeting card with message, "Meowy Christmas From Chris, Bella, Patches, and Jack" with a picture of a decorated Christmas tree on the right

I think the experiment turned out rather well, and Sharon used her artistic skill to turn the tree pic into a digital Christmas card. After that, Sharon made a salad, we had dinner, and fell asleep watching Battlestar Galactic on Prime. A good evening. 


Wed, 11.21.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

2 servings of multi-grain cereal

360

Lunch

Salad w/ Italian dressing

500

Dinner

Nothing (IV drip)

0

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

860

Today, Sharon almost killed me.

She didn’t mean to, of course, but…yeah. It’s been a day. When she arrived last night, she brought me a present, but forgot about it and didn’t give it to me until today. Some handmade scented oil for my diffuser. Lemongrass scented. Was looking forward to trying it out!

Unfortunately, the detail that neither she or I was aware of initially was the fact that said scented oil was made using coconut oil as a base.

There’s just one thing on the planet I’m allergic to. Just one.Yup. You guessed it. Coconut. The diffuser sits on my writing desk, about two feet from my face.

She filled it, turned it on and I turned toward it to take a whiff. Immediately, my eyes…my entire FACE started burning.

She turned it off quickly, but the damage had already been done. I knew that there was no home remedy I had access to that was gonna fix it, so Sharon bundled me up and got me to the ER. It was a very long night, filled with shots, IV drips, irrigations of my nose and eyes, and other fun things.

Those treatments helped, and by…I dunno…3-something in the morning, we were finally cleared to go home. Sharon went to the pharmacy the next morning to get my prescriptions.

For my part – I did pretty much nothing for the whole day except hop around like a chicken with my head cut off and whimper a lot OUCH. Pretty sure I lost at least one level of badassery, based on the night. ☹

Thurs, 11.22.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Multi-grain cereal – 2 servings

360

Lunch

Bag of mixed nuts

650

Dinner

Thanksgiving Feast

2000

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

3160

Originally, our Thanksgiving plan was that I’d follow Sharon back to her parents’ house for Thanksgiving, but that was not an option, so…we adapted. I rode down with her, and rather than heading back home later in the evening, her parents opened their home to me and gave me use of their spare room until I could recover.

I do not like being without my car. Independence and the ability to come and go as I please is a Very Big Deal to me.

Under the circumstance though, the car was of ZERO use to me. I didn’t have anywhere to be, and nothing I had to be doing except heal and try to enjoy the day. So, I went with it and focused on those things.

Although I couldn’t see the feast, it sure smelled good, and I ate generous helpings, which included ham, turkey, stuffing, broccoli, green bean casserole, and pecan pie. Now, it was great pie, but granny’s is still better (I did not say this!) – That shouldn’t be too surprising though – Granny has decades of additional experience, after all. Anyway, a wonderful feast, followed by an early bed time and meds for me.

One thing I’ll say is: You can’t be depressed when you’re in pain. Since the Great Diffuser Disaster, there has been no trace of depression. I’m glad for that, at least. Something to be thankful for.

Final note: The lack of coffee is giving me a headache. It’s okay. I’m dealing.

Fri, 11.23.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Bowl of chicken soup

270

Lunch

Giant ham sammich!

1100

Dinner

Basically, smaller version of yesterday’s feast

1200

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

2570

Docs said that after the hospital meds wore off, I’d have a rough few days as the prescription meds took time to work their way through my system. Hospital meds still must be working, because today wasn’t so bad. Eyes still swollen – it’s hard to see, but I spent the day in bed watching movies.

Sharon called my neighbor Mike and arranged for some emergency cat sitting, which I totally forgot about during the Eyesaster. I freaked, but Sharon had my back. All good.

Today’s movies on Prime included “Prepper,” “CO2” and “The Monster Project.” All decent. Couldn’t really see, but listened. No writing.

Sat, 11.24.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Leftovers

500

Dinner

Leftovers - 2 serving

1000

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

1500

And…there goes the hospital reprieve. Today was awful. Sweats. Vomiting. Woozy.

Swelling in my right eye holding steady. Left eye is MUCH worse. C’mon prescription meds – kick in! Caffeine headache continuing unabated.

Sun, 11.25.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Ham

300

Dinner

Nothing

0

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

300

This was the worst day so far. I don’t think I even got out of bed. I don’t actually remember eating anything, but Sharon told me I had some ham. Marking it down as lunch. Awful.

Headache’s gone down to a dull roar though, so that’s something.

Mon, 11.26.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Small salad

300

Dinner

Ham

300

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

600

Another tough day but not quite as bad as yesterday. At least I remember getting up and moving around. My left eye is still mostly shut, and there’s a hive that has formed on the inside of my eyelid. I messed with it some in front of the mirror, but to no avail. Back to bed with me.

Tues, 11.27.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Salad

300

Dinner

Turkey, veggies, and PIE!

1100

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

1400

Today was better, but…strange. I actually hallucinated today. Some of them were quite pleasant, but others…very dark. No need to go into the particulars, but...yeah.

Anyway, the hive on the inside of my eyelid broke open, but during the night, my (left) eye had sealed completely shut, so the goop had nowhere to go but straight into my eye and back into my system. Gross. Anyway, that, combined with the fever and meds – I think that’s where the hallucinations came from. Another day of basically nothing but bed rest.

