In the news

 How well prepared are you?

No region of the country is free from the possibility that a natural or man-made disaster will force us to leave our homes, at least for a day or two. If it hasn’t happened yet to you, someone in your circle of friends, relatives or co-workers has probably had to leave their home and nearly all that they own behind on extremely short notice. Wildfires, floods, tornados, earthquakes, hurricanes and landslides are Mother Nature’s doing; gas leaks, chemical plant explosions and the like are the price we pay for technology.

What valuables and living essentials could you gather up with ten-minutes warning – or less? What if you couldn’t use your vehicle? How much could you carry? And what would you carry it in?

As prepared as Pat and I are with our “bug-out bags” that would allow us to survive outdoors for about three days, when we were recently threatened by wildfires and were the next neighborhood that would receive orders to evacuate, that ten minutes went by really fast! But we were ready.

If you are taking prescription medicines be sure to include those. Do you have credit cards, cash and checkbooks within reach? (I almost forgot the last but Pat didn’t.) How about what your pets will need?

You can find emergency evacuation kits on the Internet but it’s easy to make your own. Hint: a wheeled carry-on will hold most of what you need.

Lifestyle

How much water should you drink in a day?  “Ounces per pound per day” is meaningless. During a Santa Ana in San Diego when the humidity is less than 10 percent while you’re puttering around the yard it will take a lot more water than sitting in front of the TV on a chilly day. The best indicator is simple: your urine should be light yellow with little odor. If it’s dark and smelly you not only run the risk of developing kidney stones, but being only 2% dehydrated will make your thinking fuzzy. If your urine is almost as clear as tap water you’re overdoing it, and several hours of that might cause a seizure.

It’s not being overzealous to have a bottle of water available in the car, and a glass on the countertop when you’re at home. Stainless steel water bottles only cost about $15 and they will last longer than you will.

How does all this fit it with dieting? What passes for hunger is often thirst, and by drinking 6-8 ounces of water you can usually make the hunger pangs go away. If that doesn’t work, have a piece of fruit – not a handful of jellybeans!

Something to keep in mind: back in the Stone Age there was no beverage but water. That worked out fine for a couple of million years.

Another point: the single most important factor in excess weight gain in America is sweetened drinks. And the average size is now 20 ounces!!

 

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