How to eat in a hostile environment

According to the Rule of Three, you can survive 3 weeks without food. But, why starve when a little preparation can go a long way?

Eating food is a basic human need. Ideally, the food should be nutritious and filling but people’s tastes differ considerably. Whatever your food preferences, all food is a source of energy in the form of calories. In a hostile environment, you will require energy not only to survive but also to fuel your exertions by day and night.

Before travelling anywhere, consider some basic nutritional requirements. Wrap a small packet of biscuits, an energy bar and a bar of very dark chocolate in duct tape. Leave this at the bottom of your pack and know that you will always have a few hundred calories to sustain you.

Remember, too, that you should not eat until you have access to water. Hydration is a priority because you can only survive for three days without water (see the Rule of Three).

6 foods to help you survive any hostile environment.                                                                     

  1. Carry one or two Meals Ready to Eat (MRE) packs. These retort packs can be eaten cold. If you want the meal to be hot, immerse in boiling water for 6 minutes and use the boiled water to make a brew of tea or coffee.
  2. Freeze-dried meals are lightweight but require water to be rehydrated. There are many dishes available but their quality, taste and nutritional values differ from each supplier.
  3. Carry a small bottle (200ml) of cooking oil. You can prepare any food in a pot with some oil.
  4. Carry some salt, bouillon cubes and hot pepper sauce. These ingredients will heighten the flavour of any dish.
  5. Learn how to make chapattis from flour and water. This Indian bread is quick and easy.
  6. Always clean your cooking pot to prevent food poisoning from leftover food in the pot.

You can learn more about feeding yourself in a hostile environment by attending one of our courses.

H.E A.T. tip: If you forgot to carry a small tin opener, tins can be opened with a knife. Insert the blade into the lid and move the blade in a circular sawing motion around the rim of the tin.