Oh, and I did make an executive decision, telling Sharon that THIS was one of “her songs.” She was not amused.

Wed, 11.28.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Chicken soup

270

Lunch

Salad

500

Dinner

Salad and PIE!

1000

Others

NO COFFEE!

0

Total Calories

1770

Holy. Cow. I can see again. Swelling down dramatically in both eyes. Left one still more than half closed and was sealed shut again this morning, but once I got it open…much better! Actually got on the laptop and did a little bit of work, but there’s almost no way I can keep November from being an epic disaster of a month from a financial perspective. Oh well – just gonna have to deal with the fallout from that as it comes.

Watched a few movies on Prime today as I did my work: “The Sheol Express,” “Dimensions,” and “Ex Machina.” On a sci fi kick today. All lower budget, but all really cool. Good stuff. Feeling human again.

Oh – forgot to say, I ate my last bag of mixed nuts when she brought me down to her parents. She told me that I was getting more as a Christmas present so, a bit of a resupply in my future!

Thurs, 11.29.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Nothing

0

Lunch

Salad

500

Dinner

Thanksgiving leftovers

800

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1450

I think it’s time to go home. Feeling better. Not healed yet, but better. Time to get back to the mountain then.

I hitched a ride home with Sharon, and we talked the whole way back. Gonna miss her and her family, but I have to admit, I AM looking forward to being back at Mountaintop.

Got home, turned the heaters on to help dispel the chill that had settled over everything while I was away and the house came rumbling slowly back to life.

Kits were thrilled at my return. Mike’s kids had gathered up the Amazon Prime boxes left on my porch from the order I had placed before the Eyesaster and had them all under my little Christmas three. Great stuff.

On top of that, when I got back, I had a productive writing day. By itself, that’s not enough to save the month, but it’s a start.

Fri, 11.30.2018

Meal

Food Eaten

Calories

Breakfast

Tomato soup

225

Lunch

Salad

500

Dinner

Thanksgiving leftovers

1100

Others

Half coffee

150

Total Calories

1975

So, I didn’t actually go to bed Thursday night…pulled an all-nighter and turned Thurs and Friday into an epic writing marathon that turned the disaster of the month into a slightly below average month.

My hands were screaming by the time the dust settled on the day, but I managed to pull off a minor miracle. There won’t be any financial fallout from the Eyesaster and flirtation with depression that slowed my progress earlier in the month. Score one for the good guys and I’m going to bed!

An Updated Review of Valley Food Storage

I wanted to add a bit to this section based on my BP spike this month.  This isn’t particular to Valley Food Storage products, but as far as I can tell, applies to all freeze-dried foods sold generally.  They have a TON of salt. 

If you have high blood pressure, it’s worth noting that unless you moderate your intake and mix things up a bit, that could cause problems.  As you saw in the journal entries above, it took about two weeks for me to start feeling the effects.

An Image of Apple Oatmeal of Valley Food Storage
An Image of Irish Pub Cheddar Potato Soup of Valley Food Storage
An Image of Mac and Cheese of Valley Food Storage

Fortunately, I’ve got a variety of other types of foods and was able to course correct, doing more mixing and matching to limit my sodium intake.

Granted, in an actual SHTF experiment, you’d probably be doing a lot more physical labor than I’m doing in my experiment so you may be able to eat more of the stuff in concentrated doses. But for me, as a person who already has high blood pressure and heart disease, it was just too much.

An Image of MultiGrain Cereal Food of Valley Food Storage

I’m not saying that freeze dried foods are bad or dangerous, and I’m absolutely planning on continuing to make use of them. But there is a lot to be said for investing in a freeze dryer and making your own so you can control exactly what goes into it. 

I’ll probably do that when I get my little farm, but when this experiment ends, I’ll definitely buy more from Valley and Thrive to rebuild my stocks.  I’ll just have to use them in moderation.

Update on Thrive Life Food

I tried one more new dish this month, the chicken salad. I am still hugely impressed with both the quality of their food and with the ease of preparation. 

A Food Recipe of ThriveLife Chicken Salad with a Burger

Unlike Valley, which I’ve had to really be careful when it comes to how much water to add (most of the packet instructions call for WAY too much water), Thrive is a lot better at this from the little I’ve seen.  Their instructions are clear and spot on, and the food tastes great!  Will definitely be mixing and matching Thrive and Valley when I rebuild the stockpile after the experiment!

End of Month Summary

This was an unquestionably tough month.  Hopefully, though, I’ve now “disaster proofed” the rest of the experiment.  I’d like to have a few months of smooth sailing, health-wise.  I do feel as though I’ve met the health/depression challenges and come through the other side though, and that’s not nothing.

Food-wise, my stocks are holding up well, and I think I’ve struck a better balance where the freeze-dried lunch and dinner entrees are concerned.  Hopefully, that’s the last we see of the massive blood pressure spikes.

Now that I’ve got my BP back under control, and assuming I don’t get killed by something containing coconut or knocked about like a bearded pinball by panicked cows, I think I might actually live through this experiment!

Month End Stats

Weight: 328 lbs
BP: 143/88

Onward to December!

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November Freeze-Dried Food Experiment – Prepper Report 3 was last modified: March 9th, 2019 by Consumer Files