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Monday, February 20, 2012

Edible Plants- A Valuable Outdoor Survival Skill To Learn

Edible Plants- A Valuable Outdoor Survival Skill To Learn


It is important to find something to eat if you find yourself in an outdoor survival emergency situation.  Edible plants may be a great option for you to get some nourishment.  You must be cautious when trying a new plant to eat, because even if the plant is considered to be edible, it may invoke a serious allergic reaction for some people.

Research plants before you begin tasting them.  Don't eat something if you are unsure about its safety.  Consider experimenting with edible plants on a day hike.  If an unforeseen reaction does occur, you will be close to help.  This is especially true for individuals who are prone to allergic reactions.

You should begin by understanding the edible parts of the plant.  Roots, stems, leaves, buds, seeds, and flowers are all valuable parts of some plants.  Be aware that some portions of a Plant may be edible while others are not.

Out in the wilderness, you may not know for certain the specifics about the types of plants that are around you.  You can begin to learn about the plants by studying the plant.  How does the plant smell, for instance?  Is there a negative reaction by touching the plant?  Place a piece of the plant on your wrist.  Generally, if you do not experience a skin reaction within 15 minutes, you are probably safe.  Do be aware that skin reactions are possible after this time, but this is usually a good rule of thumb.

Once you have decided to try a portion of the plant, prepare it in the manner you intend to eat it.  Do not start popping dinner into your mouth and swallowing.  This can be very dangerous.

First, place the prepared plant on the outside of your lip.  See if you have a reaction to the plant in 5 to 15 minutes.  If no reaction occurs, place a tiny bit on your tongue and hold it in your mouth for a brief period of time before spitting it out.  You may go ahead and chew it for a moment, but do not swallow it.  Wait another 15 minutes or so to determine how your body will react to this plant.

It may seem that this is a tedious process, but avoiding a serious or fatal reaction is worth the time and effort.

By this time, you will be able to determine if you want to consume this plant.  Don't naturally assume that just because one part of the plant is edible that all parts of the plant are safe.  Repeat this procedure for each part of the plant before determining if it is edible and crucial to your survival.

Do keep in mind that humans can survive for weeks without food.  Edible plants may help to provide healthy nourishment in a survival situation, but do not eat whatever is around in haste.  Grabbing the wrong plant can bring you plenty of trouble.  Poisonous plants can cause mild to serious reactions.  Some plants may be hallucinogen us or cause a fatal reaction.  Always take the time to experiment with each part of any new plant to maintain excellent health.

See you on the trail,
--Greg  

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